Born a Crime

Stories from a South African Childhood
5 out of 5 stars (106,390 ratings)

Regular price: $24.95

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About This Audible Audiobook

In this award-winning Audible Studios production, Trevor Noah tells his wild coming-of-age tale during the twilight of apartheid in South Africa. It’s a story that begins with his mother throwing him from a moving van to save him from a potentially fatal dispute with gangsters, then follows the budding comedian’s path to self-discovery through episodes both poignant and comical. Noah’s virtuoso embodiment of all the characters from his childhood, and his ability to perform accents and dialects effortlessly in English, Xhosa, and Zulu, garnered the Audie Award for Best Male Narrator in 2018. Nevertheless, Noah’s devoted and uncompromising mother—as voiced by her son—steals the show.

©2016 Spiegel & Grau (P)2016 Audible, Inc.

Go Behind the Scenes of Born a Crime

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The author’s gift for vocal impersonation elevates the audio version into something even more splendid than an already terrific memoir.

- The Washington Post
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Our favorite moments from Born a Crime

"No, Mom! This was not thanks to God!"
"Once Mandela was elected, we could finally live freely."
"If my mother had one goal, it was to free my mind."

  • Born a Crime
  • "No, Mom! This was not thanks to God!"
  • Born a Crime
  • "Once Mandela was elected, we could finally live freely."
  • Born a Crime
  • "If my mother had one goal, it was to free my mind."

About the Author and Performer

Trevor Noah found fame as a comedian and TV personality in his native South Africa before becoming a household name in America as the host of The Daily Show. But before he found his gift for satire, he came of age as a storyteller during the waning days of apartheid and the tumultuous freedom that followed. In writing and performing Born a Crime—his first book—Trevor Noah can add “best-selling memoirist” and “audiobook narrator” to his list of hilarious-yet-heartfelt triumphs.

Dying to hear more about Born a Crime?
For an episode of our Audicted podcast, a few editors sat down to talk about their favorite Audible Essentials—our list of 100 must-listen audiobooks. Check out the episode to hear Abby explain why Trevor Noah's Born a Crime simply can't be missed, and explore some other picks below.

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    95,311
  • 4 Stars
    9,444
  • 3 Stars
    1,277
  • 2 Stars
    198
  • 1 Stars
    160

Performance

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    93,389
  • 4 Stars
    4,444
  • 3 Stars
    551
  • 2 Stars
    97
  • 1 Stars
    93

Story

  • 5 out of 5 stars
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    86,842
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    9,482
  • 3 Stars
    1,452
  • 2 Stars
    194
  • 1 Stars
    137
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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Didn't finish

I was expecting more storytelling and laughs. I also thought it would be interesting to learn more about South Africa. I did learn more, and appreciated that part. I got bored because the story themes were repetitive, and gave up.

77 of 88 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Codependence

I sincerely hope Mr. Noah is or will become a member of Adult Children of Alcoholics, (ACOA).

44 of 50 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Fine but...

Noah is engaging. And his self-depreciating assessment of childhood is familiar to all who have experienced it, regardless of race or country. His observations on race in South Africa and the world over are insightful, but during one anecdote he essentially blames his two pet cats' natural temperament for their own sadistic murder, beheading and skinning at the hands of a superstitious neighbor. In that sense, it seems he may have learned a lot about people's nature, but not much about animals in general.

63 of 72 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

skip it

I love Trevor Noah, but this book is boring uneventful and too simple . I tried and tried but I couldn't even finish it

68 of 78 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

Nothing special.

The history of apartheid was the best part of the book. Everything else could of been a number of others story as well.

24 of 27 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Not my favorite

I didn't care for this one at all. I had to stop listening about half way through. It had great reviews and a lot of them but it wasn't for me.

24 of 27 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Boring

I realize there are a lot of important things covered in this book, I just didn’t care for Trevor doing the reading. It seems like he’s talking to his teenage friends the whole time and I got tired of him.

74 of 85 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

interesting topic, badly executed. WHERE was editor for this work!

Arrogant, egotistical, not even very funny, this guy has an overblown idea of himself that RUINED the potential for what could have been an interesting story, informative read.
I will NOT recommend this and am sorry I wasted my invested time in it. Refused to even finish it. Refund please!

74 of 85 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Not at all what I expected

I expected this book to be a lot different. I expected to at least laugh.

I didn’t laugh at all. In fact I was left quite depressed by this book.

I guess it just wasn’t what I was looking for.

And the voices and impressions were quite annoying.

67 of 77 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Average in every way

Well I was looking for a funny book to ease my commute, got a little less than I'd hoped for. I really don't understand the hype around this book (4.9 stars from 93.000 ratings on audible) because it is really an average book, with a below average performance from Mr. Noah. Very biased, it is basically a book about childhood complexes and obsessions. Funny in some parts, relatable in some ways (growing up in communist Eastern Europe was is some ways a very similar experience to being black in South Africa during the Apartheid).
In conclusion, buy the book if you like the guy, and be careful with those 5 star reviews...

73 of 84 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • KM
  • 10-16-17

EXCELLENT!!!!!!!

I'm so glad that Trevor Noah reads this book himself. He does voices for his family members and is SO funny!! A very entertaining look at what has been a pretty heavy and eventful life.