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Extended Audio Sample Empire Audiobook, by Orson Scott Card Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (5,678 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Orson Scott Card Narrator: Stefan Rudnicki Publisher: Macmillan Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Related: The Empire Series Release Date: November 2006 ISBN: 9781427200082
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The American Empire has grown too fast, and the fault lines at home are stressed to the breaking point. The war of words between Right and Left has collapsed into a shooting war, though most people just want to be left alone.

The battle rages between the high-technology weapons on one side, and militia foot-soldiers on the other, devastating the cities, and overrunning the countryside. But the vast majority, who only want the killing to stop and the nation to return to more peaceful days, have technology, weapons and strategic geniuses of their own.

When the American dream shatters into violence, who can hold the people and the government together? And which side will you be on?

Orson Scott Card is a master storyteller, who has earned millions of fans and reams of praise for his previous science fiction and fantasy novels. Now he steps a little closer to the present day with this chilling look at a near future scenario of a new American Civil War.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “The ideal presentation of any book of mine is to have excellent actors perform it in audio format. Orson Scott Card from the afterword of Ender's Game

  • The folks at Audio Renaissance have quite literally brought greatness to the text. They've included an introduction and a postscript read by Card himself, both of which place the novel and the audiobook in its context as well as enlightening us to the author's method of its construction. Multiple readers led by Stefan Rudnicki work perfectly to vocally illustrate each chapter, character and scene. Science Fiction and Fantasy on Ender’s Game (A Science Fiction and Fantasy Essential)

  • Nominated for Prometheus Award Nominee, 2007

Listener Opinions

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Mary Frances | 2/12/2014

    " See my review of Hidden Empire. Ditto. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Matthuvius Manhandlinglambs | 2/7/2014

    " Not his best. But entertaining. Not one I'd recommend though. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Sean Watson | 2/4/2014

    " As a frequent reader of OSC, this book was a monumental disappointment. Its premise is a violent revolution in America as the vocal fight between the Liberal and Conservative movements ultimately results in a civil war as one side becomes determined to take the country back from the traitors who have seized it. These unscrupulous fanatics hoard dirty money in secret, assemble a high tech army, and finally when the moment is right, they pounce and attempt to take the government by force. Which gun-toting movement is fanatical and unprincipled enough to resort to violence to change the country? You guessed it - the Liberals! Card's protagonist is a brilliant right-leaning Special Forces soldier, who despite his conservative nature, has complete empathy and a deep cultural appreciation for the Muslim civilians in the theater wherein he fights because we all know conservatives are never judgmental of those who hold different beliefs. When he uncovers the treachery of the Liberal movement, he knows the media cannot be trusted since it's been completely corrupted, so he goes on the only fair and balanced show left: The O'Reilly Factor with host Bill O'Reilly, and no - I'm not kidding about that. I typically enjoy OSC because he challenges me and presents fresh perspectives. This book was utterly predictable, base, and pandered to the lowest common denominator of our current political landscape. I thought Card was better than this. If you genuinely believe that Fox News is a legitimate news organization, I expect you'll love it and I would encourage you to buy it. It sucked several hours out of my life that I'll never get back. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Lillian Shuff | 1/29/2014

    " What a disappointment!! I absolutely love Orson Scott Card but this had none of the insight and compassion found in his other novels. Basically it's an ode to the special forces and a weak rendition of a disturbing view of our future in a red state versus blue state country. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Cassi | 1/24/2014

    " I agree with other reviewers, this book was not his best. The characters were very one dimensional, and the plot was an action story. However, his essay at the end was fantastic, and it brought another dimension to me that I didn't get in the book. So, for that, three stars. I would highly recommend the essay! "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Nancy | 1/18/2014

    " Just read this for book club. It was ok. I wouldn't recommend it. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Mark | 12/31/2013

    " Plot does not match the blurb. For right wingers only. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Grace Makley | 12/6/2013

    " Not his best work, but pretty good. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Mark Cheathem | 11/6/2013

    " The premise of this book was interesting. There's an unexpected twist that was a pleasant surprise. I would have liked a bit more character development, but given the background of the book, that probably would have been asking a lot. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Natalie | 8/26/2013

    " I love the political philosophy. I was pulled in from the beginning. It was a fun story and made me think. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jonathan Pettit | 7/18/2013

    " Excellent book. Good mix of intrigue, politics, technology, and military action. If only, he wouldn't have killed XXX (it'll be pretty obvious who this is). As a National Guardsman, I enjoyed that he didn't portray the NG as boneheads. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Emily Kate | 4/9/2013

    " loved it! made me realize how little I actually knew about us politics and made me think about how certain things could actually happen. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Leigh | 3/10/2013

    " At first I was hesitant to read a book involving politics, but I thought the author did a good job of pulling in history and presented the idea of the US becoming an Empire very plausible. There is actually a point in which the book surprises me. Enjoy! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Ruth | 11/20/2012

    " Politically intriguing, especially given the campaign right now. I can't help but wonder how this election year would have influenced the book, if Card hadn't already published it back in 2006. Maybe not at all. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 David Hansen | 10/18/2012

    " Good book with a lot of action and an interesting plot but not a heck of a lot of substance. A good sumer book. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Nina Smith | 8/17/2012

    " I don't usually like adventure books but Cooper convinced me to give this one a shot. Really, really good but taps in slightly to my mild sense of paranoia. :) Orson Scott Card is a great storyteller and, like Ender's Game, does not dissapoint! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Alan | 2/13/2012

    " I liked Card's reasoning about the future of America and a possible outcome of it. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Evan Perkiss | 11/7/2011

    " Like Dan Brown, but a bit better for those interested in Roman history or US politics. And I am a bit of both. But still a bit pedantic. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Kaworu | 5/20/2011

    " Oh, Orson, how far you have fallen. Instead of the brilliance that was Ender's Game, you now write a Tea Partier's political doomsday fantasy/sub-par action movie. A shame. Hopefully you'll recover from this. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Kim | 5/7/2011

    " This is the first time I will not not be reading the sequel if that tells you anything. I think this is the worst book I have read in a long time. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Cole | 4/21/2011

    " wow. this was just one of those books I could not put down. Fast-action and very enjoyable. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Dominique | 3/30/2011

    " Intriguing beginning, but falters a quarter of the way through with wooden characters and laughable plot. Devolves into outright silly camp towards the end. A thinly disguised vehicle for Card's politics, unworthy in my view of the author of the excellent "Ender's Game." "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Tori | 3/21/2011

    " Great political thriller. What would happen if the Republicans and Democrats started a civil war..... "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Cindy | 3/16/2011

    " Really liked this book. I haven't read many Orson Scott Card books and really enjoyed his writing style. Major twist in the middle that I wasn't expecting and definitely kept me guessing through out. Also made me think a lot about government and and how fragile our society and way of life is. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Gollor | 3/9/2011

    " Interesting idea, not the greatest implementation. It was like a caricature of a book to promote how great right wing ideals are. The left wing is the bat shit crazy imperialists trying to take over NY, and the right wingers save the day. Which is ass backwards, if nothing else. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Terrileew | 3/1/2011

    " Another book that was hard to put down and had me totally engrossed. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Anne | 2/28/2011

    " Action! Packed! Plausible? Plausiblish. I felt like I was supposed to learn more than I did. I regretted that I had not skipped the preachy postscript. But there were briefly robots, so I learned what I could from that. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Peter | 2/25/2011

    " Not bad, but not great. Good plot, but I've never really enjoyed Orson Scott Card and this didn't change my mind "

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About the Author
Author Orson Scott Card

Orson Scott Card, the author of the New York Times bestseller Ender’s Game, has won several Hugo and Nebula awards for his works of speculative fiction. His Ender novels are widely read by adults and younger readers and are increasingly used in schools. Besides these and other science fiction novels, Card writes contemporary fantasy, American-frontier fantasy, biblical novels, poetry, plays, and scripts.

About the Narrator

Stefan Rudnicki first became involved with audiobooks in 1994. Now a Grammy-winning audiobook producer, he has worked on more than three thousand audiobooks as a narrator, writer, producer, or director. He has narrated more than three hundred audiobooks. A recipient of multiple AudioFile Earphones Awards, he was presented the coveted Audie Award for solo narration in 2005, 2007, and 2014 and was named one of AudioFile’s Golden Voices in 2012.