April 2, 2009

Best Free Audio Books Online

LearnOutLoud invites you jump in and listen to 100 of the best free audiobook downloads available online. For many years now we’ve featured a Free Audio Book every Friday as part of our Free Resource of the Day Emails. From these emails, we’ve pulled out 100 of our favorites, including ancient classics, Shakespearean drama, key European & Russian novels, important political documents, poetry introductions, and the finest American literature. Whether you are a student or life-long learner, this selection covers just about everyone from Homer to Jane Austen, to Mark Twain and even an appearance by Sherlock Holmes! Click the titles below to get started on your free literary audiobook journey:

1. The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne

Listen to one of the all-time great works of American literature: The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne. This newly published edition from LoudLit.org is professionally narrated by Mary Woods and available unabridged on MP3 download. Hear the tale of Hester Prynne who is forced to wear a scarlet letter “A” on her bosom after she commits adultery and becomes pregnant in the 17th-century Puritan village of Boston, Massachusetts. Download and listen to this American classic today!

2. The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe; Prince Caspian; The Voyage of the Dawn Treader; The Silver Chair; The Horse and His Boy; The Magician’s Nephew; The Last Battle by C.S. Lewis

Here’s a set of free audio books that is almost too good to be true. The C.S. Lewis estate has granted permission to Ancient Faith Radio to record and offer all seven books of the The Chronicles of Narnia series by C.S. Lewis. Currently Ancient Faith Radio is offering them all for free on MP3 audio download through a podcast feed. They are read by children’s radio host Chrissi Hart for her Readings from Under the Grapevine podcast. She has a pleasant British accent which is appropriate for the Narnia series and the audio books are well recorded. Download this classic collection of children’s literature including all 7 books: The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe; Prince Caspian; The Voyage of the Dawn Treader; The Silver Chair; The Horse and His Boy; The Magician’s Nephew; The Last Battle. Amazing!

3. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

Download Jane Austen’s undeniable classic Pride and Prejudice. Hear the story of the courtship between Elizabeth Bennet and Mr. Darcy in early 19th century England. Published in 1813 this classic tale of love, reputation, and class remains one of the most beloved books of all time. This edition is well narrated by Karen Savage at LibriVox. She has a British accent and a nice flair for character narration. This unabridged novel has a running time of 10 Hrs. 25 Min. and is available on MP3 download from LibriVox.org.

4. The Legend of Sleepy Hollow by Washington Irving

Here’s a great short story you can listen to. It is written by Washington Irving, one of the first acclaimed American authors. It tells the tale of a Dutch settlement called Sleepy Hollow which is haunted by the legend of a Headless Horseman. This story is read by Chip at LibriVox and his narration is magnificent. It’s available on MP3 Download.

5. Adventures of Huckleberry Finn Podcast by Mark Twain

This edition of Mark Twain’s great American novel Adventures of Huckleberry Finn is one of the top free audio books on the internet. It is professionally narrated by Marc Devine and offered as an unabridged, 9-1/2 hour mp3 audiobook from Literal Systems. Listen to the classic tale of Huckleberry Finn and the runaway slave Jim as they take a raft down the Mississippi River to escape the confines of civilized life. This audio book is available as a podcast and it can be downloaded or subscribed to. Enjoy this classic work of American literature!

6. Moby Dick by Herman Melville

It’s time to pursue some ambitious reading (and listening) goals. You may want to read one of the great American novels Moby Dick by Herman Melville. The Moby Dick Big Read project has now completed all 135 chapters of the novel with high quality recordings from great actors and everyday people. Some of the celebrities reading the chapters include Tilda Swinton, Stephen Fry, Simon Callow, Tony Kushner, John Waters, Sir David Attenborough, and British Prime Minister David Cameron. Ready to listen to a free unabridged recording of Moby Dick? Listen to Herman Melville’s epic whaling tale, available on MP3 download.

7. The Red Badge of Courage by Stephen Crane

Audiobooks.org is now offering a free unabridged recording of Stephen Crane’s Civil War novel The Red Badge of Courage. Listen as the soldier Henry Fleming enters the American Civil War, and is forced to transform from fear to courage. Told in an unflinchingly realistic and journalistic style, this novel ranks among the best American war stories. It is professionally narrated by Scott Brick and available on MP3 download from Audiobooks.org.

8. Macbeth by William Shakespeare

Listen to William Shakespeare’s famous tragedy Macbeth on streaming audio and MP3 download. This full cast dramatization of the play is offered by Wired for Books. Hear all the drama of Macbeth’s bloody grab for power and his subsequent unraveling. The play stars Mark Mann as Macbeth and Laura Lee Parrotti as Lady Macbeth.

9. Free: The Future of a Radical Price (Unabridged) by Chris Anderson

Editor-in-chief of Wired Magazine Chris Anderson follows up his bestselling book The Long Tail: Why the Future of Business Is Selling Less of More, with his new book Free: The Future of a Radical Price. And in practicing what he preaches, Anderson and his publisher Hyperion are giving away his new audio book for free! We’ve listened to the prologue and it sounds like a very interesting book regarding the future of business in the digital age. You can download this audio book unabridged on iTunes, Audible.com, and Wired.com. This version is narrated by Mr. Anderson himself.

10. The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin

Ejunto.com presents this free unabridged edition of The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin. Written by Benjamin Franklin over the course of 20 years, this autobiography follows major events of Franklin’s life including his publication of Poor Richard’s Almanac, his quest for “moral perfection”, and many other significant events reflecting life in 18th century America. The book is well narrated by Andrew Julow. Download this 6 hour audio book on MP3 from ejunto.com.

11. A Tale of Two Cities Podcast by Charles Dickens

Check out this free unabridged professional recording of A Tale of Two Cities, released by Literal Systems. Listen to this sweeping historical novel set in London and Paris around the time of the French Revolution. The audio quality is top notch and Jane Ayer’s narration is superb. This classic 14-hour audio book is available on MP3 download as a podcast from Literal Systems.

12. Poetry Out Loud: Audio Guide

Download and listen to this series of MP3s from the National Endowment for the Arts Poetry Out Loud program. This audio guide features some of the most famous poems of all time read by distinguished actors and writers.

13. Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, An American Slave

Published in 1845, this autobiographical memoir written by the ex-slave Frederick Douglass tells of the treatment he endured as a slave and was a key work in promoting the abolition of slavery in America. This classic audio book is published by FreeAudio.org, and they’ve allowed us to offer it as a free MP3 download through LearnOutLoud.com.

14. 12 Shakespeare Plays from Speak the Speech

We’ve just been informed of a great new resource for listening to Shakespeare’s plays on audio. Speak the Speech is a non-profit audio theatre company dedicated to providing freely available Shakespearean audio performances online. Collaborating with a full cast of actors in Portland, Oregon, they’ve recorded some of the best audio versions of Shakespeare’s plays available and they’ve made them available for free on MP3 download through their website. Here are the plays they’re offering:

As You Like It
Henry IV, Part One
Henry IV, Part Two
Romeo and Juliet
The Tempest
Twelfth Night
A Winter’s Tale
Sounds of Shakespeare: Antony and Cleopatra, King John, Cymbeline, King Richard II, and The Merry Wives of Windsor

15. The Republic by Plato

The Republic by Plato is one of the most influential works of philosophy in history. In the form of Socratic dialogue, Plato’s teacher and protagonist Socrates sets out to find an answer to the question: “What is justice?”. Along the way Socrates discusses the ideal city-state and his theory of forms, which includes his famous allegory of the cave. This is a new, freely available, unabridged edition of The Republic. It is well read by narrator Doug McLeod and is available on MP3 download from ejunto.com.

16. Heart of Darkness Audiobook Podcast by Joseph Conrad

Joseph Conrad’s classic novella Heart of Darkness has recently been made available for free on audio download. LoudLit.org and LiteralSystems have produced this professional sounding audio book that is narrated by Tom Franks. Listen to the highly symbolic tale of Marlow’s journey down the Congo River. This unabridged audio book is available on MP3 Download from and can also be subscribed to as a podcast.

17. Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka

Franz Kafka’s novella is a bonafide 20th century classic about a traveling salesman that wakes up one morning to find his body has been transformed into that of a giant dung beatle. This highly symbolic tale about the plight of the modern working man, human alienation, and the eternal need to fit in has gone on to be Kafka’s signature work. The audio version is brought to you through Thought Audio, and is narrated in a crisp performance by Michael Scott. If you’ve ever been interested in Kafka or have heard of the story’s premise but never checked it out, now is the time. This book really is as good as everyone says!

18. Uncle Tom’s Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe

Listen to Harriet Beecher Stowe’s classic American novel Uncle Tom’s Cabin. One of the bestselling novels of its time, the book vividly depicts African American slavery and it had a profound influence on the abolitionist movement. This unabridged 18-hour audio book is dynamically narrated by John Greenman and available on MP3 download through LibriVox.org.

19. Anthem by Ayn Rand

Ayn Rand’s books are made for audio. In these busy times very few people have the time to sit down and read The Fountainhead or Atlas Shrugged. But get these audio books and pop them on in your car while you’re commuting and you can finish them up in a month or two. It’s a great testament to the opportunity represented by audio learning. If you would like to check start off with a more bite-sized portion of Rand’s wisdom check out ThoughtAudio’s production of Anthem, one of Rand’s earlier novels. Anthem sets the stage for what’s to come in Rand’s later works. It’s an entertaining science fiction novella and a great introduction to Ayn Rand’s philosophy. This audio book is available on MP3 download through ThoughAudio.com and narrated by Michael Scott.

20. The Iliad by Homer

Listen to Homer’s ancient Greek epic poem The Iliad, translated by Samuel Butler. Learn about the wrath of Achilles, the Greek hero of the Trojan War, along with a whole cast of Greeks, Trojans, and gods that battle throughout the final year of the siege of Troy. Attributed to Homer in the 8th century B.C., The Iliad stands as the oldest work of European literature still in existence. It is read by a number of different volunteer narrators at LibriVox and the quality sounds pretty good for each of them. It is unabridged with a running time of 14 Hrs. 30 Min. and is available on MP3 download through Librivox.org.

21. The Science of Getting Rich by Wallace D. Wattles

A volunteer narrator at Librivox.org has recorded The Science of Getting Rich by Wallace D. Wattles. The book is a cornerstone of personal growth and wealth building. This 2-hour audio book is narrated by Diana Majlinger. About this audio book: This book is a practical manual. It is intended for the men and women whose most pressing need is for money; who wish to get rich first, and philosophize afterward. It is for those who have, so far, found neither the time, the means, nor the opportunity to study this matter deeply, but who want results and who are willing to take the conclusions of science as a basis for action, without going into all the processes by which those conclusions were reached.

22. A Study in Scarlet by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
The Sign of the Four
The Hound of the Baskervilles
The Valley of Fear

You can now download all four of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s great Sherlock Holmes novels from Gutenberg.org on MP3 audio download. They are being made freely available from AudiobooksForFree.com with professional narration from British thespian John Telfer. AudiobooksForFree.com offers many audio books for free at a low bit rate of 8 kbps which is not very listenable. But for these Sherlock Holmes audio books, AudiobooksForFree.com has donated them to be offered on Gutenberg.org at higher quality bit rates of 16 kbps and 32 kbps which are both listenable. To get the 32 kbps MP3 files click the “More Files…” link at the bottom of the list of MP3s on the page on Gutenberg.org and you’ll see links to the files at this quality.

23. Robinson Crusoe by Daniel Defoe

From audiobooks.org comes this free edition of Daniel Defoe’s classic adventure tale Robinson Crusoe. The novel tells the story of an English castaway who spends 28 years on a remote island. This unabridged recording seems to be from a narration conducted in the 1970s, but the narrator and audio quality still sound good. This title is available on MP3 download.

24. Frankenstein, or the Modern Prometheus by Mary Shelley

Listen to Mary Shelley’s classic tale of Gothic horror and science fiction. Written at the dawn of the Industrial Revolution, this allegorical novel reveals the dark side of modern man’s irresponsible use of technology. This free unabridged audio book has been recorded by a group of narrators at LibriVox, and they all sound like quality readers with good audio recordings. Download Frankenstein on MP3 from Lit2Go.

25. The Prince by Niccolo Machiavelli

ejunto.com is site which features free mp3 downloads of historical and philosophical audio books (it’s named after Benjamin Franklin’s literary club called The Junto). They currently feature a free unabridged recording of The Prince by Niccolo Machiavelli. This political philosophy classic describes how political leaders can obtain and maintain power. It is well narrated by Andrew Julow and available on MP3 download from ejunto.com.

26. The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton

Listen to Edith Wharton’s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel The Age of Innocence. Brenda Dayne has narrated a very fine unabridged recording of the book and put it out in its entirety as a podcast. Immerse yourself into the upper class of New York City, in an age when “being things” was better than “doing things”!

27. Alice in Wonderland by Storynory Podcast by Lewis Carroll

Listen to Lewis Carroll’s fantastic tale of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland offered as a podcast by Storynory. Follow Alice down the Rabbit Hole as she meets the White Rabbit, the Cheshire Cat, the Mad Hatter, and many other curious characters. The story twists logic in ways that have entertained both kids and adults since it was first published in 1865. This 12-chapter, unabridged audio book is professionally narrated by actress Natasha Gostwick, and is available on MP3 download.

28. The Words of Christ: From the Book of Matthew

Listen to The Words of Christ: From the Book of Matthew. This audio book, released by ThoughtAudio.com isolates everything uttered by Christ in the gospel according to Matthew. Extracted from the narrative of the Bible, Christ’s message is distilled to its core values. Simple in its language yet still potent in its ever-present challenge to humanity, this is as unfiltered of a view of the gospel as one might ever find. This recording is a wonderful opportunity to engage with the gospel from a new point of view. This audio book is available to download in multiple MP3 segments.

29. Twelve Years a Slave by Solomon Northup

Download the audio book version of the memoir Twelve Years a Slave by Solomon Northup, a free black man who was kidnapped in Washington, D.C. in 1841 and sold into slavery. This book has now been adapted into the major motion picture 12 Years a Slave, and the movie has received widespread critical acclaim. Solomon Northup’s slave narrative covers the 12 years he was kept in bondage in Louisiana and provides a factual first-person account of slavery at that time. The book was a bestseller when it was published, but it fell into obscurity for almost 100 years before it was rediscovered in the 1960s. This book is read by Rob Board at Librivox.

30. Death in Venice by Thomas Mann

Listen to German author Thomas Mann’s classic 1912 novella Death in Venice. In this story, Mann introduces us to Gustav Achenbach, a well respected man of letters, whose strict dedication to his craft has led him to the kind of solitary loneliness reserved for great thinkers. After deciding to take a vacation in order to reduce his stress, he finds his way to Venice and makes a discovery there that awakens a passion within himself that he’d suppressed his entire life. This novella was translated from the German 1912 edition by Martin C. Doeg and we sincerely thank him for his permission to record it as an audio book. It is well narrated by Tom Laskey. Note: The free version is a video we have posted to YouTube on this page. To download it you’ll need to purchase it.

31. The Call of the Wild (from ThoughtAudio.com)
The Call of the Wild (from Lit2Go)
The Call of the Wild (from Librivox) by Jack London

Listen to one of the all-time classic American books by writer Jack London: The Call of the Wild. This is the tale of the dog Buck who is sent to Alaska to become a sled dog where he quickly learns how to survive the cold winter nights. From there Buck goes on many adventures until he finally heeds the call of the wild. Listen to this 3 hour and 30 minute audio book to get you through these cold winter nights. We have three free versions to choose from.

32. The Souls of Black Folk by W.E.B. Du Bois

Listen to an unabridged recording of W.E.B. Du Bois’ classic work of African-American literature The Souls of Black Folk. Published in 1903, Du Bois begins his collection of essays on race with the statement that “the problem of the Twentieth Century is the problem of the color line.” The essays that followed were instrumental to the intellectual argument for the black freedom struggle in the twentieth century. This audio book is read in a straightforward manner by Torias Uncle at Librivox and is available on MP3 download.

33. The Time Machine by H.G. Wells

Travel into the future with H.G. Wells’ classic novel The Time Machine. Bear witness to Morlocks and more in the year 802,701 A.D. This audio book is available on MP3 Digital Download from Project Gutenberg. It is well narrated by Roy Trumbull who runs The Story Spieler site which features many other stories and interesting audio programs.

34. Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoevsky

This free audio book comes from Lit2Go, which is the University of South Florida’s massive collection of free audio literature on MP3 download. They are all narrated by quality voice actors it seems and we’ve added a lot of their audio books to LearnOutLoud.com. Crime and Punishment by the great Russian author Fyodor Dostoyevsky is the second of his full-length novels. It tells the story of Rodion Romanovich Raskolnikov who is emotionally, physically, and financially stressed, but believes that he is an extraordinary man that does not have to follow the moral codes of ordinary people. Find out what this drives Raskolnikov to do in this classic Russian novel. It is translated by Constance Garnett and is available on MP3 audio download from Lit2Go!

35. Beowulf

Listen to the epic tale of Beowulf as he fights off Grendel and his venomous mother. Beowulf stands as one of the first and greatest works of English literature. Originally written in Old English, this translation by Francis Barton Gummere updates it to Modern English. A great story to be listened to, this audio book is well read by a group of seven narrators at LibriVox. It is available on MP3 Download.

36. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte

A new film version of Charlotte Bronte’s classic novel Jane Eyre comes out in theaters today. Whether or not you’re going to check out the film, you should definitely give a listen to this great novel if you never have before. In this first-person narrative you follow the title character as she matures from childhood to adulthood. Its portrayal of the development of a thinking and passionate young woman led it to sometimes be regarded as an important early feminist novel. Librivox.org offer three versions of this novel and we think we picked out the best one narrated by Elizabeth Klett, who is one of the most prolific and talented volunteer narrators at Librivox. Enjoy this novel on MP3 and now even M4B bookmarkable audiobook download.

37. Bleak House by Charles Dicken

Want to take on an ambitiously long novel that you may never get a chance to read? Try listening to Charles Dicken’s 43-hour novel Bleak House. This vast novel features an ensemble cast of Dickensian characters filling the novels numerous plots and subplots, with the focus being on the British judiciary system in the 19th century. This audio book is entirely narrated by Cynthia Lyons over at LibriVox and is available on MP3 download.

38. Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy

If you’re not ready to dive into the 1000+ page (60+ hours on audio) book War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy, then Tolstoy’s Anna Karenina might be a better place to start. Maryann Spiegel at Librivox has just completed narrating this free unabridged, 36-hour version of the work which is translated by Nathan Haskell Dole. Listen to the tragic tale of married aristocrat Anna Karenina and her affair with the wealthy Count Vronsky. If William Faulkner called it “the best novel ever written” and Fyodor Dostoevsky said it was “flawless as a work of art”, then you know it must be pretty good. Download this free audio book from Librivox.org on MP3 or bookmarkable M4B (a lot of Librivox’s catalog is actually now available on M4B).

39. The Odyssey by Homer

Listen to Homer’s epic poem The Odyssey which follows the Greek hero Odysseus on his journey from Troy to his home of Ithaca after the Trojan War. This unabridged edition is a collaborative effort from LibriVox involving 16 narrators, and they all seem to have adequate sound quality and narrating ability. Download this 24-book, 11 hour audio epic on MP3 from LibriVox.

40. Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom by Cory Doctorow

We thought we’d spice up our free audio book offerings with a bit of contemporary science fiction literature. Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom is the first novel by blogger and science fiction author Cory Doctorow and it was the first novel released under one of the Creative Commons licenses allowing for it to be recorded on audio and distributed for free. Sean Puckett at Voices in the Dark does a fine job of narrating this 4-hour audio book. The novel follows the story of the 100-year-old Jules as he fights to redeem the the artistic purity of Disney World in the 22nd century. It was nominated for the Nebula Award for Best Novel in 2004. This audio book is available for free on MP3 download from Voices in the Dark.

41. Common Sense by Thomas Paine

Listen to Thomas Paine’s classic political pamphlet published in 1776, during the American Revolution. This hugely popular book argued for independence from British rule and persuaded many to believe that revolution was necessary. We’d like to thank
FreeAudio.org for allowing us to offer this superb 2-hour unabridged audio book. Download this classic work of American political prose available on MP3 download directly through LearnOutLoud.com.

42. Black Beauty: The Autobiography of a Horse by Anna Sewell

Black Beauty is one of the best-selling books of all time. It is the first and only novel written by the English author Anna Sewell and it was published shortly before she passed away in 1878. The story is written in the form of an autobiographical memoir told by a horse named Black Beauty. As we follow Black Beauty throughout her life the story contains many allegorical lessons that teach us to treat both people and animals with kindness and respect. The novel is narrated by one of Librivox.org’s best volunteer narrators Cori Samuel. It is available on MP3 download from Librivox.org.

43. The Law by Frederic Bastiat

Frederic Bastiat’s “The Law” produced by Mises Institute is one of the best free audio books available. Bastiat’s brief treatise on law is a passionate cry for his belief that law should only be put in place to maintain life, liberty, and property. He denounces legislators and philosophers who seek legalized plunder, moral coercion, and numerous other methods of force through law which encroach on liberties. The production quality is professional and Floy Lilley’s narration is superb.

44. The Curious Case of Benjamin Button by F. Scott Fitzgerald

This F. Scott Fitzgerald story was recently adapted into a major motion picture. Hear the story behind the film, as Fitzgerald tells the fantastic tale of Benjamin who is born as a seventy-year-old man in 1860 and grows younger throughout his entire life. This audio book is available on MP3 download from ThoughtAudio.com.

45. Ethan Frome by Edith Wharton

Listen to American author Edith Wharton’s classic novel Ethan Frome. Set in the wintry New England town named Starkfield at the turn of the 20th century, this novel tells the story of Ethan Frome as he seeks to escape his sickly wife Zeena for his young, beautiful cousin Mattie. Running a modest 3 Hrs. and 15 Min., it’s a great quick listen for newcomers and fans of the literature of Edith Wharton. This title is well narrated by Elizabeth Klett and is available to download on MP3 from LibriVox.org.

46. Leaves of Grass by Walt Whitman

Listen to the unabridged final edition of Walt Whitman’s seminal work of American poetry Leaves of Grass. First published in 1855, Whitman continued to expand and revise this work from 12 poems to nearly 400 poems in 1891 when he published his “deathbed edition”. Inspired by Ralph Waldo Emerson’s The Poet essay, Whitman answered Emerson’s call to create a uniquely American poetry. This 19-hour unabridged edition is read by a collective of volunteer narrators over at LibriVox.org.

47. Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert

Listen to this classic French novel about Emma Bovary who tries desperately to escape her provincial life in 19th century France. After her marriage to a French doctor, Emma finds him dull and through adulterous affairs she escapes the boredom of their marriage. She also buys luxuries outside of her means, but as her debts began to mount up she has to face reality. This novel is narrated by a troop of volunteers over at LibriVox.org and is available on MP3 download. The translation is by Eleanor Marx.

48. The Turn of the Screw by Henry James

Listen to Henry James’ classic Victorian ghost story of a governess and the children she cares for as the deal with the mysterious spirits of their estate. The ambiguous nature of the novel has kept literary critics guessing its meanings for over a century. This spellbinding tale is narrated by Nikolle Doolin over at LibriVox.org and is available on MP3 download.

49. The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson

We all know the phrase “Jekyll and Hyde”, but how many of us have read the book which created this classic example of a split personality? Robert Louis Stevenson’s 1886 novella The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde is full of mystery and intrigue as the lawyer Mr. Utterson seeks to discover who Mr. Hyde is after a series of bizarre crimes committed by Hyde. Utterson seeks out the advice of the respectable Dr. Jekyll who has an interesting relationship with Mr. Hyde. This novella has a running time of 3 Hrs. with a fine Brit narration by David Barnes. It is available on MP3 download from LibriVox. If you’re traveling somewhere this Labor Day weekend, then this is a perfect classic audio book to listen to on a long car ride.

50. The Aeneid by Virgil

With the Aeneid, the Roman poet Virgil provides his home country with a nationalistic origin grounded squarely in Homeric myth. The poem follows Aeneas, one of the few survivors of Troy’s destruction, as he leads the last of his men through a series of trials as they make their way to Italian shores. Once they reach their sacred Latium, the Roman Goddess Juno incites a war between the incoming Trojans and the local chieftains led by the Achilles-esque Turnus. A fight for national destiny ensues, and Rome is given a birth that befits its self-identified greatness.

51. Dracula by Bram Stoker

We thought you might want to listen to one of the greatest horror stories of all time: Bram Stoker’s Dracula. This classic vampire story examines modern Victorian culture and the gothic occult dimension that lies beneath it. Listen and you will meet not only Count Dracula himself, but heroes Jonathan Harker and Abraham Van Helsing, plus an array of madmen, psychiatrists, and fair maidens who cross paths with the fanged menace.

52. War of the Worlds by H.G. Wells

Listen to this free unabridged edition of H. G. Wells’ War of the Worlds. Published in 1898, this classic science fiction novel depicts for the first time an alien invasion of Earth. Rebecca (a British man) delivers a splendid narration. This audio book is available from LibriVox on MP3 download.

53. The Works of Edgar Allan Poe

No one else spins a Gothic tale of mystery & macabre quite like Edgar Allan Poe. In this collection of his stories you’ll hear such famous Poe stories as “The Fall of the House of Usher”, “The Masque of the Red Death”, “The Pit and the Pendulum”, and “The Tell-Tale Heart”. Poe’s popular stories and poems made him a living in his day and continue to be popular. These short stories are read by a group of volunteer narrators at Librivox.org.

54. Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte

Listen to Emily Bronte’s only published novel Wuthering Heights. Emily decided to publish her novel after the success of her sister Charlotte’s novel, Jane Eyre. The novel Wuthering Heights tells the tale of the passionate, yet thwarted, love between Heathcliff and Catherine Earnshaw and how it affects the cast of characters around them. This unabridged audio book is narrated by Librivox volunteer Ruth Golding who has a lovely British accent.

55. Walden by Henry David Thoreau

Walden details Thoreau’s experiences over the course of two years in a cabin he built near Walden Pond in the woodlands near Concord, Massachusetts. Through simple living and self-sufficiency Thoreau developed his transcendentalist philosophy amongst nature. Loaded with wisdom, Thoreau reminds us in this book that “Most men lead lives of quiet desperation and go to the grave with the song still in them”, and Thoreau tries to point us towards rising above this fate.

56. The Man Who Was Thursday by G.K. Chesterton

Listen to G. K. Chesterton’s metaphysical thriller The Man Who Was Thursday. Chesterton sets this novel in turn-of-the-century London, as Scotland Yard sends a poet named Gabriel Syme undercover to investigate a group of anarchist poets. He is soon elected to the Central Council of Anarchists and given the code name Thursday. Chesterton includes many metaphysical and theological discussions in the book. This audio book is unabridged and well narrated by Zachary Brewster-Geisz. It is available on MP3 download.

57. Fathers and Sons by Ivan Turgenev

Download one of the greatest Russian novels of all time: Fathers and Sons by Ivan Turgenev. The 1862 novel portrays the clash of two generations of Russians, as the youthful Arkady returns to his father Nikolai’s estate after graduating from the University of Petersburg, and Arkady brings along his nihilist friend Bazarov. From there the story follows Arkady and Bazarov as their nihilism eventually falls apart in the face of human emotions. This unabridged novel is available for free on MP3 audio download from Librivox.org.

58. Meditations by Marcus Aurelius

Download Meditations by Marcus Aurelius. This classic work of Stoic philosophy by the Roman emperor Marcus Aurelius has been a source of guidance and self-improvement for thousands of years. This unabridged version is narrated by a number of volunteer narrators at LibriVox.org and is available on MP3 download. This Harvard Classics edition contains a biography and summary of Marcus Aurelius’ philosophy by George Long at the conclusion of the audio book.

59. Utopia Podcast by Sir Thomas More

Download Sir Thomas More’s famous work Utopia, published in 1515. This title refers to an imaginary society More developed in order to show the virtues of a place where private property does not exist, almost complete religious toleration is practiced, and other things took shape which More imagined would lead to societal perfection. This controversial novel is superbly narrated by Patrick Horgan and available as a downloadable podcast courtesy of SwitchPod.

60. Dream Psychology: Psychoanalysis for Beginners by Sigmund Freud

Download the audio book of Sigmund Freud’s Dream Psychology. This book distills Freud’s ideas on dream psychology into a compact manual. While Freud’s magnum opus The Interpretation Of Dreams can be overwhelming in its length and scientific language, this audio book attempts to convey Freud’s words on dream psychology in language fit for the lay reader through nine straightforward chapters. This book is presented on audio for the first time by Librivox.org and is narrated by a number of their volunteer narrators.

61. Paradise Lost by John Milton

Download an unabridged recording of John Milton’s epic poem Paradise Lost for free on MP3 from Librivox. Listen as Milton seeks to “justify the ways of God to men” through the story of the fall of Man as the fallen angel Satan tempts Adam and Eve which leads to their expulsion from the Garden of Eden. This 12-book, 9 1/2 hour audio program is narrated by group of volunteer narrators at Librivox. And reading or listening to Milton is no walk in the park. To help guide you along with this audio book we are also featuring a free course from Yale University entitled “Milton” taught by Professor John Rogers. This course features an introduction to the poetry of Milton along with 10 lectures on Paradise Lost. It is available on streaming video through YouTube and downloadable audio & video on the Yale website: Milton Course from Yale.

62. The Elements of Style by William Strunk, Jr.

The Elements of Style is a small guide written by William Strunk, Jr. that teaches the two fundamentals of good writing: how to choose the right words and how to compose them together without wasting space. The book was later revised by Strunk’s student, E.B. White into a second edition that has become a classic. Before expanding the book in 1959, White fondly remembered the 1918 edition as a “forty-three-page summation of the case for cleanliness, accuracy, and brevity in the use of English.” Since succinctness is one of the major points stressed in The Elements of Style, we recommend listening to this Librivox version of Strunk’s original text first before moving on to the later editions. Even at 43 pages, you get everything you need to begin writing clearly, economically, and powerfully. Download this free audio book from Librivox!

63. The Communist Manifesto (from Librivox) by Karl Marx
The Communist Manifesto (from Thought Audio)
The Communist Manifesto (from ejunto.org)

Today we are featuring 3 free versions of Karl Marx’s The Communist Manifesto. This short work (with a running time of only 1 hour and 15 minutes) has been recognized as one of the world’s most influential political manuscripts. First published on February 21, 1848, the book lays out the class struggle between the “Bourgeois and Proletarians”, and how communists will arise from the working-class and overthrow the capitalist system. The work ends with the rallying cry of communism: “Workers of the world, unite!“. Download this free audio book on MP3 today!

64. Ulysses by James Joyce

Wit back and listen to Irish author James Joyce’s masterpiece of Modernist literature Ulysses. Archive.org features a free multi-voiced, professional recording of the unabridged audio book to play and download on MP3. In 1998, the Modern Library ranked Ulysses first on its list of the 100 best English-language novels of the 20th century! Listen to Joyce employ the stream-of-consciousness technique as he follows Leopold Bloom through Dublin during an ordinary day on June 16, 1904. This novel contains 265,000 words and has a running time of 32 hours.

65. Great Expectations by Charles Dickens

Download and listen to one of Charles Dickens’ greatest novels: Great Expectations! This coming-of-age Victorian novel follows a young orphan named Pip through his personal development into adulthood when he grows up to become a fine young gentleman. This novel is well read by one of the readers at Lit2Go and is available on MP3 audio download from their newly designed site.

66. A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man by James Joyce

A gentleman over at LibriVox has recently narrated James Joyce’s first novel A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man. This classic tale of Stephen Dedalus follows the young man during his formative years as he breaks away from the Irish Catholic conventions of his past to become an artist who will “encounter for the millionth time the reality of experience and forge in the smithy of my soul the uncreated conscience of my race.” The narrator is Peter Bobbe and it sounds like he’s done a fine job with a high quality recording. Download this unabridged audio book on MP3 from LibriVox.

67. A Room with a View by E.M. Forster

E.M. Forster’s A Room with a View tells the story of two young lovers torn apart by extreme social divisions in early 20th century Europe. Lucy Honeychurch and George Emerson meet during a vacation in Italy and after a series of brief encounters, an unstated love affair develops that runs counter to the wishes of Lucy’s society and family. Forster’s characterization of Lucy offers an early, proto-feminist portrait of a newly self-empowered generation beginning to flourish in Europe in the years leading up to World War I. Her passionate time with George in Italy is contrasted with the hard restrictions imposed on her in her native England, offering a telling portrait of the era, its young people, and their dreams of greater freedom.

68. Candide by Voltaire

Listen to this French satire written by the Enlightenment philosopher Voltaire and published in 1759. In this short work with a running time of only 4 hours, Voltaire delivers a relentless, brutal assault on government, society, religion, education, and, above all, optimism. The novel follows the character of Candide after he is indoctrinated with optimism by his mentor, Pangloss, who teaches his pupils that they live in the “best of all possible worlds”. Candide then goes out into the world is lead through a slow, painful disillusionment as he witnesses and experiences great hardships. Download this classic French novel narrated by Ted Delorme at Librivox.

69. The Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor Dostoyevsky

Download Fyodor Dostoyevsky’s final novel The Brothers Karamazov, which he published in 1880. Follow the story of Fyodor Pavlovich Karamazov and his three sons Dmitri, Ivan, and Alexei as their stories involve ethical debates of God, free will, and morality. Listen to this unabridged 38-hour audio book that is translated by Constance Garnett and read by numerous volunteers at Librivox.org.

70. Beyond Good and Evil by Friedrich Nietzsche

Download and listen to this major work by German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche. In this work Nietzsche sets out to transcend traditional morality and condemns much of Western philosophy for being subservient to this morality. Nietzsche wants to replace this morality with his idea of the “will to power”. By getting past universal ideas of good and evil, Nietzsche feels that modern man create new values and meaning to life. This work is also peppered with a collection of Nietzsche’s famous aphorisms. This 8-hour unabridged audio book is narrated by a group of volunteers and can be downloaded from Librivox.org.

71. How to Speak and Write Correctly by Joseph Devlin

Listen to this classic text on how to speak and write correctly in English. The author Joseph Devlin purports that the book “is merely an effort to help ordinary, everyday people to express themselves in ordinary, everyday language, in a proper manner.” Published in 1910 this book is still useful for learning how to create sentences, use figures of speech, write letters, and more. This download is available from Librivox.org on MP3 download and it is read by a number of their volunteer narrators including David Barnes, Kara Shallenberg, and Hugh McGuire. Start improving your writing and speaking today!

72. Les Miserables, Volume 1 by Victor Hugo
Les Miserables, Volume 2
Les Miserables, Volume 3
Les Miserables, Volume 4
Les Miserables, Volume 5

Download and listen to Librivox’s 5-volume, 50-hour unabridged recording of Victor Hugo’s epic historical novel Les Miserables. In the 1980s the novel was adapted into a hugely successful musical which ran for 6,680 performances from 1987 to 2003. And now that musical has been adapted into the 2012 film Les Miserables which is now in theaters across the USA! Get back to the source material with Victor Hugo’s story of ex-convict Jean Valjean and dozens of other characters in nineteenth century France. This entire audio book is available to download on Librivox.org.

73. The Story of My Life by Helen Keller

Librivox is offering a free download of The Story of My Life by Helen Keller. Listen to the amazing autobiography of the early life of Helen Keller as she broke through her deafblind isolation from language with the help of her teacher Anne Sullivan. Helen Keller would go on to be a prolific author, political activist, and lecturer. This 4 hour audio book is narrated by George Cooney.

74. The Varieties of Religious Experience by William James

The Varieties of Religious Experience by William James is now available for free on audio download Librivox. This classic work on the nature of religion is by the great American psychologist and philosopher William James. The book comes from a series of lectures that James delivered at the University of Edinburgh in 1901 on “natural religion”. The resulting work is considered one of the most important texts on psychology and spirituality, and is often cited as one of the best works of nonfiction written in the 20th century.

75. Middlemarch by George Eliot

With Middlemarch, George Eliot weaves several narratives together to make a coherent statement on the changing values, goals, and social dynamics of Britain during the 1830s. It follows Dorothea Brooke as she struggles to define herself chiefly within the confines of a stifling marriage, witnesses idealist Doctor Tertius Lydgate’s as his ambitions crumble due to personal vice, and chases after the wayward Fred Vincy as he tries to define his destiny in order to win the heart of his childhood friend. Throughout this huge novel, Eliot uses the peculiar dynamics of small-town life that are still recognizable to modern readers as a way to explore the status of women, the value of religion, the limits of ambition, and much more. Within the narrative, Eliot also sets up an oppositional structure that scrutinizes how rural England was grappling with national democratic reform after centuries of dominance by a landed elite. This deftly handled, delicately rendered masterpiece of English literature is still popular, yet sometimes may be overlooked when compared to more visible works by Dickens, the Brontes, or Austen. We feel Middlemarch deserves to be put at the top of the list for anyone interested in the English novel and especially for fans of the the aforementioned authors. Download this free unabridged audio book from Librivox.

76. Acres of Diamonds by Russell H. Conwell

Download Russell H. Conwell’s Acres of Diamonds. Originating from a speech that Conwell delivered thousands of times throughout the United States, this book provides wisdom on finding opportunity and fortune within one’s own community. Russell Conwell was a Baptist minister and an outstanding orator, and his words are well-narrated here by Scott Dahlem at Librivox. Listen to this classic work on how to find wealth and prosperity no matter where you are.

77. Notes from the Underground by Fyodor Dostoevsky

Before Dostoevsky wrote his classic novels The Brothers Karamazov and Crime and Punishment, he published this short novel which follows the thoughts and memories of the Underground Man in St. Petersburg, Russia. Through the novel Dostoevsky lays out the philosophy of the Underground Man and the themes in his ideas have established the book as one of the world’s first existentialist novels.

78. Sons and Lovers by D.H. Lawrence

D.H. Lawrence’s early masterpiece Sons and Lovers examines the complex relationship between a mother and her two sons as they come of age in a small mining town. After marrying a man of lower class, the mother Gertrude inherits a life she comes to feel is beneath her and transfers the passion she once had for her husband Walter over to her two sons, first William, and later Paul. As the sons grow and develop their own lives apart from Gertrude, their worlds begin to fall apart, and the younger Paul must decide if he will give his heart to a new lover, or stay loyal to a mother that craves his total attention. Librivox records Lawrence’s classic modern novel with appropriate passion, giving this potent story of one family’s disintegration the energy it deserves.

79. A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court by Mark Twain

Download Mark Twain’s fantastic tale about a 19th-century resident of Hartford, Connecticut who, after a blow to the head, awakens to find himself inexplicably transported back in time to early medieval England at the time of the legendary King Arthur. Published in 1889, this is the novel Twain wrote right after Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. Underneath the entertaining story is a sharp social satire. This novel is read by John Greenman who has voiced over a dozen Mark Twain books over at Librivox.org.

80. The Wasteland by T.S. Eliot

T.S. Eliot’s The Wasteland may be the most important modern poem ever written, and marks a turning point in 20th century literature. Drawing from a dizzying array of literary references that allude to passages from the western canon, Buddhist thought, and Hindu scripture, this 434 line poem utilizes these historical texts to make comment on contemporary British society. Mundane details are crossed with ancient Sanskrit in a deliberately disjointed structural scheme that loosely follows Holy Grail folklore, particularly the story of the Fisher King. Eliot’s overriding themes explore the pervasive degeneration that has seeped into the culture of his era, depriving the modern mind of access to true meaning. Librivox offers a fine reading of the text, but we recommend bringing along a reference key to keep up with all of the literary allusions!

81. Tess of the D’Urbervilles by Thomas Hardy

Listen to a great love story in Thomas Hardy’s Tess of the D’Urbervilles. Hardy himself thought it his finest novel and Tess the most deeply felt character he ever created. Hear the tragic tale as Tess is torn between the aristocratic Alec d’Urberville and her true love Angel Clare. This novel is being offered for free on audio download from Librivox and is narrated by Adrian Praetzellis.

82. The Art of Public Speaking by Dale Carnegie & Joseph B. Esenwein

Before Dale Carnegie penned How to Win Friends and Influence People, he co-author The Art of Public Speaking with Joseph B. Esenwein in 1915. This book has finally been recorded on audio by a group of volunteer narrators at Librivox. The unabridged audio book runs 19 hours and contains 31 chapters for how to improve your public speaking. The last 15 sections of this audio book are real speeches by famous men to function as a study aid. Download this free self help classic available on Librivox.

83. This Side of Paradise by F. Scott Fitzgerald

Listen to F. Scott Fitzgerald’s debut novel published in 1920. The book follows young Midwesterner Amory Blaine who heads out for Princeton, serves in World War I, and then returns to New York where he falls in love. H.L. Mencken wrote that This Side of Paradise was the “best American novel that I have seen of late.” It was a popular novel that earned Fitzgerald renown and is in many ways autobiographical. The unabridged 10-hour novel is read by Mark F. Smith at Librivox and available for free on MP3 audio download.

84. The Wonderful Wizard of Oz (from Librivox) by L. Frank Baum
The Wonderful Wizard of Oz (from Lit2Go)

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz (also called simply The Wizard of Oz) was the basis for the well-known 1939 film version, but differs from the film in many ways as well. It is the first of the Oz books of which L. Frank Baum wrote 13 total. Follow the adventures of Dorothy, the Scarecrow, the Tin Woodman, and the Cowardly Lion as they journey to the Emerald City to seek the help of the Wizard of Oz, and then must confront the Wicked Witch of the West.

85. The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas

Alexandre Dumas’ swashbuckling novel The Count of Monte Cristo is the perennially popular tale of one man’s determined quest for justice after he is wrongfully imprisoned for many years. This character’s dramatic fall and patient rise to new power examines the personal costs of taking revenge, not only for the person who was wronged, but for the people caught in his righteous wake. Now considered on equal footing with Dumas’ other classic novel, The Three Musketeers, Monte Cristo offers all of the adventure and romance of a blockbuster movie bundled with a recurrent, bittersweet note examining what we lose when an obsession comes to define our every waking moment. With the Librivox recording, Dumas’ fast-paced narrative is given a clean, well-performed reading that gives this exciting story a proper telling.

86. Father Goriot by Honore de Balzac

Balzac’s Father Goriot is the author and playwright’s most popular novel, a study of three individuals as they try to try to climb a shifting social latter during a period in French history where social structures were constricting and poverty often led to desperation. Balzac focuses his narrative on a boarding house in Paris, where the old man Goriot, a criminal in hiding, and an impressionable law student all find themselves living and sometimes struggling together towards a better life in the city. As they interface with each other, their families and fortunes intertwine with fatal results. Written in a realistic style that was cutting edge for its time, Balzac’s pessimistic exploration of city life and the compromises we make in order to gain upward mobility offers a timeless critique that still rings true to modern readers. James E. Carson narrates this recording and gives proper attention to the characters and world that make the book so memorable.

87. The Education of Henry Adams

In this free unabridged recording presented by Librivox, Henry Adams recounts his life and era, starting as the son of post-revolution aristocracy (he is the heir of two Presidents, no less) and moving through a time of bewildering change that rendered the American landscape of his youth unrecognizable. Adams was a man stuck between two eras, living in a region of the country that was one of the first to witness the effects of the industrial revolution first hand. From his unique perspective, Adams was able to comment on how America changed at a very important time and to reflect on what was both improved and what was lost as the world marched inexorably towards modernization. The autobiography also serves as a pungent critique of formal education in the 19th century, a system that left Adams unprepared for the scientific and technological innovations that fueled this new age and forced him to pursue self-education in order to keep up. This unabridged recording is read by Jeannie at Librivox.org.

88. The Kingdom of God is Within You by Leo Tolstoy

Years after the great Russian author Leo Tolstoy had written War and Peace and Anna Karenina, he published this nonfiction work in 1894 entitled The Kingdom of God is Within You. This work is the culmination of thirty years of Tolstoy’s Christian anarchist thinking. The book was heavily influential on Mohandas Gandhi and his ideas of nonviolent resistance, and Gandhi and Tolstoy shared correspondence until Tolstoy’s death in 1910. This book is read by a host of volunteers at Librivox.

89. Self Reliance by Ralph Waldo Emerson

Self Reliance is perhaps Ralph Waldo Emerson’s most famous essay. This version, narrated by Brian Johnson from Zaadz, is both thought-provoking and inspirational. Ralph Waldo Emerson pushes the listener to break free of the dependence on society and the masses of man and to rely solely upon oneself. Always pushing us to follow our own nature & intuition, Emerson denounces those who allow themselves to be victims of society or history. He wants great men to rise from the limitations of cultural institutions and stand as giants casting shadows over the ages. Throughout the essay there is wisdom loaded in every sentence and it can be listened to again and again. Download this free classic audio book on MP3 directly from LearnOutLoud.com.

90. The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde

Listen to the classic gothic tale of Dorian Gray who sells his soul to embrace the new hedonism promoted by Lord Henry Wotton. Dorian Gray remains the same age, but a portrait of him serves as a reminder of the effect each act has upon his soul, with each sin displayed as a disfigurement of his form. Download this controversial work of gothic fiction on MP3.

91. The Social Contract by Jean-Jacques Rousseau

Written in 1762, Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s The Social Contract gave passionate voice to a moment in world history that saw the balance of power shift away from monarchy towards the rights of the individual. Stripping the question of government down to its essence, Rousseau begins by asking if it’s even possible for a group of people to govern themselves fairly. He uses examples from nature to argue that it may just be that man was never meant to work together in this way, citing the horrible state of European politics that he saw around him at the time. His solution is a two-part division of power based on the will of the people that the reader quickly realizes had a direct influence on the subsequent revolutions that rocked America and France beginning in the 1770’s. Librivox’s recording of this classic in political philosophy offers a good translation and wonderful performance emphasizing the righteous anger that fuels the entire text. For a good followup, we also recommend listening to Thomas Paine’s Common Sense to see how Rousseau’s ideas were directly applied during the American Revolution.

92. The Speaking Voice by Katherine Jewell Everts

Download and listen to this classic self development book for public speaking The Speaking Voice: Principles Of Training Simplified And Condensed by Katherine Jewell Everts. This audio book “contains practical directions accompanied by simple and fundamental exercises, first for the freeing of the voice and then for developing it when free”. Everts deals with speaking in terms of tone, pitch, inflection, and much more. The unabridged 5-hour audio book is read entirely by one of Librivox’s best narrators, Ruth Golding.

93. Pragmatism by William James

Pragmatism is a philosophical approach that tests any belief or theory by virtue of it’s practical use. In this recorded summary of lectures provided by Librivox, groundbreaking psychologist, philosopher and religious thinker William James, lays Pragmatism out in clear detail, with arguments given for why the system excels when compared to other competing theories. Developed in the late 19th century by a group consisting of James and chief advocate Charles Sanders Pierce, Pragmatism was was designed to test theoretical concepts against the final authority of actual experience, thus making it easy to adapt or reconfigure a hypothesis if it couldn’t be applied in a practical way. In short, the usefulness of an idea was paramount to these thinkers, with a verification process that influenced the development of other fields in the 20th century, such as psychology and social science theory. Download this unabridged audio book from Librivox today!

94. Peter Pan by J.M. Barrie

Listen to the story of Peter Pan, the Boy Who Wouldn’t Grow Up! This classic story was first written as a play by J. M. Barrie, and then revised and expanded into a novel in 1911. Join Peter Pan as he whisks Wendy and the darling children off to Never-land where they encounter the dastardly Captain Hook and magical adventures happen everyday. This audio book is being offered for free by Librivox.

95. The Greatest Thing in the World and Other Addresses by Henry Drummond

Listen to this free audio book about The Greatest Thing in the World by Henry Drummond. This classic book on love is our free audio book for February. Written in 1880 by Scottish evangelist Henry Drummond, The Greatest Thing in the World draws its message from the Apostle Paul’s argument that love is man’s true path to God. Using a key text from 1st Corinthians, Drummond argues that while there are many virtuous emotions we all must practice cultivating in order to live a fuller life, none is more paramount than a loving outlook. With an urgent passion that bespeaks the era in which he lived, Drummond testifies that if we only take a little more time each day to operate from a basis of loving kindness, others will notice and be attracted to our living example.

96. Bartleby, the Scrivener by Herman Melville

Far from Melville’s sea-faring novels, is this short story which is set on Wall Street. A lawyer hires a peculiar scrivener who soon begins living in the law office. Similar to themes in many Kafka stories, this short story is one of the most famous in American literature.

97. Dead Souls by Nikolai Gogol

One of the high watermarks of 19th century Russian literature, Nikolai Gogol’s Dead Souls is the author’s lacerating critique of the flaws he saw running rampant in his society. The book follows the protagonist Chichikov as he journeys through the countryside purchasing “Dead Souls”, or deceased serfs owned on paper by the various landowners he encounters. Thinking this shifty goal of acquiring quick “wealth” will work splendidly, he soon encounters a few snags due to the greed, suspicion, and distrust of their former owners. After initial success, he returns home only to find himself buried in rumors that his new-found wealth is based on false, or deceased “property”, leading to a rumor-fueled disaster that sheds light on a long, shady past. What’s obvious is Chichikov himself is the truest dead soul depicted, and that the culture surrounding him is in a similar state of decay. Librivox’s recording offers a great rendition of this Russian masterpiece, bringing Gogol’s characters and world to new life.

98. Typee by Herman Melville

Listen to Herman MelvilleÂ’s first book Typee available from Americana Phonic on MP3 download. The narrative recounts Melville’s real life experiences when he jumped ship in the Marquesas Islands in 1842, and became a captive of a cannibal island tribe. This 11 1/2 hour audio book is available unabridged with excellent narration by Michael Scherer, who doesn’t overdramatize yet still does a great sailor’s voice!

99. Spirits in Bondage by C.S. Lewis

Download C.S. Lewis’ first book “Spirits in Bondage” available from LibriVox. It was published in 1919 and consists of 40 poems that the 20-year-old Lewis wrote shortly after his service in World War I. Written before Lewis’ conversion to Christianity, these poems contain a pessimistic outlook on religion, God, and nature along with numerous references to mythology. This audio book is well narrated by Robert Garrison and available on MP3 download through LibriVox.

100. Leo Tolstoy – What Men Live By and Other Tales

Listen to this collection of four short stories by Russian author Leo Tolstoy, entitled What Men Live By and Other Tales, published in 1885. The stories included are “What Men Live By”, “The Three Questions”, “The Coffee-House of Surat”, and “How Much Land Does a Man Need?” These stories focus on how men should live and what is most important in life. These stories are well read by David Barnes and Alan Davis Drake. Download these classic stories today!

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