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Publisher's Summary

The Ordeal of Gilbert Pinfold is a semi-autobiographical story, which tells of the mental breakdown of an aging writer. Gilbert Pinfold takes a cruise to try to rebuild his shattered life, but what should his life be, and is he important to the world, anyway?

A poignant and sad book which is in turn often darkly humorous and uplifting, too, this is an insight into both the recesses of Waugh's own mind and his brilliant imagination, from which he creates a character who is both likeable and often openly derisable.

©2004 CSA Word (P)2004 CSA Word

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 3.5 out of 5 stars
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    15
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    9
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    8
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    15
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Performance

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    7
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    3
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    3
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Story

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

What a gem

I found this audiobook by chance, and I loved every second of it. This superb little book manages to convey the experience of "hearing voices" in a perfectly believable way, while still remaining humorous and engaging. And the narration is nothing short of perfect. Every character gets a rich and perfectly suited voice. Highly recommended.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Thomas
  • Boulder, CO, USA
  • 11-21-08

Superb

Waugh's best book, superbly read by the narrator. I highly recommend the book and this audio version to anyone who relishes irony, and to students of personal decline and madness.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Thomas
  • Gainesville, FL, United States
  • 10-07-10

Great reader

I didn't much care for the novel. For some reason I couldn't understand what about the character's predicament was interesting. Michael Cochrane's reading, on the other hand, is magnificent. It was the reader rather than the writer that got me through this book.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Laughed out loud. A lot.

People must have thought I was a crazy person - while I listened to this sharp, strange novel about a lazy egomanic I was laughing out loud. On the subway. On the street. In stores. The narrator and the novel are hilarious!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Utterly Hilarious

Where does The Ordeal of Gilbert Pinfold rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

This book was such a surprise for me. It actually made me laugh aloud. I had to re-read it immediately as I just loved it so much.

What other book might you compare The Ordeal of Gilbert Pinfold to and why?

The Diary of a Nobody is mentioned in the book. It is not similar in style or period but both books are hilarious. I have not read anything like Gilbert Pinfold.

What about Michael Cochrane’s performance did you like?

The narrator was brilliant. Really nailed it. He added to the hilarity of the story.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

I laughed until my stomach hurt once.

Any additional comments?

Loved, loved, loved it.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Meh...

Just didn't really enjoy. Wasn't as funny as I was hoping. Narrator speaks a little too slowly and pauses too long

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Entertaining and Mind-Bending

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Yes, if you have a high tolerance for unexpected skips and escapes due to some technological blips.

What did you like best about this story?

Pace and humor.

Which character – as performed by Michael Cochrane – was your favorite?

Pinfold himself. Michael Cochrane's narration compliments the story perfectly.

Who was the most memorable character of The Ordeal of Gilbert Pinfold and why?

Gilbert, because the reader cannot help but sympathize, especially since the autobiographical torture led [eventually] to his recovery.

Any additional comments?

Can't go wrong with this choice.

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

i can't believe i listened to the whole thing.

What would have made The Ordeal of Gilbert Pinfold better?

Waugh is a wonderful writer but this was an ordeal to listen to. obvious from the beginning and way too long.

What do you think your next listen will be?

it is Kate Atkinson,

What about Michael Cochrane’s performance did you like?

he's a good narrator.

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

not really, except the idea.

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

boring

This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

This book was a type of British humor I found uninteresting.

What was most disappointing about Evelyn Waugh’s story?

The main character was not in a muddle, and unfortunately I as listener did not care.

What about Michael Cochrane’s performance did you like?

He performed well, but the story did not hold together.

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

Not that I can think of.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Karen
  • White Plains, NY, United States
  • 12-19-11

Highbrow & hilarious!

In true "The Loved One" satire, Waugh describes a droll college professor in denial of his addition to pain meds and sleep aids. His journey blends a strange mix of reality and fantasy in quite humorous fashion, leaving the "reader" to wonder which was which -- an entertaining journey.

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Amazon Customer
  • 03-01-18

Brilliantly funny and perceptive.

Would you consider the audio edition of The Ordeal of Gilbert Pinfold to be better than the print version?

I found them equally wonderful. I've read the novel two or three times and listened to it and both versions are 100% brilliant.

Who was your favorite character and why?

It's got to be Gilbert. An exceptionally vivid and droll character with equal amounts of self awareness and complete naivety.

Which scene did you most enjoy?

Hard to choose but probably listening to the "voices" on the ship,

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

Yes.

Any additional comments?

Totally enjoyed everything about it.