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 .
Ulysses Audiobook

Ulysses [Audiobook]

Regular Price:$104.99
  • 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 -

Publisher's Summary

Ulysses is regarded by many as the single most important novel of the 20th century. It tells the story of one day in Dublin, June 16th 1904, largely through the eyes of Stephen Dedalus (Joyce's alter ego from Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man) and Leopold Bloom, an advertising salesman. Both begin a normal day, and both set off on a journey around the streets of Dublin, which eventually brings them into contact with one another.

While Bloom's passionate wife, Molly, conducts yet another illicit liasion (with her concert manager), Bloom finds himself getting into arguments with drunken nationalists and wild carousing with excitable medical students, before rescuing Stephen Dedalus from a brawl and returning with him to his own basement kitchen.

In the hands of Jim Norton and Marcella Riordan, experienced and stimulating Joycean readers, and carefully directed by Roger Marsh, Ulysses becomes accessible as never before. It is entertaining, immediate, funny, and rich in classical, philosophical, and musical allusion.

Download the accompanying reference guide.

(P)2004 NAXOS AudioBooks Ltd.

What the Critics Say

  • Audie Award Finalist, Classics, 2005

"As ambitious and rewarding an audio production as any that exists, an audio experience that truly deserves to be cherished....Readers of Ulysses have long been encouraged to read out loud the more difficult sections for added comprehension and enjoyment of the language. Now, thanks to Naxos, the entire book is available in a performance to savor. It is safe to say that anyone wanting to experience the preeminent work of modern fiction has in this package the perfect audio companion." (AudioFile)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.7 (1123 )
5 star
 (499)
4 star
 (212)
3 star
 (146)
2 star
 (126)
1 star
 (140)
Overall
3.7 (784 )
5 star
 (345)
4 star
 (141)
3 star
 (103)
2 star
 (77)
1 star
 (118)
Story
4.1 (802 )
5 star
 (467)
4 star
 (150)
3 star
 (77)
2 star
 (41)
1 star
 (67)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Eric Azle, TX, United States 12-01-10
    Eric Azle, TX, United States 12-01-10
    HELPFUL VOTES
    21
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    3
    1
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "Don't be fooled by bad reviews..."

    This should not be your first read of Ulysses. You need to see what it looks like on paper, first. There is no way anyone would be able to appreciate either the book or the audio recording of it by doing otherwise. The reading is not too fast. It is beautifully authentic. Do you want someone drolling on, waiting for you to chew the last syllable, or would you like a wonderfully fluid reading? Jim Norton is mind-blowing at times. He is genius. There are parts I'll listen to over and over and over. I'm serious. I will replay them and replay them. It's beautiful. I can never begin to comprehend how this was put together. Norton's reading has helped me to understand much of what I missed while reading it myself.

    Of course it doesn't cater to American readers. The book is a superbly elaborate account of early 20th century Dublin, written by a genius of a man. This reading brings out the native subtleties. This reading makes the greatest literary work of all time live!

    21 of 26 people found this review helpful
  •  
    John 11-11-08
    John 11-11-08 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
    16
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    62
    2
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "Ulysses"

    I agree completely with the other review of the audio version in that the reading seemed a bit rushed, especially the later potions. That said, it was a still a treat to get caught up in the language.
    Very enjoyable.

    10 of 12 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sallyspal 07-08-14
    Sallyspal 07-08-14 Member Since 2012

    Linda

    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    20
    8
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "I've read much better classics"
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    Nothing, Jim Norton did a fine job.


    Would you ever listen to anything by James Joyce again?

    I doubt it. Only if forced to and you had a noose nearby so I could choose to end it soon one way or another.


    Which character – as performed by Jim Norton – was your favorite?

    None


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    Disappointment-
    I have been trying to listen to as many classic books as I can and usually find myself enjoying them very much. I bought this book on recommendation from Audible that it is to become a classic. It may be the last time I ever take in consideration one of their recommendations.


    Any additional comments?

    If you like Robin Williams stand up comedian acts this book is for you. I, however, have never been a fan of Robin Williams stand up acts. Movies are a different story. Anyway, that’s what this book reminds me of; a lot of verbiage going nowhere. I can’t count how many times James Joyce list things and they really don’t add anything to the book but it’s done several times. I’ve listened up to Chapter 18 but am contemplating climbing an electric pole and licking the wires if I have to listen to any more. It seems to me to be a story about a man who either has had sexual relations with women or is dreaming about it. I’m not really sure where it’s going with this but it’s a constant repetitive feature of the book. However, occasionally they throw something in about Jews. Still I’m not sure where it’s going. List, Jews and sexual relations on a constant banner that just haven’t added up to anything in this book and by chapter 18 out of 25 you would think there would be some indication or clue that you might want to hold onto to keep going with this book but for me there is nothing.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Maynard Moravian falls, NC, United States 11-09-13
    Maynard Moravian falls, NC, United States 11-09-13 Member Since 2011

    Scientist, artisan, anachronism

    HELPFUL VOTES
    111
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    212
    34
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    13
    13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "there is no better book on audible"


    this is #1.

    Ulysses is the single best book on audible.

    One of the most incredible books of all time. Stream of consciousness… pure thought coming out in words. Simple and complex at once. A masterpiece. The masterpiece.

    I thought nothing could make it better. I was wrong.

    This reading brought the novel to life in no way I could have imagined. Any other reading pales in comparison. And it’s not just Jim Norton that gives a stellar performance. No no… Marcella Riordan … is amazing. absolutely amazing. She gives the end monologue so much sensuality that i get chills when I hear it.

    I truly believe there is no better audiobook on audible.

    i hope you get the pleasure

    -m

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    ZOLTAN 11-10-12
    ZOLTAN 11-10-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    47
    12
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Only if you're sitting in solitude and boredom!"
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    Perhaps an absolute literacy or James Joyce fan? Someone lying in bed with lots of spare time and long uninterrupted attention spans?


    What do you think your next listen will be?

    Something a bit lighter, with a better flow or something didactic within my fields of interest.I've just downloaded "Getting to Yes" and "For whom the bells toll".


    How did the narrator detract from the book?

    Too fast paced and monotonous.


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    Disappointment and exhaustion.


    Any additional comments?

    Unless you know what you're getting into with this book, exhaust the rest of your list first!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Maria Mexico D.F., Mexico 12-21-11
    Maria Mexico D.F., Mexico 12-21-11 Member Since 2015

    Avid reader (and listener) of great (and other) books

    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    25
    3
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "very difficult to follow"
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    It is so difficult to follow. I know James Joyce wrote as he spoke, but this is too much. There are several passages, where all you hear is mumble, so it is impossible to follow the storyline. I have read it and enjoyed it much. This is not a nice spoken word work.


    Would you be willing to try another one of Jim Norton’s performances?

    no


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    disappointment


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    B. Leddy NY 10-26-11
    B. Leddy NY 10-26-11 Member Since 2016

    bleddy

    HELPFUL VOTES
    134
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    41
    37
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    19
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Jim Norton does it"

    You can actually learn a tremendous amount about Irish History, Church history, western culture and classical education by reading Ulysses. A monumental work that has been brought back to the epic oral tradition by Jim Norton.

    Now in my opinion, this book would be completely inaccessible without Jim Norton. With Jim Norton, the book is accessible, but only with a lot of interest and curiosity. I enjoy it for the "inversion" Joyce pulls on the Odyssey. Ithaca is Ireland and Odysseus is a Jewish man that nobody seems to consider their equal.

    Ulysses is best appreciated after having read Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man (to understand Joyce's Stephen Character, and his issues with Ireland) and Homer's Odyssey (the mythic underpinning of the book). Also needed is Gifford's "Annotated Ulysses" which explains the Irish/Church history references as well as the puns and all of the references to 19th century poetry that Joyce laces throughout.

    8 of 10 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sher from Provo Utah 02-23-12
    Sher from Provo Utah 02-23-12 Member Since 2015

    Tired teacher. That is, REtired teacher.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    1722
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    459
    279
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    306
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Best book of the 20th century?"

    Ok . . . . Now I can say I read "Ulysses." Do I understand it? Ohhhhh myyyyy NOOOOOO. This is a book that a college course could be based on for a whole year. In fact, there must be courses on this book somewhere in the world, maybe in many places. It is the most convoluted, unintelligible book I have ever read. Why would anyone want to read it? And yet, there is something fascinating about it that kept me going, although by the end I was ready to be done with it.

    I read the Kindle edition of this book, along with listening to the audio recording. I could never have done one without the other. Oh, and I also read the Sparknotes, episode by episode, before during and after each one. Sometimes, in fact, when reading the synopsis and analysis of each episode, I would say to myself, "Oh is THAT what was happening?"

    This novel is on every "must read" list I've ever read, usually at the #1 position. It is often touted as the greatest novel of the 20th century, so naturally I thought I should read it. But I had heard that it is vulgar, so that made me hesitate (for about 30 years). Finally I figured I could take it. I have read some trashy stuff, and I don't really enjoy it at all. This book, in spite of the fact that it was classified as pornography and not allowed to be sold in the U.S. for a long long time, does not even rank up there with some of the trash that is published today and passed off as great literature. You know, the ones where the "f" word occurs something like 50 times per page. (Ugh I hate those!!!! This book contained almost no swear words.) Or the explicit sexual scenes (see Diana Gabaldon, whose writing I love, and while I would not categorize her writing as vulgar, I could do with a little less explicit intimacy). It does have some fairly clear allusions to sexual matters, but I could not say it is vulgar. The only part I could say might be vulgar is the last episode where Molly is in bed and can't sleep, and we get these gi-normous run-on sentences which are her thoughts just running and running around in her head, her stream of consciousness, and she thinks about every lover she has ever had, and other sexual things. And maybe one or two other places that are kinda nasty.

    The story line. What story line? What plot? It is a ramble with no particular direction. And yet, Joyce ties everything up at the end and you "get it." It was written as a parallel story to "The Odyssey", and thanks to Sparknotes, I was able to follow that idea. Luckily, I had just read "The Odyssey" a few weeks ago, so I knew what the notes were talking about. I would recommend anyone wishing to read this book to read "The Odyssey" first. Or listen to it read by Derek Jacobi.

    The writing style. You name it, he uses it. Every episode, of which there are 18, uses a different style of writing. One episode uses maybe 10 different styles alone. It is hard work to figure it all out, especially the parts that use incomplete sentences. So very many of these sentences ended with the word "the". Figure that one out. Joyce also likes to make lists. Sometimes they are funny, sometimes just odd. Bloom's last list went like this: "Sinbad the Sailor and Tinbad the Tailor and Jinbad the Jailer and Whinbad the Whaler and Ninbad the Nailer and Finbad the Failer and Binbad the Bailer and Pinbad the Pailer and Minbad the Mailer and Hinbad the Hailer and Rinbad the Railer and Dinbad the Kailer and Vinbad the Quailer and Linbad the Yailer and Xinbad the Phthailer." I think he was very tired. It had been a long day.

    The characters. I have to admit I never got to the point that I cared a great deal about any of the characters. They just weren't loveable. In many ways they weren't even interesting. I thought the most interesting person was Bloom, of course, and although I did finally have some tender feelings for Steven, I just couldn't care that much about him. Molly, eh, not so much either. She was one-dimensional to me. All the women characters were, and the only reason they were mentioned was in terms of some sort of sexual activity. Well, other than Steven's mother, who was already dead at the beginning of the story.

    Well enough of that. I just have to say this. The narrator, Jim Norris, deserves 10 stars at least. He is 110% complete and total awesomeness. He is a big reason I was able to persevere with this difficult-to-read book. Now, anyone who would consent to reading this book aloud and who would at least try to make sense of it deserves a medal of honor, but Jim was simply amazing. Marcella Riordan, who read "Molly" was also good, well above average. But it was Jim to whom the huge part of the really tough narration fell, and he handled it like a true champion. I'll be looking for other books read by Jim Norris.

    Last word: Was it worth reading? I think I can say at this point that it was worth reading. It is going to take a lot longer to fit it all together and make sense of it than just the few days since I finished it. I will be thinking about it for a long time. A year from now I will probably be able to do a great review of the book.

    I do understand what all the hype is about, but there is something in me that keeps saying that the greatest book of the 20th century or any century should be a little more accessible to its readers. It is just too hard to make sense of, at least it was for me, and I am a college graduate, in fact I hold a masters' degree. So . . . read it if you want, but I am not sure it will change your life. That is the biggest reason I am giving it three stars.

    20 of 26 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Novie E. Lee 09-03-14 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
    241
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    225
    63
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    6
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Call me an idiot, but I just DON'T get it."

    I bought this book largely based on the customer reviews that so ardently raved on and on about it. I had to have it. Now I realize that there must be a conspiracy of lunatics out there trying to make art out of garbage. I just don't get it.
    In desperation, I finally went to Wikipedia to find out what the hell this book is about (after struggling through seven chapters). I could not believe what I heard. Basically it is the "stream of consciousness" running through a man's mind in the space of one day. Just rambling on and on, on and on. Wiki gives a great synopsis of the chapters, and I was totally surprised to find that there was a thread of thought to any of what I had experienced.
    People have called it it best book of the 20th century? If I have to have a translation to understand the English language, it's definitely not for me. According to Wiki, Joyce said he would gain immortality just because literary professors would forever be arguing about what he meant in the book.
    NOT entertaining! There is a Gutenberg Project of this book online and I skimmed over it to see if I could better understand it. It's a little better to READ it than to listen to it, but still--I don't find myself wanting to STUDY a book of 330,300 or so words to find out what the author is trying to say or the parallels to Homer's work. Leave this one to the pedantics. I had to put it down.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Matthew Miller 12-19-12 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    7
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    28
    3
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Not for me"
    What would have made Ulysses better?

    I'm not sure anything could have made this enjoyable. The narrator was sufficient (though difficult to hear at times), the story, dreadful.


    What was most disappointing about James Joyce’s story?

    His style and the content.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    None.


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    While I can appreciate the authors place in history, and this books place in history, because it is often considered one of the greatest works of all time, I expected more.


    Any additional comments?

    I am apparently not a fan of this style of delivering a story. If you are on a quest to read and enjoy the greatest works of literature (as judged by others) then you should obviously give this a fair chance; it's just not for everyone.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
Sort by:
  • Tine
    12/1/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "The way to experience Ulsysses"
    What did you like most about Ulysses?

    The huge variety in the chapters and the fierce intelligence made it a challenging listen, but also a very worthwhile effort. I listened to this along with a Great Courses audio book about Ulysses, and that made me understand at least more of it than I would else have done.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Leopold Bloom. He is both the character we get to know best, and a very humane and fully rounded character.


    Which character – as performed by Jim Norton – was your favourite?

    Leopold Bloom.


    If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    I wouldn't make a film of it!


    Any additional comments?

    The reading of the book was overall astonishing from both actors, and the choice of music at the beginning of the chapters was very fitting.I had a physical book as well, which I occasional used to check something, but that was just an added bonus, not a necessity.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Amazon Customer
    UK
    10/14/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Remarkable"

    This is a superb performance - not merely a reading - of an extraordinary book. For those of us who would never have managed to get through it as a written text, a real eye-opener and a very worthwhile investment of your time.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • lexxie
    9/28/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "So glad to have finished"

    I set myself the challenge to complete Ulysses and thanks to Jim Norton I have finished. I do not think I would have been able to read it but Jim Norton (and Marcella Riordan) really bring the book to life amd make it accessible.
    Regarding the novel itself, I enjoyed the first and final parts far more than the latter part of the middle where it became very confusing but perseverance paid off.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Amazon Customer
    3/8/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "This is beautiful - do give this a go."
    Any additional comments?

    Excellently read, wonderfully written. I listened to this one through twice and will certainly go back and do it again soon.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Highlight
    United Kingdom
    2/2/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Fantastic & Excellent Way to Absorb Ulysses"

    I read the book over several months & enjoyed it. Now at last we
    have Ulysses on audible which is great to listen to as it helps to
    absorb this incredible piece of work as I read the book again.
    I like doing this with some of the more deeper literature, find this enables the work to sink in in more depth. ❤️ James Joyce.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Maurice
    Carrigrohane, Ireland
    7/15/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Listening v reading Ulysses"
    What did you like most about Ulysses?

    It's much easier to listen to Ulysees than to read it. I have had a hard copy of the book for the past 40 years and made several attempts to read it without success, never getting past 100 pages. This. Version has a very good narrator and the accents are great.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The sheer wit in every paragraph.


    What does Jim Norton bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

    Great intonations of various accents.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    No. It takes weeks to get through.


    Any additional comments?

    Would recommend this version to all my friends

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • K. Taylor
    U.K
    4/13/13
    Overall
    "Great listen!"

    I thought the audiobook was great, I chose to read along as I listened because Joyce writes in such a way that you need to see as well as actually hear the words to get the full effect. I had been putting off reading it for ages because everyone said how difficult it is but in fact this audiobook is a wonderful accompaniment 10/10 would recommend.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • BK
    Newbridge, Ireland
    2/8/13
    Overall
    "Excellent reading"

    Jim Norton does an excellent job in reading this Ulysses, he gets the nuances of accent just right and brought the book to life for me. The book itself had some really good bits and then some bits that I struggled with. I will definitely re-listen in a year or two and look forward to getting more out of it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Amin Amouhadi
    South Africa
    12/23/12
    Overall
    "Unfulfilled"

    I couldn't follow the audiobook but I believe it wasn't the audiobook's problem and it was due to the difficulty of the Ulysses. The techniques that Joyce uses in his masterpiece make is a difficult "story" if one just wants to listen to or to read a story. Ulysses is a kind of book that must be read with a lot of pauses and contemplation. if you are willing to hear it so, you could use the audiobook. otherwise my suggestion is to read the book in your sanctuary and then after grasping it try to listen to the audiobook.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Mrs
    Luton Beds, United Kingdom
    12/22/12
    Overall
    "Timeless"

    Well read and a total pleasure. If you want to hear one of the greatest classics of the 20th Century - look no further. I would give it 10 stars if I could.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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.