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Publisher's Summary

The story begins with an investigation into some strange reports of an "opera ghost", legendary for making the great Paris opera performers ill-at-ease when they sit alone in their dressing rooms. Some allege to have seen the ghost in evening clothes moving about in the shadows. Nothing is done, however, until the disappearance of Christine during her triumphant performance. With an increasing pattern of fear and violence, The Phantom of the Opera begins to strike, but always with a beautiful young performer at the center of his deadly desires.
(P)2004 Blackstone Audiobooks

Critic Reviews

  • 2005 Audie Award Nominee, Classic
2005 Audie Award Nominee, Classic

What members say

Average Customer Ratings


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  • Overall
  • Miriam
  • Mesa, AZ, USA
  • 02-12-05

Phantom of the Opera

I was quite impressed by this book. I did not know that this was a book and was eager to listen to the full unabriged story. The story was quite fascinating and I was eager to listen straight through without stopping. The narrator Ralph Cosham did a good job narrating the story. He has a nice clear voice and was able to make the different characters stand out from each other. I really enjoyed this title and would recommend it to others.

54 of 56 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Book better than the movie

I'm usually a purist and read the book before I watch the movie. However, my children persuaded me to watch Andrew Lloyd Weber's "Phantom" and I found the story to be haunting and unsettling, so much so that I decided to get the book.

This audio book was fantastic! The reader did an outstanding job infusing emotion into the reading. Leroux develops the characters so much more than a movie is able to. I understood so much more of the emotions, character backgrounds, and even the plot than I had with the movie. I ached for Christine Daae with the decisions she had to make and the final outcome of the story.

If your only exposure to Phantom of the Opera has been either Weber's Phantom or any of the other movies made based on this story, you must read (or listen to) this book. If you've never been exposed to any version of the Phantom, you must read this book. It is Beauty and the Beast set in an opera house. In the end, the only thing that can defeat evil is love.

85 of 89 people found this review helpful

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  • Performance
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Heads Up #4!

Why pay $2.95 for this "Audio Book Du Jour" when the kindle edition is $0.00 (Caution...there are multiple Kindle editions - make sure you select the right one) and after you "purchase" that book the Audible audiobook is $0.99. Obviously this is not a review but I didn't know where else to post.

83 of 89 people found this review helpful

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The rest of the classic story...

STORY (French gothic classic) - I absolutely loved the play, which I saw in New York several years ago. This book isn't nearly as awesome -- no beautiful voices, costumes, stage effects, etc., but what it does is fill in the gaps of the story. Who is the Phantom? Is he real? Where did he come from? Why does he wear the mask? How does the story really end? These questions will be answered after you listen to this book. It is the original classic which inspired the plays, the operas, the movies.

The story takes place in (and under) a famous opera house in 19th Century Paris. It is basically a tragic love story about a hideously deformed creature who is obsessed with a young opera prima donna. Strange and horrible things happen in the opera house between performances and during them, and the Phantom (who supposedly lives under the opera house) is credited with causing them. The story is beautifully written and very engaging, but one thing I would criticize is that, as an American, I had a hard time keeping all the French names straight. Unfortunately, many of them sounded the same to me and I would end up getting characters confused, but I was able to keep the main characters straight so I suppose all is well.

PERFORMANCE - The narrator is male with a French accent. He does a good job but he doesn't attempt to distinguish between characters, so that will never receive over a three in my rating system.

OVERALL (actual rating 3.5) - Recommended for all lovers of the Phantom of the Opera in order to answer questions left after watching the play or the movie. The book isn't awesome, but it's enjoyable and informative. The language is clean and there are no sexual references, but be prepared for a dark story revolving around a very sad, disturbed main character.

36 of 39 people found this review helpful

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The narrator was inconsistent, sometimes seeming to switch to an entirely different person mid-narration, and the story was difficult to follow.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Sara
  • Wheaton, IL, United States
  • 05-22-05


I liked the reading of this title so much more than then one narrated by Barrett Whitener, which seemed dry and forced. Ralph Cosham infused the story with more emotion which lent well to the delicate pronunciation of the text.

31 of 34 people found this review helpful

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I really really enjoyed this book. It fills in a lot of gaps of the phantoms story

15 of 17 people found this review helpful

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  • Fylynne
  • CHICAGO, IL, United States
  • 01-11-15

Not What I Expected! A Total Thriller!

This classic story was not what I expected at all. I was enthralled from the first moments. It was part love story, part biblical story and a thriller throughout. The narrator was perfect. He kept my heart racing. My only regret is that I didn't read it many years ago.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Barbara
  • Greenville, SC, United States
  • 09-10-12

Kept my attention

Where does The Phantom of the Opera rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

This is one of my favorites, I'll listen to it again.

What did you like best about this story?

I've seen the movie and stage production of POTO, but have not read the book. The original book version gives more insight to the relationship between Erik, Christine and Raoul.

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

The narrator kept my attention. I liked his voice. Sometimes while listening to audiobooks my mind tends to wander if the story gets boring, but not so with POTO and Mr. Cosham's narration.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

I could listen to it in one sitting, but instead I listen to books during my commute to and from work (45 min. one way) It helps pass the time and takes me places new and exciting instead of the same old drive everyday.

9 of 10 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

A must read.

This is a wonderful story and well told. It will help your understanding of the book to go to Wikipedia first, where you can get a list of the characters involved.

11 of 13 people found this review helpful

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  • phantom lover
  • 04-27-16

Let down by the narrator

Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

I didn't enjoy this much because of the strange way the narrator reads it.

What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

Glad I'd got to the end of it.

What three words best describe Ralph Cosham’s performance?


Was The Phantom of the Opera worth the listening time?

it's a good story so I persevered

1 of 3 people found this review helpful