Written By: George Orwell

Narrated By: Simon Prebble

Date: January 2007

Duration: 11 hours 23 minutes

Summary:

Blackstone Audio presents a new recording of this immensely popular book.
George Orwell depicts a gray, totalitarian world dominated by Big Brother and its vast network of agents, including the Thought Police, a world in which news is manufactured according to the authorities’ will and people live tepid lives by rote.
Winston Smith, the hero with no heroic qualities, longs only for truth and decency. But living in a social system in which privacy does not exist and where those with unorthodox ideas are brainwashed or put to death, he knows there is no hope for him. He knows even as he continues to pursue his forbidden love affair that eventually he will come to destruction.
The year 1984 has come and gone, yet George Orwell’s nightmare vision in 1949 of the world we were becoming is still the great modern classic of negative Utopia. It is a prophetic and haunting tale that exposes the worst crimes imaginable: the destruction of freedom and truth.

Genres:

  • Jorge F

    The similarities with much of what we see today in liberal/socialist society is frightening. They even seem to be using it as a guidebook on what they want to do. I had originally read it a long time ago and wanted to refresh it in mind as my son was reading Animal Farm. He's not ready for 1984. I have always hated how the book ends but in some ways it is the only way it could end in such a society. It is disturbing and should be a wake up call to anyone with socialist leanings but instead they vow to go forward thinking they will be smarter and not make the same mistakes. They don't understand that you cannot escape human nature.

    11 of 11 people found this review helpful.

  • J. Corbett

    As much as I hate the constant cultural references to 1984, I have to say it was a good book to re-read with a Socialist in the White House. Enjoyable, however there are gaping holes in the plot and character's actions. View as an educational resource.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful.

  • Carter G.

    This is a novel is on totalitarianism and its effect on the thinking mind. The text serves not so much as a prediction of the year 1984, but rather as an artful attempt to prevent a world in which 2+2=5. Facts to many are taken for granted. But in a totalitarian society facts are constantly in flux, always contradicting individual common sense, and always in the possession of the State. This novel explores the philosophical, psychological, and emotional destruction such a State can have on its subjects. Orwell uses prose that cuts to the point and is quick to produce vivid pictures without the need of superfluous, unnecessary language. His understanding of the USSR and Nazi Germany of his time as a journalist and soldier give him the intellectual and emotional authority to depict the world of 1984.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful.

  • Savannah S.

    This book is... completely unrealistic. While I do appreciate that at the time it was written, this book was a stand-alone dystopian political tell-all, but this book had aged poorly. The commenters stating that this book is a warning and reflection of today's society are COMPLETELY off base and embarrassingly ignorant. The society in the book could be at the most associated with a modern day North Korea, but even that is a huge stretch. This book didn't go into enough detail about the transition from normal society to the asinine dystopian described. I could not take this book seriously, it was hard to get through. By the end it was laughable. My final note is that many concepts in this book did NOT age well, including the several references to rape and the patriarchy as a whole. Please do yourself a favor and find a different political drama, and pay these other commenters no mind.

  • Anonymous

    it's scary how accurate this book could be under fascist/conservative ideologies. we already see it playing out in Florida and across Soviet states.

  • Doc S.

    Should be compulsory reading, for literally everyone. I liked that the NewSpeak Dictionary overview was given, too. Simon Prebble just became my favourite narrator. He literally made no mistakes, and his inflection and timing are flawless.

  • Kainster

    Very well written,I’m sure it is seemingly more relevant today then ever before in light of current events. But I thinks it shows the ultimate pursuit of government is undisputed control, very scary!

  • Lorrena B.

    narrator is great! book plot is dystopian. crimes of thought punished by pain and the ultimate room 101.

  • Anonymous

    This book digs deep into psychological manipulation, thats where this book begins to turn into a horror novel versus a sci-fi novel that you think it is. It's like I was reading a book about North Korea. The book can get a tiny bit slow in some spots, but still very engaging and a worth while read. The narrator was excellent, making the book better then I feel if I had read it myself. This is one book everybody should read, well that is unless you live in a country that has outlawed it.

  • Joseph K.

    Excellent book. The parallels to the times we live in are scary. New speak, double think, and the thought police are here. Use approved words only. Criminals are heroes. Don’t question your government. History is not what you think. Reality exists only in your mind. The revolution is coming. The Party is here to save you. Slavery is freedom.

  • Jason Norris

    this is a seriously scary book

  • Vance M.

    Well presented

  • Brandy D.

    Loved it! The narrator was pleasant and the story kept my attention. This book is so timeless and just as eye opening now as it would have been when it was first published!

  • Delina P.

    this book was great. I'm never going to trust anybody again thanks

  • Nicole R.

    I enjoyed Animal Farm more than this one, but a fascinating listen diving into political, psychological, and emotional darkness. An important read to get one thinking on ideas of government, control, and the value of human life and community. Great narrator!

  • Donna I.

    I don’t know why I waited so long to read this book, but it’s now more relevant than ever. What if Orwell wrote this after learning about the internet? How much more intrusive could his government be?

  • Donna P.

    Excellent audiobook we listened to during our trip out west. Scary resemblance of this dystopian world and current events. Must listen to this prescient novel far ahead of his time.

  • Archie Worsham

    Book was a great read. With today's technology this book is thought provoking. How large do we want government?

  • George R.

    I love the details and choices of words. The details that don't have anything to do with the plot, but make it more colorful, although they are very dark colors. Creepy. And that ending--you knew it was going to happen but you didn't think it really would.

  • Dianne M.

    As so many other reviewers have said, I read this book a while ago and re-reading (or listening) to it now. I find it interesting that Big Brother exists only for power, for the sake of power alone. That idea is so foreign to me on a personal level. I do not understand people who want power whether a supervisor, director, CEO, or politician. I do understand people who want responsibility but that is quite different. None of Orwell's characters have an innate need for God which makes his characters less believable. All the god are there (power, sex, property, and even prestige) but a yearning for the creator is not. Julia is not inquisitive or curious. She is basically a hedonist, radical only "from the waist down" as Winston says to her. She does not mind being so superficial. The tragedy is, of course, that Winston loses and Big Brother wins. It is quite fascinating when O'Brian goes through the history of past tyrants with Winston when he explains the thinking behind Big Brother's treatment of the guilty and rebellious. The narrator is exceptional, exceptional. He really brought the story alive.

  • Georgia S.

    Interesting plot but really confusing at points

  • Phillip M.

    This is a great Narration. Probably one of the best I have listened to. It is an interesting book to revisit.

  • Anonymous

    Such an interesting read and almost scary with how it relates to today’s society.

  • Sussan C

    The book was an eye opener to a world that could possibly be achieved and for that reason the book was intriguing. The narrator did a great job and I felt he drew you into that world and the characters. I hope, for humanity's sake, we never see or live in a world like this one.

  • Paul Simpson

    It was an enjoyable book to listen to. I feel the narration was great. Very satisfied.

  • Trey Majors

    The narration was fantastic. The book is intentionally dark and ominous throughout. The foresight of Orwell was quite remarkable but the book gets pretty flat after the halfway point. It was a good listen but not something I would go back and listen to again.

  • Robert Werme

    Hadn't read this book in school when it was assigned (Cliff notes), so even though I'd been vaguely aware of the major themes (double think, newspeak, Big Brother, etc), listening to Simon Prebble's eloquent reading deepened my experience with the story. As a left-leaning American citizen, it was a good reminder of the ways that political quests for "safety and security" can lead to a dangerous and delusional artifice of peace, freedom and even justice.

  • Cristy Wahala

    Brilliant character voices. I will look for other books narrated by this person.

  • Cardon Slater

    It was a decent read. As you get through the plot, the story becomes dull and boring. The ending was predictable as this was my first time reading this novel. I powered through read to get it over with. I was uninterested with the story at the half way mark, but I refuse to stop reading something once started.

  • Freddy Von Essen

    I really enjoyed the first half of the story. The second half and ending were a disappointment. Great narration.

  • sue levin

    Great book. Easy to listen to. Good first time book.

  • Mindy Jones

    Excellent narration. I'd like to listen to every book in his narration.

  • Amanda Gregory

    Some interesting insights, especially the telescreens in light of today's datamining and NSA domestic spying. I did not enjoy it a all, though. Probably not a failing of the author so much as my own dislike for thoroughly unpleasant books. It is like pointing out a possible problem without a possible solution. One further point: a previous reviewer mentioned socialism, and I hve to point out that a careful read reveals that "the Party" chose to use the term socialism ironically since they are actually a tyrannical communist regime.

1984

by George Orwell

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1984, George Orwell
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