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A Canticle for Leibowitz | [Walter M. Miller]

A Canticle for Leibowitz

Winner of the 1961 Hugo Award for Best Novel and widely considered one of the most accomplished, powerful, and enduring classics of modern speculative fiction, Walter M. Miller’s A Canticle for Leibowitz is a true landmark of 20th-century literature—a chilling and still-provocative look at a postapocalyptic future.
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Publisher's Summary

Winner of the 1961 Hugo Award for Best Novel and widely considered one of the most accomplished, powerful, and enduring classics of modern speculative fiction, Walter M. Miller’s A Canticle for Leibowitz is a true landmark of 20th-century literature - a chilling and still-provocative look at a postapocalyptic future.

In a nightmarish, ruined world, slowly awakening to the light after sleeping in darkness, the infantile rediscoveries of science are secretly nourished by cloistered monks dedicated to the study and preservation of the relics and writings of the blessed Saint Isaac Leibowitz. From there, the story spans centuries of ignorance, violence, and barbarism, viewing through a sharp, satirical eye the relentless progression of a human race damned by its inherent humanness to recelebrate its grand foibles and repeat its grievous mistakes.

Seriously funny, stunning, tragic, eternally fresh, imaginative, and altogether remarkable, A Canticle for Leibowitz retains its ability to enthrall and amaze. It is now, as it always has been, a masterpiece.

©1959 Walter M. Miller, Jr. (P)2011 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

What the Critics Say

“Chillingly effective.” (Time)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.9 (1170 )
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4.1 (1029 )
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  •  
    Michael Bellevue, NE, United States 07-19-12
    Michael Bellevue, NE, United States 07-19-12 Member Since 2007
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    "Great Version"

    A Canticle for Leibowitz has been a favorite for years. I started reading science fiction in the late sixties and this was one of the earliest ones I read. My adult son recently read this and I was going to read it again so we could discuss. Before I could read it, I saw a recommendation for the Audible book version and decided to give it a try. And was glad I did. The narrator an outstanding job bringing the novel to life.

    I enjoyed this so much that I listened to it in only a couple of days. Guess I need to find a longer Audible book to listen to so my choice lasts until my next credit arrives.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Robert Eric Koch MONTEVALLO, AL, US 07-06-12
    Robert Eric Koch MONTEVALLO, AL, US 07-06-12 Member Since 2013

    Tell us about yourself!

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Excellent Narration of a Timeless SciFi Classic"
    Any additional comments?

    Those who do not study history are doomed to repeat it - the tragic essence of one of Science Fiction's greatest stories. The audio book adds a lot of nice nuances to an already excellent tale of tragic, future history. A great way to enjoy a must-read novel.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kathy BLYTHEWOOD, SC, United States 06-04-12
    Kathy BLYTHEWOOD, SC, United States 06-04-12
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    "Review"
    What made the experience of listening to A Canticle for Leibowitz the most enjoyable?

    Have read this as a hard copy a few years ago. Listening added a great option for a long distance trip!


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer Panguitch, UT 04-15-12
    Amazon Customer Panguitch, UT 04-15-12

    Too long gone, two wrongs right, to a brighter day and Tupelo night . . .

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Glad to Have This One in my Library"

    Originally gave this book a read back in my early teens. Although I lost my copy, the huanting tale remained with me. When I found this title on Audible, I took a nice listen and found the story still works.

    Of the three story-segments, I found the 1st to be my favorite. It is about discovery. The 3rd segment may prove the most memorible, though, as the reader experiences history repeating itself.

    A great story. Fair narration.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Terri FORT WORTH, TX, United States 10-23-11
    Terri FORT WORTH, TX, United States 10-23-11 Member Since 2010
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    "As good as it was 30 years ago!"
    Would you listen to A Canticle for Leibowitz again? Why?

    This is my second time reading this book so not sure I'd read it again, perhaps..


    What did you like best about this story?

    The theme will remain timely and relevant as long as people remain human.


    Which character – as performed by Tom Weiner – was your favorite?

    The novice priest.


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

    No, just consistent enjoyment of the story.


    Any additional comments?

    Definitely on my recommend list.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Marshall I. Cohen 10-14-11 Member Since 2014
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    "Loved the Narrator. Loved the Book."

    I loved this story when I first read it in the 60's. I lived reading it again in the 80's. I loved listening to it in 2011

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jeffrey Flemington, NJ, United States 10-09-11
    Jeffrey Flemington, NJ, United States 10-09-11
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    "Simply outstanding!!"
    What did you love best about A Canticle for Leibowitz?

    I had never even heard of this book until about 2008. After reading this remarkably entertaining and extremely well written book, I could not understand why,


    What about Tom Weiner’s performance did you like?

    I was not thrilled with the narration. I would have preferred Robertson Dean. Mr. Weiner's performance sounded as if he was trying a bit too hard and it came across a bit too formal. However, I don't think it detracts from the overall affect and entertainment of the book.


    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    mary Minneapolis, MN, United States 09-26-12
    mary Minneapolis, MN, United States 09-26-12
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    "Not my cup of tea"

    I remember this book being on the bestseller list when I was in school. So when it was available on an Audible two-for-one offer I got it. Boy was I disappointed! It was difficult to follow, lacked interesting characters and just is not a good book, IMHO. I would not recommend this book and am surprised to continue to see it on various lists of best sci-fi compilations. I listened to the novel several times because it was so hard to follow but in the end found it a waste of my time. The authors I really like include Octavia Butler, Stephen King, Walter Mosley and Dean Koontz. I like real page turners (metaphorically) and am glad I didn't buy this book in hardcover or paperback form. The only redeeming quality was the reader and that's only because I'm trying to find something good to say about A Canticle for Leibowitz. Not sure why this is considered such a good book. Definitely not my cup of tea!

    3 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    SamanthaG Marietta GA 11-14-13
    SamanthaG Marietta GA 11-14-13 Member Since 2010

    SamanthaG

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    "Not my idea of "post-apocalyptic""

    I go for the post-apocalyptic stuff - favorites - Earth Abides and On the Beach. This one didn't do so much for me because it spanned too much time and was disjointed. I found it difficult to follow the story and lost interest.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    William Sandwich, IL, United States 03-19-13
    William Sandwich, IL, United States 03-19-13 Member Since 2012
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    "Boring"
    What would have made A Canticle for Leibowitz better?

    The first half of the book spends way to much time introducing you to all the characters, instead of introducing them as the story goes. Oh, and instead of telling you what part of the story is s different language, it actually reads in a different language, and never tells you what it said.The last third of the book was the only good part. I heard the second book is the same way:(


    What could Walter M. Miller have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Voice does not change enough to separate characters, which might have helped with first half of the book. And a third of the voices he just gave a speech impediment to.


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

    frustration that i had not downloaded an additional book so i would not have to listen to this one.


    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
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