The Begum's Fortune


Read by Kate Follis

(4.3 stars; 9 reviews)

A novel with some utopian elements, but primarily dystopian. A French doctor and a German professor both inherit a vast fortune as descendants of a French soldier who married the rich widow of an Indian prince. They both decide to go to America and establish their own "ideal" society. Dr. Sarrasin, the French doctor, is focused on maintaining public health. He builds Ville-France. Professor Schultze, the German scientist, is a bit of a militarist and racist. He builds Stahlstadt and devotes his city to the production of ever more powerful weapons so that he can destroy Sarrasin's city. They manage to get the US to cede sovereignty to two cities so that the two newly rich men can create their utopia. The setting for Ville-France would place it on the Oregon Coast, near Bandon, Oregon. The location for the second city, Stahlstadt, is less clear, but the description would place it somewhere near Roseburg, Oregon. - Summary by Kate Follis (6 hr 21 min)

Chapters

Enter Mr. Sharp 23:31 Read by Kate Follis
A Pair of Chums 26:10 Read by Kate Follis
Effect of an Item of News 24:57 Read by Kate Follis
Two Claimants 26:11 Read by Kate Follis
Stahlstadt 27:36 Read by Kate Follis
The Albrecht Pit 22:54 Read by Kate Follis
The Central Block 21:16 Read by Kate Follis
The Dragon's Den 33:00 Read by Kate Follis
P.P.C. 22:40 Read by Kate Follis
An Article from "Unsere Centurie", a German Review 25:02 Read by Kate Follis
At Dinner with Doctor Sarrasin 13:28 Read by Kate Follis
The Council 21:02 Read by Kate Follis
News for the Professor 5:07 Read by Kate Follis
Clearing for Action 10:17 Read by Kate Follis
The Exchange of San Francisco 20:25 Read by Kate Follis
A Brace of Frenchmen Capture a Town 17:59 Read by Kate Follis
Parley Before the Citadel 14:09 Read by Kate Follis
The Kernel of the Nut 15:44 Read by Kate Follis
A Family Affair 7:59 Read by Kate Follis
Conclusion 2:21 Read by Kate Follis

Reviews

Very entertaining


(4 stars)

As usual, Jules Verne manages to ally humour, politics and scientific advancements in an entertaining story. As a German having grown up in France, however, the demonisation of the Germans was not much to my taste and smacks too much of war propaganda. I very much enjoyed listening to the excellent reader!