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Download The Aspern Papers Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample The Aspern Papers Audiobook, by Henry James Click for printable size audiobook cover
3.34 out of 53.34 out of 53.34 out of 53.34 out of 53.34 out of 5 3.34 (29 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Henry James Narrator: Robin Field Publisher: Blackstone Publishing Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: April 2009 ISBN: 9781455195220
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Set in a crumbling Venetian villa, The Aspern Papers is a story about the heart’s romantic ambitions and the pragmatic methods we use to pursue them. An American editor arrives in Venice on a quest to acquire some unpublished letters written by his favorite Romantic poet, Jeffrey Aspern. He tracks down the mistress to whom the letters were addressed, a now elderly Miss Bordereau, and presents himself as a prospective lodger. In hopes of gaining access to the secret papers, he begins courting Miss Bordereau’s plain spinster niece, Miss Tina. As his obsessive mission leads him into increasingly unscrupulous behavior, he finds that his desire can be obtained only at the price of his honor. Written with taut suspense and brilliant insight into complex human motivations, The Aspern Papers is one of Henry James’ most acclaimed stories.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “The story moves with the rhythmic pace and tension of a mystery story; and the double climax…gives this tale…high drama.”

    Leon Edel, Pulitzer Prize-winning literary critic

  • The Aspern Papers is haunted by the specter of past and future consummations, both achieved and desired, sexual and literary.”

    Guardian (London)

  • “Henry James at his most deliciously wicked.”

    Library Journal

  • “One of the masterpieces of James’ middle period.”


  • “The narrator…experiences a sense of mystical fraternity with the spirit of Aspern, who he believes has ‘returned to earth to assure me he regarded the affair as his own no less than as mine’…At the close of the tale he is forced to seek consolation in the portrait of his deceased hero; however, his final words…illustrate the extent of his disillusionment and frustration.”

    Claire Seymour, University of Tokyo

Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Lindsey | 2/22/2011

    " 3 and a half maybe? I haven't decided yet. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kelley | 1/31/2011

    " Great storytelling. Henry James is a master, but his endings are usually SO depressing! However, the "villian" in this novel got what he deserved. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Jeanette | 1/28/2011

    " Too dull to keep reading but too interesting not to look up the plot spoiler to see how it ended... "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Laura | 10/29/2010

    " An enjoyable reading in a very warm afternoon. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Natalia | 8/10/2010

    " I personally thought, somehow, it was something else. I don't know. It was my first book by Henry James that I've read, and it disappointed me... "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Laura | 7/19/2010

    " 'My door's shut, but you may sometimes knock'. Such a beautiful piece of writing, I am almost heartbroken Jeffrey Aspern was merely a work of Henry James's imagination. Although 'merely' is perhaps the wrong word. Nothing about this book should be hedged as being anything less than brilliant. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Elizabeth | 6/28/2010

    " Loved the tone, the descriptions, the "surprise ending" was a little too heavily foreshadowed. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Rachel | 9/20/2007

    " Turn of the Screw = genius. This was my intro to Henry James. "

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About the Author
Author Henry James

Henry James (1843–1916), American novelist, short-story writer, and man of letters, was born in Washington Place, New York, to a family of distinguished philosophers and theologians. He attended schools in New York, Boston, and throughout Europe, where he later settled. A major figure in the history of the novel, he is celebrated as a master craftsman who brought his great art and impeccable technique to bear in the development of abiding moral themes.

About the Narrator

Robin Field is the AudioFile Earphones Award–winning narrator of numerous audiobooks, as well as an award-winning actor, singer, writer, and lyricist whose career has spanned six decades. He has starred on and off Broadway, headlined at Carnegie Hall, authored numerous musical reviews, and hosted or performed on a number of television and radio programs over the years.