We are currently making improvements to the Audible site. In an effort to enhance the accessibility experience for our customers, we have created a page to more easily navigate the new experience, available at the web address www.audible.com/access.
Call anytime(888) 283-5051
Giovanni's Room | [James Baldwin]

Giovanni's Room

Set in the 1950’s Paris of American expatriates, liaisons, and violence, a young man finds himself caught between desire and conventional morality. With a sharp, probing imagination, James Baldwin’s now-classic narrative delves into the mystery of loving and creates a moving, highly controversial story of death and passion that reveals the unspoken complexities of the human heart.
Regular Price:$13.96
  • Membership Details:
    • First book free with 30-day trial
    • $14.95/month thereafter for your choice of 1 new book each month
    • Cancel easily anytime
    • Exchange books you don't like
    • All selected books are yours to keep, even if you cancel
  • - or -

Your Likes make Audible better!

'Likes' are shared on Facebook and Audible.com. We use your 'likes' to improve Audible.com for all our listeners.

You can turn off Audible.com sharing from your Account Details page.

OK

Publisher's Summary

Set in the 1950’s Paris of American expatriates, liaisons, and violence, a young man finds himself caught between desire and conventional morality. With a sharp, probing imagination, James Baldwin’s now-classic narrative delves into the mystery of loving and creates a moving, highly controversial story of death and passion that reveals the unspoken complexities of the human heart.

©1956 James Baldwin (P)2013 AudioGO

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.2 (44 )
5 star
 (20)
4 star
 (16)
3 star
 (4)
2 star
 (3)
1 star
 (1)
Overall
4.3 (41 )
5 star
 (24)
4 star
 (10)
3 star
 (4)
2 star
 (3)
1 star
 (0)
Story
4.0 (38 )
5 star
 (16)
4 star
 (12)
3 star
 (7)
2 star
 (1)
1 star
 (2)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Mike Sauerman NYC, New York 11-23-13
    Mike Sauerman NYC, New York 11-23-13 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    3
    2
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great Classic - Can't Go Wrong!"
    What made the experience of listening to Giovanni's Room the most enjoyable?

    The story is a classic - James Baldwin captures so many emothions - passion, longing, loathing into one story line.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kim 08-06-14
    Kim 08-06-14 Member Since 2009
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Narrator's Poor French Ruins This Book"
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    A reader who could read the French names, places and frequent French phrases!
    This is a beautiful story, set in Paris and populated significantly by French characters and French speakers. It is a crime that the narrator cannot pronounce the French. This is worse than merely distracting; it destroys an essential part of the book.


    What didn’t you like about Dan Butler’s performance?

    He butchers the French names and phrases. It is often incomprehensible due to his poor pronunciation.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Music Man New York, NY, United States 06-28-14
    Music Man New York, NY, United States 06-28-14 Member Since 2012

    I am a New York musician, a New York native, and a passionate reader of fiction. Audible is helping me fill in some serious literary gaps.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    9
    7
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Baldwin: sensational. Butler: great. One caveat."

    I'd never read any Baldwin and it was high time to fill in the gap. I think "Giovanni's Room" is a good way to get to know this extraordinary author. The writing is filled with beauty, the characters are potent and alive, and Baldwin's ability to evoke time and place (cities, seasons, an entire era) is masterful. The tone is unrelievedly elegiac; the sad ending is announced at the very beginning, and there is precious little joy in the narrative. Every character is at some kind of impasse. But Baldwin describes everyone with such vivid detail that their dead-ends blaze in Technicolor.
    Dan Butler is a fine actor, and he doesn't fight the dolefulness of the book. He lives it. He has good timing, he finds non-stagy ways to evoke the characters, and he turns Baldwin's novel into a subtle, powerful monologue. He has variety and soul.
    What's the catch? Something that could have been avoided, alas. There is a lot of French in this book--most of it takes place in Paris, some in the south of France--and Butler has no idea how to pronounce the many, many French phrases. It's not merely that he has an American accent. Sometimes I simply could not figure out what he was saying at all. He's such a believable, sympathetic reader. I wish he'd taken the time to coach the French and get it right. He doesn't even pronounce the title character's name correctly; sometimes he gets the name "Guillaume" right but in the next paragraph he'll call the man "Zhee-yome." Etc. For me, a distraction and an irritation. For another reader, perhaps less of an issue.
    "Giovanni's Room" is shortish--a manageable length, and I think a beautiful entry into the world of James Baldwin. I am ready for more.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    David Parr ME 12-14-13
    David Parr ME 12-14-13 Member Since 2013

    Seemoreglass

    ratings
    REVIEWS
    8
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Does Not Disappoint"
    Where does Giovanni's Room rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    It's a good story to listen to because it lends itself to the audio format. Be careful, though -- you may miss your exit on the highway because you're so involved in the drama.


    What did you like best about this story?

    Baldwin is one of my favorites because he always is able to lull the reader into a sense of comfort before unleashing a phrase, sentence, or passage that rises above the fray and cuts to the core of an emotion. He blends the matter-of-fact with the lyrical so well.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    The last scene between David and Giovanni is very well done. Baldwin takes what could have been a trite, commonplace circumstance and makes it into something much rich and less generic.


    If you could rename Giovanni's Room, what would you call it?

    An alternative title? Perhaps: Escaping Myself.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    david Clermont, GA, United States 04-24-13
    david Clermont, GA, United States 04-24-13
    HELPFUL VOTES
    27
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    17
    13
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Classic Baldwin language, powerfully emotive"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I will recommend it to people fascinated by relationships with others and with one's self


    What other book might you compare Giovanni's Room to and why?

    Another Country is another beautiful story of human relationships and emotional connections


    Which character – as performed by Dan Butler – was your favorite?

    David and Giovanni


    If you could take any character from Giovanni's Room out to dinner, who would it be and why?

    I would take Giovanni if I was allowed to fall in love with him


    Any additional comments?

    Must read for open minded romantics

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 1-5 of 5 results

    There are no listener reviews for this title yet.

Report Inappropriate Content

If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.

Cancel

Thank You

Your report has been received. It will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.