The Grand Babylon Hotel

Read by Anna Simon

(4.6 stars; 167 reviews)

Theodore Racksole, a rich American multi-millionaire, buys the Grand Babylon Hotel, a luxurous hotel in London, as a whim - and then finds out there are strange things going on - a German prince is supposed to arrive but never turns up, someone is found murdered in the hotel, but then the body disappears. With the help of his independent daughter Nella and another German prince, Racksole sets out to solve the mystery.

Bennett wrote this as a 15-part serial, for a lark, in 15 days, and sold it for 100 pounds. It first appeared in The Golden Penny in 1902, which described it as "the most original, amusing, and thrilling serial written in a decade". (Summary by Anna Simon)

NB the wikipedia page for this book (see link on the left) contains some plot spoilers! (6 hr 44 min)


Chapter 1 & 2 33:03 Read by Anna Simon
Chapter 3 & 4 30:33 Read by Anna Simon
Chapter 5 & 6 25:30 Read by Anna Simon
Chapter 7 & 8 25:02 Read by Anna Simon
Chapter 9 & 10 27:00 Read by Anna Simon
Chapter 11 & 12 26:47 Read by Anna Simon
Chapter 13 & 14 23:16 Read by Anna Simon
Chapter 15 & 16 30:09 Read by Anna Simon
Chapter 17 & 18 25:05 Read by Anna Simon
Chapter 19 & 20 27:19 Read by Anna Simon
Chapter 21 & 22 28:33 Read by Anna Simon
Chapter 23 & 24 22:58 Read by Anna Simon
Chapter 25 & 26 24:48 Read by Anna Simon
Chapter 27 & 28 30:10 Read by Anna Simon
Chapter 29 & 30 24:25 Read by Anna Simon


Highly entertaining!

(5 stars)

I thoroughly enjoyed "The Grand Babylon Hotel," a novel filled with mystery, adventure, and a very smart and fearless female lead character. And this Librivox reader did a wonderful job.

a good fairy tale

(4 stars)

This story has all the elements of a fairy tale - princes, beautiful, clever woman, daddy with money, evil doers, etc. Love and right triumph, with the help of lots of money. Reader is okay, but it made me crazy to hear her mispronunciations of common words such as bow (should have been bow as in bow to the queen and not as in bow and arrow), pronouncing the Th in Thames, and I never did figure out what “Bose” was on the the launch. But good for her that she was willing to take on the task of reading the novel.

(4 stars)

Ancient Aunt's review sums this story up nicely. Although the reader isn't a native English speaker she doesn't have much of an accent, her voice is pleasant, & she only mispronounced a couple of words (used a long i in kindred, used a long o in bow, made Albert sound like Errburt which I admit did drive me nutty, etc). It's more of a drama with touches of adventure, romance, & mystery as opposed to a typical mystery (my preference) but was interesting & enjoyable with good winning in the end.


(5 stars)

a well-written crime drama that keeps one interested. One of my favorite authors, Arnold Bennett again impressed me with yet another genre love stories. I loved his humorous novel The Card, his hilarious self-help books such as how to live on 24 hours a day, and several others I have so far discovered. I very much enjoyed the marvelous narrator.

(5 stars)

I just really liked this book. I mostly listen as I'm going to bed but have played this particular book many times. I find it favorable that it has just one reader. The story line is interesting and has great detail.

Very enjoyable

(4 stars)

Adventure, international intrigue, and romance. This was an entertaining story and I loved the reader's voice. Note: in case you think she's mispronouncing the prince's name, she's not: I checked the ebook and it's Aribert.

Grand little tale

(4 stars)

Rare these days (2019) to find a rich man depicted as a hero and all the better for it. Good dialogue with clear characterisation. Well read except for the inexplicable "Errburr" for Albert.

Enjoyable mystery

(5 stars)

a good tale generally well told but the mispronunciations did irritate after a while. Surely everyone knows how to pronounce Thames and the confusion over 'bow' was starting to be annoying!