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 Idiot [Blackstone] Audiobook

The Idiot [Blackstone]

Regular Price:$31.47
  • 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

Despite the harsh circumstances besetting his own life - abject poverty, incessant gambling, and the death of his firstborn child - Dostoevsky produced a second masterpiece, The Idiot, just two years after completing Crime and Punishment. In it, a saintly man, Prince Myshkin, is thrust into the heart of a society more concerned with wealth, power, and sexual conquest than the ideals of Christianity. Myshkin soon finds himself at the center of a violent love triangle in which a notorious woman and a beautiful young girl become rivals for his affections. Extortion, scandal, and murder follow, testing the wreckage left by human misery to find "man in man."

©2000 Blackstone Audiobooks. Originally published in 1880 in Russia.

What the Critics Say

"Nothing is outside Dostoevsky's province....Out of Shakespeare there is no more exciting reading." (Virginia Woolf)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.1 (728 )
5 star
 (340)
4 star
 (220)
3 star
 (111)
2 star
 (39)
1 star
 (18)
Overall
4.2 (502 )
5 star
 (252)
4 star
 (145)
3 star
 (68)
2 star
 (25)
1 star
 (12)
Story
4.4 (494 )
5 star
 (299)
4 star
 (127)
3 star
 (50)
2 star
 (13)
1 star
 (5)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    M. bohane 10-19-17
    M. bohane 10-19-17 Member Since 2016
    RATINGS
    REVIEWS
    22
    4
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "The narrator nails it"

    Underrated and under appreciated novel by Dostoyevsky. It is read by a master storyteller; he captures all the personalities and keeps you glued to the story through all the meandering monologues right to the bitter end. Fantastic!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kindle Customer FTW TX 08-14-17
    Kindle Customer FTW TX 08-14-17 Member Since 2016
    RATINGS
    REVIEWS
    16
    4
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great writing but not a happy ending"
    Would you listen to The Idiot [Blackstone] again? Why?

    I think I would listen again because the characters are interesting and there is some deeper meaning, though I can't say what it is.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Idiot [Blackstone]?

    When Mishken and Gegorgean are together at the end. That was both strange and sad. Also when Adolia takes Mishken to see Natashia.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    When Mishken goes off on all the elites at the party he was supposed to sit and not talk at.


    Any additional comments?

    This book is hillarious in parts and very sad in parts. It's not a feel good book at all. The narrorator speaks quickly

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Constance C. 01-30-17 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
    8
    RATINGS
    REVIEWS
    36
    24
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Idiot, I Don't Think So"

    The narrator was very good, all those different voices he came up with, one does have to listen closely because he does speak quickly. The story was just OK, wouldn't recommend it or listen to it again. Such superficial people, and everything was a big drama, and did people really talk like that! They were the idiot's, not The Idiot.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dr. E. Rubinstein Melbourne, Australia 11-13-16
    Dr. E. Rubinstein Melbourne, Australia 11-13-16 Member Since 2011
    RATINGS
    REVIEWS
    4
    4
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Philosophy wrapped around a complex story"

    Filled with a panoply of impossible characters remains interesting until the end. The Russian character is revealed through this unlikely collection from the rich to the poor, the smart to the stupid, the scheming to the naive. Wonderful read

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    DFK 09-04-16
    DFK 09-04-16
    HELPFUL VOTES
    52
    RATINGS
    REVIEWS
    52
    50
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Intriquing, perhaps because the point isn't clear"

    The performance was excellent. I purchased "The Iditot" because I enjoyed both "Crime and Punishment" and "The Brothers Karamazov" enormously and found them both to be books that provoke thought. They had depth. But though I was intrigued and engaged while listening to "The Idiot", I kept hoping to see what the point of it all is, and did not see a point to it. It is almost a soap-opera like story, doesn't even have humor (the D'Artagnan books are also soap-opera-like, but there is adventure and humor). Myshkin is not an idiot, of course, and modern-day psychologists would certainly deal with him differently. At times he seems, aside from being an epileptic, like he is on "the spectrum", as we might say today. He is certainly very naive, has no concept of what love or marriage should be, and it is almost hard to believe that he wasn't exposed even through literature to some idea of what those were about in his time. It is very unclear what the purpose of developing such a character was. In the first chapter we hear him talk about the evils of capital punishment, a promising point, it is never returned to, and - I won't spoil the end, as something I read did for me - I'll just say that there would have been a point to revisit those thoughts later on but they were not at all revisited. I saw that Dostoevsky himself said that Myshkin is "the positively good and beautiful man". I don't see that. Yes, at times he was very gentle and kind, but much of what he did himself was not really considerate, maybe not intentionally, but ignorance or naïveté should not excuse all behavior. I also don't see how a person can be considered so good if he does nothing of any value with his life. Once he returns to Russia, even with his illness, he could have found something useful to do. He claimed he loved children and got along with them so well. Why didn't he volunteer to work at an orphanage? Being a supposed "prince" should not absolve him of needing to do something useful in the world, certainly not if you want to claim he is the model of goodness. I've seen him referred to as "Christ-like". Nah. I don't see that at all.
    I started out hoping to be enthralled once again, but was not.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Emily 08-22-16
    Emily 08-22-16
    HELPFUL VOTES
    16
    RATINGS
    REVIEWS
    36
    19
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Read Russian lit - don't listen to it"

    This was a good story and it moves along at a decent speed which is remarkable in Russian literature. I've read some and listened to some, and I'm finally convinced that it is too dense to enjoy as an audiobook. It just turns you around. And because the patronymics are not clearly laid out, the first half of the audiobook is spent trying to figure out which goes with which character. It is a good story and the characters are good, but I almost feel that it could have been a novella, it is so odd and charming but gets weigh laid with heavier material in the middle.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kindle Customer 06-22-16 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
    17
    RATINGS
    REVIEWS
    53
    16
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Another decent story from a Russian great"

    Really food dialogue throughout touching on those key elements Dostoevsky always includes in his works, primarily morals/ethics, religion. Additionally, memorable characters and rich characterization. At times tough to get through but well worth it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Bryan San Diego, CA, United States 06-15-16
    Bryan San Diego, CA, United States 06-15-16 Member Since 2017
    HELPFUL VOTES
    26
    RATINGS
    REVIEWS
    78
    76
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Outstanding translation and performance"

    This was an outstanding translation and performance of the famed novel the idiot. I highly recommend it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    John W McLellan Los Angeles 04-16-16
    John W McLellan Los Angeles 04-16-16 Member Since 2015
    RATINGS
    REVIEWS
    9
    2
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "An outstanding presentation of a truly great novel"

    I've read The Idiot twice before, the last time about three years ago. The thing with Russian literature (note: I'm a huge fan of Dostoevsky, Tolstoy, Bulgakov), is that it's super easy getting confused with various plot lines, character arcs, and the lack of clarity (at least for me) with where the overall narrative is going. The Idiot is in my "top 5" list of favorite novels, so I was curious whether listening to it versus reading it might bring the narrative a little more to life for me.

    Well, not really. Though I don't blame this version for it. The narrator did an outstanding job with the various characters and with the overall storytelling. He has a nice voice that just kinda sucks you in.

    The story is wonderful though - I'm not going into the plot, because the novel is less about the particulars of the story than it is about the ideas conveyed. Can a truly good man (or woman) exist in the world without becoming corrupted? Are we cursed to a life of sorrow and suffering because of our past sins? Are we evil people who do good things or the other way around? Etc, etc. Some of the ruminations about the existence of God, the Catholic Church, and the
    Nature of evil are incredibly deep and profound, and as ever applicable to our day and age as the were in Dostoevsky's time.

    This book demands engagement, in order to fully appreciate it. I would recommend listening to the audiobook while following along with the written text in order to grasp the full weight of this masterpiece.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dakota Jean West Palm Beach, FL 02-20-16
    Dakota Jean West Palm Beach, FL 02-20-16 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    RATINGS
    REVIEWS
    5
    3
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Brilliant narration of an epic book"

    This is indeed one of the best books, simply ever. The narration was incredibly well done; I highly recommend it and it's worth every minute of the 23 hours.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
Sort by:
  • osama
    11/4/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "tremendous but a bit difficult to follow"

    the characters develop slowly, keeping up with the names is a bit difficult, but the story is a masterpiece.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Sam
    4/25/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Not the best"

    I'm new to this. Why the silly voices Mr narrator? most off-putting. I think I would have enjoyed the book more if I'd read it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Ian
    PLYMOUTH, United Kingdom
    12/1/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Hard going for this idiot"

    The idiot of the title is Prince Muishkin, a young man who has just returned to Russia after being treated in Switzerland for epilepsy. The other main characters are Rogojin-another nobleman he meets on the train, Nastasia Philipovna-a woman they both love and who has a questionable reputation and Aglaya Epanchin-a young woman who Muishkin also "loves" and at one point looks like marrying.
    I struggled with this book. I found the characters hard to believe and very shallow-especially some of the supporting ones. I should say this was not helped by the fact I listened to this as an audio book, and the narrator made many of the characters sound like something out of a Monty python sketch. I also found the book incredibly long with many of the passages being an excuse for Dostoevsky to tell a yarn of some sort. Having said that I did enjoy General Ivolgin-retired and unfortunate- and his tall tales of his exploits in the army and his time as a child with Napoleon in Moscow.
    I also thought the explanation at the start of part 4 as to why you cannot write a novel about ordinary people was fantastic. But as a novel I did not like it.

    1 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • steven
    5/21/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Too much of nothing"

    Abandoned about 70% through. It was a promising start - reminiscent of Tolstoy, but it just got deeper and deeper into an endless waffle about vague topics by transient characters, none of which were properly formed. The emotions are incomprehensible and the motives are peculiar. I just cannot recommend this.

    0 of 2 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.