Download Finale: A Novel of the Reagan Years Audiobook

Finale: A Novel of the Reagan Years Audiobook, by Thomas Mallon Extended Sample Click for printable size audiobook cover
Author: Thomas Mallon Narrator: Christopher Lane Publisher: Blackstone Publishing Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: September 2015 ISBN: 9781504633031
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From the author of the acclaimed novel Watergate comes a galvanizing new novel about the tumultuous administration of the most consequential and enigmatic president of modern times—Ronald Reagan.

Finale takes listeners to the political gridiron of Washington in 1986, the wealthiest enclaves of Southern California, and the volcanic landscape of Iceland, where the president engages in two almost apocalyptic days of negotiation with Mikhail Gorbachev. Along with Soviet dissidents, illegal arms traders, and antinuclear activists, the novel’s memorable characters include Margaret Thatcher, Jimmy Carter, Pamela Harriman, John W. Hinckley, and even Bette Davis, with whom the president long ago appeared on screen. Several figures—including a humbled, crafty Richard Nixon; the young, brilliantly acerbic Christopher Hitchens; and an anxious, astrology-dependent Nancy Reagan—become the eyes through which listeners see the last convulsions of the Cold War, the AIDS epidemic, a clash of ideologies, and a political revolution. At the center of it all—but forever out of reach—is Reagan himself, whose genial remoteness confounds his subordinates, his children, and the citizens who elected him.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Gorbachev, Thatcher, the Gipper himself—the gang’s all here and ready to party like it’s 1986 in this propulsive and often very funny novel that portrays political upheaval through the eyes of some of recent history’s most formidable players.”

    O, The Oprah Magazine

  • Finale offers a certifiable slice of the recent past but teases its readers with subtle fictionalization…It is high-calorie stuff, and Mr. Mallon handles it with an easy mastery.”

    Wall Street Journal

  • “Mallon is a poised storyteller who traffics in history’s ironic creases. His novels don’t upend conventional wisdom so much as remind us that history is a rickety architecture of human endeavor—that today’s statues commemorate yesterday’s frail and fumbling mortals…Mallon works deftly with an ensemble cast, employing both real-life and fictitious characters…[a] galloping narrative.”

    New York Times Book Review

  • “Illustrates the strength of Mallon’s ability to cast even high-profile politicians as fellow humans….Wicked good, that Thomas Mallon.”

    Washington Post

  • “Thomas Mallon takes this human clay and, after adding a dash of inspired inner dialogue, sculpts characters who embody the folly and frustration of political power…Mallon has become a master of such political theater…Mallon fits all of these pieces together, combining broad historical accuracy and fictional verisimilitude with aplomb. Characters historical and fictional alike display bonfires of vanities, and insecurities, galore.”

    Christian Science Monitor

  • “This most contemporary of Mallon’s historically based novels is set amid the American political scene in late 1986…Despite all the scene-jumping, the transitions are seamless; there’s a whirlwind of activity and abundant snappy dialogue…With his customary flair, Mallon has crafted a scrupulously researched novel that gives readers a front-row seat on world-changing events—a combination that proves irresistible.”

    Booklist (starred review)

  • “An intriguing, humorous, even catty backstage view of the Reagan presidency from an artisan of the historical novel…Mallon’s version of history is close enough to fact to revive faded memories, while his imagining of who thought and said what presents some of the coherence and delights of fiction.”

    Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

  • “What Mallon does best is dramatize the bizarre ’80s intersection of Hollywood and Washington, DC, as equal weight is given to Merv Griffin and Eva Gabor as to Pat Buchanan and Jeane Kirkpatrick, creating in the process a crazy, quilted depiction of a contradiction-filled presidential administration.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “[A]well-developed snapshot of an important year.”

    Library Journal

  • An NPR Pick of Recommended Reads to Prepare You for the Conventions

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About the Author

Thomas Mallon is the author of the novels Henry and Clara, Dewey Defeats Truman, and Fellow Travelers, among others. He has been literary editor of GQ and is a frequent contributor to the New Yorker and the Atlantic, as well as other publications.

About the Narrator

Christopher Lane is an award-winning actor, director, and narrator. He has been awarded the prestigious Audie Award for Best Narration several times and has won numerous AudioFile Earphones Awards.