The Return of the Native

  • by Thomas Hardy
  • Narrated by Nicholas Rowe
  • 13 hrs and 37 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

In the remote wildness of Egdon Heath, the crossed love affairs and marriages of a small group of people are played out against the background of nature's beauty and indifference to mankind. Through a series of vivid incidents and encounters, The Return of the Native moves in a relentless drive towards tragedy, as the plans and dreams of the lovers miscarry, defeated by chance, or destiny or self-deception. In their unhappy stories, Hardy gives us a powerful dramatization of his bleak philosophy, his belief in man's helplessness before the malevolence of the universe.
PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your My Library section along with the audio.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Thoroughly engrossing after a slow start

Where does The Return of the Native rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

Not one of Hardy's most well known (or often dramatised) works, this is a bit of a slow burn but becomes fully absorbing. The star character is really the heath itself which is gradually brought to life through description and the parochial lives of its inhabitants. The plot, apparently rather simplistic at first, develops through a series of misunderstandings and misadventures to an end both tragic and stoical. Recommended.
The narration is nicely measured to the pace of the book.


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- Arthur O'Pod

The best of Hardy - magical!

Absolutely love this book, incredible characters and wonderful language. I cried more than once! Highly recommended.
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- Miss Clare Weightman "BakeLord"

Book Details

  • Release Date: 01-02-2014
  • Publisher: Naxos AudioBooks