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  • Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, Book 1

  • Written by: J.K. Rowling
  • Narrated by: Jim Dale
  • Length: 8 hrs and 18 mins
  • 4.9 out of 5 stars (7,927 ratings)

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Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, Book 1

Written by: J.K. Rowling
Narrated by: Jim Dale
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Publisher's Summary

Turning the envelope over, his hand trembling, Harry saw a purple wax seal bearing a coat of arms; a lion, an eagle, a badger and a snake surrounding a large letter 'H'.

Harry Potter has never even heard of Hogwarts when the letters start dropping on the doormat at number four, Privet Drive. Addressed in green ink on yellowish parchment with a purple seal, they are swiftly confiscated by his grisly aunt and uncle. Then, on Harry's eleventh birthday, a great beetle-eyed giant of a man called Rubeus Hagrid bursts in with some astonishing news: Harry Potter is a wizard, and he has a place at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. An incredible adventure is about to begin!

Having become classics of our time, the Harry Potter stories never fail to bring comfort and escapism. With their message of hope, belonging and the enduring power of truth and love, the story of the Boy Who Lived continues to delight generations of new listeners.    

©1997 J.K. Rowling (P)1999 Listening Library, an imprint of Penguin Random House Audio Publishing Group

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What the critics say

"To call Dale a 'reader' of books is like saying Monet was a Sunday painter." (Los Angeles Times)

"At any rate, if you have not listened to Harry Potter — even if you've read it and seen the films — you will be introduced to Harry, Ron, Hermione, and all the denizens of Hogwarts in a different way when you listen to The Sorcerer's Stone ... the richness of Rowling's characters, settings, and situations are brought to life, in my opinion, in an entirely different way when you listen to Jim Dale read them to you."

Anne, Audible Listener
.

About the Author

J.K. Rowling is the author of the record-breaking, multi-award-winning Harry Potter novels. Loved by fans around the world, the series has sold more than 500 million copies, been translated into 80 languages and made into eight blockbuster films. 

She has written three companion volumes in aid of charity: Quidditch Through the Ages and Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them (in aid of Comic Relief and Lumos), and The Tales of Beedle the Bard (in aid of Lumos). 

In 2012, J.K. Rowling's digital company and digital publisher Pottermore was launched, a place where fans can enjoy the latest news from across the wizarding world, features and original writing by J.K. Rowling. 

Her first novel for adult readers, The Casual Vacancy, was published in September 2012 and adapted for TV by the BBC in 2015. J.K. Rowling also writes crime novels under the pseudonym Robert Galbraith, featuring private detective Cormoran Strike. The first four novels The Cuckoo's Calling (2013), The Silkworm (2014), Career of Evil (2015) and Lethal White (2018) all topped the national and international bestseller lists. The first three have been adapted for television, produced by Brontë Film and Television. 

J.K. Rowling's 2008 Harvard commencement speech was published in 2015 as an illustrated book, Very Good Lives: The Fringe Benefits of Failure and the Importance of Imagination, and sold in aid of Lumos and university-wide financial aid at Harvard.

In 2016, J.K. Rowling collaborated with writer Jack Thorne and director John Tiffany on the stage play Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Parts One and Two, which is now running at The Palace Theatre in London's West End and at The Lyric Theatre on Broadway. 

Also in 2016, J.K. Rowling made her screenwriting debut with the film Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. A prequel to the Harry Potter series, this new adventure of Magizoologist Newt Scamander marked the start of a five-film series to be written by the author. The second film in the series, Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald was released in November 2018.

The script book of the play Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Parts One and Two was published in 2016. The original screenplays of the Fantastic Beasts films are published too: Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them (2016) and Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald (2018).

As well as receiving an OBE and Companion of Honour for services to children's literature, J.K. Rowling has received many awards and honours, including France's Légion d'Honneur and the Hans Christian Andersen Award. 

www.jkrowling.com

Image: Photography Debra Hurford Brown © J.K. Rowling 2018

About the Performer

Few performers have had as diverse and fascinating a career as Jim Dale. Born in the small market town of Rothwell, Northamptonshire, Dale trained as a ballet dancer for six years but it was a series of stand-up performances in 1951 that put him on the map as one of Britain's young comedians. In the 1960s, his singing and songwriting earned him an Academy Award nomination for the title theme to Georgy Girl. Dale then turned to the stage, starring in dozens of productions with the British National Theatre Company and on Broadway, including The Taming of the Shrew, Oliver!, and Candide. In 1980, his portrayal of the circus showman in Barnum won him both a Tony Award and a Drama Desk Award. (Over the course of his career, he'd earn four additional Tony nominations and five Drama Desk wins.)

In 2009, Dale was inducted in the American Theater Hall of Fame; five years later, his one-man-show Just Jim Dale opened in New York City to tremendous praise and critical acclaim. Audiobook fans will recognize him for his impeccable, finely tuned voice work. In the Harry Potter series alone, he has given life to hundreds of characters, expertly distinguishing every witch, wizard, house-elf, and goblin. He has captured hearts around the globe — including that of Queen Elizabeth II, who named him a Member of the Order of the British Empire in 2003. In addition to the Harry Potter series, Dale has narrated other kid favorites such as The Hundred Acre Woods, Peter Pan, and Alice in Wonderland, making fantastical worlds and characters even more magical. Dale has won two Grammy Awards for his narration of the fourth and seventh Harry Potter books, 10 Audie Awards, over a dozen AudioFile Earphone Awards, and was the first to be inducted into the American Audio Hall of Fame.

What listeners say about Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, Book 1

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Brilliant, as expected!

The book was excellent, as I assumed it would be. Jim Dale does a fine job of narrating, but I still don’t understand why we don’t have the UK version (narrated by Stephen Fry) in Canada since we get the printed UK version instead of the US one. Regardless, I recommend it very highly. A fabulously entertaining listen!

42 people found this helpful

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Great Book. Great Narration.

This book needs no positive review. It's Harry Potter. But apparently I need 15 words.

14 people found this helpful

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Amazing

Jim Dale blew my mind. 100% recommend this.

Will be buying all. This is just like listening to your favourite podcast.

11 people found this helpful

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J.K. Rowling

Before she was famous, she still had some magic to her writing...far from perfect, filled with plot holes, she still managed to keep you interested. A wonderfull kids book unlike anything she wrote after the original H.P. series.

10 people found this helpful

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Fun Read

Great book that JIm Dale further brings to life. Enjoyed this book when my kids were young and enjoyed it even more years later.

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disappointed

the reader did not prounce the name of the places or characters properly. I didn't enjoy it as much because of that. the story is great I read it on paperback. just wasn't happy with performance of the reader.

5 people found this helpful

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  • TB
  • 2018-02-05

Harry Potter and the sorcerer’s stone

It was the best book I’ve ever heard in my life.
I could picture the scenes as they were going.

4 people found this helpful

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Loved it!

I found Jim Dale very calming and interesting to listen to. His characters are wonderful and he brings Rowling's story to life better than the movies!

4 people found this helpful

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  • Sam
  • 2019-07-12

Was perfect to listen at work

So nice to listen to a classic from more than 20 years ago already. Voices and narration meets or exceeds expectations.

3 people found this helpful

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Magic

This book was amazing! The narrator did an excellent job bringing the book and magic to life.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Mike L Lane
  • 2017-08-08

My Sad, Sad Confession…

I will be completely honest here. I put off this book from the moment the hype took over, simply because I refused to believe the story would hold any interest for me. I even passed on the movies, honestly believing this was nothing more than a kid/young adult fairy tale that couldn’t possibly be anything worthwhile. I was wrong and I am so glad I finally convinced myself to read Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone! I even went into the first few chapters thinking, “Okay, this is readable, but I still don’t see what all the fuss is about”. But by the time I reached the end of the story I found that I not only liked it, I was eager to read the next one. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone shows a lot of imagination and creativity that literally sucks you into the story and has you rooting for Harry (and the gang) throughout. Every time I thought the plot was predictable, Rowling flipped the script and surprised me. The characters were well developed and well thought out in advance, each with traits, quirks and flaws that makes each individual character stand out uniquely on their own. A lot of times I judge a book by the villain and Rowling didn’t disappoint with Voldemort. What a terrifying villain! I don’t want to give any spoilers but as far as “big bads” go, Voldemort is a top notch nemesis and I can’t wait to see more of him in the series. This is the type of villain every protagonist should face and I applaud Rowling for her genius construction of such a chilling threat.

I’ve raved about Voldemort, but every character is fascinating and intriguing. Every time I thought I had seen it all, she pulls out a new and fascinating character or mythological creature to grab my attention again. The novel has an addictive quality to it that has me eager to read all of the books in this series. I hope the rest of the books are as entertaining as the first (based on the mega fan base I’m sure that they are!) and now I can finally watch the movies- yeah, I know, I’m super late to the party, but better late than never right?

The narration in this audio book by Jim Dale is a fantastic performance that added layers of depth to Rowling’s work. He gave each character a unique voice that is easily identifiable and never missed a beat as the ongoing action rolled on. He put a lot of heart and hard work into this performance and captivated my attention throughout. This was truly a great listen and I will look for more works by him in the future, starting with the next six books in this series since he narrated them all. That’s a huge plus for this series. I hate when a series like this gets split up by multiple narrators and I’m thrilled Dale is handling all of these books. If you haven’t read this- don’t put it off any longer like I did. Pick this up today!

654 people found this helpful

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  • Paul
  • 2015-11-24

A great reading of the wrong book

It is (as you can already tell by the title) the US variation of the book, with all the oddness that comes with it but it mostly cames out unscathed.
I've heard the UK audiobook before, however, and while Jim Dale comes close, Stephen Fry is the better narrator so I'm doubly annoyed that we don't have the option to buy the Philosopher's Stone version.

297 people found this helpful

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  • Summers
  • 2015-11-25

Prefer Stephen Fry as narrator.

Other than not having Fry as narrator and not using the English verbiage it is a classic. Listening to it after so long is like seeing an old friend.

Will likely re listen to entire series have not read them in ages!


***Listeners should have the option to choose the narrator! ****

189 people found this helpful

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  • Songbird121
  • 2015-11-20

YAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAY!!!!!!!!!!

If you could sum up Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, Book 1 in three words, what would they be?

A. MA.ZING.

Have you listened to any of Jim Dale’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

Excellent. If you like this, I recommend his reading of the Books of Beginning Series. This first is the Emerald Atlas. I will say that on the first listen I did not like the portrayal of Hermione. She seemed a little whiny. But I persevered, and now that I am used to it, I am glad I stuck it out.

Any additional comments?

I have listened to these over and over, checking them out from my local library. I have an hour commute each way to and from work, and I have listened to these so many times. I also listen to them at night as I fall alseep to Jim Dale's calm voice. I always wanted to own them, but I just could not afford the price on Pottermore. I don't know what prompted the shift, but I am eternally grateful. This has made my day, my week, my month, and quite possibly my whole year.

181 people found this helpful

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  • Pen Name
  • 2017-08-08

Outstanding

Would you consider the audio edition of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, Book 1 to be better than the print version?

Wow, that's hard. There is, as there always is for me, so much enjoyment in reading for myself with my own timing, like stopping to imagine a scene, re-reading something that made me laugh, etc. But after having read the book, I really enjoyed listening to it.

What about Jim Dale’s performance did you like?

His performance matched pretty closely the way I would have read the book out loud to myself, and you can't ask for more than that!

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

It would just be silly to binge listen to such a huge and amazing (magical) story. Enjoy it!

176 people found this helpful

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  • Darwin8u
  • 2015-11-20

Does not Do to Dwell on Dreams

“It takes a great deal of bravery to stand up to our enemies, but just as much to stand up to our friends.”

The great thing about growing up and eventually watching your own kids start to grow is sharing the magic of reading. I'm a total snob about my books. I rarely venture into YA Fiction or Fantasy, but I still remember introducing my wife, my sisters-in-law, etc., to Harry Potter. We devoured the first three books. And as every subsequent book came out, we were first in line, often reading thorough the night to finish and discuss. Our family has already listened to Jim Dale's epic read of the Potter series on CD on multiple family car trips.

I'm not sure what motivated J.K. Rowling to move from Pottermore to Audible, but as a rabid Potter family and an Audible fanatic, I'm glad she finally did.

150 people found this helpful

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  • Anne
  • 2015-11-20

Great book done justice by a great narrator

I read each Potter book with huge enjoyment within days of the publication of each.

I listened to the Potter series years ago when they first came out on CD. These wonderful stories are done full justice by Jim Dale, whose narration compliments Rowling's lovely characters perfectly. I am so delighted that Rowling has finally allowed the digital versions to be sold on Audible as the cost of them through her website was ridiculous.

At any rate, if you have not listened to Harry Potter - even if you've read it and seen the films - you will be introduced to Harry, Ron, Hermione and all the denizens of Hogwarts in a different way when you listen to The Sorcerer's Stone.

I can't seen any point in recapping the plot because I just assume everyone has read at least the first two of these books, but I can tell you that listening to them is an "immersive" experience. Of course, that's true of any book, but the richness of Rowling's characters, settings and situations are brought to life, in my opinion, in an entirely different way when you listen to Jim Dale read them to you.

If you already love and appreciate the Harry Potter series, you'll rediscover it when you listen. If you have NOT yet read any Harry Potter... my condolences. If you listen, you may discover what you missed!

119 people found this helpful

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  • Kelly
  • 2016-08-14

Rowling is great - would prefer Fry's version

I love Harry Potter, but I wish Americans could order Fry's version of the audiobooks rather than Jim Dale's. I first encountered Jim Dale in another series and absolutely hated the way he voiced girls and women - and two of the three main characters were female. He was so bad, I researched a bit to find out why this fun, promising book (The Emerald Atlas, btw) had such a terrible reader and was very surprised to learn he had won awards for Harry Potter! It took me quite a while to resign myself to get these audiobooks. Rowling never disappoints, but Dale is another thing altogether. He is quite good with most of the voices, but Hermoine's is so terrible, it has shades of sexism. I'm not calling him sexist, but he's just that bad.

107 people found this helpful

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  • Shrewsie Shrew
  • 2015-12-14

Jim Dale makes Harry (and everyone) sound whiny

What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

Stephen Fry reading it. Jim Dale makes everyone sound so whiny and awful, including Harry. It is unbearable.

Any additional comments?

Please add Stephen Fry's reading. It is so much better than the Jim Dale version.

95 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Jim "The Impatient"
  • 2015-12-12

MY BRAIN SURPRISES EVEN ME

WE COULD HAVE GOT KILLED OR WORSE, EXPELLED
A book that gets kids and parents to read has to be admired. In my life time, I have never seen a book or series of books cause so much excitement. That alone is worth Hooting about. I think the book works mostly because of Rowling's imagination. Flying keys, dock 9 and three quarters, talking hats, unicorns, Fluffy, the school itself, moving and talking chess pieces, moving pictures, and on and on. The characters are also lovable. Who-who could not love Harry. Harry is a modern day Cinderella, who becomes a humble Superman. The story has lots of action. It is just a fun read.

HARRY WISHED HE HAD ABOUT EIGHT MORE EYES
I liked the book on a personal level, but I did not love it. As an eight or ten year old, I am sure I would have loved it. As an adult I see things, I would not have as a child. This is where my honesty gets me into trouble, but I had some issues. Two or three times someone is called fat and than the good guys, call them pigs and that is suppose to be funny. It is not just the mean kid, but also a picture of a fat woman. Harry should be punished for flying on a broom when he was told he would be expelled if he did, but because he is so good, he gets special treatment. Kind of like giving the football star, a pass on his behavior in school because he is important to the team. This is also another book, where the main character is great because of his birth right. He does not work hard to achieve these powers. Matter of fact the character who works the hardest is put down and has no friends. I know later in the series she takes a more important role, but if all you read is this one book, what message does this send to kids? One more small thing, I can't believe a kid from a large family, does not know how to make his own sandwich.

IT'S SECRET, SO OF COURSE THE WHOLE SCHOOL KNOWS
This mixture of Cinderella, Star Wars and Superman is an entertaining read. There are no dull spots. Rowling fills the book with her imagination, which is broad. It is a must read for people of all ages.

91 people found this helpful