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Publisher's Summary

Universally acclaimed as the maestro of horror and the morbid, Edgar Allan Poe's dark gift has for more than a century and a half set the standard for the genre. Here, 20 of Poe's most chilling stories and poems are performed by two of his most brilliant interpreters: Vincent Price and Basil Rathbone. Included are The Tell-Tale Heart, The Pit and the Pendulum, The Cask of Amontillado, The Fall of the House of Usher, Bells, The Gold Bug, and many more!
©2000 HarperCollins Publishers, Inc., All Rights Reserved. (P)2000 HarperCollins Publishers, Inc., All Rights Reserved.

Critic Reviews

2000 Winner of Publishers Weekly Listen Up Award: Archival Reissue

 

"Superb renderings...[Vincent Price and Basil Rathbone] know this material well...and know how to make it chill the listener. It's a romp for them and a delight for us." (AudioFile)

What listeners say about The Edgar Allan Poe Audio Collection

Average Customer Ratings
Overall
  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    305
  • 4 Stars
    146
  • 3 Stars
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  • 2 Stars
    38
  • 1 Stars
    28
Performance
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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  • 4 Stars
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  • 2 Stars
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  • 1 Stars
    12
Story
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    266
  • 4 Stars
    89
  • 3 Stars
    25
  • 2 Stars
    8
  • 1 Stars
    7

Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

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

Excellent performance, poor formatting.

As mentioned by other reviewers: a. Price and Rathbone provide a masterful performance here, and b. the formatting is bad enough to render the recording almost unusable, especially to those not already intimately familiar with the works of Poe. I have little to add by way of review, but I took the time to create a table of contents that I hope will be of assistance to other listeners.

1.) 0:10 - 2:03 To -----
2.) 2:03 - 3:10 Alone
3.) 3:15 - 6:23 The City in the Sea
4.) 6:28 - 31:20 Berenice
5.) 31:25 - 55:28 The Fall of the House of Usher *
6.) 55:30 - 1:44:27 Ligeia
7.) 1:44:30 - 1:46:49 excerpt from The Fall of the House of Usher
8.) 1:46:55 - 2:18:43 The Pit and the Pendulum
9.) 2:18:46 - 2:35:27 The Masque of the Red Death
10.) 2:35:33 - 2:49:37 The Tell-Tale Heart
11.) 2:49:40 - 3:45:27 The Gold Bug
12.) 3:45:30 - 4:12:19 The Black Cat
13.) 4:12:25 - 4:20:58 The Raven
14.) 4:21:03 - 4:38:00 The Facts in the Case of M. Valdemar
15.) 4:38:01 - 4:54:07 The Cask of Amontillado
16.) 4:54:13 - 4:58:23 The Bells
17.) 4:58:28 - 5:00:35 Annabel Lee
18.) 5:00:40 - 5:01:19 Eldorado
19.) 5:01:25 - 5:16:00 The Imp of the Perverse
20.) 5:16:06 - 5:31:22 Morella

*Selection #5, "The Fall of the House of Usher" skips a section of verse (marked as I-VI in the text), along with approximately one page on either side of this section. The skip occurs at 40:57. Selection #7 is of the missing verse (I-VI), though without the other material excluded from #5. Selection #5 has additional abridgments - a paragraph here, a sentence or a word there. I have not found any further abridgments in the other selections; if you find any, please post the information in a review.

297 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • DW
  • 11-29-07

No Titles or Introductions and ABRIDGED

Although the reading is performed in an exceptional manner, this collection is best suited for one very familiar with Poe's works. Many selections are less popular short stories. None have introductions or even a pause between the current and previous selection. You may require a text of the entire collected works of Poe on your lap while listening to understand what short story is read. Also, some (Fall of the House of Usher and others) are abridged. Tales of Terror narrated by Foreman may be a better choice.

40 people found this helpful

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

what should be a labor of love ..

... has some abridgements and is impossible to navigate without tom's table of contents.

i will reproduce it here with many thanks to it's creator (see tom in another review):

1.) 0:10 - 2:03 To -----
2.) 2:03 - 3:10 Alone
3.) 3:15 - 6:23 The City in the Sea
4.) 6:28 - 31:20 Berenice
5.) 31:25 - 55:28 The Fall of the House of Usher *
6.) 55:30 - 1:44:27 Ligeia
7.) 1:44:30 - 1:46:49 excerpt from The Fall of the House of Usher
8.) 1:46:55 - 2:18:43 The Pit and the Pendulum
9.) 2:18:46 - 2:35:27 The Masque of the Red Death
10.) 2:35:33 - 2:49:37 The Tell-Tale Heart
11.) 2:49:40 - 3:45:27 The Gold Bug
12.) 3:45:30 - 4:12:19 The Black Cat
13.) 4:12:25 - 4:20:58 The Raven
14.) 4:21:03 - 4:38:00 The Facts in the Case of M. Valdemar
15.) 4:38:01 - 4:54:07 The Cask of Amontillado
16.) 4:54:13 - 4:58:23 The Bells
17.) 4:58:28 - 5:00:35 Annabel Lee
18.) 5:00:40 - 5:01:19 Eldorado
19.) 5:01:25 - 5:16:00 The Imp of the Perverse
20.) 5:16:06 - 5:31:22 Morella

i know it is a gargantuan task for audible to provide all of this material, so i forgive them their small problems.

that said, the narration is terrific and if you go to sleep with this, your nightmares will be of the most wonderful kind.

39 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

Excellent to listen to, but not

The combination of voice with the macabre writings of Edgar Allan Poe are certainly a perfect combination; however, as previously noted, there are no titles prior to each narration. Also - and more importantly - for readers of Edgar Poe, this narration is NOT unabridged. Entire paragraphs are left out. It's still fantastic to listen to, but don't be deceived, it is an abridged version of many of the tales.

28 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

Great reading, poor

As previously stated, the reading is superb, but as a person who has never encountered more of Poe than the well known, "Quoth the raven, 'Nevermore'", I would have appreciated a clearer "packaging". There are no titles or significant story dividers. The narrator simply starts at the beginning and continues on. While listening, one can usually figure out where each story ends and another begins, but, if you're not familiar with the Poe material (like myself), you won't know which story you're listening to. Still worth it, but could be better.

20 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Poe and Price--the Perfect Couple

This is a case of perfect reader meeting a perfect text. If you like Poe, even if you have different recordings of his work, get this one! You'll appreciate the chilling and macabre TONE that the readers add to Poe's already creepy stories. My favorite: Imp of the Perverse.

15 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Superior Poe!

There are many recordings of Poe's work -- ranging from the bland to the wildly overheated. This is the best, without paralell. Basil Rathbone and Vincent Price bring authority, wit and sensitivity to the tales and poems. These performers are not afraid to relish the juicy melodrama and they have the vocal equipment and training to make the language soar. I cannot recommend this highly enough. Oh, and by the way, the tales themselves are still scary, disturbing and haunting after all these years.

11 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars

ok

Classic narration for sure. Unfortunately the audio needs to be cleaned up, and edited so the listener can skip from story to story. As it is, one must fast-forward to move past a poem or story.

7 people found this helpful

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

Table of contents?????

Poe is great but you never know what you're listening to in this collection because there is no table of contents and the chapters have no titles. Very frustrating.

4 people found this helpful

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

The Definitive Audio Poe Collection

Would you listen to The Edgar Allan Poe Audio Collection again? Why?

I would listen to this book again because it was very well performed and I've always found that listening to Poe better than reading the printed work.

What did you like best about this story?

My favorite story by Poe is "Fall of the House of Usher" and Rathbone does a great job bringing the stories to life.

What about Vincent Price and Basil Rathbone ’s performance did you like?

They read the stories at a rate of speed that made it possible for Poe's rather odd style and vocabulary to be better understood.

If you could take any character from The Edgar Allan Poe Audio Collection out to dinner, who would it be and why?

I would take the poor tormented soul from "The Raven" out to dinner to help him cope with the loss of fair Lenore.

Any additional comments?

The problem with this book is the lack of titles at the beginning of the stories and poems. The publisher should add a narrator to state the title of each segment so that the listener knows what story or poem is being performed--perhaps with some creepy background music to set the mood. The audio quality could also be improved.

4 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • ERMZ
  • 11-06-16

Almost perfect but...

I absolutely loved this, Edgar Allan Poe's stories are timeless, and you couldn't ask for more perfect narrators...HOWEVER, it would be so helpful if each chapter actually corresponded to each story and there was more info available such as the name of each story and who was narrating it. This is a failure on audibles part and by no means a reflection on the audio book itself.

31 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • chellybaby
  • 07-18-20

Legendary literature narrated by legendary actors.

Thoroughly enjoyed this audiobook. Vincent Price and Basil Rathbones narration is sublime! Could not have picked two better actors for this.

I do agree with other reviews that the layout and formatting could’ve been tidied up and it was annoying that there are no titles.

I have included a track list incase anyone would like to know the title.

1. To Marie Louise (Shew)
2. Alone
3. The City in the Sea
4. Berenice
5. The Fall of The House of Usher
6. Ligeia
7. The Haunted Palace
8. The Pit and The Pendulum
9. The Masque of the Red Death
10. The Tell Tale Heart
11. The Gold Bug
12. The Black Cat
13. The Raven
14. The Facts in the case of M. Valdemar
15. The Cask of Amontillado
16. The Bells
17. Annabel Lee
18. Eldorado
19. The Imp of The Perverse
20. Morella

22 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • MISS LOLLY SPENCE
  • 05-21-20

Poor Quality Production

This should have been excellent - two master story tellers using their gifts to deliver a wonderful series of macabre stories and poems. It is the production that is at fault.

I was myself a BBC Producer for 15 years so I am disappointed that the sound quality was so granular and fuzzy. During some of the narrative, background voices (two men) could be heard as though a radio were playing in the distance - most disconcerting when listening through headphones.

The chief issue is lack of chapter headings. Even the narrators do not read the names of the poems and stories.

This is the first time I have been disappointed with an Audible purchase. The errors could yet be improved by a skillful studio editor.

10 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • glassophile
  • 09-20-16

excellent fun except for editing

the performances as good as one would expect, deliciously hammy especially from Price. only criticism is that often several poems stories bunged into one chapter, and the readers often don't announce title of the piece which makes it difficult to navigate. Audible should do this better.

9 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for House of the Angels
  • House of the Angels
  • 12-17-12

Master Recitals!

Basil Rathbone and Vincent Price both attack these texts of the Legend himself, Mr Edgar Allen Poe. These are all absolutely outstanding performances that are beyond criticism. Never again will we be able to hear such eloquent performances. Modern voices have lost much in terms of dramatic expression. Mr Rathbone and Mr Price can never be repeated.



Poe's works were meant to be read outloud. The textures of his prose and verse are highly stylized and individualistic. If we appreciate when these were actually written we will understand that Poe was a master of language. He was a phenomenon in that his prose is still sounding so modern. Among his peers he is strikingly modernist and evolutionary in American Literature.



Poe is an author and poet one can read time and time again. You will never tire of these stories and they can keep you pleasantly haunted on constant return trips into the dark yet, by today's standards, quite moral imagination of Mr Poe.

8 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Mr. M. J. Appleby
  • Mr. M. J. Appleby
  • 10-27-16

A collection of poetry and stories beautifully read read but appallingly difficult to access

Purchased My first Audible book of short stories and poetry. I don't know if all Poetry volumes are sold in this format but all you get in this volume is the book title and numbered chapters with no information on the contents. To access a particular poem you have flash forward through hours of content. The Audible novels are a pleasure to use but Edgar Alan Poe Audible book turns a normally pleasant experience into an ordeal

7 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • T. J. Stewart
  • 07-30-20

Great Performance Ruined by Careless Production

These were fantastic readings but as neither Price or Rathbone actualy say what story or poem they are reciting, you don't know what it is. In addition ther are eight chapters in the book, none of which say what stories or poems are being performed. If this was a book collection would you want to buy something handled so poorly?

4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • emir
  • 09-02-19

Where the hell is the chapters?

Please update this gem with chapter titles because the performance and material are world class, currently ruined by the lack of chapters. It's like a 15 hour mp3 wihh no indication what's where

4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Daniel
  • Daniel
  • 08-30-19

Enjoyable stories. Bad formatting.

Why can't thie stories be divided into titled chapters?

Why is there no pause between stories?

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Customer
  • 09-14-22

Wonderful

Wonderful performances by masterful readers. Unfortunately the titles of the stories are omitted and don't even correspond with track lists available for this recording. Still, very enjoyable but a bit frustrating and distracting.

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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Daniel Marcantelli
  • 11-15-21

no titles

chapters are simply numbered with no titles to indicate the story being read - sloppy work audible.

two fantastic voices reading one of the most terrific authors the way he was meant to be read