The Book of the Dun Cow

  • by Walter Wangerin Jr.
  • Narrated by Paul Michael
  • 8 hrs and 0 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Walter Wangerin's profound fantasy concerns a time when the sun turned around the earth and the animals could speak, when Chauntecleer the Rooster ruled over a more or less peaceful kingdom. What the animals did not know was that they were the Keepers of Wyrm, monster of evil long imprisoned beneath the earth....and Wyrm was breaking free.


What the Critics Say

National Book Award, 1980"Paul Michael enlivens the text with a deep, robust voice that keeps a good pace." ( AudioFile)"Belongs on the same shelf with Animal Farm, Watership Down, and The Lord of the Rings." ( Los Angeles Times)


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful


This is a strange and entertaining fable, a pacey cross between Lord of the Rings and Watership Down. The heroic (if vain) Chanticleer, after some small domestic dramas, must face down an ancient evil in a hybrid of chicken farm and epic fantasy landscape.The reader has a great time, alternating between the Br'er Rabbit folksy and cod-Nordic Saga.

The hero is wise, lonely, and flawed-but-Chosen; the females are gentle, passive, and adoring; the Evil is fearsome and, uh, evil; and you're either with Chanticleer or against him in the final extremely bloody battle. It's a straight-up patriarchal fantasy of the rawest kind. It's an odd effect, as the original Chanticleer stories mock the rooster's delusional belief that he makes the sun rise and are a satire on exactly the sort of naive chivalric story 'Book of the Dun Cow' winds up being. In this story the rooster actually does have some sort of mystical role ordained by God and it's extremely important this not be questioned. Sometimes it feels a bit like the sort of story the Pigs would assign young subservient animals to read in Animal Farm.

However! its fun, affecting, wonderfully read, only occasionally annoying, and a good way to spend 8 hours. Four stars!
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- Sydney

Book Details

  • Release Date: 08-04-2009
  • Publisher: