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The Lost World

The Lost World

Written by Arthur Conan Doyle

Narrated by Michael Prichard


The Lost World

Written by Arthur Conan Doyle

Narrated by Michael Prichard

ratings:
4/5 (41 ratings)
Length:
8 hours
Publisher:
Released:
Mar 2, 2009
ISBN:
9781400179268
Format:
Audiobook

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Also available as bookBook

Also available as...

Also available as bookBook

Description

On a zoology expedition up the Amazon River, Professor Challenger makes an inexplicable discovery. Back in London, his claims are ridiculed throughout the professional community. Reluctantly, he recounts to journalist Edward Malone, "Curupuri is the spirit of the woods, something terrible, something malevolent, something to be avoided. None can describe its shape or nature, but it is a word of terror along the Amazon. Something terrible lay that way. It was my business to find out what it was."



Professor Challenger vows to prove his tale at a zoological meeting, and a party is formed to find the truth. Malone joins adventurer Lord John Roxton and staid professor Summerlee on the mission. They journey to the depths of the Amazon, well provisioned and armed to the teeth. But how little they are prepared for what they find there.



Today, Arthur Conan Doyle is best known as the creator of Sherlock Holmes, but he was also the author of many science fiction novels, and The Lost World was one of his best. This original tale of the "living dinosaurs" was the inspiration for many others of its kind, including Michael Crichton's Jurassic Park.
Publisher:
Released:
Mar 2, 2009
ISBN:
9781400179268
Format:
Audiobook

Also available as...

Also available as bookBook

About the author

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (1859–1930) was a Scottish writer and physician, most famous for his stories about the detective Sherlock Holmes and long-suffering sidekick Dr Watson. Conan Doyle was a prolific writer whose other works include fantasy and science fiction stories, plays, romances, poetry, non-fiction and historical novels.


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Reviews

What people think about The Lost World

3.8
41 ratings / 49 Reviews
What did you think?
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Reader reviews

  • (3/5)
    A quick read. Lots of action, dinosaurs, primitive tribes and weird beasties. Not bad but nowhere near as good as his Sherlock Holmes stories.
  • (4/5)
    A romp into the deep of the Amazon in search of glory. This novel was very palatable and exploratory of the wide range of the imagination, fancy, and possibility. Despite the fact that it is not grounded in any fact, it manages to accelerate with adventure until the final denouement- which is then surprising in itself and the ending is one to be remembered.3.5 stars!
  • (4/5)
    Overall, this was a fun book, I just wish it had revolved more around the dinosaurs and less about the people and ape-men living on the plateau.
  • (4/5)
    When you mention Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, most people will immediately associate him with his great detective, Sherlock Holmes. Holmes's fame overshadows that of another of Conan Doyle's literary creations, Professor Challenger. In the first of his adventures, readers travel with the Professor and his three companions to a remote plateau in South America where dinosaurs and other prehistoric life forms still roam the earth. Just as Holmes needed Watson to record his adventures, Challenger has young newspaper reporter Malone to record the events of the expedition. Adventurer Lord John Roxton and Challenger's antagonist, Professor Summerlee, round out the party.Challenger's personality and physical characteristics reminded me of Professor Emerson of the Amelia Peabody series. H. Rider Haggard's novels inspired some of Amelia Peabody's adventures. It seems that Conan Doyle's Professor Challenger may have also influenced Peters' writing. Malone joined the expedition to prove himself to the woman who rejected his proposal. She believed that she could only love a great man. Apparently she hadn't read Middlemarch to see how well that worked out for Dorothea Casaubon.This novel's title was prophetic in that the world inhabited by the explorers was soon to change with the outbreak of the First World War.
  • (3/5)
    Professor Challenger's descriptions of a pre-historic culture with animal life somewhere in the jungles of South America is met with derision by the scientific community. It is decided Professor Summerlee, his chief opponent, along with Lord John Roxton and newspaper reporter Edward Malone will accompany him on an expedition to investigate the claim. The tale is told through the eyes of Malone who sends letters back to his editor by a faithful watchman who stays on the opposite side of their destination plateau. They fell a tree to gain entrance to the plateau, but it falls in the gorge, leaving their only connection to the other world a rope which can deliver supplies or letters but not get them back across. They decide to accomplish their mission and then worry about a means to exit the plateau. They encounter a pterodactyl almost immediately. They encounter many dangers and adventures on this well-preserved plateau, including some "half-men, half-ape" creatures which could be the "missing link." I'll leave the rest of the story and adventures for your enjoyment along with their reception upon their return. I'm not a fan of science fiction, but I decided to give this summer AudioSync offering a try since it was authored by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. This tale is very mild in comparison to many of today's science fiction offerings because of the genre's evolution over time. The adventure seemed to appeal to the interest in Darwinian theory at the time of the book's writing. The book was narrated by Glen McCready who seemed to have the perfect voice for Professor Challenger.
  • (5/5)
    Funny book, fast read that is just fun. A little dated but to me it adds to the charm.
  • (4/5)
    Intriguing tale of formidable Professor Challenger's discovery of Maple White Land and how he convinceshis two colleagues and a love struck journalist to venture back into that terrifying terrain. The conflictingcharacters are memorably contrasted throughout their journey, with elements of both Sherlock and Watson.Story acts as a prologue to Crichton's Jurassic Park with the poisoning attack birds and monstrous dinosaurs.Too much trophy and specimen killing were balanced by the finale flying!Lovely wit:"Lord John merely scratched his scanty locks with the remark that he couldn't put up a fightas he wasn't in the same weight or class."
  • (4/5)
    As you would expect from Mr. Conan Doyle, a rousing story well told. I've seen any number of movies based (some quite loosely) on the story line, so the story was familiar to me, but a very enjoyable read.
  • (3/5)
    Well-written and well-told. The characters were engaging and the scenes vivid, and I was definitely pulled in. But the protagonists' decisions at a certain point became disturbing, and I'm not convinced that the author didn't mean to endorse such decisions or the ideologies driving them.
  • (4/5)
    Great fun.
  • (3/5)
    Arthur Conan Doyle. It didn't really hold up well. I guess it is just to familiar and dated.
  • (5/5)
    The all-time Doyle classic about exploration and dinosaurs, by way of the late Victorian era. If Doyle ever came close to breaking with his identification, it was with arrogant, bombastic Professor George Edward Challenger. Just the idea of a South American tepui offering a refuge to dinosaurs who survived their extinction elsewhere.... Just great. I've read this book six times or so over the past 50 years since learning to read and may find myself doing it again. Don't miss.
  • (2/5)
    Quick read, lots of fun at parts. Horribly racist 105 years after publication.
  • (5/5)
    The Lost World was both my first foray into reading Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and my first experience reading a full-length e-book. First of all, my impressions of the electronic format for reading have been significantly improved by this experience. Although I still would prefer to read with a book in hand, I can appreciate the portability and convenience of this medium. I do not own an actual e-reader, so when I one day do own one, I may have to increase my current liking of the electronic format, but suffice it to say for the time being that I did not hate this format and using the Kindle for PC format provided by Amazon.com I enjoyed the fact that I could access my "book" at the place that I had left off from any of my computers whether at home, work or traveling. My opinions of the novel itself could not be more glowing. For such a short novel, I am amazed that I found such richness in the characters, storyline, prose, action and content as I was exposed to in The Lost World. Doyle has done an amazing job of creating unique, interesting and fully fleshed out characters. The story contains plenty of excitement and adventure and most of his scientific reasoning is plausible especially considering the time in which the novel was written. I had always had it in mind that I needed to read the Sherlock Holmes stories of Doyle but just hadn't gotten around to it yet. Now I know that I must read more of his works, not only the Holmes stories but now the Challenger series as well. Professor Challenger is one of the most outlandish, boisterous and absolutely wonderful characters in literature and I am a bit surprised that I really hadn't heard too much about the character before reading this besides in another GoodReads members' review that prompted me to read this in the first place. Overall, a fun well-written novel that transcends it's age and really doesn't feel terrible dated that I thoroughly enjoyed! (And yes, I will be reading more books in e-book format as well.)
  • (3/5)
    Forget about the science, look beyond the imperialistic racism (simply a "given" at the time this was written), and just go along for the ride, and you'll have fun. The Lost World is what Monty Python characterized as a "ripping yarn."

    I have to admit, though, that once ape men were introduced to the story, it got a bit less fun. In fact, a slaughter is perpetrated which is pretty ugly. But that again, is something which likely wouldn't have been questioned by contemporaries of Conan Doyle's.

    As problematic as the book is, however, it's much better than the cinematic treatments that have been made of it. As a kid, I remember loving the Irwin Allen production, even with its kitchy dinosaurs consisting of iguanas with fins glued on their backs. But the book evidences that Claude Rains was clearly miscast as Professor Challenger. Needed instead someone like Robby Coltrane doing his Hagrid role--except crankier. But if the movie had written the Challenger role as the book portrays him--cantankerous and a bloviating egotist--as a kid I'd probably have been scared by him and stayed away.
    Loved the blowhard as a adult, though!
  • (5/5)
    Read a few times as a teen and then again a few years ago. Rousing good adventure, what ho? Rich commentary on evolution and race, too.
  • (4/5)
    My First Experience with Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's The Lost World was the late 90s early 2000s syndicated television show. That was pretty light and really unbelievable. This was not. I really liked this book. I do not, however, understand the characters desire to keep their discovers a secret. Some the descriptions as to how the Lost World is inaccessible I think could use some improvement too. Like most books, I think that reading this would be better than listening, but I didn't' like it enough to buy a copy to read.
  • (5/5)
    A timeless adventure story

    There are many reasons why this book is often considered to be a classic. The descriptive and intimate way that the story is told, the interpersonal relationships between the memorable characters and the underlying thread of humor which weaves through the tale, will guarantee it a place in collectors' bookshelves for many years to come.
  • (4/5)
    Journalist Edward Malone wants to impress his girlfriend with his heroic prowess. He asks his editor for an assignment worthy of such a challenge, and he’s given the assignment to interview Professor George Edward Challenger, a noted zoologist notorious for his hostility to the press. The last reporter that attempted a word with him ended up with a broken skull. Challenger has recently returned from South America with some damaged photographs and the sketch book of a previous explorer depicting prehistoric beasts. Challenger is sure that they were drawn from a live model, and he intends to prove it. It was delightful to reread this old favorite in a new illustrated edition. This 1912 action adventure by the creator of Sherlock Holmes became the basis for the original creature feature silent film in 1925.What struck me was Doyle’s technique of indicating action in the midst of dialog, and the implicit racism of the time. The four adventurous explorers, three Anglos and an Irishman, are aided by a support team of “a gigantic negro named Zambo, who is a black Hercules, as willing as any horse, and about as intelligent. … Gomez and Manuel, two half-breeds … They were swarthy fellows, bearded and fierce, as active and wiry as panthers. … [and] three Mojo Indians from Bolivia.” (page 67) As it turns out Zambo is both heroic and faithful, not to mention having the wits to stick around and provide information to the outside world when the white people find themselves stranded; the half-breeds are deceitful and traitorous (although they are significantly less bearded and swarthy than Professor Challenger) and the Indians run away when they get scared, which is behavior also demonstrated by the Europeans. It’s interesting to read this in 2017 and see how much attitudes have changes and not changed in the following century.
  • (4/5)
    In an effort to win the heart of a fickle young lady, intrepid newspaper reporter Edward Malone volunteers as a member of an expedition to South America to seek proof or otherwise debunk the wild claims of arrogant and intractable paleontologist Professor George Edward Challenger.Upon returning from South America many years prior, Challenger claimed to have discovered prehistoric life still thriving atop a plateau deep in the jungles of Brazil. Unfortunately, his camera was damaged during a boating accident, leaving him with scant and inconclusive photographic evidence and only the sketchbook of one Maple White, a poet and artist who died of severe injuries shortly after escaping this supposed land of dinosaurs.During a contentious interview, Challenger permits Malone to peruse the sketchbook, wherein White had drawn numerous mundane flora and fauna—until the final image of an impossibly large reptilian creature. Malone, however, remains unconvinced.Despite his unadulterated aversion toward the press, Challenger sees some potential in Malone and invites him to a meeting of the Zoological Society where Professor Challenger, living up to his name, disrupts the guest lecturer when mention is made of the extinction of the dinosaur before the dawning of man.Challenger’s claims of eyewitness accounts of pterodactyls in Brazil draws ridicule from both the audience and his peers, including one botanist and zoologist Professor Summerlee. By the end of the raucous evening, a new team of explorers agrees to travel to Brazil and put the matter to rest. In addition to Malone and Summerlee, famed adventurer and big game hunter Sir John Roxton offers his considerable skills.Shortly thereafter, the trio embark for South America and are surprised by the appearance of Professor Challenger himself once they reach Brazil. Challenger naturally assumes the role of team leader and guide as the adventurers, along with a number of local hired hands, begin their voyage along the Amazon into the realm of the unknown—where they encounter far more than any of them ever imagined possible.The story is told from the POV of the reporter, Edward Malone, as he journals the team’s adventures through this unfathomable—and unmistakably treacherous—domain. It had been at least 30 years since I’d last read The Lost World, yet so many elements remained with me since then, such as the cantankerous and haughty Professor Challenger, the fearsome ape men, the pterodactyl pit, and a few other vivid details. After reading it again this past week, I found myself just as enthralled as I was the first time. This should come as no surprise since much of Doyle’s work, most notably Sherlock Holmes, has soundly withstood the test of time.
  • (4/5)
    A young journalist, Edward Malone, is looking for adventure. He meets with Professor Challenger who claims that a prehistoric lost world exists on a plateau in South America. During a raucous meeting at the Zoological Institute Hall, Challenger presents his controversial evidence. A fellow zoologist, Mr. Summerlee, refutes Challenger’s claims and calls for an expedition to verify his assertions with two members of the audience volunteering to accompany Summerlee; Edward Malone and British sportsman Lord John Roxton. After arriving in the Amazon they are surprised by Challenger who bullies his way into the exploration party. Using drawings made by a lost American adventurer named Chapel White and Challenger’s own recollections they find the plateau only to be stranded there by rebellious native porters.The novel is written through the eyes of the young journalist. He writes letters home to his newspaper publisher. They are carried to civilization by trusted natives. The story is fast paced with a lot of action as they encounter one amazing creature after another. Professor Challenger is the anti-thesis of Sherlock Holmes; Conan Doyle’s other more widely known character. Where Sherlock is described as tall and angular Challenger is stocky and bullish. Challenger is as egotistical as Sherlock but the great detective is more quietly British whereas the Professor is brash and assertive. Conan Doyle has said that he preferred the Challenger character to his famous detective.I have read some reviews that claim the book is too racist. The depiction of their loyal black assistant is racist, but again this novel was originally written in 1912 and does show the imperialism of that time. I didn’t find it overly disturbing.I enjoyed the novel and recommend it to anyone who is familiar with Arthur Conan Doyle’s style of writing or enjoys H. Rider Haggard and other turn of the Twentieth Century adventure authors.
  • (4/5)
    The Lost World by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle is a model for adventure stories in science fiction. The book influenced Michael Crichton in his creation of the LOST WORLD (Jurassic Park).
    Edward Malone, a reporter for the Daily Gazette, but finds no real excitement in his role. Ed wants to woo Gladys, but Gladys wants to marry a romantic hero. Gladys does not see Ed as a knightly figure, at least not yet. So Ed must find his romantic quest in the name of his beauty Gladys.
    Questions Doyle poses are: will Ed come home a hero? Will this quest earn the right to Gladys’s love? What lost world will Ed find in the Amazon? And what about the dinosaurs and the primitive humans, will he find the missing link?
    The book was published in 1912, and exhibits the world of Victorian Empire on the move. British empire was attempting to find “a dreamland of glamour and romance, a land where we had dared much, suffered much, and learned much—OUR land, as we shall ever fondly call it.*” Caveat lector, the ideas of the Victorian Era are not of our own, and may offend those with politically correct notions.
    But this book is a great adventure and I believe a good book for young readers.

    *Doyle, Arthur Conan (2011-03-30). The Lost World (Kindle Locations 2705-2706). Kindle Edition.

  • (3/5)
    The Lost World is a science fiction novel without much actual science to it, which shouldn’t be that surprising considering that it was written by one of the time’s premier mystery writers. It’s really more an adventure tale than anything, and has quite a bit of interesting elements to it. A group of Englishmen travel to uncharted territory to an area from a bygone era. They travel to South America to find a land that has not only dinosaurs but also a race of prehistoric man. The group included the intrepid reporter looking for adventure, the skeptical professor, the professor who takes life by the horns in hopes of new discovery, and a British lord who is your basic big game hunter type.There were a lot of aspects that I like about this novel, mostly the characters and the adventure portion of it. It had a real trailblazing feel to it, which I’m sure worked well for the time in which it was written. On the down side, there were some latent racism in the way Doyle handles the “negroes” and natives to the land, even the prehistoric men. There was also a distinct lack of female characters in the novel, which could have added something to it. I also felt that the writing kept the reader at a distance rather than involving them in the action. All together, this novel was enjoyable but not one that resonates.Carl Alves – author of Two For Eternity
  • (4/5)
    Personerne er ret karikerede. Professor Challenger er den bryske overkarismatiske ekspeditionsleder., the gruff, overly-charismatic leader of the expedition; Professor Summerlee, the skeptical intellectual who needs physical proof of Challenger's outrageous claims of living, prehistoric life; Lord John Roxton, the sportsman who is looking for his next big adventure; and the narrator, reporter Edward Malone, who is trying to win the hand of the woman he loves by becoming the man of adventure her overly-romantic self seems to be looking for. Filled with adventure and peril at every turn, the story did take some time to get moving, but once the adventurers found themselves in the lost world, the story really takes off and is a non-stop thrill ride.The whole idea of the book is that Professor Challenger says that he has been to a 'lost world' in South America where dinosaurs still live. Naturally, he is laughed out of the scientific community, but eventually he finds a group of explorers who are willing to go with him, either to prove him wrong and a fraud or to partake in the adventure of a lifetime. Once they finally reach the plateau where the lost world is, they find themselves in the midst of both dinosaurs and mammals that have been lost thought extinct, as well as in the middle of a civil war between a tribe of Indian 'natives' and a nation of ape-men.??
  • (4/5)
    Professor Challenger goes on an expedition to an isolated plateau in South America where he is shocked to discover that dinosaurs still exist. Arthur Conan Doyle's science fiction series.
  • (3/5)
    Most people when they think of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle think of his sleuth Sherlock Holmes and trusty sidekick Dr. Watson. (I’ll admit that I do, too.) But, Doyle wrote more than just mysteries. The Lost World is about Professor Challenger finding what he believed to be a plateau in an unexplored region of South America which still held living dinosaurs.Challenger returns to England where, of course, no one believes there are actually still dinosaurs roaming the Earth. He enlists the help of a reporter who is trying to prove the woman he is in love with that he is more than just a measly reporter, a professor of Anatomy by the name of Summerlee, and Lord John Roxton a sportsman and traveler. Shortly after the crew was assembled they began their journey from England to South America and down the Amazon River.Eventually they reach the point at which Challenger points out the great plateau. There is however no way to get up there as they only way up had been blocked off. After trial and error they find themselves on top of the plateau, trapped no less because of unforeseen events. They find though that Challenger was indeed correct. There were dinosaurs living on the plateau. There were also creatures, a cross between an ape and a human, which were smart and managed to capture Challenger and Summerlee.It was during this capture that the crew found that there also happened to be a tribe of natives who lived on the plateau as well. The natives claim not to know of a way off the plateau, or don’t want to help the crew off (after many failed attempts). Eventually, a young native takes pity on them and shows them the way.They make their way back to England with their findings and the reporter who wrote down an account of the entire trip to be put in to print. I think I’ll leave out the ending and make you read it if you are curious enough to want to find out.While I enjoyed reading this book, it wasn’t quite different than what I was used to when reading Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes. Challenger and Holmes have many of the same qualities. I would say, however, if you liked Holmes than you should giveThe Lost World a read.
  • (5/5)
    It was an interesting read, not a bad adventure at all.Would love to know what England did about the surprise at the end of the book.
  • (4/5)
    Still a surprisingly readable and fun adventure yarn, that doesn't really show its age, despite the cheerful racism throughout. The adventurers' willingness to participate in genocide and slavery is a bit much for modern sensibilities, but we must take the story in the spirit in which it was intended.
  • (4/5)
    As a teenager, I had a lot of fun when Jurassic Park came to the theaters in the '90s. After enjoying the movie, I sought out and read the book which I also found very enjoyable. Spurred by its success, a sequel was created, The Lost World. Like many sequels, it wasn't as good as the original. It still had its fun elements but for me at least, it lost a good deal of the charm and fun from the first book.I think in part it was the Jurassic Park sequel that kept me from seeking out and reading the far earlier book The Lost World by Arthur Conan Doyle. Not only was I not terribly impressed by the 1990s book/movie of the same name, but I was a little unsure of the transition Conan Doyle would make going from Sherlock Holmes to a world of dinosaurs. Fortunately, I finally gave it a try.Not surprisingly, the Conan Doyle book is considerably slower paced than the Michael Chrichton adventures. The book was serialized in 1912 is set in the late 19th or early 20th century. The story is told through a series of newspaper articles and letters written by Malone, a newspaper reporter eager to impress his girlfriend and make a name for himself in the news world. Malone's editor McArdle gives Malone the assignment of interviewing Professor Challenger. Challenger is a scientist making outrageous claims and evoking his violent temper against anybody who questions them. Before long, Malone finds himself on a journey deep into the jungles of South America in search of a world which Challengers claims is inhabited by prehistoric creatures.As you might expect from the author of the Sherlock Holmes stories, this book is filled with lengthy and very detailed descriptions of settings, characterizations, behaviors and motivations. Malone has a reporter's eye for detail taken to the extreme. He painstakingly describes the minute details of Professor Challenger as well as the various traveling companions with whom Malone sets off in search of the Lost World. The early parts of the book are set in London and involve weighty scenes of research and discussion to decide what's what and what's to be done about it all. When we finally do start winding through the jungles, we are still given intense descriptions of the surroundings and the actions.For those looking for adventure, you'll finally find it about midway through the book once the characters have finally found passage into the elusive Lost World. Though even once they finally reach their destination, there are still many pages of suspenseful investigation before any major confrontation with prehistoric adventure. Their investigation and exploration is careful and methodical. As they are confronted with challenges, they quietly and calmly attempt deduce solutions as efficiently as possible even amidst deadly time constraints.Looking back over my thoughts, it may sound that this is a dry travel narrative rather than a rousing adventure. While it does have elements of a 19th century travelogue, the book also does a good job of amazing the reader with new ideas and concepts as well as taking us on an exciting adventure with unexpected twists and turns. I admit that it was sometimes hard to imagine that these adventurers would be so calm and level headed among all the troubles and adventures they encounter, but part of that is just the style of the era. The other part comes from the distinct characterization of these individuals. Each of the travelers possesses a personality prone more to smart, strategic level-headedness than rash and frantic running around.The first portion of the book was an interesting read and well crafted. I enjoyed the style and pacing overall but often found myself wanting to skip ahead to "where the real action was." Once we got into the adventure portion of this adventure novel, the style of writing remained precise and well defined while still providing us with surprising new elements and mysteries. I think that if you were to start reading the book at the midpoint, without first becoming accustomed to Conan Doyle's narrative style, the adventure would have felt more strained. You gain a greater sense of the style after plodding along with Malone and the others as they dealt with the minutia of getting the journey underway and slowly reaching their destination.I suspect that Conan Doyle's "Lost World" was for its time what Jurassic Park was for ours…a fun and exciting tale of fantastic adventure set along the edge of speculative science and imagination. I really enjoyed this story. After finishing this book, I learned that Conan Doyle wrote a number of other stories featuring Professor Challenger. I'm looking forward to reading those and some of his other non-Sherlockian works.*****4 out of 5 stars
  • (3/5)
    A good, and interesting, Ripping Yarn but spoiled for modern readers by the racism, sexism, classism throughout. Of course, like so many of these type of stories, it's of its era and I wouldn't like to see it edited for greater political correctness. I enjoy Ripping Yarns, on the whole, but some have so much of these outdated opinions that it becomes too intrusive to read comfortably and this one was verging on that level but it was leavened somewhat by the humour and excitement of the story.