Invisible Man

Version: Unabridged
Author: Ralph Ellison
Narrator: Joe Morton
Genres: Fiction & Literature, Literature
Publisher: Random House Audio Assets
Published In: April 2005
# of Units: 16 CDs
Length: 18 hours
Tell Your Friends:


Ralph Elllison's Invisible Man is a monumental novel, one that can well be called an epic of modern American Negro life. It is a strange story, in which many extraordinary things happen, some of them shocking and brutal, some of them pitiful and touching--yet always with elements of comedy and irony and burlesque that appear in unexpected places. It is a book that has a great deal to say and which is destined to have a great deal said about it.
After a brief prologue, the story begins with a terrifying experience of the hero's high school days, moves quickly to the campus of a Southern Negro college and then to New York's Harlem, where most of the action takes place. The many people that the hero meets in the course of his wanderings are remarkably various, complex and significant. With them he becomes involved in an amazing series of adventures, in which he is sometimes befriended but more often deceived and betrayed--as much by himself and his own illusions as by the duplicity of the blindness of others.
Invisible Man is not only a great triumph of storytelling and characterization; it is a profound and uncompromising interpretation of the Negro's anomalous position in American society.

"From the Hardcover edition.

Reviews (3)

A classic, but

Written by Anonymous on April 5th, 2011

  • Book Rating: 3/5

This book is fascinating as a period piece about the culture of the era and black experience, and Ellison has a poetic writing style that at times lapses into the cadence of the Beat period. Joe Morton's reading is masterful, and the audiobook was worth listening to just for the narration. I didn't find this book particularly enjoyable as an on-the-road companion to keep one's mind off the boredom of travel (and it's full of heavy symbolism/allegory to puzzle through) but I do think it's a must for America readers.

Invisible Man Can't Conceal Genius

Written by Anonymous on February 27th, 2008

  • Book Rating: 5/5

Ralph Ellison's _The Invisible Man_ demonstrates the author's genius in his ability to both entertain readers and provide material necessary for serious scholars. It’s difficult to talk about specific aspects of the book without revealing plot surprises, so I will have to make do with praising the book’s overall effect: It is impossible to bestow too many superlatives on this work. Joe Morton was an incredible narrator who infused the main character with both the passion and antipathy inherent to his situation. Additionally, Morton made the other characters come alive in an equally expressive manner. It was a joy to listen to these CDs because it was so easy to keep the characters and their respective personalities separate in my mind. This was due in large part to Morton’s amazing performance.

The Invisible Man

Written by Anonymous on September 1st, 2005

  • Book Rating: 5/5

This brilliant and eloquent novel of one man's journey into himself is brought to life by Joe Morton's brilliant performance. He inhabits the central character with an intensity that I have rarely experienced in any acted medium. He perfectly captures the horrible and the hilarious aspects of the story, and expresses the lyrical prose in a beautiful way. Kudos to Ellison and Morton