Regular price: £20.00

Membership details Membership details
  • A 30-day trial plus your first audiobook, free
  • 1 credit/month after trial – choose any book, any price
  • Easy exchanges – swap any book you don’t love
  • Keep your audiobooks, even if you cancel
  • Free, unlimited access to Audio Shows
  • After your trial, Audible is just £7.99/month
OR
In Basket

Summary

When the 5,000-year-old djinni Bartimaeus is summoned by Nathaniel, a young magician's apprentice, he expects to have to do nothing more taxing than a little levitation or a few simple illusions. But Nathaniel is a precocious talent and has something rather more dangerous in mind: revenge. Against his will, Bartimaeus is packed off to steal the powerful Amulet of Samarkand from Simon Lovelace, a master magician of unrivalled ruthlessness and ambition. And before long, both djinni and apprentice are caught up in a terrifying flood of magical intrigue, murder and rebellion.

Set in a modern-day London controlled by magicians, this hilarious, electrifying thriller will enthral listeners of all ages.

©Jonathan Stroud; (P)Random House

Critic reviews

"Steven Pacey's ebullient narration of Jonathan Stroud's The Amulet of Samarkand is a tour de force. Amulet is the first volume of a trilogy centred on the anarchic and enterprising djinni Bartimaeus, a powerful spirit whose experiences stretch back to Ptolemy, his favourite master. He is surprised to find himself summonded by Nathaniel, a precocious self-taught twelve-year old apprentice in magic... Stroud is a convincing manipulator of magic, and adults will enjoy the antagonistic alliance and perilous adventures as much as children will." (The Times)
"Drama, humour and hypnotically engaging storytelling." (The Independent)
"The truly original touch is the way Stroud alternates Nathaniel's story with the djinni's own knowing and irascible first-person narrative." (Guardian Review)
"The narrative slips skilfully from first person to third and back, and Bartimaeus's voice is laugh-out-loud sassy, while Nathaniel's story has an engaging poignancy as he tries to prove himself in a world in which he has always been despised." (Sunday Times)

What members say

Average customer ratings

Overall

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    256
  • 4 Stars
    91
  • 3 Stars
    32
  • 2 Stars
    7
  • 1 Stars
    2

Performance

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    185
  • 4 Stars
    31
  • 3 Stars
    11
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    1

Story

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    146
  • 4 Stars
    61
  • 3 Stars
    19
  • 2 Stars
    2
  • 1 Stars
    0
Sort by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Bartemais - I like him

Downloaded this thinking it was more of a murder mystery - brilliant and I say that as a 50 something year old. Humour and good plotting have kept me going to and from work - I get a good 40 minutes of this excellent story, each way. In Waterstones, the book is in the 9-12 year old fiction shelf. Like the Simpsons, this works for any age.

17 of 17 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • DT
  • 12-04-07

A great book for all the family

We listened to this as a family on a 12 hour drive, and we were all entranced, kids and parents alike (the youngest is 8). Great story, well read and a pleasure. We're waiting for the next two stories from the trilogy.

9 of 9 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Twisty!

Was not sure what to expect when I tried this series out. Was delighted to find that it was really enjoyable. The series deals more with an Anti-hero that a hero, and for that reason will appeal to those that like series such as Artemis Fowl and Herbie Brennan's Faerie Wars. The characters are not shallow and manage to keep you intrigued through-out. Harry Potter fans may also enjoy this series.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Jaspal
  • solihullUnited Kingdom
  • 05-12-08

Brilliant

Very entertaining and the djinni is great. Well worth a listen.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Well performed and a great read

This is a great reading of this book (which I have read a number of times before). Steven Pacey hits just the right note in his delivery of the characters, especially Bartimaeus, and slips between the various narrative styles seamlessly. I downloaded the other two in the series as well based on this and was not disappointed there either. I would certainly recommend this title.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Mark
  • 26 Haverhill Road, Balham, London, SW12 0 HA
  • 07-01-09

Loved it!!

I downloaded this for my daughter to listen to but got so involved in the story myself that she hasn't had a look in. Great stuff and makes my journey to work seem 5 minutes long !!!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Thoroughly enjoyable!

I got this on the strength of the existing reviews and was really glad I had. I found the initial chapter a bit confusing but once I picked up the storyline I couldn?t stop listening! I am now on the second book of the trilogy and really enjoying it!

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

Really enjoyed

I really enjoyed this audio book, especially with the wonderful narrator. Although i was disappointed to discover at the end that this is an abridged version - i prefer books as the author intended and worry i missed a brilliant experience!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Great read

I had read this book in my teens and loved it then and now, really enjoyed the humour in this series.

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

Best Character Ever...

Best book ever...

Bartimaeus is one of the funniest characters ever to hit the shelves. He makes his presence felt throughout the entire book and is loveable, despite being a dangerous demon...

Sort by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Rob
  • 03-09-07

Truly Magical

I am a big fan of this whole trilogy and the audio version certainly does the book justice - you will not be disapointed with this one. Loved by children from 7 up and the parents too!

Imagine a world ruled by magicians deriving their power from their ability to control Djinn. The Sassy Djinni Bartimaeus is summoned by Nathaniel, a 12 year old apprentice. Very clever and thoroughly enjoyable mayhem ensues.

Highlights include cunning use of accepted mythology to enhance reality, superb characterisation, great villains and a very interesting sideways look at the recent past of Europe. Listeners will be delighted to learn that there is not a hint of Harry Potterness about this.

Even better is that there are two more books in the series which build on the plot very effectively.

You really want to download this!

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Wong Hsien Hsen
  • 05-09-17

Disappointed with abridged version, but great

Any additional comments?

I've read this trilogy, plus the additional Ring of Solomon, countless times over the years, each time finding the series tremendously enjoyable and entertaining. Not many books in the magic fantasy genre tell the story from the pov of the non-magician. This particular djinni is witty and cheeky. I recommend this book to anyone I know that enjoys any kind of fantasy fiction.

That said, I have to say I'm extremely disappointed this was an abridged version. One unique feature of this book is that the author has included footnotes, where the djinni telling the story has included interesting (and often sarcastic) snippets in them, such as cats having the ability to see up to plane #2, while some extra perceptive humans can see parts of the higher planes, and therefore claim they can see ghosts. Unfortunately, these footnotes are not included in this version. I guess an abridged version is the best way they can include some sense of these footnotes in the narration, but I find the footnotes to be much more enjoyable.

I'll probably stop listening after book 1 and continue reading e-books myself for the rest of the series, so that I can refer to the footnotes.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Sean
  • 20-05-13

Thoroughly enjoyed it

Where does The Amulet of Samarkand rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

I haven't listened to too many audio books but this one is awesome.

What about Steven Pacey’s performance did you like?

I felt like he captured the way Bartimaeus would talk, he was excellent to listen to.

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

I laughed multiple times. Highly recommend this book for a good time.