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Download Once In A Great City: A Detroit Story Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample Once In A Great City: A Detroit Story, by David Maraniss Click for printable size audiobook cover
0 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 5 0.00 (0 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: David Maraniss Narrator: David Maraniss Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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It’s 1963 and Detroit is on top of the world. The city’s leaders are among the most visionary in America: grandson of the first Ford, Henry Ford II; influential labor leader Walter Reuther; Motown’s founder Berry Gordy; the Reverend C. L. Franklin and his daughter, the amazing Aretha; Governor George Romney, Mormon and civil-rights advocate; super car salesman Lee Iacocca; Mayor Jerome Cavanagh, a Kennedy acolyte; Police Commissioner George Edwards; and Martin Luther King, Jr. It was the American auto makers’ best year; the revolution in music and politics was underway. Reuther’s United Automobile Workers (UAW) had helped lift the middle class.

The time was full of promise. The auto industry was selling more cars than ever before and inventing the Mustang. Motown was capturing the world with its amazing artists. The progressive labor movement was rooted in Detroit with the UAW. Martin Luther King, Jr., delivered his “I Have a Dream” speech there two months before he made it famous in the Washington march.

Once in a Great City shows that the shadows of collapse were evident even then. Before the devastating riot, before the decades of civic corruption and neglect, and before white flight; before people trotted out the grab bag of rust-belt infirmities and competition from abroad to explain Detroit’s collapse. From high labor costs to harsh weather, one could see the signs of a city’s ruin. Detroit at its peak was threatened by its own design. It was being abandoned by the new world. Yet so much of what Detroit gave America lasts.

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Quotes & Awards

  • Once in a Great City is incandescent…a classic American story of promise and loss.”

    Gay Talese, New York Times bestselling author

  • “Elegiac and richly detailed…Maraniss…conjures those boom years of his former hometown with novelistic ardor…[and] succeeds with authoritative, adrenaline-laced flair.”

    New York Times

  • “Captivating …That’s the tragedy at the core of this gracious, generous book. All that remains of the hopeful moment Maraniss so effectively describes is a soundtrack. And that isn’t nearly enough.”

    Washington Post

  • “The simple breadth of the book is impressive, with Maraniss merging and wrangling disparate story lines about culture, politics, race, and the Ford Mustang into a single patchwork image of the Motor City.”

    Christian Science Monitor

  • “Maraniss highlights the class and race frictions that demarcated and defined the city and gives readers a glimpse of the colorful life of mobsters and moguls, entertainers and entrepreneurs.”

    Booklist (starred review)

  • “With exhaustive research and incisive profiles of key players like Henry Ford and Berry Gordy, Maraniss evokes a vibrant city reaching for the top—even as signs of its eventual decline were starting to emerge.”

    BookPage

  • “The narrative’s tone of reminiscence makes it entertainingly informative…A colorful, detailed history.”

    Library Journal

  • “[A] fast-paced, sprawling, copiously detailed look at eighteen months—from 1962 to 1964—in the city’s past…Maraniss’ brawny narrative evokes a city still ‘vibrantly alive’ and striving for a renaissance.”

    Kirkus Reviews

  • A BookPage Top Pick for September 2014
  • A New York Times Bestseller
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