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The Blind Assassin Audiobook

The Blind Assassin

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Publisher's Summary

Man Booker Prize, Fiction, 2000

For the past 25 years, Margaret Atwood has written works of striking originality and imagination. In The Blind Assassin, she stretches the limits of her accomplishment as never before, creating a novel that is both entertaining and profoundly serious.

The novel opens with these simple resonant words: "Ten days after the war ended, my sister Laura drove a car off a bridge." They are spoken by Iris, whose terse account of her sister's death in 1945 is followed by an inquest report proclaiming the death accidental. But just as you expect to settle into Laura's story, Atwood introduces a novel-within-a-novel. Entitled The Blind Assassin, it is a science fiction story told by two unnamed lovers who meet in dingy backstreet rooms. When you return to Iris, it is through a 1947 newspaper article announcing the discovery of a sailboat carrying the dead body of her husband, a distinguished industrialist.

Told in a style that magnificently captures the colloquialisms of the 1930s and 1940s, The Blind Assassin is a richly layered and uniquely rewarding experience. The novel has many threads and a series of events that follow one another at a breathtaking pace. As everything comes together, you will discover that the story Atwood is telling is not only what it seems to be - but is, in fact, much more.

Cover Photograph: Courtesy of © The Advertising Archive, London; ©2000 by O.W. Toad, Ltd.; (P)Random House, Inc. Bantam Doubleday Dell Audio Publishing, A Division of Random House, Inc.

What the Critics Say

Book Sense Book of the Year Award Finalist, Adult Fiction, 2001

"Listeners will find themselves piecing together the clues, guessing at truths, but the rewards are to be found in the layering of details and the skill of the storytelling." (AudioFile)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.8 (1220 )
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3.9 (630 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Jerry Greenfield, NY, United States 01-21-10
    Jerry Greenfield, NY, United States 01-21-10
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Beautifully written and beautifully read"

    Just finished listening to this book for the second time. I didn't have the problem others have reported regarding sound quality, perhaps it was the equipment they were using. Atwood's perspectives on life, where it has meaning and where perhaps we expect too much meaning, moved me the second time as much as the first. And Dionne's personification of the characters brought the story to life. One of the best audiobooks I've ever listened to, and I'm certain will listen to again.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ashley New York, NY, USA 11-13-06
    Ashley New York, NY, USA 11-13-06
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "I can't even judge the text on its own merit..."

    ... Because the narration was simply unbearable.

    Margaret Atwood is a favorite of mine, and I think her genius is such that it would be quite difficult to eclipse or distill it by narration. Unfortunately the narrator succeeded in that, and not in a good way. In short I could not listen to this insufferable reading.

    Two stars only because I cannot in good conscience give the venerable Atwood a one-star review.

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Richard 01-07-05
    Richard 01-07-05

    Biomedical entrepreneur. Lifelong Libertarian. Yoga enthusiast.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A very fine book"

    A very fine book: prose, reader, plot. Keeps you thinking and guessing ahead. Wrapped in all the sadness, you stay hooked in thinking about how life moves ahead one way or another.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Samantha 08-28-04
    Samantha 08-28-04 Listener Since 2003

    lioness2001

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "I'd give this book 6 stars if I could"

    This was my first Audible book and I highly recommend it. The story has everything; intrigue, romance, history, humor, and sadness. The plot twists and turns; I couldn't put it down. Margaret Atwood has outdone herself -- again!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Valdis 03-27-04
    Valdis 03-27-04 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "It Grabs You And Doesn't Let You Get Away"

    This is the first Margret Atwood book I have read. I'll give you the bottom line first. It was a good to great book, but it took me a while to realize it.

    The book starts out in a somewhat confusing fashion, but with time, events, places, characters and sub-plots sort themselves out and I was left wondering and anticipating what is going to happen next. The reader's voice is a little off-putting at the beginning and it takes a while to get used to it. By the middle of the book her voice fits the times and the story quite well.

    Although by the middle of the book it was hard to put down, I must say that within the first quarter of the book I was tempted to erase the file and admit that I had wasted my money. I am now glad that I didn't because I would have missed out on an interesting and well written story.

    I am now intrigued enough to try some of Atwood's other novels.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Liz Lake Charles, LA, United States 05-30-03
    Liz Lake Charles, LA, United States 05-30-03 Member Since 2002
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    "Just didn't make the grade"

    I typically enjoy Atwood. However, this was too distracting. I literally had to work my way through this book. While Alias Grace started slow (Unabridged), it gained momentum and you eventually became involved. I never reached that point with this book. I do have high hopes for the new Sci Fi though.

    10 of 13 people found this review helpful
  •  
    J.B. 05-15-17
    J.B. 05-15-17

    Reading, the arts and physical activity clarify, explain, illustrate, and interpret life’s goods and bads.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "The Only Book I Have Ever Failed to Finish!"

    The Blind Assassin, by Margaret Atwood, narrated By Margot Dionnepit, is a story within a story and then again another story within that second story. The Blind Assassin, a science fiction story told by the prime character's fictional counterpart to the second novel's protagonist is an interesting machination and an ingenious plot maneuver. The angst of the story teller intrigued me and got me to buy and listen to the story, but perhaps the very poor quality of the audio or just the fact that the machinations did not seem to be there for any purpose other than style, just made me give up. I can read James Joyce, but could not read Atwood? Well at least this book.

    With that said, its acclamations are outstanding. The Man Booker Prize in 2000 and the Hammett Prize in 2001. It was also nominated for Governor General's Award in 2000, Orange Prize for Fiction, and the International Dublin Literary Award in 2002. Can’t get much better than that? Well, then again the Emperor’s cloths were well acclaimed by the courtiers. It was only the innocent little boy that put it all amiss.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Whitney 08-24-16
    Whitney 08-24-16 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Please rerecord this audiobook!!"

    If only they would rerecord this book with a better producer. The sound quality is terrible. Makes it impossible to listen to. Very dissapointing.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Katherine McLain Durango, CO United States 05-03-16
    Katherine McLain Durango, CO United States 05-03-16 Member Since 2015
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    "Beautiful and stunning"

    Atwood is by far one of my favorite authors. The Blind Assassin is mesmerizing. I did not expect the ending, which made me cry because of how beautiful it was. Read this book. That's all there is to say.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tiffany 12-22-15
    Tiffany 12-22-15
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Loved it just as much as I love all her books"

    Sad to have it end, it has been my companion for the last few weeks

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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