Novel Conversations is a podcast summarizing the world’s greatest works of classic literature: in 35 minutes you get the whole story from cover to cover. (If SparkNotes had an audio best friend, it would be us!) In each episode, Frank Lavallo hosts two readers, and the three of them give their reactions to the story and read their favorite passages along the way. Each episode features Endnotes by Ted Schwartz, a segment with interesting facts about the author.

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“Candide” by Voltaire

Listen to this Episode

S5 Ep 3

Host: Frank Lavallo

Readers: Elizabeth Flood and Phil Setnik

Author: Voltaire

Year of Publication: 1759

Plot: Candide, a simple man, is thrust into a world of chaos as he experiences the horrors of war, poverty, the maliciousness of man, and the hypocrisy of the church. His tutor, Doctor Pangloss, attempts to teach him philosophical optimism, that “... All is for the best.” Candide begins to doubt the veracity of Pangloss’ theories and soon finds the best of both worlds.

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