Listen free for 30 days

The Absolutist

Narrated by: Michael Maloney
Length: 8 hrs and 36 mins
Categories: LGBT, Literature & Fiction
4.5 out of 5 stars (311 ratings)

£7.99/month after 30 days. Cancel anytime

Summary

September 1919: 21-year-old Tristan Sadler takes a train from London to Norwich to deliver some letters to Marian Bancroft. Tristan fought alongside Marian’s brother Will during the Great War, but in 1917 Will laid down his guns on the battlefield, declared himself a conscientious objector and was shot as a traitor, an act which has brought shame and dishonour on the Bancroft family. But the letters are not the real reason for Tristan’s visit. He holds a secret deep in his soul. One that he is desperate to unburden himself of to Marian, if he can only find the courage. As he recalls his friendship with Will, from the training ground at Aldershot to the trenches of Northern France, he speaks of how the intensity of their friendship brought him both happiness and self-discovery as well as despair and pain. The Absolutist is a novel that examines the events of the Great War from the perspective of two young soldiers, both struggling with the complexity of their emotions and the confusion of their friendship.

©2011 John Boyne (P)2011 Random House Audio Go

What listeners say about The Absolutist

Average customer ratings
Overall
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    187
  • 4 Stars
    86
  • 3 Stars
    33
  • 2 Stars
    3
  • 1 Stars
    2
Performance
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    199
  • 4 Stars
    52
  • 3 Stars
    24
  • 2 Stars
    4
  • 1 Stars
    2
Story
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    169
  • 4 Stars
    75
  • 3 Stars
    31
  • 2 Stars
    4
  • 1 Stars
    0

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

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Brilliant and deeply touching

A fantastic book that centres on a rarely explored area of the war and told by an incredible storyteller. Narration was generally excellent but slightly the wrong intonation at times.

8 people found this helpful

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

You must read this book.

Would you listen to The Absolutist again? Why?

What incredible characters, the whole theme of the book was something I didn’t think I’d go for but it’s more than that. Love, friendship, betrayal, everything. I think if I were to listen to this again, I’d hear more of the story.

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Absolutist?

Near the end, but I don’t want to give anything away.

Which scene did you most enjoy?

I can’t pick out one single scene.

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

It will make you smile, it will make you gasp in horror and it will make you very sad. It did for me.

Any additional comments?

This is a wonderful story captured over the years of two boys, young soldiers making sense of war. Their bonding, their lives. I loved this book.

5 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Wonderful

Talented writer and a good reader. Skilfuly structured book. Powerful, emotional story. Would recommend it highly.

5 people found this helpful

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

Brilliant!!

John is a genius. I couldn't stop listening. Michael Maloney's narrative brings the story to life. I absolutely enjoyed this book.

5 people found this helpful

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

Moving

I have only recently discovered Jon Boyne and am now rattling through his work. I love his style of writing and this book is both thought provoking and moving

3 people found this helpful

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

I loved it. Life changer of a story.

Beautifully told, painful in places but only because we would all be guilty of the same judgement

3 people found this helpful

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

a story I'll never forget

absolutely loved this book. beautifully narrated. such a strong story. I recommend it very highly.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Enjoy read.

Very interesting and sad at the same time. Don't really believe what he thought of himself was true.

2 people found this helpful

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

A beautiful story

The story of Tristan Sadler and Will Bancroft, is beautiful and poignant story of soldiers in the First World War and as usual I really enjoyed again John Boyne as a sensitive writer. The real letdown was the narrator's interpretation of the sergeants accent, Dear God it was a really terrible, possibly a shocking Newcastle /Welsh combination, it really spolt the otherwise clear narration Please from someone listening here from the north if you don't know what the accent is really like please even attempt to murder it!!!

2 people found this helpful

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

Intolerable, unfair, unjust, bloody, muddy etc etc

There are so many adjectives that come to mind when reflecting back on this book. Set in the First World War when fixed attitudes were handed down by our "betters" and a man was on Earth to do his duty, the story made me seethe with suppressed anger at times. I never lost my sympathy for the main character despite his cowardice (perhaps because he was the narrator). I am left with pointless, useless sorrow once again for the loss of so many young boys.

2 people found this helpful

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Anonymous User
  • Anonymous User
  • 01-02-12

Just good

Michael Maloney is fine reader & he & the author keep interest up through all this good but not very good book. Do not approach expecting another " Birdsong" but those who are taken by novels of the Great War will want to read this.