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Download The Summing Up Audiobook (Unabridged)

Extended Audio Sample The Summing Up (Unabridged) Audiobook, by W. Somerset Maugham
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (382 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: W. Somerset Maugham Narrator: Charlton Griffin Publisher: Audio Connoisseur Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: February 2005 ISBN:
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William Somerset Maugham (1874ï 1965) was born at the height of British imperial power. When he died, the British Empire was all but a memory. In Maugham's lifetime, as his civilization slowly disappeared, people from all walks of life, the proud, the urbane, the crude, and the desperate, passed beneath the lens of his dispassionate scrutiny. Transformed into some of the most unforgettable literary works of the 20th century, his experiences re-emerged in his plays, fiction, and essays. No other writer possessed his keen ability of observation. It was an ability so well honed that his work makes you feel as if you have been drawn into an intimate conversation with the century's most arresting and sophisticated personality.

The Summing Up represents Maugham's life and philosophy in his own words. It is autobiographical in nature, though most of the work is concerned with Maugham's unique and fascinating opinions on the theater, writing, metaphysics, and the interesting people he encountered in his long and successful career. His style is very conversational and you feel yourself settling into an intellectual odyssey led by a man who lived life to its fullest. Sixty years after The Summing Up was published, Maugham's controversial insights and opinions continue to stimulate conversation and debate. This is one of the most entertaining, self-revealing pieces of all time. Download and start listening now!

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Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Gregg Cebrzynski | 11/16/2013

    " As usual, Maugham never fails to delight. This book is particularly valuable to writers, but general readers will find insights into the mind and personality of a novelist and playwright who was much admired in his time. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 J. Joan | 11/13/2013

    " A couple of golden nuggets in this quasi-autobiographical super-essay, but also lots of boring blather on how to write. I love Maugham still, and this book will definitely supplement anyone's love for Maugham or his writings, but I did find it tedious to read at times. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Pankaj Mullick | 9/4/2013

    " If you aspire to be a writer, no other book could offer you a view from the inside the mind of one the greatest writers of all time. Sensing his end coming, he holds nothing back and offers some hard advice for writers and on life, in general. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Saket Suryesh | 8/11/2013

    " A great book, as one would expect from Maugham, must read for people wanting to do serious writing. The book illustrates the seriousness and dedication with which Maugham pursued writing. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Dottie | 8/9/2013

    " WSMaugham is one of my author obssessions. This one is epecially poignant. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Greg Converse | 4/22/2013

    " I thought it started well, but I was bored by the end. Ironic. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Gelu Contiu | 9/8/2012

    " An autobiography where S.M. presents his philosophical ideas about life in general and about the world of theatre and professionalism in particular. He is a good story teller and this is an interesting book to read. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Aaron | 6/16/2012

    " An interesting autobiography that shows someone who is well aware of his limitations (to the point of disparaging himself). I've only read Of Human Bondage and it was a great book (he believed that it was his best, too). "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Glen | 6/15/2012

    " Now let me begin by admitting that I will give five stars to almost everything this man wrote. But I do believe this book is one for his fans. I think you have to be into Mr. Maugham's style to truly enjoy all the wisdom and insight he offers here. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Chad | 4/29/2012

    " I've read some decent how to write books since college. On hopes and dreams, "if I could do anything and do it well, I'd write a novel." This is the greatest "how to" I've ever read. It's interesting, cunning and historical. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Tom Barry | 1/22/2012

    " I read this to get Maugham' insights after a lifetime writing. Some excellent material, but for a hack like me far too broad ranging. But worth a read if you like quality writing. If you want the best of Maugham, try Razor's Edge "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Gina | 1/19/2012

    " reading it again because it's so good. My NYC library is small as I have no space. The last 3 books i read were so tired i had to pick this up again for inspiration! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Lowell | 9/27/2011

    " Excellent advice for emerging writers "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Prasad GR | 9/11/2011

    " A thoroughly inspiring book about writing! It is absolutely addictive - so much so that I managed to read it in one week, despite the long hours spent in office! Maugham captures so well the pains and pleasures of writing. And we learn, how writing is a labour of love. A masterpiece! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Paul Read | 9/11/2010

    " Some great quotes from this man who's way of thinking and living cause a certain reflection on these hectic and distracted times. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Saket | 4/4/2010

    " A great book, as one would expect from Maugham, must read for people wanting to do serious writing. The book illustrates the seriousness and dedication with which Maugham pursued writing. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Glen | 6/14/2008

    " Now let me begin by admitting that I will give five stars to almost everything this man wrote. But I do believe this book is one for his fans. I think you have to be into Mr. Maugham's style to truly enjoy all the wisdom and insight he offers here. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Dottie | 9/3/2007

    " WSMaugham is one of my author obssessions. This one is epecially poignant. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Gina | 9/3/2007

    " reading it again because it's so good. My NYC library is small as I have no space. The last 3 books i read were so tired i had to pick this up again for inspiration! "

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About the Author
Author W. Somerset Maugham

William Somerset Maugham (1874–1965) was born in Paris, the son of a British embassy official, and grew up in England. He studied medicine and officially qualified as a doctor before turning to writing. One of the twentieth century’s most popular novelists as well as a celebrated playwright, critic, and short-story writer, he also served as a secret agent for the British during World War I.