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Summary

Christopher Isherwood's dramatized memoirs are prophetic images of a country preparing itself to embrace Hitler and the Third Reich. The Berlin Stories includes 2 works published together - The Last of Mr. Norris and Goodbye to Berlin. These modern classics reveal in poignant detail the tragedy of mid-20th-century Germany.
©1990 Christopher Isherwood (P)2005 Phoenix Audio

What listeners say about The Berlin Stories

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goodbye to berlin

Any additional comments?

well read audiobook- incase anyone else wants to know 'Goodbye to Berlin' starts around 1hr 24minutes

9 people found this helpful

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The Berlin Stories

The audio book skipped large parts of the book so I missed bits of the storyline.

6 people found this helpful

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An old friend revisited.

I read these books for the first time at least 30 years ago and really loved them. Seeing them on audible it seemed like an opportunity to revisit. Well I still enjoyed the story and the cast of characters proved as beguiling as ever. The narration is as you might expect superb. BUT given the time we live in I was surprisingly disturbed by the politics a couple of events felt just too close to home but maybe that makes it all the more important to read. They certainly work well as an audio book.

6 people found this helpful

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Lovely afternoon’s listening.

I’ve always been fascinated by Germany in the early 30s and read Isherwood when I was about eighteen. I decided to use my Amazon token on the audible version and was so glad I did. Michael York’s narration was clear and enjoyable. His voice from Cabaret is such an iconic one. I’d recommend this whole heartedly.

4 people found this helpful

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Weimar Berlin in real time

These stories are a fascinating insight into a time and culture which was to define the 20th century. To listen with hindsight is to feel the dreadful creep of the menace of fascism and be reminded of the speed and ease with which this horror could engulf us again. Wonderful characters and exceptional writing make these biographical writings a most painful pleasure.

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leaves you wanting more

Where does The Berlin Stories rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

Michael York is such a pleasure to listen to and the story's construction leaves you wanting more from Isherwood.

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Terribly abridged

The essence of the story has been destroyed in the way it has been abridged. Very annoying as it does not mention that they are abridged. Awful!

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Excellent Characterization by Michael York

What makes this is Michael York's telling of this story, his voice for Sally Bowles and colourful range of characters is spot on. He is also subtle as is Isherwood's light touch in the telling of the change Berlin undergoes as the Nazi's gain power. Isherwood's story is both fun, engaging and upsetting. Do not avoid because you feel it may be too dark, of course ultimately it is, but it is a most incredible insight into.people and a particular time in history in a very particular city.

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  • Michael
  • 20-05-17

Berlin just before the Nazi's move in

The Swastika is a little lie as these four or is it five stories are set about 1930s just before or as the Nazi's come to power. The undercurrent is there as is homosexuality and anti-semetic. The Weimar Republic is coming to an end and the Nazi's are still a joke but things are a changing. Well written and Michael York has such a beautiful speaking voice he is a pleasure to listen to, however as I think all these stories are different and are not connected the main characters sound like one and their personalities are almost equal. Still a nice listen to whilst driving the back lanes of Sydney.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Kathryn Drinkard
  • 05-03-12

Marvelous performance of Isherwood's stories

Would you consider the audio edition of The Berlin Stories to be better than the print version?

I haven't read the print version. I can say that it was wonderful to hear the German words and placenames pronounced by Mr. York. He clearly has experience with the language and that lends a great deal to the immediacy of the stories.

What other book might you compare The Berlin Stories to and why?

The Audible version of Defying Hitler by Sebastian Hafner. Both authors were writing their personal experiences living in 1930s pre-war Berlin. Comparing the lightness of Isherwood's stories to the intensity and passion of Hafner's memoir shows how much difference it makes when you are just visiting a country instead of a citizen watching your homeland be comsumed by insanity.

Any additional comments?

I've been a fan of the musical Cabaret for decades--it's wonderful to hear the stories that show was based on.

6 people found this helpful

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  • Eugene
  • 13-02-19

Fascinating stories

These are fascinating stories for those interested in pre-WW2 Germany (and who isn't?). And they're also just fascinating stories about a rootless but likeable young man in a weird-bordering-surreal time and place in history. I recommend them. The performer deserves extra praise for convincingly rendering so many characters of different ages, genders and nationalities.

2 people found this helpful

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  • R. Bhatt
  • 09-07-20

Fresh and relevant

Beautiful and heartbreaking. And also quite funny.

These are 80 years old but feel entirely fresh. Given the current state of the world, tge stories also feel oddly relevant. Now I want to read more things by Isherwood.

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  • Sergio
  • 31-12-19

Where is “Goodbye to Berlin “

Says that “Goodbye to Berlin”is included but I do not hear any part from it.

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  • Oliver Lilinois
  • 09-04-18

Of Minimal Interest

It’s two (true) ‘stories’ set against the Weimar years, but the only truly engaging part of each is at their very end, and even those are so brief as hardly to rank a mention. The author can’t capitalise on the most investing parts of his life in Germany. Not worth your time, compared to other WW2 memoirs.

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  • Utilisateur anonyme
  • 07-10-21

Inaccurate

This was narrated great and tells roughly the stories within Ishwerwood’s Berlin Stories but leaves out narration of massive amounts of text throughout the entirety of the book doesn’t exactly tell the story of the full text

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  • Barb Reader
  • 14-09-21

Better Listened to Than Read

I read “Berlin Stories” a few years ago and thought it was a good read; however, I discovered t's a terrific listen. I got so much more out of the audio version than I did the written one--I’m finding that some books are just made to be heard, and this is definitely one of them.

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  • farid motamed
  • 09-07-21

Disappointing- this seems to be a summary of the book

Terrible to summarize the book- my guess is this audible edition is one quarter of the print edition I have.

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  • Juan Rodriguez
  • 09-11-20

A perfect pairing!

Some of the best Isherwood's stories beautifully narrated by Michael York, the unforgettable Brian from "Cabaret".