• The Swiss Family Robinson

  • By: Johann Wyss
  • Narrated by: George Guidall
  • Length: 10 hrs and 13 mins
  • 4.4 out of 5 stars (440 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

After the Robinsons - a minister, his wife, and their 4 young sons - are shipwrecked on a desert island, they must adapt to their new environment, which includes exotic birds and animals, but none of the comforts they enjoyed in their native Switzerland. Without modern conveniences or even clocks and calendars, the Robinsons must use common sense to build a home, find food, and tame the island's wild animals. Through their struggles and achievements, the courageous family not only survives, but finds a spiritual happiness that they never experienced in their civilized homeland.

©1812 Johann David Wyss (P)1994 Recorded Books, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"This is one of the dearest old books in the world." (W.D. Howells)

What listeners say about The Swiss Family Robinson

Average Customer Ratings
Overall
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Performance
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Awesome version!!!!!!!

You know the story never changes, but it doesn't seem the same with Mr. Guidall reading it. He took us to that island, every step of the way. We laughed when the cheldren laughed, cried when our hearts were touched. He gives so much life to this reading that our daughter thought that there were many people reading. Please do not hesitate to get this. When you feel like part of the Robinson family, you couldn't for better. A+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++




41 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

An Entertaining Novel...

which extols the virtues of moral behavior toward other humans and animals as well as industry and critical thinking in tight situations. Wyss devised this novel as something of an instructional manual for right living, a kind of didactic Robinson Crusoe, to be read and followed by his sons, but the wonderful adventure makes this also an entertaining and enjoyable read. A great classic for both children and adults!

9 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Well worth the time.

This is a particularly good book for younger boys. Much is here to help build character while being most entertaining.

13 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Great Family Read

My eight year old and I listened together. He enjoyed the story. The book sparked lot of great conversations and interesting questions. I appreciated the narration. The language and vocabulary is complex for child, but the narrator was clear and read with great fluency.

5 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Excellent Listening!

The reader does an excellent job of voices and is never boring. Well paced and truly delightful listening.

9 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

Great Listen

I enjoyed this very much. If you haven't read or listened to this book in the past few years, or ever, I suggest that you do now. It is a lot of fun.

6 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

Such a Disappointment

I enjoyed the voice of George Guidall and his performance of this classic book. His voice is very well suited for such a tale.

That about all of the nice things I have to say about this book. Hopeful that the book would be similar to a Robinson Crusoe with the element of a clever family unit, I expected the Robinson’s to be the intelligent & inventive family that we see mimicked in many other works (Disney’s Meet the Robinsons, Lost in Space, etc.). Instead I found the children to be outright obnoxious, running around and killing hundreds of animals a week, it seemed; the father (narrator), an annoying know-it-all who is frequently wrong, as know-it-all’s usually are, and condemns one of his sons for being a similar know-it-all; and a doting mother who is almost never referred to by her name or as “my wife”, but always as “the mother”.

The inventions they do make are so frivolous, like a rowing machine so they didn’t have to do any work to get somewhere.

This is such a wasteful family... one morning, the obnoxious boys shoot too many birds for “the mother” to process & cook so they make the boys to stop shooting into the trees (despite the fact that they have a seemingly endless supply of gun powder). So then they kill some penguins, catch a 15 lb salmon, and kill a kangaroo... shortly after, the know-it-all father says he wishes to make some candles from some wax berries he found, but that he didn’t have some of the ingredients he needed, such as animal fat... WHAT?! You have all these dead animals laying around, and yet no animal fat with which to make candles... interesting.

Which brings me to the obscene array of animals on the island that come from every corner of the earth... did some zoo shut down and offload their inventory to this island? Let’s see... in addition to those above, we have flamingos, capybara, lobsters, sharks, whales including 1 dead & 1 fighting cachalot whale, peccaries, buffalo, gorillas & other monkeys, jackals, wolves, eagles, a giant donkey-eating boa constrictor, honey guides, platypuses, elephants, ostriches, walruses, albatross, lions, tigers, bears (oh my!), and the list goes on & on & on.
99% of these animals, the Robinsons kill immediately. And many of them they just take a tusk or something and leave the animals to rot.

In addition, every area of the island that the family visits, they decide to construct a mansion, expending unlimited resources... and then they get upset when gorillas ransack the homes when they’re off at one of the other 15 locations...

I guess the point of the book is to show how the family masters the domain 💪... but in my eyes, they were needless killers and wasteful of all resources. I did not enjoy this book.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Good Story but harsh treatment of animals

This story was written in another time and animals are not treated the way we treat them now for the most part. The story was good but if you are soft hearted toward animals this may not be the book for you.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

loved this book

this is the best version of this book .. it takes the story further than many others

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

One of my top ten or fifteen books

Really good book with neat lessons for families. Both exciting and educational. It may drag a little in the middle, but very worth finishing.

2 people found this helpful