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 .
 >   > 
The Unbearable Lightness of Being Audiobook

The Unbearable Lightness of Being: A Novel

A young woman is in love with a successful surgeon, a man torn between his love for her and his incorrigible womanizing. His mistress, a free-spirited artist, lives her life as a series of betrayals—while her other lover, earnest, faithful, and good, stands to lose everything because of his noble qualities. In a world where lives are shaped by irrevocable choices and fortuitous events, and everything occurs but once, existence seems to lose its substance, its weight. Hence we feel “the unbearable lightness of being."
Regular Price:$23.62
  • 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

A young woman is in love with a successful surgeon, a man torn between his love for her and his incorrigible womanizing. His mistress, a free-spirited artist, lives her life as a series of betrayals - while her other lover, earnest, faithful, and good, stands to lose everything because of his noble qualities. In a world where lives are shaped by irrevocable choices and fortuitous events, and everything occurs but once, existence seems to lose its substance, its weight. Hence we feel “the unbearable lightness of being.”

A major achievement from one of the world’s truly great writers, Milan Kundera’s magnificent novel of passion and politics, infidelity and ideas, encompasses the extremes of comedy and tragedy, illuminating all aspects of human existence.

©1984; 1984 Milan Kundera; English translation © Harper & Row, Publishers, Inc. (P)2012 HarperCollins Publishers

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.2 (454 )
5 star
 (225)
4 star
 (139)
3 star
 (56)
2 star
 (24)
1 star
 (10)
Overall
4.2 (398 )
5 star
 (201)
4 star
 (109)
3 star
 (55)
2 star
 (23)
1 star
 (10)
Story
4.4 (399 )
5 star
 (231)
4 star
 (116)
3 star
 (37)
2 star
 (7)
1 star
 (8)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Maxsauntie 10-28-15
    Maxsauntie 10-28-15 Member Since 2015
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "NAILED IT"

    Are there awards for audio book narration? Because Hoxie killed it. Obviously Kundera's novel is incredible, a moving fusion of philosophy and memoir and fiction. Hoxie honored the text with his performance and heightened the emotional resonance.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Basque505 New Mexico 10-24-15
    Basque505 New Mexico 10-24-15 Member Since 2012

    Driving long miles across Wyoming can be soooo boring , but ever since I founds Audible my wife and I love to travel !

    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    53
    12
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A woman in search of knowledge"

    A friend recommended this book to me. It's completely outside my normal reading realm, but I've fallen in love with it. I highly recommend listening to it. However, do not listen then set it aside for a while, you will be lost if you wait too long. I believe both men and women would love this book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer Shelby Township, MI 10-21-15
    Amazon Customer Shelby Township, MI 10-21-15 Member Since 2015
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    5
    3
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Good book!"

    Not a love story in the conventional form, but a story within a story, intertwined with a littlw bit of history.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    desiree 07-03-15
    desiree 07-03-15
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    11
    3
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "for deep thinking not entertainment"

    Hoxie has a soothing voice and the narrative is consistently existential. German phrases and cultural references come up every once in a while. Philosophy references come up often in the theme of lightness and absurdism. Overall it was interesting just not thrilling enough. More of something to be expected with reality and less entertaining. Can be difficult to
    follow because of time skips and references to the past throughout. Recommended for conceptual understanding not so much for excitement.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Gerald Sebastopol, CA, United States 11-13-12
    Gerald Sebastopol, CA, United States 11-13-12 Member Since 2012
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    3
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Teflon Meets Flypaper"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I would recommend this book to a friend who has experienced being both stuck in a relationship with a person, career, or movement and also disengaged at these levels at various times of his or her life. Having had these experiences I found the story helpful in assessing my own life. It also helps me appreciate the balance I have now found.


    What did you like best about this story?

    I most enjoyed the various combinations of characters and situations that exemplified what can happen when a person needing freedom to experience all encounters one needing connection to express all. In the story this came together for me in Tomas' son, Simon. He could give all to God while not burdening another human being.


    What about Richmond Hoxie’s performance did you like?

    He served as a transparent medium for the story, which held my interest, throughout.


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

    I wanted to use this for my commute and took a week to complete the book.


    Any additional comments?

    This was my first Audible selection, and I look forward to others.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Khaled ElSherbini Cairo, Egypt 10-01-12
    Khaled ElSherbini Cairo, Egypt 10-01-12 Member Since 2014

    Kelsherb

    HELPFUL VOTES
    7
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    61
    8
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "wonderful story"
    What made the experience of listening to The Unbearable Lightness of Being the most enjoyable?

    excellent performance, and the story is wonderful.


    What did you like best about this story?

    from the movie made after the book. the book as usual is much deeper and more rewarding.


    If you could take any character from The Unbearable Lightness of Being out to dinner, who would it be and why?

    Sabina for sure


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mr. D Idaho, United States 09-09-15
    Mr. D Idaho, United States 09-09-15 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
    13
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    112
    15
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A good idea poorly executed."

    No spoilers.

    The philosophical aspect of this book I found intriguing. The author did a mediocre job writing a story around it. I did find myself interested in Tomas, Tereza and Sabina and wanted to hear their story but every time I got into any rhythm, the author decided it was time to lecture. These lectures became tedious. There may have been kennels of wisdom within but there was also a lot of nonsense. Near the end of the book when the subject of "Kitch" was introduced I decide I had enough and did not want to find out what became of the characters. I quit the book without finishing.

    The author is highly regarded. Why is it I feel he does not deserve this acclaim? Possibly too much is lost in translation? Or, could it be he is regarded more for ideas and not so much for his prose?

    It is rare but in this case the movie version, dated as it is, is better than the book.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Stephen 11-18-12
    Stephen 11-18-12

    Fictional characters in narrative

    HELPFUL VOTES
    54
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    283
    35
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    2
    3
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Clever writing I guess"

    Quirky and even a little sexy without being prurient if that makes any sense. Actually I forget the story, maybe something about a girl not getting her man but not particularly worried about it? The writing style was the thing I liked. The political conditions of a city and sexual politics also.

    0 of 2 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.