The Grand Babylon Hotel

Read by Anna Simon

(4.5 stars; 261 reviews)

Theodore Racksole, a rich American multi-millionaire, buys the Grand Babylon Hotel, a luxurious 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.

(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.

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.

(5 stars)

Listening to Anna Simon has become addicting for me. I eagerly look forward to listening to more of her readings. Her voice is pleasant, not at all sharp, and interesting in and of itself. Her intonations are spot-on and provide the drama necessary to make a compelling story. Very well done, Anna. Thank you.

Not my Favorite

(3 stars)

This novel has terrific characters, well defined, and certainly likable, yet the story lacks continuity. There are so many moving parts, that just didn't come together in any meaningful way, though the villain was pursued and ultimately caught, we never hear exactly how it all tied back to the Hotel.

(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.

Lies, Spies, and Alibis...

(4.5 stars)

...or high jinks in high life! American tycoon buys world's finest hotel on a whim! This story could be all banner headlines in a newspaper, newsreel or movie. It's great fun, and remarkably few people die.