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Paradise Lost and Paradise Regained (Paradise #1-2)

4.08  ·  Rating Details ·  5,411 Ratings  ·  141 Reviews

Milton's Paradise Lost is one of the greatest epic poems in the English language. It tells the story of the Fall of Man, a tale of immense drama and excitement, of rebellion and treachery, of innocence pitted against corruption, in which God and Satan fight a bitter battle for control of mankind's destiny. The struggle rages across three worlds - heaven, hell, and earth -

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Published (first published 1671)
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Katie Muffett
Jan 30, 2008 Katie Muffett rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone who doesn't read the Bible
Recommended to Katie by: uh, everyone? ever?
This book must be removed from high school syllabi immediately, and become the reserve only of those who can truly appreciate it. No teenager has ever been capable of grasping the infinite layers of brilliance in these poems, and it is doing the work a disservice to dessimate it into Cliff's Notes. I adore Milton so much that if he were to punch me in the boobs after each page of Paradise Lost/Regained, I would keep turning and turning until the bittersweet end.
Ken Moten
Dec 14, 2012 Ken Moten rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poetry-stuff
[*I won't mark spoilers but will assume that if you read this you have read Paradise Lost or know the story of the creation of the world and the fall of man as recounted in the book of Genesis.]

"Some natural tears they dropp'd, but wip'd them soon;
The world was all before them, where to choose
Their place of rest, and Providence their guide:
They hand in hand with wand'ring steps and slow
Through Eden took their solitary way.
" - Book XII Lines 645-649

I know what this book is usually based around a
Richard Houchin
Apr 24, 2008 Richard Houchin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, philosophy
As Blake said, "The reason Milton wrote in fetters when he wrote of Angels & God, and at liberty when of Devils & Hell, is because he was a true Poet, and of the Devil's party without knowing it."

Milton's work is really, really good. It has epic gun battles between angels and demons, and titanic expressions of sheer will. Most remarkable, though, is Satan's character as a rebel hero. Milton's reliance on the apocrypha and the treasure trove of literary stories as his source material do h
Sandra Hamlin
Sep 15, 2016 Sandra Hamlin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
As we trend the increasing prosperity of bookbinding gallows, haunts, prisons and data driven arrows of failing square boxed perceptions of "lost children" of civility, the greatest philosophical read is a protest poet. Few eternally burn the flames of protest Epics like 1625's John Milton, a man whose passage changed the course of humanity.
After a fall from grace's ambitious cup of challenging King Charles's Puritanical subjugation, his latter years led to a painful journey back with Paradise
Linda I
To be a fan of classic literature it is imperative to read, at least once, the powerful poetic epic that is "Paradise Lost". As far as "Paradise Regained", well...this story is not so illuminating, but is still a beautifully written poem. Most everyone living in a Western Civilization already knows the story: Satan is expelled from Heaven and decides to defile the new world God created. He sneaks into the Garden of Eden and finds a way to ruin God's plans by tempting Eve to eat from the tree of ...more
Colin Hogan
Jul 25, 2010 Colin Hogan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read this while preparing for a cumulative exam in English literature. I had only touched Milton in a survey course of British Literature of the Renaissance. I must have gone to the bar the night before that lecture because nothing seemed familiar. I spent the better part of two weeks, sitting at work, sitting in cafes, sitting in the library, sitting in my car, announcing Milton's convoluted lines of poetry à haute voix. This was the only way I could understand what was going on, like I was p ...more
Nancy Jones
Sep 02, 2014 Nancy Jones rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Finished Paradise Lost and started Paradise Regained. Maybe I read a bit of Milton when I was in school but don't remember any positive thoughts on poetry.

I started listening to the audible version because my son wanted to read some of the "Great Books". I decided that I didn't want to get left out. I have no words to describe how Milton can make you see the beginning of the world and feel the struggles of the first people created (and much more).

I don't focus on each individual word but listen
Aug 07, 2012 Clayton rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Paradise Lost is bar-none the greatest work of literature in the English language, and I suspect it stands up pretty well against what the rest of the world has to offer. Milton took a handful of Bible verses and expanded them into 10,000 near-perfect lines on the nature of sin, temptation, good and evil. In it, he creates a powerfully sympathetic Lucifer, posits the single most persuasive argument for Human free-will ever attempted, and paints the fall of Man as the greatest tragedy of all time ...more
Jun 11, 2008 Michelle rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What can I say? I suppose I felt guilty giving "Paradise Lost" anything less than four stars! I'm certainly no serious judge of poetry, epic or other, but I'd never read Milton and felt it was time. It's amazing what you learn about a piece of literature without ever having read it. So with all the critical background noise of graduate school, I finally have Milton under my belt. The poem is impressive, to say the least, and enlightening on many levels, the most intriguing to me being Milton's v ...more
Antonio Simon Jr.
While I hesitate to review Milton's masterpiece because it is indeed a masterpiece of Western literature, here's my best shot at it. "Paradise Lost" starts with the fall of the angels and ends with the expulsion from Eden. After Lucifer is cast out of heaven for leading a revolt against God, he gets revenge by setting into motion mankind's fall from grace. "Paradise Regained" is a sequel of sorts; it tells the story of Jesus's life with particular emphasis of the temptation in the desert.

Well, the poetry is quite good. But there were a few parts that fell in the action department. Paradise Lost is much, much more interesting than Paradise Regained. I feel this is possibly because Milton made Satan to be such an anti-villain that you couldn't at least blame him for rising up over an overbearing monarch.
There may be some values dissonance here as well, some sources say this is a very Calvinist book, which is not as popular a view nowaparts.
May 18, 2016 Edmund rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: school
Not a book i would recommend, it is basically a Protestant retelling of the story of salvation.... I had to read this for school, and though there are a few interesting points, there is a lot questionable material (especially in Paradise regained)
Peter B.
Oct 07, 2014 Peter B. rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
An excellent poem depicting the greatest story of tragedy and redemption ever. I especially enjoyed the last two books of the poem as Milton describes the flow of biblical history from Adam onwards.
Alice Sather
Apr 14, 2012 Alice Sather rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Read the original even though you'll wade at times because of language that is ponderous to us. It is worth the literary and cultural experience.
Sarah Lawrence
Interesting story behind this: I went into Strand hoping to find either a cheap, used copy of the Norton Critical Edition of Frankenstein or an even cheaper copy of Paradise Lost with decent notes. I was more interested in the former than the latter, which is only tangential research for my current story project. I couldn’t find a single Norton Critical Edition and the copies of Paradise Lost cost way more than I was willing to spend on a whim. Fortunately, I took the long way out of the store a ...more
Robert Sorba
Dec 09, 2012 Robert Sorba rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Ahem, what I meant to say was: I was not made for reading epic is beyond me.
Nov 08, 2012 Scott rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I don't think I'll give a full review of this poem, because surely at this point it doesn't need it! But I wanted to get down a few ideas that I had while reading through it.

One of the things that I think is so great about this poem, is that I'm not totally convinced that Milton had complete control over what he was doing. And I don't say that as an insult. Rather it's as if so many things were speaking through him gaining entrance into the poem.

One of these ideas that I think he plays with is t
Jessica (Books: A true story)
This book took me a long time to read. Three months to be exact. It’s some seriously dense epic poetry. Some of Paradise Lost reminded me a lot of Tolkien’s The Silmarillion, especially the lines about flames that produced darkness and the idea of Satan doing the opposite of God but God turns it to good anyway. It was hard to get used to the language, but once I did I really liked how Milton was able to use two meanings for a lot of words – the literal meaning and a figurative meaning. It was in ...more
Aug 12, 2016 Italia8989 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I got this for three dollars at a used book store. Although the old books triggered some dust mite allergies and I am never going back there, the combination of epic poetry and helpful footnotes has intensified my love for classical English writers. It's wonderful to see these two pieces in one book. I'm thankful for this edition.

Review of Paradise Lost:

As annoying as epic poetry is, this book is a work of art and deserves a high rating. At times the reading level is a struggle to get through,
Jun 07, 2007 Renu is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone interested in poetry and theology
I bought this book in class 9 in school, but let it languish on my bookshelf for more than a decade! Finally, I think I am able to make space for a sustained read.

The poem portrays the human predicament, vis-a-vis man and god and the question of faith in a medieval christian context.

The poem has been the subject of controversy amidst 19th and 20th century critics for its rather one-sided and chauvinistic depiction of Eve.

However, there's more to this book than mere controversy. It is a reward
Ivan Bedolla
Dec 08, 2015 Ivan Bedolla rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a book that gives a plot twist to a story most of us are either accustomed to or have heard or read either part of the story or all of it, the story of The Garden of Eden with Adam and Eve living it. Reading this story made me realize just how much we assume and most of the time incorrectly and a lot of the details we have grown up knowing are not even in the story. John Milton goes into a completely different side of the story that the bible does not even take into consideration and he ...more
G.D. Master
May 15, 2015 G.D. Master rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Academics, recreational readers, and poets
Adam and Eve are at the root of the human genome in the Holy Bible. They seem little more than a place to begin, except for Eve’s supposed temptation of Adam and the fall of man, which is the fall of “man” and by its interpretation has taken a toll on women for hundreds of years. Enter John Milton; blind he became the mouth of God reciting the greatest epic poem ever conceived. Or, he was just the greatest human poet to ever master iambic pentameter and blank verse to create personalities for th ...more
Elliott Bignell
I feel that I am committing lèse-majesté in giving Milton anything but five stars, and this rating reflects a certain confusion and neutrality about how to assess it. You see, I think it needs repeated reading and perhaps some expertise to criticise. The achievement is undeniable. The first poem is 10,000 lines long, composed entirely in iambic pentameter - the metre and foot of much of Shakespeare's work . and interrupted only by division into longish chapters. The second was largely dictated w ...more
Aug 09, 2014 Chris rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I didn’t rate this based on it’s seemingly sexist nature; I’m well aware of how Eve got the shaft, how all womanhood is to blame for the Fall of man, how God’s old and white and has a dick, and blah blah blah (since it’s based on the Bible, might Milton be forgiven?). I rated it based on the talent of Milton’s craft and the highly memorable, intangible imagery. There is Satan ascending to Heaven through Chaos, the divine chorus after the Son is ordained human incarnation, the various description ...more
Mar 07, 2014 Robyn rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I am glad I finally had the opportunity to read Paradise Lost. It deserves the acclaim that it has received over the past 400 years. That being said, I don't think it is necessary to read the entire epic poem unless someone is assigned to do so or wishes to inflict self-induced agony. Books I, IV, and IX (along with the last four lines of Book XII) contain the most emotionally-wrought and action-packed scenes, but for most readers, I think reading only these sections along with the Arguments at ...more
Jan 27, 2012 Dana rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
So, I do understand that this is a great classic. I can even see why. I don't think it stands the test of time, however. I found myself, nine times out of ten, laughing at the reactions and the situations, finding most of the figures portrayed in the book to be small children (and sometimes, they would come across as gangsters but I think that's my own special spin on this tale). Now, this is not a bad thing, per say. Speaking as someone who doesn't enjoy reading old English, the reactions of th ...more
Tim VanderMeulen
The virtues of these well-beloved epic poems by John Milton in the seventeenth century are their uncanny style, their persistent beauty, and their epic scale. Paradise Lost is worthy of holding the title for the originator of Romantic revival through its descriptions of beautiful scenery. It holds the reader's attention through its epic tone of the vastness and evil of the devil and his demons as well as the glory of the heavenly angels. I'm sure there is much to be missed in the translation - l ...more
Jul 22, 2013 Jenny rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
It took two months to get through Paradise Lost, but I did it. I couldn't stomach the 60 pages of Paradise Regained so that will have to wait until another time. Milton did not spend enough time portraying the actual fall of man, (maybe because he made it clear that it was woman's fault and what else needed to be said?). Really, 5 pages out of 340 doesn't cut it, even for a misogynist. I don't think it's fair to assume that Adam and Eve were so innocent and gullible not to need more sinister per ...more
Dec 29, 2012 Kari rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4 stars because there are imperfections in how the characters and their motives are written, and even how the simple facts of the events happened. I mean, you can tell that Milton read and searched and knew the Bible, which by far most people who try to retell Bible stories like this have not done and do not know, but I think if he'd done just a little more reading for, say, another half hour with regard to some sections, he'd have gotten it right, and so even better. But 4 stars because he real ...more
Aug 26, 2008 Richard rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A masterful piece of literature. It purports to be in the same poetic style as Homer and Virgil, and it doesn't dissapoint. The first part is the story of the War in Heaven, Lucifer cast out, the creation, the Garden of Eden,and the fall of Adam. The second part, much shorter and simpler, is the tale of Jesus and his three temptations in the desert. Though these stories are very familiar to most Christians, the style and the poetry are what this is really about. Milton's voice gives new and high ...more
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John Milton (9 December 1608 – 8 November 1674) was an English poet, polemicist, man of letters, and a civil servant for the Commonwealth of England under Oliver Cromwell. He wrote at a time of religious flux and political upheaval, and is best known for his epic poem Paradise Lost (1667), written in blank verse.

Milton's poetry and prose reflect deep personal convictions, a passion for freedom and
More about John Milton...

Other Books in the Series

Paradise (2 books)
  • Paradise Lost
  • Paradise Regained

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