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Publisher's Summary

In this widely acclaimed modern classic, Graham Greene delves deep into character to tell the dramatic, suspenseful story of a good man’s conflict between passion and faith.

A police commissioner in a British-governed, war-torn West African state, Scobie is bound by the strictest integrity and sense of duty both for his colonial responsibilities and for his wife, whom he deeply pities but no longer loves. Passed over for a promotion, he is forced to borrow money in order to send his despairing wife away on a holiday. When in her absence he develops a passion for a young widow, the scrupulously honest Catholic finds himself giving way to deceit and dishonor. Enmeshed in love and intrigue, he will betray everything he believes in, with tragic consequences.

The Heart of the Matter is one of Graham Greene’s most enduring and tragic novels.

©1971 Graham Greene (P)1994 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Critic Reviews

“A literary ‘event’….[A] profoundly reverent book.” (Evelyn Waugh)
“No serious writer of this century has more thoroughly invaded and shaped the public imagination as did Graham Greene.” (Time)
“Joseph Porter’s gritty-voiced narration gives the story the perfect measure of world-weary angst.” (Library Journal)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall

Characters come to life with Greene as the author

A nice change of pace. Not the action, spy or detective novel I usually get. Makes me want to go back and start listen to more classics. If you want interesting characters and a philosophical theme to your books this is a great find. Writing at its best.

5 of 8 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Not nearly as good as Greene's "The Quiet American

What disappointed you about The Heart of the Matter?

Characters were not developed enough for their choices to "ring true." Big disappointment after reading " The Quiet American."

What could Graham Greene have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

Would have been better as a short story.

Would you listen to another book narrated by Joseph Porter?

Yes

You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

Well written in places - a few quotable sentences.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

British Colonialism and Catholic Guilt ho hum

I bought this because it is referred to. in Ghana Must Go. II am afraid I could not get past the acceptance
of white supremacy and hysterical white women heroines. ho hum

0 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Andre
  • Ithaca, NY, United States
  • 03-23-12

African Nightmare

The story is set in a British colony in Africa during World War II. The author created a hero who was decent, reasonable, but unfortunately Catholic. The plot involved events which led to the complete destruction of the hero, due primarily to his mindless, ridiculous adherence to the evil dogmas of the Catholic Church. A much better ending would have had the hero converting to some more relaxed religion, or better yet to a sane, reasonable atheism.

2 of 20 people found this review helpful