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Things Fall Apart: A Novel Audiobook, by Chinua Achebe Extended Sample Click for printable size audiobook cover
Author: Chinua Achebe Narrator: Prentice Onayemi Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: December 2035 ISBN: 9780525496564
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (105,355 ratings) (rate this audio book)
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Things Fall Apart is the first of three novels in Chinua Achebe's critically acclaimed African Trilogy. It is a classic narrative about Africa's cataclysmic encounter with Europe as it establishes a colonial presence on the continent. Told through the fictional experiences of Okonkwo, a wealthy and fearless Igbo warrior of Umuofia in the late 1800s, Things Fall Apart explores one man's futile resistance to the devaluing of his Igbo traditions by British political andreligious forces and his despair as his community capitulates to the powerful new order.

With more than 20 million copies sold and translated into fifty-seven languages, Things Fall Apart provides one of the most illuminating and permanent monuments to African experience. Achebe does not only capture life in a pre-colonial African village, he conveys the tragedy of the loss of that world while broadening our understanding of our contemporary realities.

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Listener Reviews

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  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Galen | 2/15/2014

    " It's a very interesting story. Very successful in getting you into the perspective of very foreign characters. The narrative itself, kind of meh. I guess it all holds together, but very little of it feeds into the main plot. A lot of "this happened THEN this happened THEN this happened". "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Sally | 2/15/2014

    " Heartbreaking and exquisitely poetic. I loved the simple rhythmic pace of the language which functions to create dramatic tension between the narrator's voice, and the complex inner life of the characters. An interesting supplement to this book is Achebe's essay on The African Writer and the English Language. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Lex | 2/8/2014

    " Didn't like this the first time I read it. I thought the simple writing style sounded a bit uneducated. But on a second pass I really appreciated how beautiful the writing actually was. The story itself is highly intense, emotional, with some very grave and serious events. But the description is extremely detached, as though the writer is only reinforcing the helplessness of the people's position. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Chad | 1/30/2014

    " I learned about the impact of colonialism from the perspective of the people who were directly affected by it "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Joyce | 1/28/2014

    " This novel gains its power from its restraint. We are psychically bound to Okonkwo, we live his life, feel his emotions and think his thoughts. We are members of his family and his clan. We share his gender, his status, his virtues and his faults. We worship his gods. When the British missionaries arrive, we see them through his eyes. We swing his machete. At the end, we share his refusal to live in a world they control. No amount of rhetoric could harvest such deep connection, or such a sense of loss. This book is small, brilliant and essential. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Renee | 1/28/2014

    " For class. Interesting but sad story. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Takara | 1/25/2014

    " I don't think this book even deserves one star. Had I not had to read this book for a class I would have stopped reading it after the first page. There was no plot, no point to any of it. Just down right stupid. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Zea | 1/16/2014

    " I got confused and I read this just because I had it as my book report "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kevin | 1/14/2014

    " Yes things do fall apart, but the sad thing about this book is what caused things to fall apart. In this case it was Christian Ministers going into a Nigerian village and pretty much forcing the people to convert ; or else... "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Thomas | 1/6/2014

    " I enjoyed this book. I found the story stangely written in a good way. Easy read. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Zoe | 12/25/2013

    " Yes I read this in school, and yes, I appreciate it for it's portrayal of Africa during the time period. But oh god why "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Mangaliso | 12/5/2013

    " Literary classic. The novel is a great work of art but is of even greater symbilic value as the genesis of main stream African Litritaure. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Keyanna | 12/3/2013

    " This is a book of aquired taste first and for most. The story isn't completely horrible, but I was not a fan of this book. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Alicia | 7/11/2012

    " Wonderful writing and a moving story. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Christina | 10/4/2011

    " Read it. You won't regret it--during or after. It's not one of those classics that is difficult to read, and it launched and entire undiscovered genre--Postcolonial or World English novels--onto the Anglophone stage. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Nicole-pickens | 8/26/2011

    " I had to read this book in college. I didn't love it but I didn't hate it completely, either. It was enlightening as it showed the tension of European colonization for the natives in an Africa village. I learned alot. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Chad | 8/12/2011

    " Something I would've hated in high school/pre2001 but absolutely loved now that I'm appreciative of other cultures. Notice how all three parts are written differently in terms of style. Another perspective on colonialism! Heartbreaking! "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Mallory | 5/4/2011

    " I did not enjoy this book at all "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Yun | 3/14/2011

    " You know the author has succeeded when you feel the same indignation against the white colonial imperialists. It isn't a story of blame but a story of the clash of different cultures and the forced imposition of one on the other. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Aneta | 1/1/2011

    " The ending was a bit dramatic, but added in a meaningful way. However, the detailing of the book was much of a bore to me. It was an okay read. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Bonnie | 2/7/2010

    " I can see why people like it - just not my style of book "

About the Author

Author Chinua Achebe

Chinua Achebe (1930–2013) was a prominent Nigerian writer who is famous for his novels describing the effects of Western customs and values on traditional African society. His satire and keen ear for spoken language made him one of the most highly esteemed African writers in English. He published novels, essay collections, poetry, short stories, and juvenile fiction. Among his works are Things Fall Apart, Anthills of the Savannah, A Man of the People, Arrow of God, and the notable collections Morning Yet on Creation Day and Hopes and Impediments. A recipient of the Man Booker International Prize, he was the Charles P. Stevenson Professor of Languages and Literature at Bard College in Annandale-on-Hudson, New York.

About the Narrator

Prentice Onayemi is an Earphones Award–winning audiobook narrator and a voice and film actor who is known for his roles in The Steam-Room Crooner, AmeriQua, and as Joey in the Tony Award–winning play War Horse.