Download Empire (Abridged): The Life, Legend, and Madness of Howard Hughes Audiobook

Empire (Abridged): The Life, Legend, and Madness of Howard Hughes Audiobook, by Donald L. Barlett Extended Sample Click for printable size audiobook cover
Author: Donald L. Barlett, James B. Steele Narrator: Christopher Hurt Publisher: Blackstone Publishing Format: Abridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: May 2017 ISBN: 9781538463444
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (33 ratings) (rate this audio book)
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Howard Hughes lived one of the greatest, most heroic, misunderstood, mysterious, bizarre, and tragic lives in American history. Here at last, in a uniquely full and brilliantly documented biography by a Pulitzer Prize–winning investigative team, the mythology that surrounded that life is disentangled from the truth.

Hughes had always been different. Raised by overprotective parents, pathologically fearful of germs, in awe of his father, unable to make friends, he grew into a man ruled by madness. Certainly his riches set him apart. But he was also tough. Orphaned and a millionaire at eighteen, Hughes repudiated his relatives, seized control of the Hughes Tool Company, the linchpin of his fortune, and went on to become a flamboyant movie producer, holder of many world aviation records, principal owner of Trans World Airlines, a critically-important defense contractor, Hollywood’s most pursued, and elusive, bachelor, and partner of the United States government.

This is an epic biography of an epic figure, who bestrode the world like a colossus, yet could not master himself.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Of all the books written about Howard Hughes, Empire is easily the best.”

    New York Times Book Review

  • “[The] most responsible and authoritative biography of Hughes to date.”


  • “A dazzlingly reported, hard-nosed account.”

    Chicago Sun-Times

  • “The perfect biography of the weirdest, most fascinating most god-awful corporate creature you will ever encounter in broad daylight.”


  • “A remarkable job of investigative reporting…Cracks Hughes’ public persona as it disentangles the psychodrama of his private doings.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “The most rounded portrait of this bizarre man to find its way into print.”

    Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

Listener Reviews

Write a Review
  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Julie | 7/4/2013

    " Well done for a biography, very telling. Quite a page turner. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Stephen | 7/3/2009

    " I don't read much non-fiction. I should read more good books like this one. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Dolores | 1/3/2008

    " Remember investigative journalism? Remember reporting teams? Donald Barlett & James Steele - formerly of the Philadelphia Inquirer - haven't forgotten. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Felix | 12/1/2007

    " This book is huge! I thank it for making me completely paranoid about our whole system. "

About the Author

Donald L. Barlett and James B. Steele have worked together for more than three decades, first at the Philadelphia Inquirer, where they won two Pulitzer Prizes, and then at Time magazine, where they earned two National Magazine Awards. They have written several books together.

About the Narrator

Christopher Hurt is an accomplished narrator with a lengthy résumé of popular titles for Blackstone. A graduate of George Washington University’s acting program, he currently resides in New York City.