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Publisher's Summary

Penguin presents the audiobook edition of The Forty Rules of Love by Elif Shafak, read by George Blagden.

Ella Rubinstein has a husband, three teenage children and a pleasant home. Everything that should make her confident and fulfilled. Yet there is an emptiness at the heart of Ella's life - an emptiness once filled by love.  

So when Ella reads a manuscript about the 13th-century Sufi poet Rumi and Shams of Tabriz, and his 40 rules of life and love, she is shocked out of herself. Turning her back on her family, she embarks on a journey to meet the mysterious author of this work.  

It is a quest infused with Sufi mysticism and verse, taking Ella and us into an exotic world where faith and love are heartbreakingly explored....

©2019 Elif Shafak (P)2019 Penguin Books Ltd

What listeners say about The Forty Rules of Love

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Nice book

Liked it. As Jesus said," Love one another as I have loved you". Feel good book.

1 person found this helpful

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A touching story and an equally touching narration

The book has successfully given life to many characters, each of which had their own beliefs and opinions.
The narrator did a great job embodying the different characters and distinguishing between them.
The only reason I didn't rate it as a 5 star book was because of the gloominess that surrounded the final chapters.

1 person found this helpful

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Surprising, captivating, and thought provoking.

I thought this was going to be another trendy Middle Eastern romantic story. It came recommended by people who's views I admired, so I read it. It ended up redefining many skewed meanings I had in my mind about the religious and (or should I say v.s) spiritual areas of life. Will probably read it again at another point in time. Highly recommended if you're a 'truth seeker'. George Blagden's narration was mesmerising!

1 person found this helpful

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The most exquisite book ever written

Highly recommend for any age, race and gender. Valuable lessons hidden amongst every sentence. Finished listening to the book in less than two days.

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deep and captivating

loved it. The story, the message...I couldn't stop listening.
I wish there was 5 seconds pause between chapters to make you reflect

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Loved it

A spiritual book with a storyline. Thoroughly enjoyable. narrator does a fab job of it too.

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A true eye opener

I was quite perplexed wether to buy this, thinking it might be anther generic love novel. How wrong was I - this book is a true eye opener, it is about love; but a very philosophical approach to it. The story was excellent & one can definitely improve oneself by listening to this novel. Amazing.

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This warms your brain and your heart

This book may be a fiction, but it gives so much that I will listen to it again and again. So well written and also so well interpreted ❤️ thank you to everyone involved

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Sensational!

Beautifully written and narrated. The end will leave you wishing there was more. The teachings are profoundly inspiring.

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My first Audible experience

This book was recommended to me by my friend who also suggested signing up for audible.

The Forty Rules of Love is the first book I have read by Elif Shafak. It’s a beautiful story about love, kindness and friendship. I particularly enjoyed Shafak’s descriptions of whatever there was in this book. Moreover, different colours of the voice of the narrator added this extra factor to the entire experience. I would definitely recommend this book to anyone.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 01-19-20

Great story, not great audio

You really need to pay attention with this audiobook because voices don’t change often and there are a lot of characters to keep track of. Story was great, I just wish the speaker had more diversity with his deliverance.

4 people found this helpful

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  • mary-clare blackburn
  • 07-21-20

Beautiful and full of wisdom

Narrated with warmth and compassion.
The narrator gently illustrates many different characters subtly and effectively.

An intricate web of colourful characters, this beautifully written book carries you through history and brings to life timeless truths that are needed today more than ever.
So grateful to have received this precious gift.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Chris N.
  • 01-18-20

"The Embodiment of Nothingness"

Astonishingly beautiful and readable love story, mystical poem and historical adventure. I can't remember when I last read a novel that impressed me so much.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 01-06-20

Sooo disappointing, awful narration and worse plot

I had been so looking forward to this book as I really enjoyed 'The Architect's Apprentice' by Elif Sharak and am a big fan of Rumi so this book sounded wonderful, unfortunately it was a massive disappointment. The narration was awful and such a weird choice - using an English man to play and American family (mainly a mother and daughter) as well as multiple Persian characters - he unfortunately did so in such a meek and simpering way for all the characters you can't ever get beyond his annoying breathy tone into the story. But even if you could, the plot is terrible as well. There is a Sufi mystic lecturing at you for whole portions of the book which becomes increasingly dull, but worse than that, is the quite frankly entirely unbelievable central plot of the correspondence between the main character -a self-proclaimed housewife- and a globe-trotting sufi author. We're supposed to believe they're falling in love through their letters, however while the sufi sends her interesting and thoughtful observations on the world as he travels through it, she responds by only ever really talking about how boring she and her life are, putting herself down and begging for reassurance (from a man who doesn't know her). There are also some weird anti-female undertones to the Rumi part of the book where he and the mystic are straight up shitty to his wife for her wanting to be remotely involved or acknowledged, and the mystic (who's entire purpose in life is to follow the religion of love), marries Rumi's adopted daughter, decides for some inexplicable reason he can't have sex with her, and then lets her go crazy and die of heartbreak which honestly doesn't seem to bother him or Rumi at all, and they continue merrily on their way. What even is this book!?

2 people found this helpful

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  • Isa Leitch
  • 09-08-21

so sad the book I finished 😢

enjoyed every minute of it, lots of brain food, well read, very interesting .

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  • Ayesha
  • 07-30-21

Really hard to follow this audiobook!

Honestly couldn’t get through it, even though I’m fascinated by Rumi and Sufi thought. Feel bad for wasting my credit. Just read the paperback- I wouldn’t advise this audiobook.

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  • Rocket
  • 06-27-21

Made me then buy a book of 13th century poetry!

I hadn't quite realised what I was getting into when I began to read this and, had I known how much mysticism and spirituality was inside, I probably wouldn't normally have chosen it. My wife seemed keen to include it in our personal 'book club' though so in I dived! To have dismissed it would have been a shame because I strangely found myself drawn, not only into the story, but also into letting each 'rule' or parable style lesson that was told really sink into me and actually feeling a little spark of joy whenever it became clear a new lesson was about to be told.

With my critical head on I would say that the balance between the present day story and the ancient one is a little off in my opinion and I occasionally found myself sighing at more detail from the year 1242 from yet another perspective when I was eager to find out what was going on in 2008. At times I felt a sense of 'either tell both stories or only have one', despite the fact that the dual storyline did work really well as a vehicle.

Mostly though I found this a calming and almost spiritual read. I've since ordered a book of Rumi poetry, which really is NOT the kind of thing I would have seen myself ever doing, so that has to be testament to the fact that the book has had a real effect on me.

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  • Faraz
  • 06-26-21

A life changing experience

A rollercoaster ride of life altering experiences and a window into your soul. listen to this audio book if you wish to experience the inner beauty of Islam and it's sufis

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  • Vicky Norman
  • 05-23-21

Worst audio book EVER

The performers voice is so boring, hardly any differentiation between characters. Really struggled to compete this.
The story line overall I just couldn’t get into, I found the characters very flat and I found myself not caring for any of them. I’m surprised at how many high reviews this has.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 04-16-21

Mystic and enthralling!

What a beautiful book. It took me to the realm of mystic love and being. Sad when the book ended

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  • Ava
  • 08-05-21

life-changing.

Blessed to have found this book. A perfect dance with the true essence of love. Infinite stars.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 02-09-21

Absolutely loved every word of it

I simply could not stop listening to it. It was very engaging and enkightening .

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  • Anonymous User
  • 01-24-21

Beautiful :)

For all those with a heart that speaks the depths of a wandering dervish, I hope this book further wraps your soul with the bountiful love that surrounds us ever presently.

Highly recommended to all seeking wisdom while visiting life’s tavern :)

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  • shae
  • 05-29-20

magical

magical words from elif shafak!
amazing journey within your soul.
love is the answer to eveything

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 12-01-19

Cookbook

I’m drawn to the topic around which this book is written. However, it didn’t really lift off into good fiction when based so much on an already established set of circumstances. It was more like following a recipe in a cookbook. Also, there were far too many characters written in the first person. Tiresome for any reader.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 11-22-19

Great Mix of Fiction and Wisdome

Opening up the Black box. Now can understand and see the plan a bit clearer. Be Rumi. 😉🖤🖤🖤🧿

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  • Anonymous User
  • 09-03-19

Beautiful

Quick, passionate, Educational. A heartbreaking warm hug. Reminds me to have my heart broken to know love fully.