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Extended Audio Sample The Cold War: A New History Audiobook, by John Lewis Gaddis Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (1,261 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: John Lewis Gaddis Narrator: Jay Gregory, Alan Sklar Publisher: Highbridge Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: October 2007 ISBN: 9781598873757
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The major powers took the world stage for their decades-long face-off, a frightening, hostile relationship that defined our age. This important account explores the strategic dynamics that drove the Cold War, provides illuminating portraits of its major p Download and start listening now!

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Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Ryan | 2/17/2014

    " A really in depth look at all of the players and their motives. Sifting through mire (as someone who grew up in a post-Cold War world) was a little nauseating, yet the book illuminated the terrifying idea of living during an ever-present nuclear scenario. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Liz | 2/15/2014

    " Interesting read, no too dry... "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Tresy | 2/13/2014

    " A good, if utterly tendentious account of the cold war from a pro-US perspective, by a "dean" of foreign policy at Yale. No amount of ink is too much to expend on the USSR's and China's crimes against humanity, but all similar US crimes are rationalized away as reluctant departures from our true and virtuous nature, necessitated by the evil we were confronting. Funny how we keep finding ourselves reluctantly violating these values we supposedly hold (e.g, torture and warrantless wiretapping) even after the evil empires are gone (or in the case of China, making its cheap labor available to our Wal-Marts). Gaddis supposedly was an admirer of the Bush Doctrine, and it shows. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jeffrey | 2/12/2014

    " Very interesting read. I think i will get even more out of it when i read it a second time. Some of the facts that the author brings out are downright chilling. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Ilya | 1/27/2014

    " In November 1950 the United Nations coalition, consisting mostly of the United States Army and the South Korean army, had almost won the Korean war, occupying most of North Korea. However, since October hundreds of thousands of Chinese "volunteers" had been crossing the Yalu River, and in November they started attacking the United Nations positions and pushing the United Nations troops south. At a press conference on November 30, 1950, President Truman said that he did not rule out using the atomic bomb against Chinese troops. So on December the 2nd, five Hiroshima-sized bombs were dropped on Chinese troop formations. A United States veto prevented the United Nations Security Council from undoing the authorization of involvement in the Korean conflict. Pressured by their Chinese ally, the Soviet Union gave the United States an ultimatum: stop all military operations on the peninsula within 48 hours, or face the severest consequences. When the deadline passed, two bombers took off from Vladivostok and dropped atomic bombs on the port cities of Pusan and Inchon. On General MacArthur's orders, the next bombs fell on Vladivostok, Shenyang and Harbin; as Western European countries were withdrawing from NATO, mushroom clouds appeared over Hamburg and Frankfurt. Now, only the first half of this paragraph took place in our timeline, but the second part could very well have. During the missile era, a nuclear war could have started during the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962 and during the Able Archer exercise of 1983, which Richard Rhodes also wrote about. So whatever harm came out of the Cold War, things could've been much, much worse. This is an America-centric history of the Cold War that devotes several pages to Watergate, and only mentions Guatemala in passing because of the U.S. involvement in the coup that overthrew the country's leftist government in 1954, which supposedly radicalized Fidel Castro and Che Guevara. Nowhere does it say that the coup was followed by a 40-year civil war where 140 thousand to 250 thousand people were killed. El Salvador is not even in the index. In the Third World, the Cold War was quite hot, and I wouldn't be surprised if more people were killed in the Cold War-related hot wars that would've been in the nuclear exchange of December 1950 - but this book doesn't even ask this question. The basic narrative is familiar to all educated adults: the wartime coalition breaking up, the coup in Czechoslovakia, the formation of NATO and so on until the age of Gorbachev, Yeltsin and George H. W. Bush - but perhaps not to the Yale undergraduates the author teaches. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Tui | 1/25/2014

    " A great read and entry into the subject. Gaddis can tell a story, and it stoked my interest in the subject some years ago. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Bev | 1/14/2014

    " History of our times is subject to the interpretation of the author. I found this highly iinformative, well written and organized and a good take on events in my lifetime. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Azaam | 12/31/2013

    " Every man, woman, and child should read this book. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Gilbert | 12/29/2013

    " Enjoying this book, does a great job linking events during the 1940's into the 1970's that I knew about, had lived thru, but didn't understand the interconnections. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Jessica | 12/18/2013

    " Meh. I expected so much more. This is NOT a "new" history. It is the same old stuff, and he does little to include new studies, like those in the field of environmental history. His optimistic conclusion and pro-American undertones are nauseating. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Baniza | 12/9/2013

    " After world war II, there were basically two big geopolitical powers left to divided up the world. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Patrick | 10/7/2013

    " I can't really picture what a better compact Cold War history would be like. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Angie | 8/4/2013

    " Amazing. The best book I've read on this topic in general. I cried once or twice while reading it. Very cool. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Grevnier | 3/29/2013

    " Short but very interesting account of the Cold War - for a US perspective eve "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Tifanny | 3/1/2013

    " I love this book so much. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Amy | 2/9/2013

    " I became interested in the Cold War while writing my master's thesis. This provides a good overview of the causes and players. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Eric | 12/30/2012

    " Concise without loosing the important facts of the Cold War. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Stephen Osborne | 3/19/2012

    " Very nicely written with many interesting insights as to the thought processes of world leaders during a frightful period of history. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Aaron | 11/12/2011

    " Great overall coverage of the topic. Very much in the vein of "popular history". "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Sarah | 6/1/2011

    " To be expected of a book only 260 pages long but I feel it glossed too much. Still enjoyable though. Need to find a more in depth one now. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Sarah E. M. Feld | 4/22/2011

    " Caveat- listened to this book via Audible. As an audiobook, it does not work great. You must have an immaculate attention span and never break focus for so much as a moment, otherwise you'll be saying to yourself, "Wait, Breshnev again? I thought we'd moved on to Gorby. Damn it." "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Ted | 4/16/2011

    " A very readable volume of the Cold War. Not overly "academic", nor "pedestrian". "

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

    " Every man, woman, and child should read this book. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Robert | 1/23/2011

    " Exactly what I was hoping for. Wish I could give this 4.5 stars "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Russell | 1/15/2011

    " A serviceable if somewhat pedestrian survey of the cold war. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Brian | 12/28/2010

    " Excellent book and easy to read. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Sarah | 12/19/2010

    " An engaging distillation of a conflict I (sadly, terrifyingly, pick one) never learned much about in school. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Cavolonero | 12/13/2010

    " Filled in some blanks, the part about Nixon is especially relevant today "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Gilbert | 8/17/2010

    " Enjoying this book, does a great job linking events during the 1940's into the 1970's that I knew about, had lived thru, but didn't understand the interconnections. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Craig | 7/13/2010

    " A great book by a well known Cold War historian who does an excellent job of educating people with a clear, concise account of the events that merely led us to the brink of Nuclear catastrophe and the fall of the U.S.S.R "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Natasha | 6/24/2010

    " a nice, relatively simple explanation of the basic events of the Cold War. I don't know if I agree with the depiction of Reagan as a hero, but I appreciated the simplicity of the book as many history books get too self-involved. I learned a lot about our country's history "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Tifanny | 4/14/2010

    " I love this book so much. "

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About the Author
Author John Lewis Gaddis

John Lewis Gaddis is the Robert A. Lovett Professor of History at Yale University. His previous books include The United States and the Origins of the Cold War; Strategies of Containment; The Long Peace; We Now Know; The Landscape of History; Surprise, Security, and the American Experience; and The Cold War: A New History. He teaches courses on Cold War history, grand strategy, international studies, and biography and has won two Yale undergraduate teaching awards. He was also a 2005 recipient of the National Humanities Medal.

About the Narrators

Jay Gregory is a veteran New York actor of stage, film, and television. He can be heard in a number of informational narrations on the Discovery Channel, TLC, and PBS and has a wide range of audiobooks to his credit.

Alan Sklar, a graduate of Dartmouth, has excelled in his career as a freelance voice actor. He began narrating audiobooks in 1996, winning seven AudioFile Earphones Awards and earning several “Best Voice” awards. He has also worked as a stage actor and as a promo announcer at WPIX-TV in New York City. His dream is to be an opera singer, a role for which he hones his bass-baritone operatic skills in the upstairs shower of his home.