Ralph the Heir

Read by Arnold

(4.5 stars; 68 reviews)

As usual, Trollope creates a nice variety of characters of different English classes, sentiments and positions. The primary themes are the inheritance of property, extravagance or reason in the spending of assets, the mating of young people, and the electoral practices of the time. The election chapters are based on Trollope's own experiences when he ran for Parliament.

There are, of course, many subplots which allow Trollope to express, through dialog, his opinions about greed, snobbery, work ethics and dandyism. Trollope probably regretted the duplicative naming of his characters after a while; we have two Gregory Newtons, uncle (and present Squire of Newton) and one of his nephews. Then there are several Ralphs: the (deceased) father, Ralph his son (the heir), and Ralph (not the heir) the son of the uncle Gregory! As they appear, Trollope has to interject "not the heir", or "the other Ralph". Ralph the heir is an extravagant, easy living young man who has spent himself into debt, and is faced with having to either sell his right to the family property, or marrying a wealthy tradesman's (a breeches maker cutely named Mr. Neefit) daughter.

Four young women are major characters, and these are sought by the two Ralphs, young Gregory, and a bootmaker, Ontario Moggs (don't you love the names?). These include the fairly sedate daughters of the family lawyer, a ravishing West Indian beauty come to live with them, and the tradesman's daughter. There are the classic novel "misunderstandings" from errors in communication; while the reader knows the real circumstances, the characters can't resolve issues apparently standing in the way of love or friendship. This is one of the few novels in which the reader can applaud such a misunderstanding, keeping the undeserving heir from unmerited success in his wooing. ( Arnold Banner) (23 hr 24 min)


Sir Thomas 27:21 Read by Arnold
Popham Villa 28:37 Read by Arnold
What Happened On The Lawn At Popham Villa 21:27 Read by Arnold
Mary Bonner 22:16 Read by Arnold
Mr. Neefit And His Family 36:12 Read by Arnold
Mrs. Neefit's Little Dinner 21:28 Read by Arnold
You Are One Of Us Now 21:09 Read by Arnold
Ralph Newton's Troubles 34:12 Read by Arnold
Ontario Moggs 21:30 Read by Arnold
Sir Thomas In His Chambers 22:34 Read by Arnold
Newton Priory 27:34 Read by Arnold
Mrs. Brownlow 26:57 Read by Arnold
Mr. Neefit Is Disturbed 27:18 Read by Arnold
The Rev. Gregory Newton 19:31 Read by Arnold
Clarissa Waits 29:55 Read by Arnold
The Cheshire Cheese 22:14 Read by Arnold
Ralph Newton's Doubts 22:44 Read by Arnold
We Won't Sell Brownriggs 15:42 Read by Arnold
Polly's Answer 17:07 Read by Arnold
The Conservatives Of Percycross 33:18 Read by Arnold
The Liberals Of Percycross 17:19 Read by Arnold
Ralph Newton's Decision 28:34 Read by Arnold
"I'll Be A Hypocrite If You Choose" 21:31 Read by Arnold
"I Find I Must" 27:52 Read by Arnold
"Mr. Griffenbottom" 26:51 Read by Arnold
Moggs, Purity, And The Rights Of Labour 21:59 Read by Arnold
The Moonbeam 27:28 Read by Arnold
The New Heir Counts His Chickens 27:34 Read by Arnold
The Election 28:52 Read by Arnold
"Miss Mary Is In Luck" 14:21 Read by Arnold
It Is All Settled 34:32 Read by Arnold
Sir Thomas At Home 28:06 Read by Arnold
"Tell Me And I'll Tell You" 18:27 Read by Arnold
Alone In The House 31:06 Read by Arnold
"She'll Accept You, Of Course" 23:01 Read by Arnold
Neefit Means To Stick To It 18:07 Read by Arnold
"He Must Marry Her" 15:22 Read by Arnold
For Two Reasons 21:41 Read by Arnold
Horseleeches 39:34 Read by Arnold
What Sir Thomas Thought About It 14:42 Read by Arnold
A Broken Heart 26:00 Read by Arnold
Not Broken-Hearted 25:20 Read by Arnold
Once More 14:23 Read by Arnold
The Petition 38:41 Read by Arnold
"Never Give A Thing Up" 21:43 Read by Arnold
Mr. Neefit Again 22:21 Read by Arnold
The Way Which Shows That They Mean It 35:04 Read by Arnold
Mr. Moggs Walks Towards Edgeware 28:45 Read by Arnold
Among The Pictures 26:48 Read by Arnold
Another Failure 21:32 Read by Arnold
Music Has Charms 29:03 Read by Arnold
Gus Eardham 18:43 Read by Arnold
The End Of Polly Neefit 18:42 Read by Arnold
My Mary 12:51 Read by Arnold
Cookham 21:19 Read by Arnold
Ralph Newton Is Bowled Away 29:25 Read by Arnold
Clarissa's Fate 20:59 Read by Arnold
Conclusion 7:04 Read by Arnold


Trollope at his best

(5 stars)

Engrossing, full of interesting people we come to care about, pace, gentle but frequent humour (making me smile almost all the time & often bursting out laughing), and such variety of place, situation, attitude. The icing on the cake is Arnold's reading. His voice is mellow, he understands what he's reading and conveys it to the listener, he gives us time to think about what's going on but never drags anything out. (I didn't even really wince at Berkshire being pronounced "Burkshire" instead of "Barkshire".) Many thanks, Arnold. Trollope seems to have been equally interested in both men & women, and some sympathy for the difficulties of marriagable young women having to just wait for things to happen to her. But the appalling double standards of the time still come through and I get the feeling Trollope didn't always see them as such. The good or plain looks of men & women are treated differently – the physical inferiority of Ontario & Gregory the parson don't really matter, while the plainess of women condemns them to become "old maids" (e.g. Ontario's sister).

one of my favorite readers

(3 stars)

I'm not a fan of Trollop but I do like this reader. If he would only read books with happy endings and not so depressing. I choose books that get me away from realities of life. This book and most of Trollop's books repeat problems and feelings too many times. Then gives too many evasive details at points, ie election. Get past all that, one can enjoy the rest of the sad story where the bad guy doesnt really loose things but relationships and the good guys loose everything but each other.


(2.5 stars)

Good story but I never cared for any character and too much time spent on elections, which added little to the story. Reader was ok, but read slowly - to my liking - and his female voices sounded like five year old girls... I'm sorry, I appreciate the time and effort needed to read, especially a Trollope novel, but...


(5 stars)

Several have expressed disappointment with this novel. It is certainly not the greatest of TROLLOPE; but it is his great gift that even his lesser works have the power to maintain the interest of the reader. Arnold did a fine narration!

Too much of a muchness

(3 stars)

A plethora of Ralphs, a surfeit of Gregorys & too large a helping of politics! Not even Trollope's brilliant writing can save this mare's nest!

(5 stars)

Satirical .....so funny.....beautifully read by a honeyed American voice which this Brit did not expect to be so thoroughly pleasing. Thank you.


(5 stars)

Thoroughly enjoyed this book. I enjoy Anthony Trollope's books. There is wisdom in this book and it was well read.

fun story - wonderful reader!

(5 stars)

really appreciate Arnold's style - nice cadence, minimal embellishment, no fake British accents - bravo!