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Parable of the Talents Audiobook

Parable of the Talents

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Publisher's Summary

Environmental devastation and economic chaos have turned America into a land of horrifying depravity. Assault, theft, sexual abuse, slavery, and murder are commonplace. Taking advantage of the situation, a zealous, bigoted tyrant wins his way into the White House.

Directly opposed is Lauren Olamina, founder of Earthseed - a new faith that teaches "God Is Change". Persecuted for "heathen" beliefs as much as for having a black female leader, Earthseed's followers face a life-and-death struggle to preserve their vision.

Best-selling author Octavia Butler's fluid writing and keen observations about race, gender, politics, and religion make for a moving parable that will be pondered for generations. A powerful reading from three standout narrators captures the multi-generational sweep of this poignant tale.

Butler's acclaimed novels have won numerous awards, and she is a recipient of a "genius" grant from the MacArthur Foundation. Parable of the Talents was selected as one of the best books of the year by Publishers Weekly.

©2007 Octavia Butler; (P)2007 Recorded Books, LLC

What the Critics Say

  • Nebula Award, Best Novel, 1999

"Octavia E. Butler is one of the finest voices in fiction....period." (Washington Post Book World)
"These...are the keynotes of Talents: family and characters, warmth and endurance, hope and determination. It's a worthy book, well up to Butler's standard for thoughtfulness and insight." (Analog Science Fiction & Fact)
"Though not for the faint-hearted, this work stands out as a testament to the author's enormous talent, and to the human spirit." (Publishers Weekly)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.4 (770 )
5 star
 (469)
4 star
 (184)
3 star
 (72)
2 star
 (26)
1 star
 (19)
Overall
4.6 (596 )
5 star
 (415)
4 star
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3 star
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2 star
 (7)
1 star
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Story
4.5 (591 )
5 star
 (383)
4 star
 (143)
3 star
 (50)
2 star
 (13)
1 star
 (2)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Erika L Peterson Dorena, Oregon 04-07-15
    Erika L Peterson Dorena, Oregon 04-07-15
    HELPFUL VOTES
    12
    ratings
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    52
    8
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    0
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    Performance
    Story
    "Disappointing"
    Any additional comments?

    I found this book pedantic. Too much was "told" instead of "shown," and the majority of the book seemed to be the simplistic promotion of a hackneyed personal philosophy. Like Ayn Rand for Greens.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jonelle 12-04-12
    Jonelle 12-04-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
    11
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    88
    19
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    2
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "I have always loved this book...."
    What did you love best about Parable of the Talents?

    The vision and sheer terror that Octavia Butler can communicate while telling a story of hope. it's a gift she has.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Parable of the Talents?

    The enslavement parts. I've read this book several times but hearing voices put to this part...unsettling.


    What three words best describe the narrators’s performance?

    Good. The voice of her daughter was my favorite. I would like to listen to her read more. What else has she done??


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

    I always have an extreme reaction to Octavia Butler--you're dead if you don't. I didn't cry this time, although I thought I might.


    Any additional comments?

    GET MORE Octavia Butler on AudioBook..

    PLEASE!!!

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Eric C. Zawadzki Minneapolis, MN, United States 07-31-10
    Eric C. Zawadzki Minneapolis, MN, United States 07-31-10 Member Since 2017
    HELPFUL VOTES
    90
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    126
    12
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    8
    0
    Overall
    "Interesting but ending disappointed"

    I enjoyed this story. Plot, characters, voice, and setting lived up to my expectations throughout. It would have gotten a pretty solid 4 stars, which tends to be my way of saying I liked it, but it didn't completely blow me away.

    However, the ending felt like a cop-out, as though the writer thought to herself, "This has been a fun writing exercise, but I'm ready to work on something else, now." There's a great story going, and I'm wondering how the heroine is going to deal with the challenges of the next phase of her master plan, and then we get a huge time jump right into the epilogue. It felt like the third act of a three-act play had just gotten cut. Imagine if the Star Wars trilogy had gone straight from the final scene of The Empire Strikes Back directly to the last scene of Return of the Jedi with only a brief narrative voiceover to describe all the events of the third movie.

    After crafting such a well-written and interesting story, the ending is a missed opportunity. The story is weaker for it, and an otherwise perfectly satisfactory conclusion rings hollow and sloppy. It's really a shame, because the rest of the story is so strong.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Marcia Irmo, SC, USA 09-19-08
    Marcia Irmo, SC, USA 09-19-08
    HELPFUL VOTES
    67
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    36
    14
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    FOLLOWING
    2
    0
    Overall
    "Depressing and lacking in real substance.."

    I was compelled by the title and summary and hoped for better than what I got. I found the futuristic world of chaos intriguing in that we could be headed for something like that with the state of our economy right now. The haves and the have nots.. But it was more like "what if everyone lost their minds" a bit too biazzare!

    I found the whole story line depressing and it reminded me of the guy who got all of his followers to kill themselves during the eclipse or comet sighting some years back. They poisoned themselves and had on purple sneakers and were going to ride the tail of the coment... or something, right?!! "Lauren" was overbearingly and simple minded. As noted by another reviewer, the characters are not very developed.

    The most important thing though was the narrator! Boy was her voice aggrevating and I could hear her swallow quite often throughout the text being read!

    I know there are a lot of long passages, however I have listened to many other books and this is the first time the narrator's voicebox expressed all of the annoyances that come with regular, non-professional exchanges, very fluid! Maybe it was the audio equipment that was not set properly, I am not sure. I just found that everytime I heard her swallow, I cringed..

    Sorry and better luck next time!

    7 of 12 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kathryn Bradley 01-22-08 Listener Since 2003
    HELPFUL VOTES
    45
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    210
    9
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    FOLLOWING
    0
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    Overall
    "Meh"

    Starting with an interesting premise, Butler squanders it with uneven story-telling, unlikable characters, and no true understanding of the world she has set them in.

    6 of 11 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Julian New York, NY, USA 11-02-07
    Julian New York, NY, USA 11-02-07 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
    9
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    5
    1
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "Fails Promise"

    The first few minutes of this were really intriguing, the rest of it couldn't hold my attention. Bad writing, a flaw you can skim over quickly in a print book if the plot is good enough, never works in an audible book. Don't waste your money or credits.

    9 of 17 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 11-15-17 Member Since 2017
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    6
    4
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "wonderful"

    sad when it ended parable of the sower as well get the series my favorite writer

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Anonymous 11-05-17
    11-05-17 Member Since 2016
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Captivating"

    Octavia Harris is a visionary, she has her finger on the pulse of today's reality. A truly engrossing story.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    April 10-23-17
    April 10-23-17 Member Since 2016
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    2
    2
    Overall
    "Finally!"

    I read Parable of the Sower over 10 years ago in school and I finally got around to this book. I loved it, and I enjoyed the narration.
    I have enjoyed every Octavia Butler book I've read (or listened to) thus far.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tony 09-20-17
    Tony 09-20-17 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
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    28
    7
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    0
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    Performance
    Story
    "Well written story of hardship."

    not much science fiction however, but it'd be fun to see where this would go later.

    is the next book a continuation?

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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