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 .
Lingo Audiobook

Lingo: Around Europe in Sixty Languages

Regular Price:$19.95
  • 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

Whether you're a frequent visitor to Europe or just an armchair traveler, the surprising and extraordinary stories in Lingo will forever change the way you think about the continent and may even make you want to learn a new language.

Lingo spins the listener on a whirlwind tour of 60 European languages and dialects, sharing quirky moments from their histories and exploring their commonalities and differences. Most European languages are descended from a single ancestor, a language not unlike Sanskrit known as Proto-Indo-European (or PIE for short), but the continent's ever-changing borders and cultures have given rise to a linguistic and cultural diversity that is too often forgotten in discussions of Europe as a political entity.

Lingo takes us into today's remote mountain villages of Switzerland, where Romansh is still the lingua franca; to formerly Soviet Belarus, a country whose language was Russified by the Bolsheviks; to Sweden, where up until the 1960s polite speaking conventions required that one never use the word "you" in conversation, leading to tiptoeing questions of the form: "Would herr generaldirektör Rexed like a biscuit?"

Spanning six millenia and 60 languages in bite-size chapters, Lingo is a hilarious and highly edifying exploration of how Europe speaks.

©2015 Gaston Dorren. First published in Great Britain in 2014 by Profile Books. Recorded by arrangement with Grove Atlantic, Inc. (P)2015 Audible, Inc.

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.9 (42 )
5 star
 (12)
4 star
 (19)
3 star
 (8)
2 star
 (1)
1 star
 (2)
Overall
4.1 (33 )
5 star
 (13)
4 star
 (11)
3 star
 (9)
2 star
 (0)
1 star
 (0)
Story
4.3 (33 )
5 star
 (16)
4 star
 (10)
3 star
 (7)
2 star
 (0)
1 star
 (0)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Anonymous 03-09-16
    Anonymous 03-09-16 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    5
    2
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Fascinating tour of European dialects"

    This book is a fascinating your of European dialects. It melds history and linguistics in a breezy, flowing story of each language. It's easy to listen to because each chapter is short and modular. But if you miss a bit of any chapter, it's hard to gather what the author is getting at. Still, it's captivating enough for a few listens. I recommend.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    John S. Seattle, WA United States 08-31-16
    John S. Seattle, WA United States 08-31-16 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
    510
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    228
    194
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    29
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Perfect narrator fit!"

    An overview of European languages, including several either dead, dying, or spoken as distinct "minority" languages in their countries. Easy to pick up and put down without losing any continuity; folks looking for something more in-depth might likely find themselves frustrated or disappointed. Excellent audio narration - Backman obviously went to great lengths to get the material down correctly.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    See Reverse 07-17-16
    See Reverse 07-17-16
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    38
    17
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Introduction to a Wide World of Language"
    What did you love best about Lingo?

    I like the "lightbulb" words at the end of each chapter. English is definitely missing components that are elegant in other languages!


    What did you like best about this story?

    I love the stories about each of the languages, and the varied style for each of them. With 60 languages to cover, I really enjoyed how the author would balance between deep historical coverage, and fun, tongue in cheek delivery. Gaston Dorren called out French as a language afraid to be away from its mother. Who does that? Definitely a (mostly) fun read.


    What about George Backman’s performance did you like?

    He definitely has fun with the delivery over the course of these stories.


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

    It's not a dramatic book, but there were a few times where laughter is appropriate.


    Any additional comments?

    If you're not a linguist, then you will have a lot to absorb from this book. I didn't sweat the details too much, and went with the flow. Backman is offering us a tour of Europe, so don't worry if you don't know which General won the battle, or which year the building was completed. The point is that there are a lot of languages, they've got some similarities, and some key differences.

    1 of 1 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.