The Man Who Would Be King

Read by Philippa

(4.6 stars; 555 reviews)

The Man Who Would Be King tells the story of two British adventurers in British India who become kings of Kafiristan, a remote part of Afghanistan. It was inspired by the exploits of James Brooke, an Englishman who became the "white Raja" of Sarawak in Borneo, and by the travels of American adventurer Josiah Harlan, who claimed the title Prince of Ghor.

The story was first published in The Phantom Rickshaw and other Tales (Volume Five of the Indian Railway Library, published by A H Wheeler & Co of Allahabad in 1888). It also appeared in Wee Willie Winkie and Other Stories in 1895, and in numerous later editions of that collection.
It is the basis for John Huston’s 1975 film of the same name, starring Sean Connery and Michael Caine as the "kings", and Christopher Plummer as Kipling.
(Interim summary by Wikipedia adapted by Philippa) (1 hr 30 min)


Chapter 1 26:12 Read by Philippa
Chapter 2 33:27 Read by Philippa
Chapter 3 30:51 Read by Philippa


Great reading of classic short story

(5 stars)

Kipling's story is deserves all the accolades it has received over the years. Philippa's reading is a classic gem that subtly supports without distraction, while leaving the story to shine. If you have never read the story (or at least, not read it recently), this is the way to be (re)introduced.

Great Story

(5 stars)

I love this story and id certainly suggest watching the film (starring Sean Connery and Michael Caine). Very well read. Voices for the characters are very well done despite all speaking Characters in this story are male. Very pleased with how the narrator has delivered this great story.

(5 stars)

A superlative reading of the timeless tale. Many have wished that Kipling had developed this tale into a full-length novel, but I personally think that it would have lost something. The author knew what he was doing.

Great Story and Great Reader

(5 stars)

This is one of my favorite stories, I saw the film when I was a kid, have the book on my Kindle for PC and just finished this audio version. The audio was well recorded and the narrator did a great job, not just reading but acting out each part. She took a great story and made it better, Kipling would be proud, Thank You, Joseph W. aka WaterRabbit, Cape Cod, MA, USA 100% CapeCodMediaKing Approved

Free Listens review

(5 stars)

Phillipa has a beautiful British accent. She reads with a steady pacing, slow enough to take in the words easily, though some people may wish for a faster read. Her dialect for the two con-artists' voices adds character to the recording, though at first I found it hard to understand. The recording is as crisp and clear as one could ask for. Full review at

Free Audio Review

(5 stars)

This short story tells of high adventure and excitement and is very well read. If you haven't seen the film (1975) then listen to this reading of the original before you do. It's an audio treasure, the reader puts such heart and soul into the reading it reduced me to tears at the end, and I'll be hard pushed to offer a better recommendation than that. Strangely the story doesn't relate incident after incident of death defying adventure in the Indiana Jones style but rather in a more step by step advancement style. At each stage you know what the men are up to, and through use of the blind belief that an Englishman can do anything and a bit of stiff-upper-lip they climb to the dizzy heights. It's simply a thrilling story well written and incredibly well read. Once again I feel myself having to rate this story as a MUST-LISTEN! If you want to read more of my reviews of free audio visit

Kipling Would Be Honored!

(5 stars)

Superbly narrated by Philippa! I definitely recommend The Man Who Would Be King to anyone that enjoys a good yarn. I especially recommend any story narrated by Philippa. Her narrative skills pulls you into the story. You become a bystander. Observing all as if you were there. Philippa gives this story dimension, making it come alive for the listener! Definitely 5 star!

interesting story

(4 stars)

the reader is quite good and it doesn't seem to matter that a woman is playing the part of 3 men. I had not heard this story before so it was a surprise to me. I think some of the references to tribal disputes still apply today.