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Lost Horizon

3.91  ·  Rating details ·  13,473 Ratings  ·  1,121 Reviews

While attempting to escape a civil war, four people are kidnapped and transported to the Tibetan mountains. After their plane crashes, they are found by a mysterious Chinese man. He leads them to a monastery hidden in "the valley of the blue moon" -- a land of mystery and matchless beauty where life is lived in tranquil wonder, beyond the grasp of a doomed world.

It is her

Published (first published 1933)
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Jul 12, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: top, i-said
In 1931, four people, including Glory Conway, escape the political unrest in Baskul, China by boarding a plane, bound for Peshawar. The plane, however, much to their dismay, has been hijacked and eventually crash lands deep in the far reaches of the Tibetan Himalayas. Seeking shelter, the group soon finds themselves in the valley of the blue moon, guests at a lamasery, called Shangri-La.

Reading this is like stepping slowly into a hot, fragrant bath while strains of your own audio preferences del
Henry Avila
Skyjacked! Unheard of, in the early 1930's, but it did happen to four passengers, in Afghanistan, during a civil conflict there. A "mad" Asian pilot, with a gun, does, flying east into the tallest mountains in the world. The aircraft goes above, around and hopefully, not through them. A spectacular view, for those with the guts, to look, beautiful, the Himalayas and frightening. Tibet, an almost unknown land, with few visitors, who return back home, to report their findings, the apparent destina ...more
Feb 15, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Explorers/adventurers of any kind, anyone who wants to hear a damn good story
Shelves: must-read-again
The last time I loved a book as much as I loved this one was when I read Dune. Even though Dune is considered one of the masterworks of science fiction, I'm not really a sci-fi kind of girl, per se, I just love places that are so well-imagined by the author that you can't believe they're not real SOMEWHERE. Lost Horizon presents Shangri-La as such a place.

More personally, though, I read this book at the precise right moment in my life. Conway, the main character, has a sort of dispassionate det
K.D. Absolutely
Aug 23, 2009 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to K.D. by: 501 Must Read Books
I hummed Lara’s Theme while reading most of Boris Pasternak’s Doctor Zhivago a couple of years back. Similarly, the first two lines of this Burt Bacharach-composition was inside my ears while reading this book.
♪♫♪Have you ever dreamed of a place
Far away from it all
Where the air you breathe is soft and clean
And children play in fields of green
And the sound of guns
Doesn't pound in your ears (anymore)

♪♫♪Have you ever dreamed of a place
Far away from it all
Where the winter winds will never blow
Will Byrnes
Nov 01, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a fun read. They did a pretty good job with the film. Given that Hilton was a major screenwriter that makes sense. It is very Victorian in its feel, a sort of Kipling-esque yarn, in which depression era westerners find themselves in a version of paradise. The place is rather communistic, with elements of free love that no doubt raised some eyebrows when it was published. On the other hand, the place is run by a Belgian cleric. On the other hand, their motto is all things in moderation, e ...more
Aug 23, 2008 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: No one. Run the other way!
Recommended to Amanda by: Trey Brewer
For the life of me, I have no idea why anyone dearly loves this book. The narrative is plodding, the characters boring and unsympathetic, and the ending--don't get me started on the ending. This was a book club selection that I was actually excited about since its setting is the mystical Shangri-La. I thought it would be an Indiana Jones-esque action and adventure in an exotic Asian setting. What I got instead was Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Boring Tibetans. There's no action; all they ...more
Hugh Conway, a veteran of the Great War and a British diplomat, told a novelist friend an incredible story. He and three other people were being evacuated from a rebellion in Baskul when their plane was hijacked and flown to Tibet. After they crash landed in the frigid, windy mountains, their dying pilot told them to go to the lamasery of Shangri-La. The four passengers were guided there by porters and a postulant from the lamasery. After winding through dangerous mountain passes for hours, they ...more
It wasn't until I finished the story and read the Afterword that I realized that this book was written by the same guy who wrote Goodbye, Mr. Chips, another story I had pretty much put out of my mind. Much, I think, like I expect to happen with this one.

So, okay, here's Shangri-La. We all know the name, but this is where it started. And that's fine. Shangri-La is this utopian society-place in the Himalayan area, where the inhabitants are almost immortal. It's supposed to be this perfect society
Jun 21, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Not the best book I've read, but certainly one of the more magical ones. It does cast a spell. I was a bit surprised at the WW I element in "Lost Horizon." Hugh Conway, the emotionally damaged hero of the novel, is a part of the Lost Generation. Hilton's turning his Valley of the Blue Moon into a kind of post-War Brigadoon is a brilliant one, especially since he sandwiches events between the known war and the worse one Hilton foresees as coming. I'm sure others in 1933, when the novel was publis ...more
Mar 21, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Chris Walters, Harry Haladjian
The plane that launched a thousand derivatives...

Before there was the ABC juggernaut that is LOST, there was James Hilton's afternoon read Lost Horizon. This fantastical tale, billed as the first paperback, introduced four characters, and a world audience, to Shangri-La, a time capsule of knowledge and wisdom hidden in the crevasses of the Himalayas.

The conceit: a plane crashes and the motley crew of survivors (two British officials, and American, and a missionary) are left to fend for themselv
Oct 28, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014
Lost Horizons is a very silly, dumb book, but charming and fun for all that.

It's racist and sexist, in that casual and unmalicious way that you see in, like, Mad Men. The "hard, mocking, sex-thirsty voices of women" are mentioned at one point, and the inhabitants of Shangri-La are described as "cleaner and handsomer than the average" Chinese. Compare it to Sax Rohmer's The Insidious Dr. Fu Manchu from 30 years previous: that book is obsessed with the danger of cunning, diabolical Chinamen, while
Sep 28, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics, utopian
A beautiful story set deep with in the Himalayans, sits a mysterious place known only to a few as Shangri-La.

Four people are kidnapped in a plane and land in the unknown regions of Tibet. There they embark on a physical and spiritual journey to a Utopian society of Lamas living deep within the beautiful mountains of the east. Here they are learning about transcending their lives to something wonderous and more meaningful.

Our story opens when our lead character, Conway, is found in a hospital by
Dost Kitabevi'nde dolanırken ismi ilgimi çekmişti Yitik Ufuklar'ın. Kitabı bitirdiğimde iyi ki de almışım diyorum; çünkü merakla okudum. Alırken böyle seveceğimi hiç düşünmemiştim.

Hikâye çeşitli amaçlarla Çin'de bulunan dört kişinin iç savaş nedeniyle ülkeyi terk etmek üzere bir uçağa binmeleriyle başlıyor. Bu yolculardan ikisi Dış İşleri çalışanı olan İngiliz, biri İngiliz kadın misyoner, diğeri ise kim olduğu net olmayan bir Amerikalı. Bu dört kişinin bulunduğu uçak kaçırılıyor ve kimselerin
Laurel Hicks
Hilton's beautiful tale is hard to classify. It reminds me, in a way, of "The Twenty-One Balloons," by William Pène du Bois, and in another, curious way, of C.S. Lewis's "Till We Have Faces." I do know that I want to go back to Shangri-La.
Το Άσχημο Ρύζι Καρολίνα
Το λάτρεψα. Χτες νύσταζα και σχεδόν το άφησα με πόνο καρδιάς. Μια τόσο υπέροχη ιστορία. Τόσο ονειρική, τόσο μαγευτική. Λοιπόν αυτό το έργο το είχα ακούσει στην εφηβεία μου, σε θεατρική διασκευή, στο ραδιοφωνικό θέατρο της Κυριακής από το Τρίτο Πρόγραμμα. Με είχε εντυπωσιάσει η υπόθεση αλλά δεν θυμόμουν τίτλο και περισσότερα στοιχεία. Τελικά το ξέθαψα μετά από κάμποσο ψάξιμο. Και με οδήγησε σε αυτό το μυθιστόρημα, στην παραμυθένια Σάνγκρι – Λα και σε αυτόν τον κόσμο που κάπως αχνά μου θύμισε ένα ...more
Mohamed Ateaa
Feb 05, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned
مقريتش الرواية الاصلية
بس اعتقد ان د احمد ملخص منها كتير اوي زيادة عن الحد

بس رغم كده الفصول الاخيرة في الكتاب ممتعة
خصوصا مقابلة البطل لللاما
النهاية شبه مبتورة
اعتقد ان تفاصيل النهايات دوما بتحيي الرواية
حتى لو كان الحجم هيزيد شوية
بس انا بستمتع في طريقته في الانتقاء و الترجمة و الاختزال اكتر بكتير من الروايات المترجمة نفسها
ادامه الله

محمد عطية
فبراير 2013
Oct 31, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: re-read, classics
This was a reread for book club, but I enjoyed it as much as I did (1990) 26 years ago!
It's not too long. It's kind of mysterious. It was first published in 1933 which I think is an interesting era. It's about 4 people who get kidnapped and accidentally end up in Shangri-La. Or do they? I enjoyed it :)
Also, the same author wrote Goodbye, Mr. Chips, it's a good one too!
[To fully capture my moment of reading this book and re-watching Frank Capra's 1937 film version of Lost Horizon simultaneously, I've penned a mighty review of both that exceeds the Goodreads 20,000-character limit. To get around this, I have posted the rest in my personal writing section, where it fits snugly. It can be found: here. First part of the review starts here. Continuation link is below.]

In 1937, director Frank Capra made a masterful, heart-rending movie out of James Hilton's immensel
Thomas Holbrook
Oct 22, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
There are reasons books become classics. They speak with a voice that is ageless, have a plot that reflects the human experience and/or connects with a deep part of the psyche. Reading a classic work of literature for the first time is akin to discovering an unknown family member - someone who: expresses a familiarity of experience that is rooted in genetics, needs no explanation or translation to be understood and is a friend upon meeting. When this classic was offered by one of my dealers, th ...more
Samantha Glasser
After seeing Frank Capra's film version of this book, I had to read James Hilton's novel. The book and the film are very similar, so my love for the film has transferred to the original work. Lost Horizon is the story of four people, an American, a young British soldier, a middle-aged British man, and a female missionary, who have the misfortune of being kidnapped on an airplane. They are crashed near a mysterious and dismal mountain somewhere in Tibet, and all seems to be lost to them, includin ...more
Marty Reeder
Mar 16, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was part of a book recommendation swap between myself and my brother-in-law. I recommended Ender's Game and he recommended Lost Horizon. I wasn't sure at first if either of us anticipated our tastes in literature very well, but I at least read Lost Horizon with interest.

There is no doubt that it is well written. Hilton is able to tap into the deeper philosophies of life in a non-intrusive yet succinct way that avoids most of the heaviness that accompany philosophical reads. In other words,
Sep 12, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A British group leaves India in the 1930s by plane, the plane goes down, and thereafter they find themselves in the fabled Shangri-La. In this valley of warmth and beauty in the midst of the Himalayan mountains, they find a people with astounding longevity leading lives of simplicity and wisdom and peace. They eventually find their way out of Shangri-La and back home, but Conway (the main character), consumed by regret for the peace that he left behind, returns in the end.

For me, the power of t
May 24, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own, fiction
What a beautiful and wondrous book! I was completely captivated by the mysteries of Shangri-la. Our hero Conway's adventure was an awe-inspiring tale of a monastery hidden deep in a Tibetan mountain range, where the lamas lead extraordinary existences. Theirs are privileged lives steeped in wisdom and secrecy. Their isolation and longevity allows them a unique position in the world and very few outsiders are privy to their secrets. Hilton's use of the high lama's telepathy is certainly prophetic ...more
After loving the BBC dramatization based on this book, I decided to read it afterwards. Really liked it and I didn't know that Frank Capra had made a movie version of this book, which was probably more reliable to story itself than the last Hollywood version.
Apr 12, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a great book. It is a short read but provokes deep thought and questions about what we want of life and existence. It's very much rooted in the time it was written and, without any direct references, reflects the emotional, societal and physical damage that WWI created and that tipped reality on its axis. It is a sort of adventure story but, be warned, it's not takes a while for both the characters and the reader to get to a point of understanding but its worth the wait. A ver ...more
Arah-Leah Hay
Jan 28, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 5stars, classics
Lost Horizon gives birth to the Legendary utopia of Shangri-La. This was an incredible philosophical journey into the crisp Himalayan mountains. Deep and Thought Provoking this story is great for any one interested in religion and spirituality, or just books in general that really make you stop and think! A True Escapist Read into Paradise!
Faiza Sattar
★★★★★ (5/5)

Perhaps the exhaustion of the passions is the beginning of wisdom.

This was an absolutely mesmerizing and compelling read! It narrates a tale of a utopian lamasery concealed within the majestic mountains of the Himalayas, bordering near Tibet. It is a tale of high fantasy, utopian indulgence and pure, unadulterated adventure which has the power to resonate with one’s spiritual and physical existence.

You see, my dear sir, one of the first steps toward the clarifying of the mind is to o
Apr 08, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed this much more than I'd expected. I'd seen the movie many many years ago and vaguely remembered it as an adventure story, set in Utopia. I didn't realize how much it was a post-World War I book. In Chapter 3, Conway says "If you'd had all the experiences I've had, you'd know that there are times in life when the most comfortable thing to do is nothing at all. Things happen to you and you just let them happen. The War was rather like that. One is fortunate if, as on this occasion, a tou ...more
Krista the Krazy Kataloguer
I read this when I was a teenager, on my father's recommendation, and it has haunted me all these years. It fired my imagination and has remained one of my all-time favorite books.
Well, I just read this book again for my book discussion tomorrow at the library, and my feelings about it haven't changed since I first read it as a teenager. I wish Shangri-La really existed, because I'd go there in a heartbeat. The concept of moderation in all things, all the ti
Feb 10, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: to-buy, favorites, fantasy
I found "Lost Horizon" on a list of fantasy novels that, apart from Tolkien and Lewis, everyone who is interested in the genre should read. The one thing everyone remembers from this novel is Shangri-La, but what should really be remembered is the meditation on the post-WWI state of young men. The reason the protagonist, Conway, is open to the moderate unhurried ways of Shangri-La is because the War burned all the passion out of him. If you read this as a Lost generation book, it's just as rewar ...more
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British Literatur...: Novel Review: Lost Horizon 1 5 Mar 13, 2017 06:15AM  
Return of the Rog...: Lost Horizon by James Hilton 10 16 May 25, 2015 06:57AM  
What's The Name o...: SOLVED. Book about a plane crash in Nirvana /s 4 16 Nov 03, 2014 09:46AM  
Goodreads Librari...: Page number ISBN 9781840243536 2 10 May 15, 2014 12:40PM  
Would I enjoy it? 10 33 Sep 23, 2013 04:15AM  
Flawed freedom or blissful imprisonment? 14 66 Apr 26, 2013 12:43AM  
What's The Name o...: MAN IN A LARGE LIBRARY [s] 4 55 Feb 27, 2013 04:48AM  
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James Hilton (1900–1954) was a bestselling English novelist and Academy Award–winning screenwriter. After attending Cambridge University, Hilton worked as a journalist until the success of his novels Lost Horizon (1933) and Goodbye, Mr. Chips (1934) launched his career as a celebrated author. Hilton’s writing is known for its depiction of English life between the two world wars, its celebration of ...more
More about James Hilton...
“People make mistakes in life through believing too much, but they have a damned dull time if they believe too little.” 1891 likes
“if we have not found the heaven within,we have not found the heaven without” 38 likes
More quotes…