Regular price: $24.49

Membership details Membership details
  • 30 days of membership free, plus 1 audiobook and 2 Audible Originals to get you started.
  • After trial, you'll get 3 titles each month: 1 audiobook and 2 Audible Originals of your choice.
  • Don't like your audiobook? Swap it for free.
  • Cancel anytime and keep your audiobooks.
  • After your trial, Audible is just $14.95/month.
  • Get access to the Member Daily Deal
OR
In Cart

Publisher's Summary

John Milton's Paradise Lost is one of the greatest epic poems in the English language. It tells the story of the Fall of Man, a tale of immense drama and excitement, of rebellion and treachery, of innocence pitted against corruption, in which God and Satan fight a bitter battle for control of mankind's destiny. The struggle rages across three worlds - heaven, hell, and earth - as Satan and his band of rebel angels plot their revenge against God. At the center of the conflict are Adam and Eve, who are motivated by all too human temptations but whose ultimate downfall is unyielding love.

Marked by Milton's characteristic erudition, Paradise Lost is a work epic both in scale and, notoriously, in ambition. For nearly 350 years, it has held generation upon generation of audiences in rapt attention, and its profound influence can be seen in almost every corner of Western culture.

Public Domain (P)2009 Tantor

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    236
  • 4 Stars
    79
  • 3 Stars
    37
  • 2 Stars
    11
  • 1 Stars
    7

Performance

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    224
  • 4 Stars
    62
  • 3 Stars
    25
  • 2 Stars
    5
  • 1 Stars
    2

Story

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    209
  • 4 Stars
    61
  • 3 Stars
    32
  • 2 Stars
    9
  • 1 Stars
    4
Sort by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

The most accessible reading of Paradise Lost

Simon Vance's pace and tone are excellent, infusing the verse with appropriate dramatic tones.

Naturally, the book is a classic. However, I never thought listening to Milton would be so rewarding.


32 of 34 people found this review helpful

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

Solid performance

Simon Vance always does a tremendous job. The poem itself can be dull at times, but the last few books of it were intense and vivid. It is a difficult read, but if you're into the subject matter, I would recommend

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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

Beautiful and intelligent reading

Milton's complex lines are read with articulate care, rendering even the most convoluted stanzas clear to the listener and drawing out their unique beauty effortlessly

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

Wonderfully read audiobook.

This reading does justice to Milton's great poem.
I highly recommend it for those interested in Milton or already fans.

10 of 11 people found this review helpful

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

Brilliant, illuminating reading

Never was a fan of the poem before, but between teaching it to outstanding students at my school, and Simon Vance’s superlative performance, I’m a convert. Vance does an extraordinarily deft job of balancing erudition, elegance and poetic instinct; a wonderfully sensitive read by the perfect voice for this work.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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

brilliant and beautiful

a masterpiece of the English language. Milton is the modern Homer and has crafted a poetic epic the scale and import of the Iliad.

8 of 9 people found this review helpful

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

Worthwhile purchase

If you're interested in Paradise Lost, then you should already know what you're in for. It's not the most riveting story in the world. This performance doesn't do much to help that; the voice is monotone and may put you to sleep. But I found the voice clear and easy to understand (because it emphasizes all the right parts in Milton's convoluted syntax, it's easier to follow than reading in print). And the audiobook was a good recording -- no weird volume changes and a steady pace. Overall I'd say it was a good purchase and I'd buy it again.

10 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

I love this book.

Paradise Lost is written in Old English fashion and the only way to enjoy it completely is to listen to it with a narrator that can capture that certain finesse. I would highly recommend it.

7 of 9 people found this review helpful

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

classic

this is a classic. well read. the narrators voice and accent were the perfect accompaniment to Milton's poetic narrative.

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

gripping

stygian counsel? Lucifer's stygian counsel
Amalech, Esmadi, Ariel, Ariach, Ramiel, misrok, and zophiel (7)
Historical accuracy check: Lucifer is a sygian, and pices is really the leader


angel Uriel, one of 7 guardians of God the father is sent to talk to Lucifer. This is a peace envoy.


Gabrielle (Galadriel) speaks to God the father as if God the father isn't sure she loves him.

Lucifer - Paradise Lost refers to him as the apostate
the sun is briefly spoken to by Lucifer as if she were an angel, she is uninterested. Her name is Alfina.
"the air is disembowled." Alarming metaphor.

This means that the sun is the daughter of Gabrielle/Mendoza.

The angel that is the mother of the almighty is Urania, a name I missed the first few times.

2:24 The dragon came down for its vengeance on mankind

4:07 On the 2nd day Satan made war engines used to hurl mountains caused Michael and his angels some disarray

4:07 God sends the "messiah" which I insist is meant to be said the "almighty" for victory

4:10 God refers to his son as highest in martial might and 2nd is "Gabrielle" who I think is the mother of the sun, Alfina

4:11 The gulf of Tartarus to receive their fall

4:12 The martial powers of heaven moved on their legions to the sound of music
Tartarus, a fiery region, appears from skirt to skirt in the north

4:13 The apostate and and his son sat. With flaming cherubim and golden shields. Satan came armed in adamant and gold.

4:18 Michael bid sound the archangel trumpet. Clamor such as was never heard in heaven before happened.

4:24 His right side sheared, Satan then first knew pain.

4:25 Gabrielle pierced Mulloch? Is this the man from Raiders? Paul Belloq Freeman, I got his name right in class by guessing
this is the leader of the infernal. I think I guessed his callsign was "duh" when it is "Dye"
Paul "Dye" Belloq Freeman


4:34 Adamantine coat for armor

4:49 Refers to heaven as the empire of Urian.

4:53 God, the father calls on his son to create the universe in 6 days.

4:53 The angel Urania?

4:55 Raphael tells Adam not to touch the interdicted tree. Easily obeyed amongst the choice of all else. Suggestive that
Adam can have sex with Eve.


4:57 Adam refers to heaven as the empire of Urian.


5:01 Glory to the almighty that drove the unholy from heaven, suggests the almighty is God, the son

5:04 Chaos took the golden compasses and circumscribed the universe with them


5:05 God says let their be light!


5:06 God, calls heaven the firmament.


5:07 The hills bare backs heaved into the sky. A reference to Brokeback mountain.

5:09 God saw that it was good, so evening and morning recorded a 3rd day

Where is God described as Fate? That suggests God is the grim reaper!


5:10 The moon Globos is formed

That earth now seamed like to heaven.

5:12 On the 4th day God fills the sea with fish and tells them to be fruitful and mulitply

5:18 and on the 6th day, there yet remained to make man

5:19 God, the father says to his son, let us make man in our image! Let them rule over all the earth.
Be fruitful, multiply, and fill and subdue the earth.

5:20 The sixth day complete.

5:22 The 7th day is a day of rest. The filial power arrives sits the throne.

The empire of Urian was glad. That is, heaven.

5:25 Adam speaks to Raphael about astronomy. He ends up talking about sex. Eve gets up to go gardening.

5:33 Raphael tells Adam to only concern himself with controlling what is on earth.

5:40 Adam recounts to Raphael that it is God, the father who tells Adam not to eat the fruit of Knowledge from the tree of Life.
From that day you shall be mortal, expelled from Eden.

5:43 Adam praises God, the father for creating the universe with hands so liberal.

Adam refers to God, the father as Jehovah.

5:48 I think this is Adam recounting to Raphael how Jehovah makes Eve from Adam's rib.

5:49 Adam calls God the Creator

5:49 For this reason he (Adam) shall forego father and mother and to his wife adhere

5:55 Adam asks Raphael if angels do it, asking pardon if the question is not lawful. He demurs.

6:07 God is pronounced Lord, I suppose by the Almighty.

God, the father envies Adam and Eve's conjugal love.

Lucifer talks about how much he loves Eve.

"Scipio the height of Rome."

It's the fruit of a particular tree that Eve may not eat.

Adam and Eve eat the apple and Adam gives a speech of now knowing good and evil.

For the first time they feel shame. So they find leaves to sew and gird themselves. It sounds like they are concerned more
with their sanitary condition than bodily embarassment.

God, the son "For dust though art, and to dust though shall return."

The achangel Michael shows Adam visions of the future including Cain's treachery.

As the archangel Michael describes the future I start headbanging to "Before the War."

Adam shall endure punishment by living a reproachful life and cursed death.

analysis:


I believe there is more than one archangel Michael. The one who fights Mephisopheles is demonstrated in the movies Faust and Nosferatu. The thing is, Michael walks out of Eden with Adam. There is a city named Kirkuk in northern Iraq that is very important. And the symbology of Genesis that a cherubim and a flaming sword guard the entrance to Eden mean that Michael gave his sword to someone else.

Michael Gikorsky leads the army of heaven along with Gabrielle(Galadriel) according to Raphael.

The battle is in question until the Messiah arrives on the 3rd day.
check: the messiah is the son of the almighty who was born in Sargantun on earth in an Egyptian colony

Abdiel is the angel that sees Lucifer at the head of his army and pontificates that he is beginning to look demonic.

Raphael and Uriel on either wing fight Amalech and Esmadi and vanquish them.

The war is over and God, the father calls for creation of a new world. There is music.

God, the son calls heaven the firmament.

That earth now seamed like to heaven.

Heaven is referred to as the empire of Ian. That is a reference to Gandalf or Eru.

God the father says to the son, now I will make man in our image. Adam was made from dust. In God the father's own image he
created Adam and he became a living soul.

It is God, the father who tells Adam not to eat the fruit of Knowledge from the tree.

Adam refers to God, the father as Jehovah.

Jehovah makes Eve from Adam's rib.

God, the father envies Adam and Eve's conjugal love.

Lucifer talks about how much he loves Eve.

"Scipio the height of Rome."

It's the fruit of a particular tree that Eve may not eat.

Adam and Eve eat the apple and Adam gives a speech of now knowing good and evil.

For the first time they feel shame. So they find leaves to sew and gird themselves. It sounds like they are concerned more
with their sanitary condition than bodily embarassment.

God, the son to Adam, "For dust though art, and to dust though shall return."

The achangel Michael "Akkad" Kirkuk Gibraltar shows Adam visions of the future including Cain's treachery. I believe this is a different Michael because he leaves Eden with Adam

As the archangel Michael "Akkad" Kirkuk Gibraltar describes the future I start headbanging to "Before the War."

Adam shall endure punishment by living a reproachful life and cursed death.

analysis:
6:07 I think Lord is like a feudal title, it implies Jehovah's identity is complete through his eldest son

5:49 a prohibition on incest

Raphael is the angel who tells Adam he can have sex with Eve. This implies he is the angel of baptism.

Uriel, I was once told my Mike Gualtieri that Uriel is the son of Lucifer. Jehovah sends him, Lucifer's son, to entreat with Lucifer not to rebel. See the movie Legend for Uriel became Darkness. Uriel is concerned that Gabrielle will cast him out of heaven if something goes wrong, and I don't remember what it is.

This is not quite correct and I don't blame Mike. The apostate is PICES, Ed Beagley, Jr, who is the father of Uriel. The leader of the infernal is Paul "Dye" Belloq Freeman who Garbrielle/Mendoza fought. The leader of the infernal worships the devil, Albert Walker, who worships Aloucard, Will Hirsch.

From the movies Faust and Nosferatu, Mesphisopheles is the person who fought Michael in the war in heaven.

Eve created asexually? Jehovah wants to make sure that they like each other, after Lucifer's failure to find a bride. I think.

This story implies the archangel Michael decides whether marriages are honored in heaven. It also implies that if marriage fails so does Christianity. The war was a defense of the marriage of Jehovah and Gabrielle.

Uria is a name I missed the first time through, that is the mother of the Almighty, God, the son, who is Walter O Brian.

tips, from the original Ten Commandments, the angel James Earl Magorian Adama, he says

"I am wherefore, I am"

"I am that I am" is Jehovah.

"I am where I am" is is the Almighty.

Sort by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Robin
  • 03-15-15

An awe-inspiring book read flawlessly by SV

Having been enthralled by the myths of Vikings and of ancient Greece and Rome, I always suspected that Christianity had a bit more to offer than the limp moralising stories I encountered at school and through the Venerable Bede. Not only have I found this in Paradise Lost, which has now taken the place as my favourite piece of mythology, but I would say this is one of the greatest books I have ever read.

Almost everything is perfect. From the start, with Satan crashing headlong into hell, I was gripped. Milton takes what I always considered a bland and tedious subject matter, the fall of man, and turns it into a romping story with cataclysmic battles, horrific monsters and disarmingly human characters. I recognised myself in Adam and Eve, and indeed in Satan, who is portrayed as a complex but understandable evil. The writing is breathtaking and leaves me, an atheist, in the awkward position of finding it perfectly plausible that it was, as Milton claimed, divinely inspired. Every line is a treat. The scenes he spins are as clear and dazzling, or as dark and terrifying as the subject matter. And this is story with a purpose too. Milton tackles some of the deepest questions about what it is to be human with a clear and persuasive logic.

It angers me that a story as deeply affecting as this has to, according to the leaders of many religions, be taken not as allegory but as fact. It is clear that Christianity, or at least Milton’s interpretation of it, has a lot to offer. I found myself struck by the relevance of many of the themes. But do we really have to tie in rules that say we have to believe in holy ghosts and heavenly kingdoms? It seems like such a pointless waste.

Though this is not to say that I was comfortable with everything presented. Foremost, the role of women, weaker and subservient to men. I looked hard for some saving graces in the text, but while Eve has depth, ultimately I found the messages about women uncomfortably antiquated. Secondly, the chastisement of those seeking knowledge. It really does reek of the tools used by rulers to oppress their subjects and stifle curiosity. I take the point that there are limits to what we can and should explore, but without our thirst for knowledge we wouldn’t have made such leaps in medicine, and helped save the lives or alleviate the suffering for so many people. If human life is as precious as Christianity makes out, the angels should be singing Hallelujah at these advances in science, not ticking people off for daring to probe deeper.

I also inevitably got confused at Milton’s dense poetic verse from time to time, but this comes with the terrain and certainly shouldn’t put anybody off. It’s Shakespearean in style, with all the benefits and challenges that brings, but with the summaries, the “arguments”, at the start of each book, I never got bamboozled for too long. I must also confess now that I cheated a little in “reading” the audiobook, but epic verse like this was made to be read aloud, and Simon Vance’s narration is, as ever, flawless.

A staggering achievement in literature and one of the best pieces of writing I’ve ever encountered, even with my reservations about some of the messages embedded in the subject matter, I still consider this one of the greatest and most enjoyable books I have ever read.

4 of 5 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
  • Alexander
  • 04-12-18

Great book, good narration!

There’s no denying the book itself is brilliant. The narrator is clear and portrays good feeling.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Catherine
  • 09-28-17

Worth persevering with.

I found this story full of rich imagery and portraying a wide range of human psychological and religious experience that is still relevant today. I also found it historically interesting as it embodies so many aspects of the Renaissance and classic world views that Milton would have had access to, including the latest scientific/mathematical discoveries by Galileo.
Tip: Initially I found it difficult to follow the story because the language Milton used is quite rich compared with modern speech and literature. However I found that by replaying the first 3 chapters I got the gist of it and could follow the rest without repeat.