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Download The Golden Age Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample The Golden Age Audiobook, by Gore Vidal Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (468 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Gore Vidal Narrator: Anne Twomey Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: September 2000 ISBN: 9780553753073
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The Golden Age is Vidal's crowning achievement, a vibrant tapestry of American political and cultural life from 1939 to 1954, when the epochal events of World War II and the Cold War transformed America, once and for all, for good or ill, from a republic into an empire. The sharp-eyed and sympathetic witnesses to these events are Caroline Sanford, Hollywood actress turned Washington D.C., newspaper publisher, and Peter Sanford, her nephew and publisher of the independent intellectual journal The American Idea. They experience at first hand the masterful maneuvers of Franklin Roosevelt to bring a reluctant nation into the Second World War, and, later, the actions of Harry Truman that commit the nation to a decade-long twilight struggle against Communism--developments they regard with a decided skepticism even though it ends in an American global empire. The locus of these events is Washington D.C., yet the Hollywood film industry and the cultural centers of New York also play significant parts. In addition to presidents, the actual characters who appear so vividly in the pagea of The Golden Age include Eleanor Roosevelt, Harry Hopkins, Wendell Willkie, William Randolph Hearst, Dean Acheson, Tennessee Williams, Joseph Alsop, Dawn Powell--and Gore Vidal himself.

The Golden Age offers up U.S. history as only Gore Vidal can, with unrivaled penetration, wit, and high drama, allied to a classical view of human fate. It is a supreme entertainment that is not only sure to be a major bestseller but that will also change listeners' understanding of American history and power. Download and start listening now!

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Quotes & Awards

  • [A] true magnum opus. The New York Times
  • "A smart, witty Washington novel... You'll be gripped to the edge of your Chesterfield... Long live Gore Vidal. Chicago Sun-Times
  • "Rich in dialogue and mirthless humor, The Golden Age is... a worthy conclusion to one of the finest sustained historical visions in American literature. The New York Observer

Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Cynthia | 2/1/2014

    " Great combination of fascinating history and lots of gossip. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Georgesear | 1/31/2014

    " The story of America from the FDR administration to the turn of the new century, sharply and often wittily observed by 2 generations of Washington insiders. Gore Vidal himself turns up as a character and takes over part of the narrative toward the end. I was riveted from beginning to end. The history itself would be interesting enough, but Gore's observations about politics, history and human nature itself, along with a lovely prose style, make this book a great read. I will definitely read the others in this Empire series. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Stormy | 1/12/2014

    " We should have started at the beginning with Vidal's series. This is the last book in the series and it was hard to get to know the characters. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Annie | 12/26/2013

    " One of the most boring books I've ever read! It was one of the few times in recent history I showed up for class (Professional Book Club) not having had my homework done (the reading). Vidal either gives too many unnecessary details or jumps to something with not enough details. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Louise | 12/23/2013

    " Starts out much better - bogs down by page 250. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Dan | 12/14/2013

    " I shouldn't have read all 7 in this series in a row, needed more fiction in between. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kimberly | 12/12/2013

    " I recognize that it's a good story, well told, without having actually enjoyed it very much; I'm not overly fond of multi-generational family stories, or fairly recent American history. I picked it up because I was interested in reading something by Vidal. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 will | 12/6/2013

    " A suitable conclusion to Vidal's Empire Series, and also a good standalone book. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Tim Ward | 10/2/2012

    " Not as good as his Lincoln, I thought. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Jim | 3/24/2012

    " This was not a terrible book, I suppose, but it just was not up to the standards of Burr and Lincoln. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Theresa Jacobsen | 12/22/2011

    " Ok from the historical perspective, but too many fictional people for me to truly enjoy this book. Did learn a lot tho. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 John | 5/26/2011

    " As with most of vidal's writings, he feels compelled to remind you, subtly and NOT so subtly that it is the great Gore Vidal who is laying these literary scraps for the readers to pine over. Anyone that makes himself a character is his own novels shows a level of hubris that difficult to swallow. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Richard | 2/28/2011

    " Oli Embargot! Oil Embargot! Wendell Willkie was a douchebag! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Julie | 11/7/2010

    " i give it 4 stars for content, not for style, which was somewhat uneven and sometimes even annoying with the excessive name-dropping. but it's still a fascinating read if you're interested in mid-century US history of the powerful and the rich. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Dan | 6/9/2010

    " I shouldn't have read all 7 in this series in a row, needed more fiction in between. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Louise | 8/16/2009

    " Starts out much better - bogs down by page 250. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Annie | 12/6/2008

    " One of the most boring books I've ever read! It was one of the few times in recent history I showed up for class (Professional Book Club) not having had my homework done (the reading). Vidal either gives too many unnecessary details or jumps to something with not enough details. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Richard | 7/15/2008

    " Oli Embargot! Oil Embargot! Wendell Willkie was a douchebag! "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 John | 6/26/2008

    " As with most of vidal's writings, he feels compelled to remind you, subtly and NOT so subtly that it is the great Gore Vidal who is laying these literary scraps for the readers to pine over. Anyone that makes himself a character is his own novels shows a level of hubris that difficult to swallow. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Stormy | 5/3/2008

    " We should have started at the beginning with Vidal's series. This is the last book in the series and it was hard to get to know the characters. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Julie | 12/28/2007

    " i give it 4 stars for content, not for style, which was somewhat uneven and sometimes even annoying with the excessive name-dropping. but it's still a fascinating read if you're interested in mid-century US history of the powerful and the rich. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kimber | 4/23/2007

    " I recognize that it's a good story, well told, without having actually enjoyed it very much; I'm not overly fond of multi-generational family stories, or fairly recent American history. I picked it up because I was interested in reading something by Vidal. "

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About the Author
Author Gore Vidal

Gore Vidal (1925–2012) has received the National Book Award, written numerous novels, short stories, plays, and essays. He has been a political activist and as Democratic candidate for Congress from upstate New York, he received the most votes of any Democrat in a half-century.

About the Narrator

Anne Twomey is an accomplished actress of both stage and screen. Her Broadway credits include Orpheus Descending with Vanessa Redgrave, To Grandmother’s House We Go, and Nuts, for which she received a Tony nomination and a Theatre World Award. Her many television appearances include guest roles on Seinfeld, Law & Order: SVU, Spin City, and the Christopher Reeves’ movie-of-the-week Rear Window. She has also appeared in the films Picture Perfect and Orpheus Descending.