Tarzan of the Apes

Read by Mark F. Smith

(4.8 stars; 1202 reviews)

Tarzan of the Apes is Burroughs’ exciting, if improbable, story of an English lord, left by the death of his stranded parents in the hands of a motherly African ape who raises him as her own. Although he is aware that he is different from the apes of his tribe, who are neither white nor hairless, he nevertheless regards them as his “people.” When older, larger, stronger apes decide that he an undesirable to be killed or expelled from the tribe, it is fortunate that Tarzan has learned the use of primitive weapons.

Although small and weak by ape standards, Tarzan is a human of god-like strength and agility to men who discover him. By studying these people, he gradually decides he is not an ape at all, but human.

And when he meets Jane, a beautiful American girl marooned with her father and friends on the hostile coast of Africa, Tarzan conceives love for her. When they are unexpectedly rescued before Tarzan can find a way to reveal his feelings to Jane, he determines to become civilized and follow her into the world of people – to find her and wed her, though he must cross continents and oceans, and compete with two other suitors for her hand.

This story was the subject of a successful film in 1932, with Tarzan being played by Johnny Weissmuller, who acted in a further eleven Tarzan films. According to Weissmuller in an interview with Mike Douglas, his famous ape-call was audio stitched together from a soprano, an alto, and a hog-caller! Summary by Mark F. Smith

(9 hr 20 min)


Out of the Sea 23:18 Read by Mark F. Smith
The Savage Home 20:42 Read by Mark F. Smith
Life and Death 14:52 Read by Mark F. Smith
The Apes 16:21 Read by Mark F. Smith
The White Ape 17:44 Read by Mark F. Smith
Jungle Battles 14:13 Read by Mark F. Smith
The Light of Knowledge 25:53 Read by Mark F. Smith
The Tree-Top Hunter 12:37 Read by Mark F. Smith
Man and Man 23:34 Read by Mark F. Smith
The Fear-Phantom 11:36 Read by Mark F. Smith
King of the Apes 22:41 Read by Mark F. Smith
Man’s Reason 17:58 Read by Mark F. Smith
His Own Kind 29:36 Read by Mark F. Smith
At the Mercy of the Jungle 21:25 Read by Mark F. Smith
The Forest God 10:33 Read by Mark F. Smith
Most Remarkable 20:59 Read by Mark F. Smith
Burials 22:07 Read by Mark F. Smith
The Jungle Toll 23:04 Read by Mark F. Smith
Call of the Primitive 22:40 Read by Mark F. Smith
Heredity 26:01 Read by Mark F. Smith
The Village of Torture 13:30 Read by Mark F. Smith
The Search Party 22:19 Read by Mark F. Smith
Brother Men 18:27 Read by Mark F. Smith
Lost Treasure 17:08 Read by Mark F. Smith
The Outpost of the World 22:29 Read by Mark F. Smith
The Height of Civilization 22:10 Read by Mark F. Smith
The Giant Again 26:41 Read by Mark F. Smith
Conclusion 20:21 Read by Mark F. Smith


A Wonderful Tale

(5 stars)

Although very non-pc in today's world, it is a story of self discovery and sacrifice. Mark is an excellent reader and I look forward to hearing more of his works. I am looking forward to the new Tarzan movie just to see how close they stay to the spirit of the book.


(5 stars)

How it took me so long to read this book, I don't know. One of the best, most exciting adventure novels ever! Mr. Smith is like a professional narrator. Would listen to another book he reads just for the performance.

great reader

(5 stars)

Five stars for the reader! Somehow, having only known the Disney adaptation before, I wasn't aware of all the race issues in this story. But oh my. I was all prepared for swooning ladies and noble ape men learning to read and speak in two days, okay. Somehow I wasn't prepared for african tribes and how they are shown, the fact that Jane and Co. were NOT the first humans Tarzan has ever seen (he grew up among them!!) but simply the first white ones, so, you know, finally someone intelligent and civilized like him.... I don't want to go on its pointless. If you listen to it, treat it as window to the past and how an average person must have thought of race, civilization and eugenetics back then. It's chilling. On the other hand I'm willing to get through anything just for these jewels like Tarzan's love letter: "I am Tarzan of the Apes. I want you. I am yours. You are mine. We live here together always in my house." Now who wouldn't swoon over that...?

Bravo from Borneo

(5 stars)

So pleased I decided to listen to this book...simply because it was read by Mark Smith...my favourite narrator. The book is so different from the movies and TV series I have previously viewed. Such a treat to listen to older English and to have such an insight into life growing up in the jungle with such binary choices made from a practical perspective to sustain life. Whilst there are clearly flaws in Tarzan's ability to learn the written English language yet not speak it...this can be overlooked in the whole of the book...a rip roaring yarn. Marvellous!!

Jenni J

(5 stars)

No rainy Saturday afternoon tv movie of Tarzan ever came close to story line of the original book by ERB. Very well written and thought-out, down to the character and motives of the African wild life. Wouldn't a modern narrated movie adaptation be wonderful? A note of thanks to the reader as well, who did a very fine job. I will persue him further.

Not Disney's Tarzan

(5 stars)

I didn't expect it to really be the same, but it was far different than I thought it would be. Still very, very good. The ending surprised me. And as always, Mark Smith, I wish you could read every book they offer on here. Reading was superb and story was very good.

well done.

(5 stars)

Mark Smith does a great job reading this book. I'm only a few chapters in but it's definitely one of the best I've heard on librivox. when i finish this book I'm going to check out some of his other reads. Good one, Mark.

(5 stars)

Mark Smith, what a beautiful job you did reading this book. I am bedbound so I listen to a lot of books. I could listen to you read the phone book! Thank you for the enormous amount of time recording these books must take.