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 Way We Live Now Audiobook

The Way We Live Now

Regular Price:$22.71
  • 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

Exclusively from Audible

In this world of bribes, vendettas, and swindling, in which heiresses are gambled and won, Trollope's characters embody all the vices: Lady Carbury is 'false from head to foot'; her son Felix has 'the instincts of a horse, not approaching the higher sympathies of a dog'; and Melmotte - the colossal figure who dominates the book - is a 'horrid, big, rich scoundrel...a bloated swindler...a vile city ruffian'. But as vile as he is, he is considered one of Trollope's greatest creations.

Trollope's highly regarded satire is about the dishonest and villainous financier, Augustus Melmotte, who captivates and buys his way into the corrupt aristocratic society of London, throwing it into turmoil.

Described by The Guardian as 'the darkest of Trollope's 47 novels' it is also the longest with gloriously rich subplots. Inspired by the financial scandals of the 1870s, the novel is a dramatization of how greed and dishonesty permeated life during that era.

The Way We Live Now has become recognised as Trollope's masterpiece and was featured at Number 22 in The Guardian's 100 best novels.

Narrator Biography

Timothy's theatre includes King Lear, The Vote, Uncle Vanya, A Number, Quarter, and Coriolanus and his films include Ever After, Joan Of Arc, Endgame, Iris, The Day of the Jackal. On television, Timothy has appeared in Broken Biscuits (BBC), Great Canal Journeys (across 3 Series), regular role of Stan Carter on EastEnders (BBC); Last Tango in Halifax; Bleak House, Bedtime and Brass.

©2009 BBC Audiobooks Ltd; (P)2014 Audible, Inc.

What the Critics Say

"A tale of financial skulduggery reminiscent of recent city scandals." (Daily Telegraph)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.4 (625 )
5 star
 (381)
4 star
 (165)
3 star
 (50)
2 star
 (17)
1 star
 (12)
Overall
4.4 (430 )
5 star
 (258)
4 star
 (111)
3 star
 (40)
2 star
 (16)
1 star
 (5)
Story
4.6 (432 )
5 star
 (323)
4 star
 (80)
3 star
 (16)
2 star
 (10)
1 star
 (3)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Nardia Adelaide, Australia 03-03-10
    Nardia Adelaide, Australia 03-03-10
    HELPFUL VOTES
    49
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    38
    4
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    0
    Overall
    "Long, but well worth it."

    I have to admit to buying this audiobook solely for the reason that I wanted an author I'd never read before, and a story that would last a while. At 32 hours it did that, BUT, I really enjoyed it. It took a few chapters to get into the scenery as there was a plethora of character's names to remember, but Timothy West convinced me that there was treasure to come. He does an awesome job with the accents and different voices for each character. It really seemed like a a full cast performing a perfectly timed dialogue. As for the storyline, I'll leave that to the publisher's description because my review would go way over the 2000 letters allowed. Put it this way, - hearing this book made me look up and watch the entire new BBC film version on youTube at 10 min intervals because the DVD was unavailable in my area. I look forward to more Anthony Trollope, and definately more Timothy West.

    32 of 33 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Larry E. Litster 02-12-10
    HELPFUL VOTES
    24
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    13
    1
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    0
    Overall
    "Timothy West is marvelous"

    Anthony Trollope just possibly could not find a better reader for any of his wonderful books. Timothy West makes the stories come to life. He is wonderful.

    24 of 26 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Victor Elizabethtown, PA, United States 02-04-11
    Victor Elizabethtown, PA, United States 02-04-11
    HELPFUL VOTES
    25
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    7
    7
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    0
    Overall
    "For My Money, Better than Dickens"

    I bought this book because I had been listening to Victorian literature, familiarizing myself with some works that I had neglected earlier in my life, and the reviews were so positive I decided to give The Way We Live Now a try. I had not even heard of Anthony Trollope until now. To say that I am pleasantly surprised would be a terrible understatement. Trollope skewers the money and status-obsessed upper class of late 19th century London in a manner that surpasses Dickens or any other author I am familiar with from that time. He relentlessly exposes the neuroticism, betrayal, greed, jealousy and lack of authenticity that characterize humanity in general, but were especially salient in that highly constrained society.

    Unlike Dickens, Trollope does not give the reader any syrupy and lovable characters. He exposes everyone as self-obsessed and challenges the reader to love them in spite of their flaws, and God help us, we do. We empathize with Trollope's rogues and victims because we see a bit of ourselves in them and appreciate the fact that that at bottom each of them is vulnerable.

    Much has been said of Timothy West's narration. It is, as previously reviewed, pitch perfect in every way. I particularly liked his take on Mrs. Carberry and her insufferable whining. Also, the narrator's voice had just the right blend of intelligence, wit and irony. I can easily see how this work might be tepid in less skilled hands.

    Highly recommend. It's more cynical than Dickens, but also more intelligent, and that is what gives it its tremendous satirical bite.

    21 of 22 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Laurene New York 06-05-10
    Laurene New York 06-05-10 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
    356
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    100
    38
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    29
    3
    Overall
    "Finally!"

    I've listened to all of Trollope's Chronicles of Barsetshire on audiobook (I recommend the Simon Vance-narrated versions), and I've been longing to read his most famous novel this way, too. However, for the longest time Audible only had a version narrated by the awful Flo Gibson, who sounds like she's 90 years old. So hooray for this new narration by Timothy West of one of Trollope's fabulously entertaining and relevant masterpiece! I was spellbound. Considering that one of the main plot elements is the rise and fall of a Bernard Madoff-style pyramid stock scheme, some of this novel rings painfully true. But there's also love, money, marriage and literary gossip -- something for everyone. Bravo to Audible for finally getting a decent version of this great book.

    40 of 44 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Emrys Alfred, NY, United States 05-29-11
    Emrys Alfred, NY, United States 05-29-11 Member Since 2017
    HELPFUL VOTES
    240
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    115
    68
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    8
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Trolllope's best"

    I've listened to six of Trollope's novels. I love them ll but I'd rate this the finest. It explore's with merciless humour the struggle between the bankrupt gentry who need to marry new money they despise, and the nouveau riche who want to buy themselves higher rank. At the centre of it is a great crook running a Ponzi scheme. The novel remains totally relevant to our times. The reading is excellent.

    6 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Feather San Francisco, CA, United States 07-14-10
    Feather San Francisco, CA, United States 07-14-10 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    59
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    63
    32
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    11
    1
    Overall
    "Excellent"

    A fantastic read. Timothy West does a masterful job of interpreting the many characters. Anthony Trollope never gets old. Amazingly relevant plot.

    6 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Steven San Francisco, CA, USA 02-13-10
    Steven San Francisco, CA, USA 02-13-10
    HELPFUL VOTES
    23
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    17
    2
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "Excellent book, excellent reader."

    What a great book this has been. The story is consistently interesting, with interesting characters who are well fleshed-out. Very Tolstoy-esque. The reader is also, fortunately, excellent. A very long book which I wish could have been longer!

    13 of 15 people found this review helpful
  •  
    W.Denis Savannah, GA, United States 02-20-10
    W.Denis Savannah, GA, United States 02-20-10
    HELPFUL VOTES
    696
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1361
    111
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    20
    0
    Overall
    "The Best"

    It is said that this is the best of the author's books and I very much agree. It is also one of the best audiobook performances I have heard and even though Trollope's longest book,100 chapters,
    it kept me into it all the way. After I started listening I remembered watching the film on PBS and imediately went to BBC and bought it.

    18 of 20 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jane Ng 05-17-10
    Jane Ng 05-17-10 Listener Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
    35
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    25
    13
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "30 hours of enjoyment"

    I was a little hesistant about getting this book as it is so long! I wasn't sure that I had the patience to sit through it all, but I can now say, I've enjoyed every minute of it. Apart from the wonderful writing of Trollope, I must say that Timothy West did a marvellous job reading the tome. It wasn't reading, in fact. It was acting. I feel like I was listening to a very well-performed audio play.

    16 of 18 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Die Falknerin 12-19-13

    Painter, musician, bibliophile...

    HELPFUL VOTES
    915
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    935
    189
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    51
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Still the way we live now"

    As others have rightly said, Trollope may be better than Dickens. And if not better, then he certainly can give him a run for his money every time!

    Both share a genius for choosing the perfect names, and both provide social commentary and satirical wit. Both stage-manage a breathtaking cast of characters, and provide unforgettable stories. But there are differences. For one thing, I find Trollope's female characters, while still Victorian, to be far more fully developed and interesting. At times one begins to feel that the women in Dickens are either angels or demons, with some close to caricatures. Not so with Trollope. And his wit is so dry and crisp that he doesn't lapse into the preaching tone into which Dickens sometimes falls.

    One couldn't find a better illustration of Trollope's considerable talents than this book. It begins simply: Auguste Melmotte has lately come to London. If one is well-born, one certainly does not wish to know this man, but one cannot afford to ignore anyone this rich, nor the daughter who is his sole heir. The vultures begin to circle, to highly entertaining effect, and we meet dozens of characters whose lives will be affected by the parvenu.

    We may not be corseted, nor driving four-in-hand in the park these days, but this is still the way we live 138 years later. Money "expects money," and those who do not have money scheme to get it, some legally, some not. And as ever, greed and social climbing are the very soul of modern satire.

    For those who watched the wonderful BBC miniseries with David Suchet you may find the book to be even better. It ends in a far more interesting way, I think, with all the loose ends tied up, and the characters are fully developed over the long course of the reading. Timothy West is incredible at bringing the characters to life.

    9 of 10 people found this review helpful
Sort by:
  • M. Griffiths
    12/26/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Dickens meets Austen"

    The comedic use of language and peerless narration were the stars of this audiobook. The writing is entertaining and easy to listen to.
    Timothy West carries it all off with infectious enthusiasm managing male and female voices with equal facility and subtlety. My highlight was his odious Sir Felix struggling with his diction after having a couple of his teeth knocked out.
    I look forward to listening to more from the Trollope/West partnership.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • M. Clark
    London, UK
    12/13/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "AMAZING BOOK"
    What did you like most about The Way We Live Now?

    Trollope has a wry understated humour, I liked this book more than his others. This book is a huge undertaking, I'm so glad tackled it in audio book form. The characters are so well drawn, I couldn't wait to be alone to listen to it, It's big a love story, a financial who done it and a social commentary.


    What did you like best about this story?

    Again the humour, the 'Posh' people were unintentionally hilarious, the 'commoners' equally so. It is like a carry on script with loads of class and social rules, blocking each tier from living the lives they could. They all accept the parameters without question.


    Which scene did you most enjoy?

    I loved it all, Timothy West is the perfect narrator for this book. When he is the female characters being really 'bitchy' to each other while being pleasant and refined, it's fantastic.


    If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    The way it was, now lost forever.


    Any additional comments?

    Listen to this, it will take you a long time, and no one in my family would listen to it with me, so I had to put headphones on (this was great actually). Treat yourself.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Stephanie
    11/5/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "absolutely fantastic"

    Utterly brilliant from start to finish, this is an intricate tale written clearly and read beautifully. I love Trollope, and Timothy West, what a combination!
    I just wish there was a little more pause and quiet at the end before the Audible announcement so that one could take a breath and realise that it is finished. Apart from that, wonderful.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Amazon Customer
    7/7/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Fancy some Trollope?"

    I'd never read Trollope before but thought that it was time for something new (and long) to accompany me on my bicycle rides. I am so pleased that I chose this. The narration, as you might expect, is very good from Timothy West. However it is the story itself which won me over. The characters are fantastic and you immediately engage with them and despair at times at their actions. The author has managed to maintain a steady pace throughout with numerous 'laugh out loud' moments along the way. If you fancy a change from Dickens, perhaps consider this.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • hfffoman
    Kent
    6/9/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A masterpiece, brilliantly read"
    Any additional comments?

    Absolutely superb. Timothy West's reading of Trollope is one of the great Triumphs of literature read aloud. Don't be put off by the length. It is not a minute too long. I have listened to his reading of all The Barchester Chronicles and the Palliser novels and am sorry to have come to an end of them all.<br/><br/>If you don't know Trollope you should be warned that his style is very different classics such as Bronte, Austen and Hardy which poetically into the depths of peoples' feelings. Trollope writes with very little imagery and instead analyzes his characters' motives and political calculations, chiefly involving pride, status, and money. If that is not what you want in a novel, you won't like it. If you do want it, you will delight in every page at his accurate, witty understanding of how people's minds work.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • emily hinshelwood
    12/12/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great story! great narration"
    Would you listen to The Way We Live Now again? Why?

    I have listened to this story four times and love it each time. It addresses such relevant issues to today, and yet it was written over 100 years ago. Trollope is an amazing storyteller.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    My favourite character is possibly Lady Carbury; a single woman bringing up her children as a writer.


    Which character – as performed by Timothy West – was your favourite?

    I could listen to Timothy West all day. All the characters are performed brilliantly.


    If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    Greed, railways and the city.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Joanne
    Clavering, United Kingdom
    11/15/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Extraordinary. Timothy West rocks!"
    If you could sum up The Way We Live Now in three words, what would they be?

    Incredible.


    What did you like best about this story?

    What I find fascinating about this story is that over a 100 years after bring written, it's description of moral and financial corruption could equally apply today. Superbly drawn characters who just cannot help themselves. Nothing has really changed, and these problems with society and business are nothing new! The observations are fascinating. Different era, same human frailties.


    What does Timothy West bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

    Timothy West brought this long and involved story to life, his expression and interpretation definitely lifted this novel out of the "I might struggle to read it" category into an unputdownable journey of shock and delight.


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

    I loved it all.


    Any additional comments?

    Listen, listen, listen. It will live and grow with you and leave an indelible impression.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Andrea
    Stratford Upon Avon, United Kingdom
    8/13/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Reading and voicing fantastic"
    What did you like most about The Way We Live Now?

    Its one of the books I have enjoyed and read but the audio reading added even more to it and I think Timothy West's reading wonderful.


    Have you listened to any of Timothy West’s other performances? How does this one compare?

    They are all great.


    Any additional comments?

    Listen to it!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Patricia
    Kingsbridge, United Kingdom
    5/3/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Simply superb storytelling"

    I remembered seeing this on television and so saw David Suchet in my mind as Melmot and Shirley Henderson as Marie, both perfectly cast. I kept thinking about the Robert Maxwell saga while listening to descriptions of the sort of business deals Melmot engaged in; nothing changes!

    Timothy West is simply superb as the narrator and moves from character to character with great ease and fluidity. You can easily believe you are listening to more than one person during dialogues. He brought the long and complex story to life from what might have been a daunting printed read for the average person. I love Trollope but can't wade through such long books any more. The subscription to Audible has solved this problem in great style! I'm very impressed by the quality and variety of what's on offer and often recommend Audible to my friends.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Rosie
    London, United Kingdom
    4/13/13
    Overall
    "Compelling listening"

    Fantastically narrated and a wonderfully compelling story. It will make you want to hear / read all of Trollope. Still relevant today. A total delight

    0 of 0 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.