• Steppenwolf

  • By: Hermann Hesse
  • Narrated by: Peter Weller
  • Length: 7 hrs and 46 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Release date: 05-05-08
  • Language: English
  • Publisher: Blackstone Audio, Inc.
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars 4.3 (97 ratings)

Summary

Harry Haller is a sad and lonely figure, a reclusive intellectual for whom life holds no joy. He struggles to reconcile the wild, primeval wolf and the rational man within himself without surrendering to the bourgeois values he despises. His life changes dramatically when he meets a woman who is his opposite, the carefree and elusive Hermine. With its blend of Eastern mysticism and Western culture, Steppenwolf, Hesse' best-known and most autobiographical work, originally published in English in 1929, continues to speak to our souls as a classic of modern literature.
©1927 S. Fischer Verlag A. G., Berlin. Renewal copyright 1955 Hermann Hesse. English translation copyright B 1929 Henry Holt and Company. Renewal copyright 1957 Hermann Hesse. Revised translation copyright 1963 Holt, Rinehart, and Winston, Inc. Author's note copyright 1961 Suhrkamp Verlag, Frankfurt Am Main (P)2008 BBC Audiobooks America
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
4 out of 5 stars
By Anonymous User on 15-04-18

Brief rev.

Once you loose yourself in the character of steppenwolf, the story flows beautifully. Especially with the soothing deep voice of this particular narrator.

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Anon on 10-01-18

Superb

Steppenwolf is an outstanding classic. I had no preconceptions about this book - with no previous idea what the book was about. It’s now one of my favourites. The story is about a man who is clearly fed up with life and while he finds some things stimulating is numb to most of life and the world around him. The story evolves from there and really is superb. I loved the part where Hesse describes us as half wolf, half human: when the wolf is in charge it is happy but the human despises it; when the human is in control the wolf despises it. He’s suggesting that whether doing what we think is right OR whether following our animal instincts we’re never fully happy. He then challenges this. Brilliant. And superb narration!

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Robyn on 21-02-10

I was the Steppenwolf

I believed from the prologue that I was probably the sort of person that Hesse had intended for an audience to this book. When you enter a writer's world... that is to say, the world of a good writer, you are taken away from your own world to experience joys and sorrows of the author's creation. Hesse's world quickly became my own, but Hesse took me a step further. When I was reading the Steppenwolf, I believed that I was the Steppenwolf. Harry Haller was me and I was him.

Haller begins as a sick and sorrowful man, a brilliant man and I became him as I found myself trudging through his life. When Holler, and thus myself, came out the other side of the story, we were healed, healthier and a better people for having made the journey. For me, reading this was less of an accomplishment and more of an apotheosis... a transcendence. I wish I could thank Hesse myself for creating this wonderful little masterpiece.

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16 of 17 people found this review helpful

4 out of 5 stars
By Darwin8u on 02-03-14

Save this Hesse novel for your midlife crisis.

There is this bourgeoisie period in every man's life. This midpoint between birth and death where man is trapped alone. Unable to exist in hot or cold of the absolutes he tries to find his way between the extremes in the comfortable center. Fearing life and death, he just exists ... barely. This is not a novel for the young. Just like it is better to save King Lear for late in one's life, it is better to save Steppenwolf for those crisis years of the midlife.

Hesse's novels seem to flirt between the edge of memoir, scripture, prose poem and Eastern philosophy tract. This isn't a book you want to read in a hot bath with scotch in one hand and a razor blade in the other. You will either spill your drink or spill your blood or lose every printed word, the hot water erasing pages and pickling your fingers, toes and time.

There are parts of me that get super irritated by Hesse and parts of me that absolutely love him. It depends, I guess, on what part of me is dominating at the time, which of my selves is dislocated and which is demanding the most.

Somedays, I wonder if I had my druthers I'd be a shepherd and write poetry on rocks. Unfortunately, I am a bourgeoisie bitch cloaking myself in cashmere and not a mangy wolf from the steppes.

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35 of 39 people found this review helpful

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