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Download Finding Iris Chang: Friendship, Ambition, and the Loss of an Extraordinary Mind Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample Finding Iris Chang: Friendship, Ambition, and the Loss of an Extraordinary Mind Audiobook, by Paula Kamen Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (138 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Paula Kamen Narrator: Bernadette Dunne Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: May 2010 ISBN: 9781455188420
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Iris Chang, bestselling author of The Rape of Nanking and tireless human rights activist, symbolized strength to many in the literary and social justice worlds. Her fearlessness made it all the more shocking when she committed suicide in 2004 at age thirty-six.

Longtime friend and confidante Paula Kamen, author of the critically acclaimed All in My Head, reveals for the first time the private woman behind the bold international celebrity. She offers a tribute to the lost heroine while attempting to explain Iris’ tragic psychological decline. Through letters, diaries, her own memories, and investigative journalism, Kamen fills in the surprising gaps in Chang’s personal transformation from awkward teen, to world-class writer and lecturer, and finally, into mental illness and paranoia. Finding Iris Chang is a portrait of a real, vulnerable woman who changed the world.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Peels back the layers of a ‘perfect’ life to trace what led to Chang’s carefully plotted suicide…[Kamen] approaches her very interesting subject with clarity, respect and an absence of melodrama.”

    Irish Times

  • “This moving bio searches for answers to author Chang’s 2004 suicide.”

    Entertainment Weekly

  • “Examines the link between madness and genius…Finding Iris Chang gives us an appreciation of what was lost when we lost Iris Chang.”

    The Asian Reporter

  • “Engaging on multiple levels…Engrossing and will inspire readers not familiar with Chang’s work to read her books…Would be an appropriate addition to courses in journalism, history, psychology, and women’s studies.”

    MultiCultural Review

  • “A multi-faceted exploration of her friend’s life and death. It does more than shed light on a complex woman, activist and journalist; it also places Chang’s struggles in the context of the secondary trauma experienced by journalists, artists and activists who seek to unearth and confront ugly truths.”

    In These Times

  • “Narrator Bernadette Dunne demonstrates her mastery of the audio format. Without resorting to accent or artifice she presents each voice distinctly, clearly defining the individual’s personality and emotion. This is an excellent pairing of material and voice artist.”

    AudioFile

  • “Expose[s] the unique genius and creativity of Chang, the far-reaching effects of her persistent social activism and compassion, and, sadly, the relentless escalation of the bipolar disorder that impelled her to suicide.”

    BookPage

  • “Kamen dutifully delves into the larger issues of suicide and mental illness in Asian-American communities, and into the peculiar immigrant drive to succeed that seized Chang so forcefully at such a young age…An intriguing portrait of an enormously ambitious woman.”

    Kirkus Reviews

Listener Opinions

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Connie | 1/5/2014

    " This book was a disappointment. I felt like the author was too fixated on herself and the underlying guilt she felt about not really being there for her friend in the last years of her life. Reading between the lines, it appeared that some of Iris Chang's family and friends didn't want to contribute to the book, which made me think there was some backstory to that. And there were some odd holes in the storyline. How come no pictures of Iris? I also didn't care for the way the author summed up the whole tragedy by blaming it on bipolar disorder. Overall it was a shallow attempt to explore a complex topic and had a whiff of self-servingness about it. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Judy | 10/30/2013

    " It made me want to read the book she had written- depressing though it may be but this book seemed long for the information she had to work with. I skimmed the last half. I hardly ever do that. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sheena | 10/7/2013

    " i'll get to this shortly... "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Tammy | 9/17/2013

    " Very interesting book and it has inspired me to read all of Iris Chang's books. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Claire | 9/9/2013

    " This is a fascinating book about friendship, ambition, the secrets we keep, depression, post-partum depression, how we drift apart, and more. Engrossing and interesting. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Rebecca | 6/23/2013

    " I really liked the way that the author told both a personal and biographical story of Iris Chang. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kathleen | 9/28/2011

    " can be depressing "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Joey | 9/7/2011

    " Whose life was chronicled here, Chang's or Kamen's? "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Ruth | 3/2/2011

    " Revealing and powerful biography of one of the most inspiring author/historian of her generation, by one of her closest friends whom digs deeper for answers on why Iris killed herself and the friend she never knew. For anyone who liked ''Rape of Nanking" this is a book to read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Evelyn | 1/17/2011

    " Fascinating, sad, the story of someone who died far too young, a person always under tremendous pressure to achieve and succeed. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Kay | 6/3/2010

    " I learned a lot from this book and am keen to read more of Iris Chnag's work. Its tagic what happened with her, but i hope it continues to bring to light the issue of mental health. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sheena | 5/12/2010

    " i'll get to this shortly... "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Joey | 7/6/2009

    " Whose life was chronicled here, Chang's or Kamen's? "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Evelyn | 3/28/2009

    " Fascinating, sad, the story of someone who died far too young, a person always under tremendous pressure to achieve and succeed. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Rebecca | 5/27/2008

    " I really liked the way that the author told both a personal and biographical story of Iris Chang. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Claire | 2/20/2008

    " This is a fascinating book about friendship, ambition, the secrets we keep, depression, post-partum depression, how we drift apart, and more. Engrossing and interesting. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Judy | 2/18/2008

    " It made me want to read the book she had written- depressing though it may be but this book seemed long for the information she had to work with. I skimmed the last half. I hardly ever do that. "

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About the Author

Paula Kamen is a Chicago journalist, author, and visiting research scholar with Northwestern University. Her commentaries and book reviews have appeared in the New York Times, Washington Post, Salon, Ms, Chicago Tribune, In These Times, and numerous anthologies.

About the Narrator

Bernadette Dunne is the winner of seventeen AudioFile Earphones Awards and has twice been nominated for the prestigious Audie Award. She studied at the Royal National Theatre in London and the Studio Theater in Washington, DC, and has appeared at the Kennedy Center and off Broadway. She lives in Brooklyn.