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Download Seize the Day Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample Seize the Day, by Saul Bellow Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (4,051 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Saul Bellow Narrator: Grover Gardner Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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Fading charmer Tommy Wilhelm has reached his day of reckoning and is scared. In his forties, he still retains a boyish impetuousness that has brought him to the brink of chaos: he is separated from his wife and children; at odds with his vain, successful father; failed in his acting career (a Hollywood agent once placed him as “the type that loses the girl”); and in a financial mess. In the course of one climactic day he reviews his past mistakes and spiritual malaise, until a mysterious, philosophizing con man grants him a glorious, illuminating moment of truth and understanding and offers him one last hope.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “It is the special distinction of Mr. Bellow as a novelist that he is able to give us, step by step, the world we really live each day—and in the same movement to show us that the real suffering of not understanding, the deprivation of light. It is this double gift that explains the unusual contribution he is making to our fiction.”

    New York Times

  • “One of the finest short novels in the language.”


  • “Saul Bellow is one of the giants of the twentieth-century novel. Read Seize the Day and see why.”

    Irish Times

  • “Grover Gardner’s everyman narrative voice augments the fumbling, oafish life of Wilhelm by supplying the character with an air of bafflement, even helplessness. The pliable narration gives color to the supporting characters of Wilhelm’s father and especially to Doctor Tamkin, whose blunt philosophizing about living in modern times provides the core of this short novel. Gardner’s approach eschews the expected New York City accent for Wilhelm in favor of emphasizing his off-kilter inner turmoil, reminding the listener that Seize the Day is a dark comedy, not just grim reality.”


Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by John Kitcher | 2/12/2014

    " Good pace, interesting style of writing and just good stuff. A similar feel to capote breakfast at tiffineys "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Kate | 1/27/2014

    " Wilhelm is searching for reassurance and finding none. Unemployed, living in a hotel, despised by his father and his wife, he spends a day reflecting on his decisions, obsessing over his actions and the actions of others, and desperately searching for someone to save him. He puts his faith in a swindler and loses the rest of his money; his father refuses to help him; his wife won't even talk to him. I found myself alternately frustrated at the absurdities in Wilhelm's behavior and deeply empathetic with his precarious position in life. An immensely moving read! "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 by Seth Cochran | 1/24/2014

    " Characters very well done, but the main character was super annoying. This novel was very short on plot. Bellow has done much better with Henderson the Rain King. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Evan Sandman | 1/13/2014

    " Lovely, lyrical, devastating portrait of a father & son falling further and further apart, set in a residence hotel in '50s Upper West Side. "

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