Extended Audio Sample

Download The Death Instinct Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample The Death Instinct Audiobook, by Jed Rubenfeld Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (1,368 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Jed Rubenfeld Narrator: Kerry Shale Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: January 2011 ISBN: 9781101460481
Regular Price: $25.00 Add to Cart
— or —
FlexPass™ Price: $20.95$5.95$5.95 for new members!
Add to Cart learn more )

A spellbinding literary thriller about terror, war, greed, and the darkest secrets of the human soul, by the author of the million-copy bestseller, The Interpretation of Murder.September 16, 1920. Under a clear blue September sky, a quarter ton of explosives is detonated in a deadly attack on Wall Street. Fear comes to the streets of New York.Witnessing the blast are war veteran Stratham Younger, his friend James Littlemore of the New York Police Department, and beautiful French radiochemist Colette Rousseau. A series of inexplicable attacks on Colette, a secret buried in her past, and a mysterious trail of evidence lead Younger, Littlemore, and Rousseau on a thrilling international and psychological journey – from Paris to Prague, from the Vienna home of Dr Sigmund Freud to the corridors of power in Washington, DC, and ultimately to the hidden depths of our most savage instincts. As the seemingly disjointed pieces of Younger and Littlemore’s investigations come together, the two uncover the shocking truth about the bombing – a truth that threatens to shake their world to its foundations. Download and start listening now!

BK_PENG_001646

Quotes & Awards

  • “This novel is great…The Death Instinct is that rare combo platter: a blast to read…and hefty enough to stay with you. There’s a steady beat of intrigue and confusion and explanations you wouldn’t have guessed.”

    New York Times

  • A deadly terrorist attack rocks downtown Manhattan in September...1920. Rubenfeld's gripping novel revolves around the real-life Wall Street bombing and will have you enthralled from page 1. Entertainment Weekly Must List
  • Brilliantly concocted and more than just a little eerie. The fictional and actual events surrounding the 1920 bombing are as relevant today as they were nearly a century ago. USA TODAY
  • This novel is great ... Jed Rubenfeld's tremendous follow-up to his 2006 novel, The Interpretation of Murder, bustles with kidnapping, knife throwing, gun fighting, poisoning, bank robbery, corruption. The Death Instinct is that rare combo platter: a blast to read - you'll be counting how few pages you have left with dread, and you'll do this before you're halfway done - and hefty enough to stay with you. There's a steady beat of intrigue and confusion and explanations you wouldn't have guessed. The New York Times
  • Intelligent, absorbing and provocative. The Seattle Times
  • Rubenfeld's debut, The Interpretation of Murder (2006), proved his skillful use of historical detail to create a compelling tale of psychological suspense. He's only gotten better. Library Journal (starred review)
  • Jed Rubenfeld delivers a soul-searching narrative with complex and memorable characters. Not only is The Death Instinct a suspenseful story that pulls readers into its political and scientific intrigue, it is also a provocative meditation on the psychological and emotional ripple effects of war and terrorism. Matthew Pearl, author of The Dante Club and The Poe Shadow
  • In The Death Instinct, Jed Rubenfeld masterfully weaves a sweeping story that moves from New York City to Paris to Vienna and back, illuminating with shocking and harrowing clarity the aftershock effects of the Great War on an entire generation. Anyone with a taste for mystery, political intrigue, and love in desperate circumstances will devour this enthralling novel. Katherine Howe, author of The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane
  • The Death Instinct is a terrifically smart, tumbling roller coaster of a novel, full of mysterious twists and turns, murders, conspiracies, dreams of revenge, and ultimately a very human redemption. Beginning with one of the great unsolved crimes in American history?the 1920 bombing of Wall Street?author Jed Rubenfeld takes the reader on a fast-forward journey through the politics and police work, science and psychoanalysis of the of the early nineteenth century. The characters are so well realized, the conspiracies so wonderfully twisted, and the rendering of time and place so well done that readers will find the story hard to put down?and harder to forget Deborah Blum, author of The Poisoner's Handbook: Murder and the Birth of Forensic Medicine in Jazz Age New York
  • A well-crafted story, skillfully told, with more twists than a pig's tail, and a lot more entertaining. Anne Perry, author of the Thomas Pitt and William Monk novels
  • “Intelligent, absorbing, and provocative.”

    Seattle Times

  • “A deadly terrorist attack rocks downtown Manhattan in September…1920. Rubenfeld’s gripping novel revolves around the real-life Wall Street bombing and will have you enthralled.”

    Entertainment Weekly

  • “Brilliantly concocted and more than just a little eerie. The fictional and actual events surrounding the 1920 bombing are as relevant today as they were nearly a century ago.”

    USA Today

  • “Rubenfeld’s debut, The Interpretation of Murder, proved his skillful use of historical detail to create a compelling tale of psychological suspense. He’s only gotten better.”

    Library Journal (starred review)

  • “Jed Rubenfeld delivers a soul-searching narrative with complex and memorable characters. Not only is The Death Instinct a suspenseful story that pulls readers into its political and scientific intrigue, it is also a provocative meditation on the psychological and emotional ripple effects of war and terrorism.”

    Matthew Pearl, New York Times bestselling author of The Dante Club and The Last Dickens

  • “In The Death Instinct, Jed Rubenfeld masterfully weaves a sweeping story that moves from New York City to Paris to Vienna and back, illuminating with shocking and harrowing clarity the aftershock effects of the Great War on an entire generation. Anyone with a taste for mystery, political intrigue, and love in desperate circumstances will devour this enthralling novel.”

    Katherine Howe, New York Times bestselling author of The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane

  • The Death Instinct is a terrifically smart, tumbling rollercoaster of a novel, full of mysterious twists and turns, murders, conspiracies, dreams of revenge, and ultimately a very human redemption. Beginning with one of the great unsolved crimes in American history, the 1920 bombing of Wall Street, author Jed Rubenfeld takes the reader on a fast-forward journey through the politics and police work, science and psychoanalysis of the of the early nineteenth century. The characters are so well realized, the conspiracies so wonderfully twisted, and the rendering of time and place so well done that readers will find the story hard to put down and harder to forget.”

    Deborah Blum, author of The Poisoner’s Handbook: Murder and the Birth of Forensic Medicine in Jazz Age New York

  • “A well-crafted story, skillfully told, with more twists than a pig’s tail, and a lot more entertaining.”

    Anne Perry, New York Times bestselling author of the Thomas Pitt and William Monk novels

  • Selected for the February 2011 Indie Next List
  • A New York Times Bestseller
  • An Entertainment Weekly “Must Read”

Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Alicia | 2/17/2014

    " Cinematic writing, real-life mystery, engaging investigators (professional and amateur), and some very interesting war and scientific history. Fast and engaging historical fiction. "

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

    " Rubenfeld does a good job of mixing fact & fiction. I look forward to his next creation. Again, thanks for F for introducing me to Rubenfeld! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Tony | 2/8/2014

    " Good stuff, clever and intriguing. Full of twist and turns. How I envy the Yale law undergrads. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Mark Levine | 2/1/2014

    " Lenghty & informative.Are any means acceptable for the desired results?Every novel set in Vienna in the early 20th century involves Freud and anti-semitism and discussions of such. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Terry Priest | 1/29/2014

    " What an amazing book. Very historically informative, while holding an awesome story line. The characters were gripping, and contributed abundantly to a real page turner. I have recommended this book to the countless other readers I know. Thanks for a wonderful story, and for teaching me more than one historical fact. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Joanna | 1/26/2014

    " I am a big fan of historical fiction. I really like the idea of a fictional story with the tips of its toes still fact. I am glad that I have a 100 page rule for books that I start, because it took that long for me to get hooked on this one. But by the end, it was definitely a read-in-the-parking-lot-at-school-pick-up page turner. A good adventure, interesting characters, with just the right amount of spooky. A great read. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Lian Tanner | 1/14/2014

    " This was such an entrancing book - I picked it off the shelf at the library with no idea what to expect, and was surprised at how much I liked it. The historical setting was splendidly done, the political undercurrents, the manipulation that is going on behind the scenes, the atmosphere. The story winds in and out with intelligence, constant surprises and unexpected humour. The main characters are delightful. I'll be looking out for more of this author's work. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Diane S. | 1/13/2014

    " Sequel to the Interpretation of murder taking place ten years later, a fantastic historical mystery centered around the Wall Street bombing of 1920. The fist World War has ended, Freud has become famous and Madame Curie and her discovery of radium has had an impact on the medical field as well as used for a great deal of profit by nefarious industries. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Karen | 1/13/2014

    " I enjoyed this but it seemed to drag a little - maybe more a reflection on my life at the time but it didn't keep me awake at night reading. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Atishay | 11/22/2013

    " Loved this book for its ruthless pace and stimulating effects. A completely un-putdownable and compulsive read. Waiting anxiously for Rubenfeld's third. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Martin Cerjan | 10/19/2013

    " Very clever. I liked the mix of historical facts and characters. Of course it was fluffly, but it was a good diversion. Maybe a tad overwritten and the stereotypes were a bit overused, but all in all a good read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Lynn Webster | 10/10/2013

    " I would recommend this book. "

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

    " A very good book which was hard to put down. Love the mixture of reality with fictional events. The ending was a little rushed in my opinion which is why it only had four stars. But very good all the same. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Rebecca Martin | 6/10/2013

    " Guess I just don't respond well to the "what if?" kind of book. The book was too much a construction of the 21st century. Anachronistic. Good explanation of the death instinct and Beyond the Pleasure Principle. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Cathy | 4/2/2013

    " Even better than the first book, The Interpretation of Murder! Again, starts a little slow, to build familiarity with the characters and to set the scene, but once it gets going, a terrific read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Debbie | 5/15/2012

    " Very enjoyable historical fiction. Excellent character development, intricate and sophisticated plot twists, and effective merging of history and fiction in this multiple-layered whodunnit. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jackie | 5/3/2012

    " Probably a 3.5. I had a really hard time keeping up with the characters, and their motives, at first, but I had a really crazy month, so that may have been me... "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Mary G. | 2/6/2012

    " What a very well written story with interestng characters. I found the setting to be very captivating. Hopefully we will see further adventures of Littlemore and Younger. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Elizabeth Sum | 11/25/2011

    " The Interpretation of Murder was still better. But this was not bad too...an intelligent thriller. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Linda | 6/27/2011

    " Really enjoyed this book. Very cleverly crafted story. Even better than his first book The Interpretation of Murder. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Wesley | 5/21/2011

    " A very entertaining page turner, with some interesting fictional characters intertwined with historical figures in a story that revolves an unresolved terrorist bombing on Wall Street in 1929. The author, fwiw, is the husband of the "Tiger Mom." "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Sarah | 5/18/2011

    " not as good as The Interpretation of Murder...I thought the plot was less believable, and the connection with Freud and rushing back and forth across the Atlantic seemed implausible. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Diana | 5/16/2011

    " A page-turner, for sure. Will be a good film, but not serious lit. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Cara | 4/30/2011

    " Great spy/thriller/period novel circa 1920. It really brought the era of post WWI, pre-depression New York City and Washington D.C. to life. And it was a real page turner. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Andrew | 4/28/2011

    " Very good yarn - was not aware of historical connection. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Sunny | 4/7/2011

    " Not my favorite. Too much going on. I think it could have been two or three novels. He doesn't trust his readers to "get it." "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Ilene | 4/1/2011

    " exciting and easy to read mystery based on historic facts. i love the sense of humor the protagonists have. the only fault i have is how easily rubenfeld wraps everything up so conveniently. "

Write a Review
What is FlexPass?
  • Your first audiobook is just $5.95
  • Over 90% are at or below $12.95
  • "LOVE IT" guarantee
  • No time limits or expirations
About the Author
Author Jed RubenfeldAmy Chua and Jed Rubenfeld are professors at Yale Law School. Chua, one of Time magazine’s 100 most influential people in the world in 2011, is the author of Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother, which unleashed a firestorm debate about the cultural value of self-discipline, as well as the bestselling World on Fire. Rubenfeld examined the political dangers of “living in the moment” in Freedom and Time; he is also the author of the international bestseller The Interpretation of Murder.
About the Narrator

Kerry Shale is a Sony Radio Academy Award winner, a narrator of dozens of audio books, and an actor in films as diverse as Yentl and Welcome to Sarajevo. He won an Audie Award for his narration of Q&A.