FREE LISTENS Review: King Solomon’s Mines by H. Rider Haggard


Free Listens Blog

King Solomon’s Mines
By H. Rider Haggard

Source: Librivox | Zipped MP3
Length: 9 hr, 52 min
Reader: John Nicholson

The book: Set in British colonial South Africa, King Solomon’s Mines tells of the extraordinary adventures of big game hunter Allan Quatermain. Sir Henry Curtis hires Quatermain as a guide for an expedition to find Curtis’s brother, who disappeared while searching for the biblical King Solomon’s fabled diamond mines. Joining them in the expedition are Curtis’s friend Captain Good and Umbopa, a porter with mysterious purposes.

The action is told in an unadorned style that, along with the descriptions of Africa and its inhabitants, makes this Lost Civilization fantasy seem real. A major part of this realism is the character of Quatermain, who narrates the adventure in the first person with a sense of dry humor and a matter-of-fact tone. Quatermain is not a hero in the traditional sense – he admits to being a coward. Instead of a hero, he is someone that the reader can positively identify with: fair, practical, smart, and opposed to injustice, racism and greed. This enlightened protagonist, the fresh writing style and exciting plot make King Solomon’s Mines a great read.

Rating: 9/10

The reader: Nicholson has a deep plain voice that is a perfect match for Allan Quatermain. The book is filled with difficult-to-pronounce names and words in Afrikaans and Zulu, but Nicholson says them with confidence. Whether or not he’s right, I have no idea. The pace is sometimes too slow for my taste, but he does vary both the pace and volume. The recording has some background whine and a hiss on the esses.

Posted by Seth

LibriVox: She by H. Rider Haggard

SFFaudio Online Audio

LibriVoxShe is a classic of the imagination, a milestone and foundation stone of a whole sector of fantastic novels upon which others have built and still build novels of wonder. The sector is that of the lost land, the lost race, the wonder that lies over the next mountain or beyond the farthest sea.” – Donald A. Wollheim (author of H. Rider Haggard’s Empire of the Imagination)

Complete and unabridged, H. Rider Haggard’s She! What’s that you say? You’ve been hankering for a story about a lost civilization ruled by gorgeous 2000 year old female-despot? That’s even what you thought the word Fantasy meant for all these years? Don’t know what I’m talking about?

She was a 19th century best-seller from the author of King Solomon’s Mines, its another tale set in Africa. A mysterious African kingdom in fact. It explores themes of “imperial arrogance, sexual obsession, power and isolation” and it’s all wrapped up in a high adventure format. Best of all, it’s out now in the form of a Public Domain audiobook from LibriVox!

Fantastic Adventure Audiobook - She by H. Rider HaggardShe
By H. Rider Haggard; Read by various
29 Zipped MP3 Files or Podcast – 11 Hours 36 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Published: February 2008
At 5 years old Leo Vincey is left in the care of a Cambridge professor by the name of Horace Holly. His father leaves him a strange casket which he is to open on his 25th Birthday. On opening the Casket Leo and Horace discover the strange history of Leo’s ancestors. Leo and his adoptive father Horace must travel all the way to Africa in order to uncover the solve his family’s strange history.

Podcast feed:

Posted by Jesse Willis