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 Number of the Beast Audiobook

The Number of the Beast

Regular Price:$27.97
  • 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

The wickedest, most wonderful science-fiction story ever created in our - or any - time. Anything can begin at a party in California - and everything does in this bold masterwork by a grand master of science fiction.

When four supremely sensual and unspeakably cerebral humans - two male, two female - find themselves under attack from aliens who want their awesome quantum breakthrough, they take to the skies - and zoom into the cosmos on a rocket roller-coaster ride of adventure, danger, ecstasy, and peril.

Robert A. Heinlein (1907–1988) was the dominant science-fiction writer of the modern era, a writer whose influence on the field was immense. He won science fiction's Hugo Award for best novel four times.

©1980 Robert A. Heinlein. 2003 by the Robert A. & Virginia Heinlein Prize Trust (P)2012 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

What the Critics Say

“One of the grand masters of science fiction.” (Wall Street Journal)

“The most influential science fiction writer of all time!” (Locus)

“[A story] about two men and two women in a time-machine safari through this and other universes. But describing The Number of the Beast thus is like saying Moby-Dick is about a one-legged guy trying to catch a fish.” (National Review)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.9 (583 )
5 star
 (242)
4 star
 (144)
3 star
 (108)
2 star
 (49)
1 star
 (40)
Overall
3.9 (535 )
5 star
 (240)
4 star
 (118)
3 star
 (90)
2 star
 (47)
1 star
 (40)
Story
3.9 (530 )
5 star
 (227)
4 star
 (138)
3 star
 (98)
2 star
 (39)
1 star
 (28)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Chris midvale, UT, United States 06-04-12
    Chris midvale, UT, United States 06-04-12 Member Since 2008

    Dr. Christopher W. Roberts Ph.d I am a Computer Geek working around the U.S. and the world. I have a lot of Air miles to listen to audible titles.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    113
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    691
    28
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    9
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Must listen before cat that walks through walls"

    The sory in this book besides a homage to the authors of the golden age of SF & F is the ultimate multiverse story. The two following novels form RAH "The cat who walks through walls" which also has the prerequisite of "The Moon is a harsh mistress" the novel "to sail beyond the sunset" is also based on the result of this book. A must listen for Hienlien fans.
    Great listen

    6 of 9 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Aden LAFAYETTE, CO, United States 02-26-13
    Aden LAFAYETTE, CO, United States 02-26-13 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
    76
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    18
    17
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    2
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "It. Never. Ends."

    I have most of Heinlein's work in print or audiobook. This is the worst one for so many different reasons.

    Story:
    Allah have mercy. I feel like I've done an N-space jump into universe of arrested pubescent development. "Stranger In A Strange Land," is brilliant because it rode high on the crest of the 60s counter-cultural movement, challenging nearly every moral bedrock of Western society. It is superb and does what Sci-Fi does best. This work isn't even an echo in an out-house of the mind that created "Stranger," or "The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress." The story is as juicy as a packing peanut.

    The dialogue in this book is pointless, too. I feel like I'm being treated to the discarded remnants on the cutting floor of "Time Enough For Love." The characters in this book are the same as Laz/Lor/Athena/Gallahad without the hook-laden narrative of Lazarus Long or great storyline.

    I'm a loyal masochist so I suffered through the whole recording the same way I listened to Robert Plant's solo work simply because I'm a Led-head and thought, "At some point, this will get good." I had hope, so much hope. Now I just have scars.

    Performance:
    It's a good thing I don't have a yard arm and a length of rope or I may be swinging in the breeze. I'm having a hard time describing this performance without using expletives. Horrible is a compliment. Female narrators should not try to imitate male voices by lowering theirs. [Under any circumstances]. Seriously. There should be a law. This was like listening to a woman with traumatic brain injury but without the benefit of being a public service announcement. Someone should be held accountable.

    I now have a soundtrack for the waiting room in Hades...

    4 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Donald 10-01-12
    Donald 10-01-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    2
    1
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A Chick Flick,"
    What disappointed you about The Number of the Beast?

    Almost no adventure. You would have almost as much fun listening to your wife and her girls friends talk.


    Has The Number of the Beast turned you off from other books in this genre?

    No he has written a lot of great books, just not this one.


    How did the narrator detract from the book?

    None


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

    Disappointment


    Any additional comments?

    Read his older works.

    5 of 8 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Liberty Dunedin, FL, United States 10-12-12
    Liberty Dunedin, FL, United States 10-12-12 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
    44
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    232
    10
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Take an exciting ride in Gay Deceiver"

    This book was written for those of us who grew up checking cereal boxes, just in case, because smart girls need spacesuits too! About a year ago I begged Audible for this book. Let's face it, we aren't getting any younger, and no large print editions were available. Experiencing this book in audio is truly a wild ride in the Gay Deceiver as it should be done, voice and ears only! This is a MUST LISTEN for Heinlein fans.

    3 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Crystal 09-13-16
    Crystal 09-13-16
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    7
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Story ruining narration"
    What did you love best about The Number of the Beast?

    The story is fantastic, but the only way I know that is because I read the book.


    What didn’t you like about the narrators’s performance?

    The narrators have managed to make it sound like a whiny romance / space opera. Deety, who is written as a brilliant computer programmer, comes across as a spoiled little girl. The other narrators are not as bad, but they still don't bring out the personalities of the characters.


    Any additional comments?

    I hope someone re-issues this book with a good traditional narrator. It doesn't deserve what has been done to it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Bill Boling Lynden, WA USA 08-22-16
    Bill Boling Lynden, WA USA 08-22-16 Member Since 2014

    iamanerd in Lynden

    ratings
    REVIEWS
    7
    5
    Overall
    "best Heinlein book that I have just finished!"

    of course I love it, I have Time enough for Love! great author good read

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    James 08-16-16
    James 08-16-16 Member Since 2015
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    2
    2
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Enjoyed as a teen...adult...and as a Senior"

    I have always enjoyed Heinlein and have reread him throughput my life. They usually have a nonspecific sexual overtone and become more adult oriented as you proceed through his series of books. Early fiction definitely teen oriented ; later books more adult oriented.

    Enjoy. Read as many times as you can.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jessica 06-26-16
    Jessica 06-26-16
    HELPFUL VOTES
    14
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    8
    6
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "one of my favorites"

    i must preface this review by saying that Heinlein is my all-time favorite author. this book is narratively a mess, and I love every uncomfortable, disjointed, anarchic, self-indulgent second of it. my only real complaint is in the performances. this book is told in point of view chapters from each of the four main characters. in particular the female who reads for DT ends up sounding weak and insipid a lot of the time which does not fit the character at all. if possible I recommend the audio version read by George Guidal his single performance managed to capture the wit and charm of the style so much better.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer Seattle 04-19-16
    Amazon Customer Seattle 04-19-16 Member Since 2011
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    34
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "vapid bobbleheads go on a space hike for no reason"

    I couldn't get through 8 hours.
    four readers. one talks through her teeth. another whines half the time. when you have a cast of four and only four major characters that spend their time together speaking to one another, why not produce something like a radio play instead of each reader reading all characters with completely different takes on how the character speaks (and that's not done in a clever 'differing perspectives' kind of way, more like amateur time)

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    big_jim_ok 10-12-15
    big_jim_ok 10-12-15
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    47
    1
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Don't start here..."

    The performance is interesting, with the round-robin of narrators reading the chapters as told from the various characters' points of view, and the narrators do very good jobs, but it's ultimately Heinlein himself who lets us down. The concept of the story is good, but the story itself is just a hot mess. Jerry Pournelle once said that Heinlein's biggest problem was that he became too big to edit, and this story is proof of that statement.

    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.