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The Guns of Navarone

Narrated by: Jonathan Oliver
Length: 11 hrs and 50 mins
Categories: Fiction, Literary
4.5 out of 5 stars (93 ratings)

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Summary

The classic World War II thriller from the acclaimed master of action and suspense.

Twelve hundred British soldiers isolated on the small island of Kheros off the Turkish coast, waiting to die. Twelve hundred lives in jeopardy, lives that could be saved if only the guns could be silenced. The guns of Navarone, vigilant, savage and catastrophically accurate. Navarone itself, grim bastion of narrow straits manned by a mixed garrison of Germans and Italians, an apparently impregnable iron fortress. To Captain Keith Mallory, skilled saboteur, trained mountaineer, fell the task of leading the small party detailed to scale the vast, impossible precipice of Navarone and to blow up the guns. The Guns of Navarone is the story of that mission, the tale of a calculated risk taken in the time of war....

©1957 Alistair MacLean (P)2017 HarperCollins Publishers

Critic reviews

"Could hardly be bettered." ( Sunday Times)
"Its strength comes from the speed of its narrative, its vivid creation of tensions and its power in handling descriptions of action." ( Evening Standard)
"Action sustained at a high pitch. From the outset there is a feeling of suspense: a problem that can only be solved by action involving danger and demanding courage...an insistently gripping tale." ( Scotsman)

What members say

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Nice to see, painful to listen ?

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

Having seen the movie and listened to the abridged cassette (?), read by Patrick Allen, in my teens it was a pleasant surprise to find a full unabridged version available on Audible. The story, although written in 1957 is still a great roller coaster ride and thoroughly enjoyable. A great piece of WWII fiction.

Would you be willing to try another one of Jonathan Oliver’s performances?

Oliver is good at the straight forward narrative parts. He struggles with accents and it really shows here. For example, Andrea, pronounced as An-drey-ah to me and most greeks is pronounced as And-rea, much like your great aunt, and I found myselt constantly correcting him!
Some of the german and greek accents are cringeworthy and the New Zealander, Mallory, comes across as rather.... wet. Miller was equally painful and Brown tolerable.

Oliver also struggles with moving between the accents and there are a number of overly long pauses in the diagloue. and also one horrendous edit (or my download glitched) within the first couple of hours. I think the director/producers have something to answer to here, and they let MacLean down here.

I nearly put it down (and that would have been the first time for any audible book) because of the accents in the narration, but persevered to the end. It would appear that Oliver is going to be the voice for this round of releases on MacLean's stories and therefore works like, When Eight Bells Toll, could play more to his strengths, rather than accentuate (bad pun) his weaknesses.

8 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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BRILLIANT much better than the film by far.

excellectly read.voices charaterised superbly ... Could not stop listening. Cant wait to hrar gorce 10, my next download

1 person found this helpful

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An all time classic.

Arguably the best work from the Thriller Writers Thriller Writer! The pace, detail and suspense never falter!

1 person found this helpful

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Still one of the best

Great storyline with a narrator who always brings the tales of wartime exploits to vivid life.

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High tension adventure story'.

A very good adventure story, well written and expertly told a very pleasant way to have the full range of the books secrets read out while relaxing. At 80. I find it better than the TV.
Please keep these storied coming

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Excellent Listen

I watched the film a few days ago and enjoyed it. Then I purchased the unabridged book and throughly enjoyed much more than the film.

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Long, but a classic tale, well told

Wonderful narration. Believable story line. Engaging characters. It may be an old novel but it's a good listen.

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Terrific Story but...................

I have loved this book since i first read it many many years ago also a fan of the film which took liberties with the original but was still very enjoyable so i looked forward to the audio version
The story is a rollicking rollercoaster of derring do and goes along with pace and interest at every turn but this version is let down badly by the narration
Jonathan Olivers characterisations detract immensely from the listening experience his voicing of the characters getting in the way of a fantastic book. Brown for instance is characterised as an Engineer from the North East of England but Oliver for some reason gave him a Scottish accent worthy of Mel Gibsons portrayal William Wallace also his drawn drawl vocalisation of Miller was just immensley irritating
such a shame !

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  • gw
  • 02-10-18

took a bit to get used to the narrator

for the firstc30 minutes I really didn't like the narrator, but then he grew on me and towards the end I was sad to leave him and the heroes of Navarone

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  • Jeff G
  • 28-01-19

Better Than Movie

I have seen the movie numerous times, but had never read the book before. While the movie is partially true to the book, I found the book to be much better and the narrator good for this story.

1 person found this helpful

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  • mr kieran j murphy
  • 28-10-18

wonderful reading!

the guns of navarone is a classic, but I didn't realise how well it suited being read out loud. there are lots of conversations and the reader does a brilliant job with these.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Brian Dunne
  • 29-09-17

One of Maclean's best

I enjoyed this book immensely. It brought back great memories of the first time I enjoyed this author's work. I recommend the others as well. Great performance by the narrator also.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Rufus T. Firefly
  • 20-05-17

amazing and adventurous!

classic adventure tale! so good. nothing better then blowing up some Nazi's. highly recommended for all who like the genre.

1 person found this helpful