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The Neverending Story | [Michael Ende]

The Neverending Story

In this classic fantasy novel from author Michael Ende, small and insignificant Bastian Balthazar Bux is nobody's idea of a hero, least of all his own. Then, through the pages of an ancient, mysterious book, he discovers the enchanted world of Fantastica, and only Bastian himself can save the fairy people who live there. Shy, awkward Bastian is amazed to discover that he has become a character in the mysterious book he is reading and that he has an important mission to fulfill.
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Publisher's Summary

In this classic fantasy novel from author Michael Ende, small and insignificant Bastian Balthazar Bux is nobody's idea of a hero, least of all his own. Then, through the pages of an ancient, mysterious book, he discovers the enchanted world of Fantastica, and only Bastian himself can save the fairy people who live there.

Shy, awkward Bastian is amazed to discover that he has become a character in the mysterious book he is reading and that he has an important mission to fulfill.

©1979 Thienemann Verlag (Thienemann Verlag GmbH), Stuttgart/Vienna (P)2012 Tantor

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.9 (265 )
5 star
 (96)
4 star
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3 star
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Overall
3.9 (236 )
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Story
4.1 (235 )
5 star
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4 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
 (5)
Performance
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  •  
    James MILLEDGEVILLE, GA, United States 08-28-13
    James MILLEDGEVILLE, GA, United States 08-28-13 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "So much better than the movie"
    If you could sum up The Neverending Story in three words, what would they be?

    Story is so much more than the movie. Until you have read the full story, you cannot say you have fully enjoyed the Never Ending Story.


    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Natalia P. Valdes South San Francisco, CA USA 08-02-14
    Natalia P. Valdes South San Francisco, CA USA 08-02-14 Listener Since 2007

    Natalia

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "whoa-oh-whoa-oh-whoa-oh"

    Neverending Story had such a great message for young readers. A story that really makes you understand the consequences of actions while being dressed up in a fantastical adventure story.

    I must have watched the movie dozens of times as a child, but I wish someone had made me sit and read the book instead.

    I loved it.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mike's Newark, Ohio 07-16-13
    Mike's Newark, Ohio 07-16-13 Member Since 2001
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Good book but"
    Any additional comments?

    In parts the volume was to low and as I drive I have to fumble with the controls. Besides that Great book.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jim "The Impatient" Springfield, MO, United States 11-14-14
    Jim "The Impatient" Springfield, MO, United States 11-14-14 Member Since 2010

    I will listen to NO boring book. Old Fav's,Card, King , Hobb. New Fav's, Hill, Scalzi, Sawyer, Interested in Lansdale, Crouch, Konrath

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "THE NOTHING"

    Kids will enjoy this, but most will not understand it. I enjoyed the Rocky and Bullwinkle Show as a kid, but did not understand the adult messages. This is full of a lot of abstract ideas, such as The Nothing and a creature who is a voice only. This was the top selling children's book for three years in Germany.

    Movie ends in the middle.
    One main difference between the book and the movie is the main character. In the movie he is a normal looking boy. In the book he is fat and sort of dumb. He is an outcast who is made fun of a lot. This was an important part of the first part of the book, but Americans could not handle a fat hero. The movies stops in the middle of the book and in my opinion that is were the book should have stopped. In the second part of the book the main character gets skinny and becomes a super hero. I think the story was heading toward the message that no matter what we have we want more. A good message, but I was getting pretty bored. The first part of the book was four stars, but the second part was two and heading down. The second half seems to lack a plot.

    The narrator is good, but I also had trouble with the volume. There are characters who talk softly, so softly you can not hear them.

    You might enjoy listening to this with your children, but I don't think as an adult by yourself it will be as good.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    dan lower burrell, PA, United States 02-25-14
    dan lower burrell, PA, United States 02-25-14 Member Since 2013
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    "Surprised i liked the movie more..."
    What did you like best about The Neverending Story? What did you like least?

    First time I have ever thought the movie was deeper than the book! Had trouble getting through it. The narration was somewhat annoying. The volume went up and down a lot and I had to keep adjusting.
    Worth a listen to I guess. A solid story. Just not what I was expecting I guess!


    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kristin 11-16-14
    Kristin 11-16-14 Member Since 2011
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    "Enjoyable"

    I enjoyed it, but not in my top 10 list (or even top 20) but good fun. Do Not try to make your kids watch the movie WOW that was a mistake.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 10-24-14
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    "Love the story, hate the volume problems"
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    The volume level throughout the story was inconsistent. I had to crank the volume way up to hear one character and way down to save my eardrums from the next during the same conversation in the story.


    Any additional comments?

    I had to stop listening to the story because the constant changing of the volume was so ridiculous.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Cam T. United States 08-12-14
    Cam T. United States 08-12-14 Member Since 2011

    "Reclusive Writer"

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    "Great audiobook, but very soft"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I've always enjoyed this book, and when I found out there was an audiobook, I had to have it! Gerard Doyle's performance is good, but the volume of the book is very, very soft, which is often to its detriment.

    I frequently had to jack the volume up to maximum just to hear it at times. That's why I only give it four stars out of five in the overall.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The story is very different from the movies that most people know. This is not a bad thing. I enjoyed the first two movies very much, and it's interesting to see the original version of the elements of both movies.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    I can't honestly just pick one scene. The death of Artax is a tragic scene, both in the movie and the book. There are a number of cool scenes after Bastian makes it to Fantastica (why the translator called it Fantastica, when even the original author called it "Fantasia" is beyond me.), that I can't pick a single.


    Any additional comments?

    If you've got a good strong sound system with a high volume, and if you enjoy a good fantasy story, get this book. It's an amazing odyssey.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Uncle Bud South Carolina USA 06-14-14
    Uncle Bud South Carolina USA 06-14-14 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Returning as an adult to Fantastica"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I read this book many, many years ago as a youth. When I saw this title among the many titles at audible.com, I had to have it. This book, while it is most likely written with a younger audience in mind, can bring even an adult to Fantastica. I enjoyed this audio book and my only regret is that I no longer have the hardcover book and that Amazon & Audible do not currently have a COMPANION e-book for purchase to read along as you listen. Is this the GREATEST Fantasy I've ever read/listened to? No but it is fun and did rekindle a part of my younger self to come alive while listening to the whole story.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    While Bastian Balthazar Bux is the main character, he's not MY favorite character of the story. I would say that Atreyu is my favorite character and is the key figure in the first 1/2 of the story.


    What does Gerard Doyle bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    To my knowledge, I don't recall listening to a story narrated by Mr. Gerard Doyle before but I felt his performance very much fit the book. I may even consider seeing what other books he has narrated to see if any of them interest me.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    No, not really. I suppose there were of course moments in the story that DID make me laugh but I'm not sure I'd ever go so far as to use the terminology of "having an extreme reaction" to any book.


    Any additional comments?

    The story itself is full of interesting characters in a fantasy realm. There are many moral lessons along the way that one might use to expound upon if / when listening to this story with a child.

    2 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    jonathan Clark 05-05-13 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "You've Only Ever Heard HALF of the Story!"

    Anyone with a Love for the Fantastical and Quixotic realms of Childlike Fairytales will Love this novel, and ask themselves how So Much could have gotten Left behind for So Very Long. Having grown up with the film version I Thought I knew what the story was all about, and which characters were involved, but with the novel version in hand I come to realise the depth and complexity of nuance which I missed.

    While much of youth oriented fiction can suffer from a lack of dynamism and depth, only occasionally surpassed in a form worthy of repetition and continuity between the generations, This Book has joined the rather short list of books I think would be Imperative to read to my future children every night around the ages of 8 to 10 years old...
    While the characters can seem simplistic in their catagories at first, time and again each presumption of simplicity is destroyed.

    I often judge my most favorite Fantasy on that, and one other main point. I look for characters and situations not presented as cliche and shallow composition, and I have a particular interest and personal metric of the quality of an author by looking to the Names Chosen for each 'imaginary part'... Ironically, the second metric is not only satisfied, but proven in some ways integral to the story itsself.

    In fact, the whole of the story reaches a level and depth of alagory and symbolism which not only demands rereading, but feels continually expositional in a way I think all the Best Fantasy does.

    While I am continually disappointed that (American) film adaptations continually fail to depict Describedly and Integrally necessary 'frumpy characters' as main characters in their stories, (Somebody get me a cutesy child star!) certain other aspects are evocatively presented, and I found myself returning to their itterations for other characters...
    for the first half of the book...

    I am left to wonder if there was some Intention to continue the story later, a total abandonment of the second part's alagory, or if Peter Jackson just hasn't heard of it yet...
    Lets hope it can, at least for this preciously short period, still continue to be a Truely Unique Find, and a Powerful Mutual Experience between parents and their children, or young readers stumbling upon the novel in passing...

    Among the Best of young fiction, and a powerfully evocative departure from the formulaic tolkienian, or rowlingnian method otherwise dominant currently...
    I love each new take and each evocative result and This is certainly Among the Best!

    6 of 12 people found this review helpful
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