Regular price: $41.99

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

Perhaps the most influential science book ever written, On the Origin of Species has continued to fascinate for more than a century after its initial publication. Its controversial theory that populations evolve and adapt through a process known as natural selection led to heated scientific, philosophical, and religious debate, revolutionizing every discipline in its wake. With its clear, concise, and surprisingly enjoyable prose, On the Origin of Species is both captivating and edifying.

Public Domain (P)2016 Naxos AudioBooks

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    77
  • 4 Stars
    15
  • 3 Stars
    4
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    1

Performance

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    68
  • 4 Stars
    10
  • 3 Stars
    4
  • 2 Stars
    2
  • 1 Stars
    1

Story

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    63
  • 4 Stars
    14
  • 3 Stars
    3
  • 2 Stars
    2
  • 1 Stars
    1
Sort by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Great piece of history!

Taking into consideration the time it was written it's great to see how elegantly Darwin discusses reason over faith. (It should be read taking into consideration it's time. Also for the time spent describing fauna and flora it's sometimes a heavy reading)

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • david
  • houlton, wi, United States
  • 02-14-17

Historic ... a must read

I'm not sure I could "read" this book because it goes on forever. But it was good listen. You have to make allowances because of when it was written and tough sell it must have been over the creationists. Even though you already know all the concepts, it still makes one look at nature with a new perspective and marvel at the vast diversity of life.

7 of 8 people found this review helpful

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

In the beginning...

"Thus, from the war of nature, from famine and death, the most exalted object which we are capable of conceiving, namely, the production of the higher animals, directly follows. There is grandeur in this view of life, with its several powers, having been originally breathed into a few forms or into one; and that, whilst this planet has gone cycling on according to the fixed law of gravity, from so simple a beginning endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been, and are being, evolved."

it has been over 40 years since I first read "On the Origin of the Species." From where I stood at that time in my life, being raised in a strictly fundamentalist Christian environment, Darwin's tretise on nature was akin to the "Book of Satan" in my household. The version I read way back then was targeted at young readers but the concept of evolution versus spontaneous creation by a Creator seemed so... strange. And then, to consider the time scale of millions and billions of years for things to evolve versus the mere six thousand years the world had existed according to my familial beliefs was inconceivable.

Thus have been the mental wrestlings of many people who want to believe this fantastic story of creation but are nagged by the questions that scripture doesn't answer and can't be satisfied by merely accepting the pat answer that "such are the mysterious ways of God."

I was inspired to return to Darwin's seminal work while reading "Way of All Flesh" as it was written contemporaneous to "Origin's" recent publishing and wide circulation and the accompanying cultural and spiritual battle it was fueling in the realms of both academia and the church.

To many, Darwin's theory was tantamount to heresy. But when you realize the dozens upon dozens of prior tretises in all scientific fields accompanied by Darwin's own decades of research and observation that formed the basis of his thinking and understanding the unfathomable resistance he knew was about to fall upon him from those who diametrically opposed any suggestions of an evolutionary process, you realize how not only important, but, how brave this work was.

And still is.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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

Wonderful book - tough listen

This was/is a very interesting book. However it was a challenging listen given the scientific vocabulary and referrals to charts (that are not available...). Not sure it is a book to listen to. Still it was most interesting materiel.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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

Groundbreaking book.

He describes the evolutionary process in such depth and provides so much evidence that it really is a wonder that people still doubt it to this day. The first addition is a little easier to get through, but this (the 6th) edition addresses all of the faulty arguments put forth by his critics at the time. After all, it’s only a theory, just like gravity.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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

Beautiful!

The explanation for the struggle of life is breathtaking and astonishing. I cannot stress enough just how fascinating it is to finally know the answers to the questions I have on evolution from the genius himself. Charles Darwin's theory is a brilliant masterpiece of human understanding of the orchestra that is on the origin of species.

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

well done

this is a good title to understand the book by Charles Darwin On the Origin of Species

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

Not very convincing, creationism much more likely.

Everything in this book simply details the dispersion of animals after Noah's flood. Animals dispersed and adapted to their new surroundings creating different species in different areas. Its also a racist book. Darwin refers to native people as "savages". I hope someone tears down his statue.

0 of 66 people found this review helpful

Sort by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • G Douglas Whistler
  • 02-14-17

Excellently read

An excellently read edition: Wickham is clear, emotive, authoritative, & reads without (so far as I could tell, & which is nigh unheard of) a single pronunciational, grammatical-misreading, or intonal error.

On the text itself, it's worth noting that this recording is from Darwin's heavily revised 1872 edition of On the Origin of Species, which is the sixth version of the text first published in 1859: The text is therefore quite a lot longer than one might expect, & filled not only with explanation of the theory but with long sections which dispute with or refer to the work of nineteenth-century naturalists with whom the general reader is unlikely to be familiar. This makes this version somewhat more foreign to the modern reader, but also gives space for Darwin to work at a greater depth on certain matters, which is very helpful to one trying to understand the complexities of the theory as he proposed it.

11 of 12 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • wamjam
  • 09-06-16

A brilliant concept, A brilliant book

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

I would (and have) recommended this book to many. I believe this book to be the pinnacle of the progressive, scientific way of thinking. Though dated (both in content and in language used), this book holds great scientific and historical importance.

What other book might you compare On the Origin of Species to, and why?

A lot of Richard Dawkins' writing, primarily the selfish gene, is comparable to Darwins "on the origin of species". Though Dawkins has the benefit of a century of scientific development and understanding, they both approach the topic in a similar manor.

Any additional comments?

As with most scientific writing, it helps vastly to have a preliminary knowledge before jumping in. If you are completely unfamiliar with biology or evolution then some of the finer points of this book will be lost on you. We have the privilege to be able to understand much that Darwin could not (genetic theory, true inheritance etc.). Reading / listening to this with an understanding of these concepts not only makes it easier to understand what Darwin wrote, but also gives a humbling realization to the gravity of what he was writing (and at such a time). Many of his predictions have since become true, and many of his observations can now be explained thoroughly with our modern understanding of genes.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • PAE
  • 06-18-17

Superb narrator

I could listen to Peter Wickham all day. A fantastic and enthralling subject beautifully delivered.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Michael Hirst
  • 10-12-18

A great work delivered beautifully

Wonderfully read great book of the last century covering Darwin's theories of evolution and survival of the fittest.

Sort by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Amazon Customer
  • 06-01-17

A book that transformed the way we think of the world

This long book is not for everyone, but if you want to get an insight into thinking in the mid to late 1800's then I could recommend listening patiently. I thoroughly enjoyed start to finish.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Danny
  • 04-28-18

Overall?.... I personally would have preferred David Attenborough, but

Credit needs to be given where it is deserved and Darwin’s efforts are nothing short of someone worthy of historical comment however, I personally wasn’t convinced by Darwin’s argument and did not enjoy his argumentative efforts: Although, his experiments are definitely worth the read/listen and the life dedication coupled with commitment put forward by Darwin is worthy of historical mention as it is, but flawed.
The narrator was very much suited to the task! Well done
Take out Darwin’s argument and replace with David Attenborough’s spirit and it would have been much more WOW in my humble opinion.
‘One cannot comment on something with 100% conviction unless one is complete on all the facts and without doubt; does anyone obtain this qualification? Especially pertaining to experiments that are imperfect and our assumptions as human beings are always muddled with bias, personal experience, individual perception and environmental influence to name a few: ‘Darwin falls within this category’.... as do we all
Again... lastly... great experiments and descriptions that the reader may enjoy and info that ‘can be built upon’, but ‘not completely relied upon’

1 of 1 people found this review helpful