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Earthly Powers cover art

Earthly Powers

By: Anthony Burgess
Narrated by: Gordon Griffin
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Summary

Kenneth Toomey is an eminent novelist of dubious talent; Don Carlo Campanati is a man of God, a shrewd manipulator who rises through the Vatican to become the architect of church revolution and a candidate for sainthood.

These two men are linked not only by family ties but by a common understanding of mankind's frailties. In this epic masterpiece, Anthony Burgess plumbs the depths of the essence of power and the lengths men will go for it.

©1980 Anthony Burgess (P)2014 Audible Studios

Critic reviews

"Crowded, crammed, bursting with manic erudition, garlicky puns, omnilingual jokes... which meshes the real and personalised history of the twentieth century." (Martin Amis)

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What listeners say about Earthly Powers

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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Spoiled pleasure

The book is excellent; the reader spoils it. There is much Italian,french, Latin and other languages in the text, a great deal of it haltingly and horribly mispronounced. Unfortunately the reader also mispronounces a large number of English words as well. This and some mangled attempts at various accents spoils the pleasure of hearing the book
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19 people found this helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

Utter Waffle

Horrendously dull. Badly paced. Nothing worthwhile happens in terms of events, exchanges, or internal monologue.

I love literary fiction. I love satire. I hate this book.

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5 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • K
  • 09-07-19

Indefinable

A classic writer who presents the fragility, capriciousness and beautiful complexities of human nature without inhibition. All our vulgarities and beauties are laid bare and with both humour and empathy the life of an imagined human is presented for our consideration.
It is hard to comprehend the controversial nature of Burgess’ writing now - clearly an author before his time: the bravest type of author there is.
The narrator is also a craftsman who is able to bring this piece of art to life.

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5 people found this helpful

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  • Pj
  • 28-11-16

Wonderful capolavoro.

I read this when it was first published. Loved it then, maybe more so now.

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5 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Poorly read

Sadly, the reader is appalling. If I had not read the book already and did not know how good it is I should have turned it off. Painful.

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2 people found this helpful

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Fine work beautifully performed

Fine, thought provoking novel. Beautifully written and beautifully read. I totally disagree with the previous reviewer who castigates the narrator. To my ear he was clear, all words pronounced according to Received Pronunciation, except for dialect, and foreign words annunciated correctly: just perfect!

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1 person found this helpful

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Amazing story and performance

I read this book in the late 80s, I think, and it became one of my favourite books. I’m weaved historical events with a fictional life in literature. When I saw it available as an Audible title I eagerly purchased it. The reader captured perfectly my idea of the protagonists’ voices. I enjoyed every minute of this title. It is long, involved and thought-provoking but worth it.

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1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Fantastic

I wasn’t sure what to expect from this book, but it has proven to be one of the finest audiobooks that I have ever listened to - in both content and performance. I saw a couple of poor reviews and feel that these critiques are persnickety and do not give credit to the outstanding performance and pacing of the speaker. Absolutely fantastic.

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • A
  • 01-09-22

Wonderful

To start with I wasn’t keen, but once we got going it turned into a riveting yarn. So good to read a properly grown up book ably read by a serious narrator. Bravo,

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