Extended Audio Sample

Download The Constant Gardener Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample The Constant Gardener Audiobook, by John le Carré Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (8,097 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: John le Carré Narrator: John le Carré Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio Format: Abridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: January 2001 ISBN: 9780743554671
Regular Price: $17.95 Add to Cart
— or —
FlexPass™ Price: $14.95$5.95$5.95 for new members!
Add to Cart learn more )

Tessa Quayle—young, beautiful, and dearly beloved to husband Justin—is gruesomely murdered in northern Kenya. When Justin sets out on a personal odyssey to uncover the mystery of her death, what he finds could make him not only a suspect but also a target for Tessa’s killers.

A master chronicler of the betrayals of ordinary people caught in political conflict, John le Carré portrays the dark side of unbridled capitalism as only he can. In The Constant Gardener he tells a compelling, complex story of a man elevated through tragedy, as Justin Quayle—amateur gardener, aging widower, and ineffectual bureaucrat—discovers his own natural resources and the extraordinary courage of the woman he barely had time to love.

Download and start listening now!


Quotes & Awards

  • “Amazingly seductive, pulling you in deeper all the time.”

    David Halberstam, New York Times bestselling author

  • “Le Carré’s narrative…illuminates the tangle of hypocrisy, politics, and passion roiling beneath that steadfast British restraint.”

    Entertainment Weekly

  • “A cracking thriller.”


  • The Constant Gardener reveals a new and far more Dickensian le Carré…His novel unabashedly wears its heart on its sleeve.”

    New York Times Book Review

  • “Brilliant.”

    Washington Post Book World

  • “Richly detailed, full of righteous fire to offset its desperate prognosis, The Constant Gardener is a very impressive piece of work. It is certainly one of John le Carré’s best books.”

    Times Literary Supplement (London)

  • “Tough-minded, fast-moving, and uncompromising, The Constant Gardener is a tale of personal transformation…eloquent…civilized and forceful.”

    Boston Globe

  • “Le Carré has lost none of his gift for setting vivid scenes in far-flung places expertly described: London, Germany, Saskatchewan, Kenya. His sprinting thriller prose remains in great shape. And thanks to his sixteen years in the British Foreign Office, his merciless send-up of its cutthroat intrigues and petty self-delusions is unbelievably good—or rather, believably so. This is global do-gooder satire on a literary par with Doris Lessing’s The Summer before the Dark…Le Carré [has written] a smart, melancholy page-turner, and his moral outrage (the real subject of his books) burns as brightly as ever.”

    Amazon.com, editorial review

  • The Constant Gardener ranks with The Russia House as the best he has produced since hitting his peak. If this new book is craft rather than art, it is craft of the very highest caliber. It is no mean feat to entertain while also making a reader think. Yet Le Carré pulls this off admirably, weaving together several themes—corporate power, underdevelopment, globalization—that will resonate with a wide audience.”


  • “Nobody writing today manipulates suspense better. A powerful moving novel that stands with le Carré’s best. It is, in order words, essential reading.”

    Sunday Telegraph (London)

  • “Le Carré has never been angrier or more satisfyingly entertaining.”

    New York Daily News

  • “The book breathes life, anger, and excitement.”

    Observer (London)

  • “There is only one character in le Carré’s latest novel who retains any belief in government as a force for good in the world, and she has been brutally murdered before the action begins…Her naïve husband, the constant gardener of the title, rises from his lethargy to follow Tessa’s trail…Readers who want a triumphant saga of right-thinking individuals bringing the corporate monolith to its knees should rent Erin Brockovich, but The Constant Gardener is not only about the triumph of the gray men who rule the world. It’s also a love story, and as we watch Justin take on his wife’s cause in spite of himself, we realize that there are parts of ourselves that the gray men will never reach.”

    Booklist (starred review)

  • “Le Carré’s manifold skills at scene setting and creating a range of fearsomely convincing English characters, from the bluffly absurd to the irredeemably corrupt, are at their smooth peak here. Both The Tailor of Panama and Single and Single were feeling their way toward this wholehearted assault on the way the world works, by a man who knows much better than most novelists writing today how it works. Now subject and style are one, and the result is heart wrenching.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “The most intimate of le Carré’s thrillers since the salad days of George Smiley…at its core the old, familiar story of a decent man driven to avenge the wife he never really knew.”

    Kirkus Reviews

  • “When his activist wife is found raped and murdered in a remote part of Kenya, her ineffectual husband, a career diplomat stationed in Nairobi, seeks out those responsible. Many le Carré fans found this new opus a disappointment, but we occasional visitors to his domain of espionage and sleuthing appreciate his elegant style, rich characterization, and Graham Greenish exploration of moral ambiguity. He reads as well as he writes. His sonorous voice and nuanced delivery perfectly complement his authorial personality.”


  • A New York Times Bestseller

Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Carrie | 2/17/2014

    " A good book - but i think there was a bit of bad language in it "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Ian Robb | 2/11/2014

    " An excellent book dealing with abuses in drug testing in Africa. Tessa Quayle is trying to draw attention to abuses with a TB drug and is murdered together with her friend a doctor. Her husband, Justin who has not been involved in her crusaded takes up her mission, learns about it and is also murdered. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Larisa | 1/23/2014

    " As if I weren't jaded enough where the pharmaceutical industry is concerned... "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 heidipj | 1/5/2014

    " I loved this book. It's brilliant. Read it. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kalilah | 12/31/2013

    " Great even if you've seen the movie and basically know what's going to happen. Some great lines, such as, "don't you dare call me girl, she told him furiously - but not aloud." I love that line. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jen Marie | 12/25/2013

    " This author ties together world events and really makes you think about what is going on. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Helen | 12/19/2013

    " This was a very complicated book with lots of intrigue and it did not have a happy ending. And although fiction I think some of the things about the drugs company's may be true. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Stien | 12/19/2013

    " Good portrait of the good, the bad, the fallible and the lost. Believable expose. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Piers | 12/18/2013

    " Fantastic read. Saw the movie before reading the book. The book was way better "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Derek Bridge | 12/16/2013

    " In The Constant Gardener, Le Carre turns his attention to the venal side of big pharma. A great theme - and tautly written - but the characters are not wholly credible - this somewhat undermines the whole - rendering this a superior airport thriller rather than one of Le Carre's classics. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Janet Valentine | 12/11/2013

    " Great, but very sad, also a great movie and attack on corruption among big pharmaceutical industries. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Katie Sammis | 12/11/2013

    " Action. love. political intrigue. This really had it all. And it kept me turning the page for 500+. I longed for the happy ending, but the ending was really perfect. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kimi | 2/12/2013

    " Lima bintang kalau saja terjemahannya bagus. :D "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Laurel | 7/28/2011

    " I initially didn't like this book as much as The Honourable Schoolboy by the same author. I found the plot a little far fetched and the ending a little disturbing. After some thought, the way it ended began to make more sense, and I would give it a 3 1/2. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jocelynne Lowans | 3/12/2008

    " One of the most brilliant books I have ever read. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Maureen | 12/10/2006

    " Listened to this book as an audio book and was very confused most of the time. Hard to tell what was a flashback. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Piet Opperman | 5/31/2006

    " A spine-chilling tale of pharmaceutical skullduggery, set in Kenya. Excellent characterisations and descriptive passages. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Courtney | 3/19/2006

    " I loved the movie and its book is really good as well. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Bill | 2/24/2005

    " One of Le Carre's better stories. Nice to see a novel set in Africa from him. The movie was an excellent version of the book. Rachel Weisz is one of my favourite actresses. Highly recommend both the book and movie. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Monica | 6/2/2004

    " Wow! This is the first book I have ever read where I actually thought the movie was better than the book! Shocking! I did enjoy the story, though it did drag a bit and I adore the characters of Tessa and Justin. They are also portrayed beautifully in the movie. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Valerie LeComte | 10/31/2001

    " Took me forever to read this. Good, but too long & wordy. "

Write a Review
What is FlexPass?
  • Your first audiobook is just $5.95
  • Over 90% are at or below $12.95
  • "LOVE IT" guarantee
  • No time limits or expirations
About the Author

John le Carré, the pseudonym of David John Moore Cornwell, is an English author of espionage novels. After attending the universities at Berne and Oxford, he taught at Eton and spent five years in the British Foreign Service. The Spy Who Came in from the Cold, his third book, secured him a worldwide reputation as one of the greatest spy novelists in history. In 2011 his novel Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy was made into a feature film starring Gary Oldman. Le Carré has more than twenty titles to his name and lives in Cornwall, Great Britain.