Fiver could sense danger. Something terrible was going to happen to the warren; he felt sure of it. They had to leave immediately. So begins a long and perilous journey of survival for a small band of rabbits. As the rabbits skirt danger at every turn, we become acquainted with the band, its humorous characters, and its compelling culture, complete with its own folk history and mythos. Fiver's vision finally leads them to Watership Down, an upland meadow. But here they face their most difficult challenges of all.
A stirring epic of courage and survival against the odds, Watership Down has become a beloved classic for all ages. Both an exciting adventure story and an involving allegory about freedom, ethics, and human nature, it has delighted generations with its unique and charming world, winning many awards and being adapted to film, television, and theater.
©2000 Richard George Adams (P)2010 Blackstone Audio, Inc.
“Quite marvelous...A powerful new vision of the great chain of being.” (New York Times Book Review)
“Spellbinding....Marvelous....A taut tale of suspense, hot pursuit, and derring-do.” (Chicago Tribune)
“A classic....A great book.” (Los Angeles Times)
It was original, creative, imaginative, and written wonderfully. The narration also added to a flawless and enjoyable production.
Charlotte's Web, Felidae, Lion King, Firebringer trilogy
Each had qualities I thought added to the story; probably Hazel for his leadership qualities and his integrity, Bigwig for his boldness and courage, Blackberry for his cleverness and dedication, Fiver for his tenderness. I understand the reason for Cosham's Norwegian accent with the character Kehaar, but found his rendering a little difficult to understand.
General Woundwort--with some Bataka bats to work out his anger and abandonment issues; Fiver for obvious reasons.
A lovely listen. At times I thought it became just little tedious towards the end and suggest it be listened to over a period of time to really appreciate it fully.
This is a wonderful book. It is challenging and thought provoking. Richard Adams has written a classic book that makes you consider our relationship to nature, the way we act in community, trust, loyalty and friendship. The narrator, Ralph Cosham, is perfect.
I love this story. I have or listened to it a half dozen times over the years. It never fails to be rewarding. In a way, it reminds me of the Hobbit in that in both cases unlikely heroes go off unexpectedly to learn about the great world around them with all it's good and bad.
Very well read. The narrator did an excellent job.
I have been waiting for an unabridged audiobook to be made for such a long long time. I have a battered old hard copy much loved and an ancient abridged version that cut out all the adventures of El-ahrairah (so you could hardly call it Watership Down)
This is without a doubt my favorite book. I could read it over and over again and It just increases in loveliness. I hope this audiobook helps others discover a literary treasure that so many of us already hold so dear.
If you like this book be sure to look up the animated film which is a bit dated but still does the story full justice.
SET REVIEWS TO BE SORTED BY 'MOST RECENT' INSTEAD OF 'MOST HELPFUL'!
Great golden Frith above us, this is an absolute masterpiece!! To say I love this book more each time I read or listen to it would be an understatement. Allegorically speaking, this is the filet mignon (or the finest vegetarian sushi dinner, if you're not a fan of red meat) of audiobooks. Please experience it if you haven't fallen in love with it already. Ralph Cosham's impeccable narration brings the story alive even more than it did when my son and I used to read it aloud to one another, hour after hour, on long summer evenings almost annually many years ago. I guarantee that your first listen won't be your last. This is one you will return to (and listen to with your loved ones on long car trips, or when gathered around the fire in winter) year after year.
The Introduction by the author was an unexpected treat I only discovered on this listen. It is fascinating; it is the only book introduction you could ever reasonably call "spellbinding." However, I have the very tiniest bone to pick with the author over one small matter. At the end of the introduction the author says, "I want to emphasize that Watership Down was never intended to be some sort of allegory or parable; it is simply a story about rabbits, made up in the car." At the moment I heard those words, I was already mentally composing my review, which I had decided to title "PLEASE STOP CALLING THIS A STORY ABOUT RABBITS!!" So much for what I know! In all seriousness, however, this is so much more than a story about rabbits; it's about very human personalities, relationships, class struggles, the 1% vs the 99%, war, heroism, resilience, redemption, superstition, tradition, adventure, and courage (especially the courage to cast off all social constructs and start over when needed). It remains one of the top ten audiobooks ever recorded. Thank you, Ralph Cosham; thank you, Audible! This is a treasure beyond measure.
I read this book for the first time at age 14, and loved it. Now, 13 years later, I listened to the audiobook, somewhat worried that it wouldn't live up to my memories, as so often happens. But just the reverse - it's even better than I realized as a kid.
The story is thrilling and compelling, but the real reason to love this book is the characters. So many of these characters will stay with me - haunted Fiver, stout Bigwig, courageous Hazel, and others. They feel like friends, as well as heroes to admire.
The narration is perfect as well, feeing intimate while still giving each character their own voice. I particularly liked the rendition of the bird Kehaar's foreign accent.
This book sat unread on my shelf for years. I bought it on the recommendation of many friends, but was always held back by the rabbit thing.
Don't be held back by the rabbit thing.
This is a wonderful book -- full of adventure and spirit in a way not unlike The Hobbit. Also like The Hobbit, it kind of masquerades as a kids book, but its depth and darkness and insight into humanity betray the fact that it is not really a kids book at all.
Ralph Cosham's narration could not be more perfect.
still tilting at windmills, after all of these years.
i read this years ago and remember how moving it was then. i went on to read shardik, the plague dogs, and the girl in a swing. all good. funny, i have read that adams had some trouble publishing because the *sigh* "target audience" was not clear: books about rabbits were going to turn off the adults and books written in an adult style were going to turn off the children. i handed the book to a reasonably bright teenage girl who came back with the latter response ... "nothing happened!" maybe she will give it a try later on. my advice: give yourself a treat, listen to the book for its use of language, its development of character, and its development of plot. be an adult for part of it, be a child for the rest. you shouldn't be disappointed.
THANK YOU! THANK YOU! THANK YOU! I have been trying to locate an unabridged recorded copy of this book forever. Thanks for listening and getting it!!! Great Birthday Present! General Woundwort Lives!
"Didn't want it to stop"
Engaging, thoughtful, enjoyable
Hazel, he is a true leader, not big headed, able to admit he gets things wrong and will take advice
The very last. All is settled.
Emotional as in I wanted the rabbits to live
Watership Down is a hard one to pin down. It is one of those remarkable and epic stories that has so much in there - tales of courage and bravery and politics and action and even mini-stories within the story. With all that, it is simply difficult to rate the story itself as being low.
Everything. It's just that good.
Although the story itself is epic, the narration is the only thing that brings the audiobook down. Mr. Cosham doesn't do a good performance. I find his narration flat and unemotional, but it doesn't affect how enjoyable the story itself is. I had been reluctant at first to purchase this audiobook because of the narration. However, because I was too distracted by the story, the narration didn't bother me as much.
Any kind of emotional reaction, I think, would be for me to want to read/listen to more. This is definitely one of those stories that you read/listen to during a long drive/journey.
Watership down was a childhood favourite and this audio book has bought it all back to life.
Beatifically read by Richard Adams with his variety of voices to suit each rabbit.
One I shall listen to over and over
This is so beautifully read - our family (Incl all the children aged 8,10,14,16) were all captivated for the whole 51 hours! Imagine, 51 hours of peace.....!!
"A beautiful story, well read."
This is one of my favourites from childhood - and just as good as I remembered. the narrator does it justice. Highly recommended.
I love this story it's one of my favourites. The book was very well read, the narrator really brought the book to life. Top marks
I read it as a teenager and remembered bing caught up with the lives of the rabbits and the accents of the different animals. I thought it would be a good book to listen to but wondered if I could get excited about rabbits at the age of 60! I found it enthralling and can't recommend it highly enough.
"A cut above the rest."
This is one of my top 5 books I love it on so many levels.
Firstly, its kind of a stand alone book. Because although there are other books that follow the lives of animals, most of them are children's books, and most of them have the animals doing things that real animals could or would never do. Or they have animals far more intelligent than real animals ever could be.Or in the case of animal farm which is not a children's book it's highly allegorical and political in nature.
Watership down is not meant to be anything other that a story written for entertainment and the animals do not do things that real animals could not. The book bends the rules slightly in places but does not outrightly break them.
The story is cute and funny enough for many children to love providing that have the stomach for it, it's kind of harsh in place's and it has plenty of grit and complexity to keep adults interested, even the ones who don't read children's books as a rule.
The narration is just right and really enhanced the story and the characters.
Just buy it already.
Narration by Ralph Cosham was very enjoyable, not too slow and his voice really brought the story alive to me again.
Read this as a child, and watched the 'cartoon' version numerous times (I have it on DVD now!) and I loved the story. Rich and varied, the story makes me laugh and cry in equal measures and as I listened I could see the rabbits, and feel what they were going through. I love this book.
I find that books being read to me resonate with me in a totally different way than reading them. I love to read but I use audiobooks when running, walking an on my 45min each way drive to work every day. His narration was spot on and it was wonderful to hear the history of the novel, which I had never heard before too.
Laughed. Cried. As usual with this book!
Buy it, you will not be disappointed.
"As good as I remember!"
Such a good story! Fun, sad, exciting and most of all enjoyable. Watership down was a great read when I worked my way through it years ago. I even went to the cinema to see the film (bit of a disappointment there though). The audiobook though was well read and kept me interested even if I did already know what happened.
Well read, clear, concise and read with passion
I would not like to listen to this book in one sitting but then I have read the book and seen the film
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