This is the enthralling account of a Christian's epic journey. With a burden on his back, Christian reads a book that tells him that the city in which he and his family dwell will be set ablaze. Christian flees from the City of Destruction and journeys through the Slough of Despond, the Interpreter's House, the House Beautiful, the Valley of Humiliation, the Valley of the Shadow of Death, Vanity Fair, Doubting Castle, and the Delectable Mountains, and finally reaches the Celestial City.
(P)1997 Blackstone Audiobooks; originally published in 1670, United Kingdom
This was the first audio book that I chose to listen to, and although I had heard it was good, I did not know much about it beforehand.
In the introduction, Bunyan's prose is written in couplets, which proved quite difficult to understand. But he quickly begins the story, and the language becomes much easier to understand. In the first half, the author recounts a "dream story" where a man, named Christian, leaves the city called Destruction to head up the trail to the Holy city. Along the way, he meets such characters as a man named Mr. Ignorant and Mr. Timorous, goes through such places as the "Slough of Despond" and the Valley of the Shadow of Death.
Clearly this is an allegory about the Christian journey of faith, and I think everybody should know that going in. If you are a Christian, you will likely find this an uplifting and inspiring work which, in addition to being entertaining, may accurately depict some of your own struggles along the way. If you are not a Christian, you may feel the prose gets a little preachy in parts, but you will regardless enjoy the meticulous prose and wonderful imagination with which this allegory is told.
Robert Whitfield reads with wonderful, light, English clarity, and his voices of the characters are distinct. The recording is also clear and easy to understand.
This beautifully written allegory is the perfect metaphor of a ?pilgrims? journey through life with word pictures that will soothe your soul as you realize your journey along ?The Way? to the Kingdom is not so different than Christian?s. The author is brilliant in his poetry and Biblical truth. A must ?read? for all Christians. Unknown to me before listening, we are treated with a bonus of an additional journey by Christian?s wife and three children.
If you are well versed with the King James version of the Bible, you will find this to be an enjoyable, well narrated version of John Bunyan's Pilgrim's Progress.
If you use a modern day version of the Bible, the 16th century English may be a bit hard to follow. Nevertheless, if you listen carefully, you will get hours of enjoyment from this audio book.
This is one of the best books I have ever experienced. I think listening to it even added to the experience for me. The only thing I regret is that I couldn't highlight the many sections that profoundly impacted me.
We are a couple who love books and occasionally write reviews. We rarely read the same book so our reviews express our individual opinions.
The Pilgrims'Progress is a true monument of English literature. With the power of its universal imagery and the bumpy but engaging style of Bunyan's prose it is one of the books that never loses its appeal for the sympathetic reader. Robert Whitfield does a stunning job, maintining a strong rhythmic narrative flow while displaying a masterful (and consistent) variety of accents for the various characters. He also conveys Bunyan's apparently fundamentalist Christian message in a way which highlights the universal nature of many of his themes. Audio quality is very good.
Eclectic mixer of books of my youth and ones I always meant to read, but didn't.
I read this book because of the extensive quotation from it in Neal Stephenson's "The Baroque Cycle", but I should say that I soon discovered that the subject matter of the book is so not to my interest. It is to religious for my secular taste. To that end, I am amazed I listened to the whole two books (there are two, in case you were expecting one gospel only). Still, I guess that says something positive for the underlining message, which transcends the religious parables and the moral nomelacuture (the most famous of which must surely be "Vanity Fair"). The preaching can be hard to take, but I think the performance helped ease that, as did the famous passages from time to time that sparked re-newed interest. I'm not sure I would do it again, but I'm glad I did it once.
I had heard of this book through a similar work that CS Lewis had written, The Pilgrim's Regress. Lewis made note that he followed the same style as Bunyan in The Pilgrim's Progress. I read Lewis' book (paperback version) and liked it; so I decided to give Bunyan's book a try.
I am now a fan of Bunyan's writings and plan on purchasing more of his works, both in paperback and audio form.
This story "in the similitude of a dream" is filled with so many lessons that I have already listened to it twice and am currently working on my third pass through it, each time with a new blessing, a new lesson.
If you are serious about being on the right road to heaven, this is a must have.
Elderly (1932), retired university professor, degrees in engineering and economics.
The full title is “THE PILGRIM’S PROGRESS FROM THE WORLD TO THAT WHICH IS TO COME.” It was published over the years 1677 - 1684. If, to be designated as a “CLASSIC” requires universal themes and enduring availability, then this is a real “classic.” It has never been out of print since 1677. Wikipedia calls it a “religious allegory.” Allegories abound.
This was required reading in my high school advanced English Lit course in 1950. I encountered it again in a sophomore literature course in college. I found it long, dull and tedious. I learned to appreciate Bunyan’s creative writing flair when I LISTENED to it! (Audible where were you when kids needed you?} Can such a book even be taught today? It is definitely about religion -- Christian religion. Do students have enough familiarity with Christianity to recognize these allegories? I don’t know. I do know that Audible’s spoken words are like Mary Poppins’ “spoonful of sugar,” it makes Bunyan go down with appreciative smiles.
This audiobook was awesome. It made a 12 hour trip to Virginia fly by. It included extra parts like the author's bio and a sequel, all for the price of the book. Love it!
Very solid theological teaching. Fresh perspective from most sermons today. The only bad thing about the audio is that you miss the nuances of some of Bunyan's character names that you'd be able to catch seeing it in print.
Those who have never essayed this puritan classic will be delighted by the humour and vigour of the discourse and incident in Christian's way (part one.) Who'd-a-thunk-it? The wit that emerges from the vocalisations is a delight. Love the regional accents applied by the admirable Mr Whitfield and the earthy humanity of Bunyan himself.
Part two - Mrs Christian and family - is a little less rumbustious. By now, the metaphor has been fully developed and the tone becomes more preachy. Some of the potential sexism of the first book is redressed.
Overall, Christians in particular will find much that challenges, refreshes and inspires in this faithful and imaginative dramatisation.
"bunyan's great book"
excellent book, moving and inspiring, much easier to follow by listening. Though I need to get a paper copy as well. If you are a Christian I recommend this.
"The Pilgrim's Progress"
Well what is there to say about this timeless classic that hasn't already been said?
It is an excellent story especially when one considers how the story was written, that is by a man imprisoned for his faith. Imprisoned because his expression of his Christian faith was opposed by the established church of his day.
Four hundred years forwards and in many countries people are still suffering for following Jesus as the Holy Spirit leads.
The Pilgrim's Progress is as relevant today as when first written.
I initially bought the paperback of this book, but never got round to reading it, and I'm glad in the end I listened to it, as the archaic language would probably have made me put it down. I enjoyed the tale, and although it is not perhaps deep in literary technique, character development, etc that we generally expect from books, I would recommend it to any Christian who will understand the allegory and analogy from the Bible.
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