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Publisher's Summary

Exclusively from Audible

Kipling's masterpiece Kim is his final and most famous work and one of the first and greatest espionage stories ever written. It explores the life of Kimball O'Hara, an Irish orphan who spends his childhood as a vagrant in Lahore. When he befriends an aged Tibetan lama his life is transformed as he is requested to accompany him on a mysterious quest to find the legendary River of the Arrow and achieve Enlightenment. The pilgrimage will take them across the vast continent, across rivers, and up the Himalayas.

While Kim wishes to take part in the imperialistic Great Game, learning espionage from the British secret service, he feels spiritually bound to the lama. Kim has a difficult choice to make: his companion or his country?

A rich and colourful depiction of India's exotic landscape and culture in the imperialistic world of the late 19th century, this audiobook celebrates their friendship and explores a young man's quest for identity.

Rudyard Kipling was an English journalist, short-story writer, poet, and novelist who was the first English language author to win the Nobel Prize in Literature. Some of his most memorable works include The Jungle Book and Just So Stories.

In 1998 Kim was ranked at Number 78 on the Modern Library's list of the 100 best English-language novels of the 20th century. In 2003 it was listed on the BBC's The Big Read poll of the UK's 'best-loved novel'.

Narrator Biography

Three-time Olivier Award winner actor Alex Jennings has had an extensive career with the Royal Shakespeare Company and National Theatre. His recent stage performances have included Willy Wonka in 2014's Charlie and the Chocolate Factory the Musical and Professor Henry Higgins in the 2016 Australian 60th Anniversary production of My Fair Lady. In 2006 he played Prince Charles opposite Helen Mirren in The Queen and has had other roles in films such as Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason (2004), Babel (2006) and The Lady in the Van (2015). His television work has included the BBC TV series Cranford (2007) and long running legal drama Silk (2011-2014). In 2016 he featured in the Netflix series The Crown and the ITV series Victoria. He has narrated many audiobooks including Attention All Shipping by Charlie Connelly, which in 2008 was chosen as one of the top 40 audiobooks of all time.

Public Domain (P)2014 Audible, Inc.

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
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Mr. Dastor made the book come alive

I was not familiar with "Kim" and thoroughly enjoyed experiencing it through the voices of Mr. Dastor. Each character was distinct and vivid, both as written and as read.

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awesome!

The reader is Awesome! The voices are unbelievable. it is a great story also. Highly recommended.

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Excellent Performance!

Kim is one of my favorite Rudyard Kipling stories. The reader gives a Fantastic performance in so many accents, that it was better having heard it than when I read it. A classic. Also useful for those wanting to peer into the tapestry of India' s history, and includes the intrigue of the "great game".

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Amazing voice acting

this was not my favorite story, but by far the best voice performance I've ever heard.

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Dastor and Kipling are both geniuses

What did you love best about Kim?

Kipling's word choice, the descriptions of scenes, the amazing performance of Sam Dastor (seriously, he play characters of umpteen different casts, dialects, genders, ages, national origins!), the winding, intricate tale, Kipling's deep knowledge of India and Buddhism.

What did you like best about this story?

See above

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

See above. He is incredibly talented. I cannot fathom how he can switch in and out of the narrator's voice and the voices of the numerous characters he plays. He brought the book to life without a fault.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

The descriptions of the mountainous regions in/near Tibet.

Any additional comments?

This is a complex story, but it all beautifully comes together. Kipling is a master of the written word and Dastor a master of acting. Buddhists (particularly of Tibetan lineages) will deeply appreciate this book.

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Classic Kipling, beautifully performed

Kim is an orphan boy with a foot in two worlds, living during the late 1800s. British by birth but seeing himself as a part of the local community, he lives as a street kid until his employment as an agent of espionage. He is also a student, and a disciple of a Tibetan Buddhist Lama. His adventures take place in Pakistan, India, and the Himalayas. The performance does full justice to the splendour of the language, and covers a remarkable range of accents.

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Great Listen

Sam Dastor takes you on a great Indian adventure with this Rudyard Kipling classic. His vocalizations of the different characters are incredible. Kim, a young orphan in early British India travels the country with his mentor, a Tibetan lama. The book is essentially a narrative of their adventures while painting a colorful and informative picture of India prior to the full bloom of the British Raj.

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Sheer delight

This is a "Boy's Own Adventure" but wonderfully told, an India long gone captured in word painting that was masterly.

This is Rudyard Kipling's best book and it is a masterpiece - in a few words he can describe a scene, a look or a character. I've never been to India but I feel like after listening to this I know what to expect.

For younger boys it is an adventure but it goes far beyond that for adult readers as it works on so many levels.

Sam Dastor, who read The Siege of Krishnapur and didn't do the best of jobs doing so, did a marvellous job of all the characters in this book. It was compelling listening. I loved it and know I shall listen to it again and listen to more Kipling as a result of listening to this book.

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One of my very favorite listens

What made the experience of listening to Kim the most enjoyable?

I love this Kipling story. The adventure of a spy store, the respect for Indian culture, and the friendship of a young rascal and an old Llama give it a lot of depth. I can listen to it over and over, and appreciate it each time. It's a great bed time story, yet I'm never bored.

What other book might you compare Kim to and why?

You might compare this book to Huckleberry Finn. Both have the same respect for culture, the satire of racial perspective, and the sense of a higher moral framework than that of our immediate parochial perspective.

Have you listened to any of Sam Dastor’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

I don't think so, but he's perfect for Kim.

  • Overall

Excellent, but....

Having heard rave reviews of this book, I was considering using this book to teach World History..... This is an excellent--absolutely wonderful--historical novel of India during the British period. The nuances of religious heterogeneity certainly are depicted.

HOWEVER, I doubt very few of my students would trudge through this. Unless you are truly a fan of the classics or are looking to improve your understanding of religious pluralism throughout the world, I would suggest you bypass this book.... but that is my own opinion.

In short, it's worth a read once. But not twice. And certainly not if you are an undergraduate with a million things on your plate.

6 of 18 people found this review helpful