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Summary

Brought to you by Penguin.

Vintage Classics Murdoch: Funny, subversive, fearless and fiercely intelligent, Iris Murdoch was one of the great writers of the 20th century. To celebrate her centenary, Vintage Classics presents special editions of her greatest and most timeless novels.

Every artist is an unhappy lover. And unhappy lovers want to tell their story.

Ex-tax collector and author of two unpopular novels, Bradley Pearson wishes to devote his retirement to writing a masterpiece. But the doorbell and the phone keep ringing and every ring brings with it an ex-wife, a friend in need, a sister in trouble or a young woman seeking a teacher and so dusty, selfish Bradley is plunged into the muddles and mysteries which will end in his doom.

Winner of the James Tait Black Memorial Prize 1973.

©1973 Iris Murdoch (P)2020 Penguin Audio

What listeners say about The Black Prince

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Great

Thanks Excellent narration and a great book With a unique structure. I strongly recommend it.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Challenging, fascinating and disturbing

This book is like a time capsule from early 1970's middle-class literally life which is interesting. It's structure is unusual (to me at least) and contains a really complex dislikable central character who has difficulty and sometimes hard to believe relationships with everyone in this life, particularly females. I found it very tough to get through to times as its hard to root or empathise with any characters. My conclusion is that Murdoch is a bit too highbrow for me, its clever but too close to smug and pretentious in the same way Martin Amis can be. Just tell us a good story...

Brilliant narration btw

1 person found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars

Reliability of the narrator

Enjoyed this fifth audio Murdoch novel for Murdoch's usual scathing insight into the human condition and philosophical enquiry. However, I found my enjoyment marred by the audio narration by Anthony Howell. He narrated as if he was a coach tour guide giving information about the interesting sights. Perhaps his tone of voice was not to my personal taste, but his deep burr felt out of keeping with the story. His rendering of the dialogue was a lot better and I was able to imagine the characters. But I was somewhat glad to reach the end of this audio book and that is an exceptional experience for me using audio books.

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  • M. J. Walsh
  • 10-08-20

Not her best work

For much of its course, to draw a theatre comparison, this novel from the 1970s is a Shaftesbury Avenue comedy for the high minded. Misadventures and misalighnments proliferate as a ship of earnest fools sets out on a voyage to journey the sea of love.

Interesting and entertaining, and so far so good. Then the philosopher in Murdoch takes over in devising the progress to an end and dry wit morphs into dry waffle and the ship is beached.

Worth a listen, as it is beautifully read, but not the author's best.