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Download The Infinities Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample The Infinities, by John Banville Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (1,181 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: John Banville Narrator: Julian Rhind-Tutt Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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On a languid midsummer’s day in the countryside, old Adam Godley, a renowned theoretical mathematician, is dying. His family gathers at his bedside: his son, young Adam, struggling to maintain his marriage to a radiantly beautiful actress; his nineteen-year-old daughter, Petra, filled with voices and visions as she waits for the inevitable; their stepmother, Ursula, whose relations with the Godley children are strained at best; and Petras, a young man very likely more interested in the father than the daughter who has arrived for a superbly ill-timed visit.

But the Godley family is not alone in their vigil. Around them hovers a family of mischievous immortals, among them Zeus, who has his eye on young Adams wife; Pan, who has taken the doughy, perspiring form of an old unwelcome acquaintance; and Hermes, who is the genial and omniscient narrator: We too are petty and vindictive, he tells us, just like you, when we are put to it. As old Adams days on earth run down, these unearthly beings start to stir up trouble, to sometimes wildly unintended effect.

Blissfully inventive and playful, rich in psychological insight and sensual detail, The Infinities is at once a gloriously earthy romp and a wise look at the terrible, wonderful plight of being humanely dazzling novel from one of the most widely admired and acclaimed writers at work today.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Banville is a glorious stylist whose prose holds sustaining pleasures…You keep turning the pages just to gather more of these bouquets. But when Banville waxes philosophic he’s even better; he’s heartbreakingly poignant…[A] rich and strange novel, as ambitious in its reach as it is delightful to read. This god has outdone himself.”


  • “A major work of Shakespearean imagination, Banville’s fifteenth novel is among his best.”

    Austin American-Statesman

  • “Like Nabokov, Banville has a wide-ranging intellect and a rather godlike view of the power of fiction—and, like Nabokov, he’s got the goods to back it up. The Infinities is an inventive melding of myth and realism, a sly and poignant tale of lust and loss, but above all it is a joy to read for the sheer beauty of its language.”

    St. Petersburg Times

  • “Characteristically gorgeous.”

    Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel

  • “Banville may have surpassed himself with the brilliance and introspection of his writing in [this] mythic novel.”

    Buffalo News

  • “Banville’s best and brightest work…Masterful.”


  • “Spellbinding.”

    Finacial Times

  • A Midsummer Night’s Dream of a story…Pure pleasure.”

    Minneapolis Star Tribune

  • “Intriguing, complex, and ultimately elusive, The Infinities manages, through divine sleight of mind, to bring glimmers of possibility to its dark characters: as such, it is a novel for our hopeless times.”

    Irish Times

  • “The Infinities is a Beethoven string quartet of a novel. It deals with huge ideas—plenty of them—and in doing so, breaks new ground in its own medium…A masterpiece of a book.”

    Daily Telegraph (London)

  • “Mesmerizing…The Infinities is rife with mischief, as well as godly/authorial omniscience, irony, and wordplay, but what warms and anchors it is its humanity.”

    Miami Herald

  • “Entrancing…Banville achieves real depth in this alternately grave and bawdy exploration of the nature of time, the legacy of grief, and the costs and sources of inspiration.”

    San Francisco Chronicle

  • “Dazzling…Banville is, without question, one of the great living masters of English-language prose. The Infinities is a dazzling example of that mastery.”

    Los Angeles Times

  • “A writer of protean powers…[Banville] retains his standing as one of the world’s most exquisite stylists in this sublimely acerbic and mischievous tale about the timeless mysteries of love and death…With odd details (cars powered by seawater) and intricate musings over the complexities of consciousness and the cosmos, Banville creates a bewitching world in which to ponder what it is to be human.”

    Booklist (starred review)

  • “In his first novel since the 2005 Man Booker Prize-winning The Sea, Banville reminds the world that he is one of the best prose stylists at work today…Choosing introspective character description over rich plotlines, Banville here puts his writing prowess on full display.”

    Library Journal

  • “Even more pristine than his Booker-winning The Sea.”

    Publishers Weekly (starred review)

  • “[Banville’s] latest novel…is haunting, beautiful, and perhaps even stranger than those that preceded it…Ultimately, The Infinities is a kind of mystery novel, one that respects its mysteries too much to try to resolve them. The real subject of this unforgettable, beautifully written book is nothing less than the enigma of mortal existence. And who better than a cast of lusty, bemused, mischievous, and quite possibly imaginary immortals to cast a new light on that?”

    Washington Post

  • “In a narrative that makes intricate use of this material’s mythic, dramatic, and philosophical possibilities while remaining improbably comedic…Banville manages to write compassionately about his mortals without sacrificing his deities’ exalted wit and wisdom. And always, even as this story prepares to takes tragic turns, his agility is abundantly evident.”

    New York Times

  • “Beautifully written, perversely entertaining, and well worth a close look.”

    Kirkus Reviews

  • A 2010 Washington Post Best Book for Fiction

Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Karl Mueller | 2/10/2014

    " While it took a little bit of reading to get into this book, I thoroughly enjoyed it. In fact, this is one of the rare books that I am already looking forward to reading again. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Seth | 2/10/2014

    " I like the idea of taking the stuff at play in The Infinities---Greek gods interfering with a family, an alternative but closely related world, and a theoretical mathematician/physicist as a main character---and using it all to reflect on relationships and the ordering of our world. But I thought the book was a little slow and stuffy for my tastes. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 by John Pitcher | 2/5/2014

    " Silly book. If I am charitable I will say I missed the point entirely. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Paul | 2/4/2014

    " Clever and funny, I could easily see it adopted into a screenplay. On the stage it would be brilliant. Has the feeling of an Oscar Wilde play crossed with Gaiman's "American Gods". Takes a bit to get started but excellent middle and a decent ending. "

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