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The Lost World

Narrated by: John Richmond
Length: 8 hrs and 18 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (239 ratings)

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Summary

The Lost World is a novel by Arthur Conan Doyle.

Released in 1912, it tells the story of an expedition to a plateau in the Amazon basin where prehistoric animals still survive. The character of Professor Challenger was introduced in this book. The novel also describes a war between Native Americans and a vicious tribe of ape-like creatures.

Scottish-born author and physician Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (1859 - 1930) was a major innovator in the field of crime fiction. His other works include science-fiction stories, historical novels, plays and romances, poetry, and non-fiction.

Please note: This is a vintage recording. The audio quality may not be up to modern day standards.

Public Domain (P)2009 RNIB

What listeners say about The Lost World

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

A brilliant adventure but of its time be warned

It's ACD at his pompous best, letting off some steam about those sceptic scientists who refused to believe in his beloved spiritualists. In reality, it was ghosts that were poo pooed but here it's dinosaurs. The reader is wonderfully old-fashioned and a pleasure to listen to. It should be said though that this story was written during the zenith of British colonialism and the attitudes of the ruling class at that time looms over a modern reader like a (love the pronunciation) pateradactil. Here we have a bunch of posh English schoolboys running off on a caper, enslaving "red men" and "great, black brutes with the intellect and power of a horse" ( I paraphrase only slightly) and committing a kind of mini race-cleansing murderous spree against a lesser breed of human. In case anyone was confused, CD helpfully likens the behaviour of the British superior race to the enslavement of the Jews. I found myself listening with a regretful smile on the tube, allowing the author his racist undertones acknowledging that times have changed and, really, what else can we do? But then again I'm not Asian, black or Jewish so it's less likely to offend me. I'd treat it as a funny, boys-own adventure book written by an overgrown, arrogant but very talented Victorian public schoolboy and see it for that.

12 people found this helpful

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Loved it

Thrilling, well written and told. A wonderful old fashioned story of exploration and friendship. A must read.

2 people found this helpful

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Fantastic classic, pleasantly performed

This is my first experience of a Doyle novel and possibly my 3rd audio book. I thoroughly enjoyed the narrative and the performance and would love to hear more.

1 person found this helpful

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Disappointed with choice of narrator

Can’t believe they didn’t get an Irish narrator when it’s so important to the book that the first-person protagonist is Irish.

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Good listen

This is one of my favourite adventure classics. The narration was good in spite of a few hitches here and there. Audio quality is not the best in this recording but I enjoyed it all the same. It gave the thing an appropriate old-timey feel, so to speak.

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Top story, superbly read .

superb narration, esteemed voice which made it very easy listening. good story line keeps you hooked.

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  • S
  • 04-02-20

Conan Doyle classic!

Great enjoyment listening to this audible recording of a book well remembered from childhood. Style of narration most suitable to this
period of historical literature.

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Excellent classic

It sounded like Basil Rathbone reading it, in black and white. Marvellous story the style and tone of which reminded me of Jules Cerne’s ‘Journey to the Centre of the Earth’ or ‘Around the World in 80 days’.

There were a couple of times when some unfortunately outdated views on race cropped up.

The whole premise is of course preposterous but it’s a ripping good yarn.

I think one day this Conan Doyle fellow might write something even more popular than this story. He has it in him!

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Great book

Well narrated. Perfectly in keeping with the original era and a timeless story from a great writer

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A great yarn

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle was one of Britain's finest ever story writers and this one is written with his usual skill and fluency. It is also perfectly narrated and gives you a great insight into that era.

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Andrea
  • 23-03-10

Fun book, but characters are muddled

This is a fun book to listen to, but it was difficult at times to understand which character was supposed to be speaking. The narrator would sometimes stay in one character's voice throughout several lines of dialogue between several characters and it would take me a minute to realize that it wasn't just one character that was speaking. This made listening a little confusing. The book is fun though and it was mostly an enjoyable listen.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Rick
  • 10-06-17

Warm and Wild British Adventure

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, a prolific writer of much more than Sherlock Holmes mysteries, was a friend of the explorer Percival Fawcett (see “The Lost City of Z”). Fawcett vanished on a South American expedition in 1925, having told Doyle of seeing “monstrous tracks of unknown origin” in Bolivia. Thus, the inspiration was probably set for a grand account of great adventure in a post-Victorian world.

It’s the first time I’ve ever heard the “p” pronounced in “pterodactyl.” But unlike Fawcett’s unspeakable miseries in multiple explorations of the Amazon Basin, this is a gentlemen’s yarn, ably narrated by John Richmond (1912-1992) in the most authentic of British intonations.

It would be the first of Doyle’s five stories featuring Professor Challenger, a pompous, abrasive, but unarguably brilliant scholar.

Fawcett had written in his memoirs that “monsters from the dawn of man’s existence might still roam these heights unchallenged, imprisoned and protected by unscalable cliffs.” Which is exactly as Professor Challenger finds them, and the many surprises that follow.

Not unlike a Sherlock Holmes enigma, there is an engaging story and character development among an ensemble cast, and the eventual moment when everything comes together and makes perfect sense, no matter how many dinosaurs and apes have been involved along the way. It is a kind of story constructed with great care and no small degree of cleverness, and makes for a highly enjoyable listen. Incidentally, the advisory about this being a “vintage recording” presents no problems at all.

1 person found this helpful