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Download Old Goriot Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample Old Goriot, by Honoré de Balzac Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (13,795 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Honoré de Balzac Narrator: Frederick Davidson Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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Balzac’s universally loved novel explores the great theme of money and its effect on the human character. Old Goriot is a lodger at Madame Vanquer’s Parisian boardinghouse. At first, his wealth inspires respect, but as his circumstances are reduced, he is gradually shunned by the others. He moves into smaller and less desirable rooms in the house, and soon his only remaining visitors are two beautiful young women. The mystery as to who they are and what is happening to Goriot’s fortune involves several other boarders, including Eugene Rastignac, an ambitious youth who hopes to rise in society.

With its complicities and alliances, mysteries and betrayals, passions and ambitions, the house becomes a microcosm of the grasping Parisian society of the 1820s—a perfect setting for Balzac’s masterful portrayal of la comédie humaine, the whole comedic parade of human life.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “The greatest novelist who ever lived.”

    W. Somerset Maugham, on Honoré de Balzac

  • “A man of genius.”

    Victor Hugo, on Honoré de Balzac

  • “[A] meticulously observed story of love and greed…Reminiscent of King Lear, it also resonates today with the clarity of the poet’s barbed pen…Frederick Davidson is brilliant, deadening his voice for the dreadful daughters and their ghastly husbands, as well as portraying each ridiculous tenant in the boardinghouse…But it is Goriot’s deathbed scene that causes the hairs to rise on the backs of listeners’ neck. Listeners…cannot remain unmoved.”


Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Mary | 2/18/2014

    " Admit I read this as part of a class assignment, but really, truly liked it! I like putting myself into the corrupt life of Paris in the early 1800s, I guess. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 by Jeff | 2/12/2014

    " Perhaps I'm cynical, but stories about the evils of sacrificing one's morals for status and wealth strike me as outmoded. Of course it's a good message, but the daily newspaper is full of much worse than anything in Pere Goriot. For this reason, it falls a little flat. However, I was impressed by the narrative flow. It's a tight, quick read - something I wasn't expecting from a 19th century French novel. Maybe that's just how Balzac rolls. This was the first thing I've read by him, but it may be awhile before I try anything else. A decent story, strong characters, and a more than solid execution...but I still felt like something was missing. What am I not getting? "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Tim | 2/8/2014

    " Read in French for exams and was heavy going but once my French was better I read this through in a couple if days. The twists and turns in the plot show that little changes in two hundred years especially with the way students behave. Have not read this translation but the penguin classics version is as good as you can get if you don't go for the French edition "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Gena Lott | 1/24/2014

    " Not the easiest book I've ever read, but worth the plod. Many truthful tidbits. "

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