Regular price: $31.47

Free with 30-day trial
Membership details Membership details
  • A 30-day trial plus your first audiobook, free
  • 1 credit/month after trial – good for any book, any price
  • Easy exchanges – swap any book you don’t love
  • Keep your audiobooks, even if you cancel
  • After your trial, Audible is just $14.95/month
OR
In Cart

Publisher's Summary

The South Seas are a paradise for battle-weary Captain Jack Aubrey and ship's surgeon Stephen Maturin. But their peace is disturbed when Stephen's fancy for a peculiar marine organism lands him overboard. Acting in his usual headstrong fashion, Jack dives into the rescue, unfortunately failing to plan what will happen once they are both in the water watching the sails of the Surprise disappear in the mist.
Don't miss the rest of the Aubrey/Maturin series.
©1984 Patrick O'Brian; (P)2003 Recorded Books, LLC.

Critic Reviews

"The best historical novels ever written." (The New York Times Book Review)
"No writer alive can move one as O'Brian can; no one can make you laugh so loud with hilarity, whiten your knuckles with unbearable tension or choke with emotion. He is the master." (Irish Times)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.8 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    636
  • 4 Stars
    127
  • 3 Stars
    17
  • 2 Stars
    3
  • 1 Stars
    6

Performance

  • 4.9 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    502
  • 4 Stars
    44
  • 3 Stars
    6
  • 2 Stars
    3
  • 1 Stars
    2

Story

  • 4.8 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    453
  • 4 Stars
    86
  • 3 Stars
    10
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    4
Sort by:
  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Darwin8u
  • Mesa, AZ, United States
  • 05-08-17

What lies beyond is the far side of the world...

“Martin was a thoroughly amiable man, a man of wide reading, but when he came to write he mounted upon a pair of stilts, unusually lofty stilts, and staggered along at a most ungracious pace, with an occasional awkward lurch into colloquialism, giving a strikingly false impression of himself.”
― Patrick O'Brian, The Far Side of the World

'The Far Side of the World' is driven by a fairly simple plot. It is a chase, a hunt, a sea race from Gibraltar, down around Cape Horn into the Pacific. The Surprise has been tasked with intercepting the American frigate the Norfolk as it hunts for British whalers in the Great South Sea on the Far Side of the World. The benefit of this novel's simple plot structure is it really boils the book down to what makes the series great: O'Brian's nautical prose and the relationship between Dr. Stephen Maturin and Captain Jack Aubrey.

The relationship between Maturin and Aubrey is one that captures the unique relationship that forms between some men in battle, war, etc., that seems to almost transcend relationships of blood or the liquid link of lovers. Some of the most touching parts of this novel are those lines where Captain Aubrey recognizes how his role as captain requires him to do something that will cause distress or pain to Dr. Maturin. The affection is real. It is honest. It is mature. The amazing thing is this type of love between men almost NEVER gets exposed in modern literature or art. Again, I say almost because there are example, but the great thing about this series is O'Brian lets this relationship grow and develop and adds complexities to it that are unparalleled anywhere in literature.

I also adore how these two men explore two great models* of masculinity. Captain Aubrey (to me) represents almost a Ruler form of masculinity while Doctor Maturin represents the Explorer form. These two men, with these two very distinct FORMS and WAYS of BEING men are able to interact, cooperate, resolve conflict, etc., through their linked affection, to a world at war and a world unknown. I read these novels and I believe there is nothing that Victorian rules and the Age of Enlightenment can't accomplish.

* Borrowing a bit from Clare W. Graves here.

12 of 12 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Jean
  • Santa Cruz, CA, United States
  • 07-21-11

The Far side of the World

What a great sailing story. Not much of a story about naval battles but this story give a fabulous insight into Naval life of the 1790's. The information on whaling and the tension between British and U.S. whales was great. Patrick Tull is the best narrator of the series that I have listen to. The excitment displayed by the parson and the doctor regarding the exploration of nature was the best part of the story. The description of the Galapagos Island was magnificent.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

The Far Side of the World ( Unabridged)

Listening to Patrick Tull is like having an endlessly patient, wonderfully entertaining grandpa who will read and read and read. Combine Patrick Tull's narration with Patrick O'Brian's brilliant, heroic and funny world and you are off on a barefoot cruise every day. But stop right here, go back, and start at the beginning with Master and Commander. And, haul down the mizzen topgallant on your way back. There's not a moment to lose.

11 of 12 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Mary
  • Quilcene, WA, United States
  • 05-30-12

I love this series, such fun!

Would you listen to The Far Side of the World again? Why?

I have listened to this series twice already, and will again in a few years I'm sure.

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Far Side of the World?

The relationship of the the Captain and the Surgeon are so much fun and so very real.

Any additional comments?

I much perfer the reading of Patrick Tull to Simon Vance. I have listened to both and for this eries Tull is much better for these books. Simon Vance is great in others, but not these books.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Dennis
  • FORT PIERCE, FL, United States
  • 02-06-13

They are in trouble again in deep water

What made the experience of listening to The Far Side of the World the most enjoyable?

The flow of the story with the charactors parts, Also I found it interesting with the Royal navy against the American navy in the worlds seas

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Far Side of the World?

Againg I liked the end with the cavalry arriving in the nick of time

Which scene was your favorite?

When Steven and Jack are picked up by the native girls

Who was the most memorable character of The Far Side of the World and why?

I liked both Jack and Steven for their parts are a cement that holds the story together

Any additional comments?

I look forward to listening to the next one

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Great series

I love the Aubrey Maturin series, but I'm growing tired of the climax of the plot coming on the last page. I prefer some closure, some opportunity to destress with the main characters as they come down from that climax. in this book it's literally the last two sentences.

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Best of the series

It has everything you expect from an Aubrey/Maturin tale: continuity of plot, strife and drama at home, political intrigue, espionage, seafaring adventure, philosophical and moral quandries (Stephen refused to resuscitate the Gunner!), cliffs hangers (open water waiting for certain doom) and (spoiler) the Surprise arriving in the nick of time to Deus ex machina the book to a close. Read the whole series many times, this is in my top 3. Patrick Tull is a wonderful narrator. No one embodies Jack or Stephen as well.

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Far Side Of Imagination

I have reviewed each one of these recordings in order as I have listened to them. So far they have only gotten better! Patrick Tulls American accent is classic and only serves to deepen the immersion in this incredible series. Far Side of the World is another perfect installment in the greatest historical series ever written. Listen to it and don't hesitate.

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Another winner!

Again the combination of O'Brian's storytelling with Tull's performance make for a spectacular audiobook. There was also an interesting note from the author at the end talking about how he came to start the series and how he plans to continue it. I'm looking forward to see just how he did that!

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Classic

Yet another classic seafaring tale, told with the imagination grabbing thoroughness of a blue water seaman. Patrick Tull, as always, brings the characters to life.