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Download The Irregulars: Roald Dahl and the British Spy Ring in Wartime Washington Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample The Irregulars: Roald Dahl and the British Spy Ring in Wartime Washington Audiobook, by Jennet Conant Click for printable size audiobook cover
2.71 out of 52.71 out of 52.71 out of 52.71 out of 52.71 out of 5 2.71 (17 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Jennet Conant Narrator: Michael Bates Publisher: Highbridge Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: September 2008 ISBN: 9781598877670
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Before America entered WWII, British spies <#150> including authors Roald Dahl and Ian Fleming <#150> worked in Washington to weaken the American isolationist forces, encourage war against Germany, and influence U.S. policy in favor of England. A lively Download and start listening now!

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Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Libby | 2/15/2014

    " Unlike several other readers who have reviewed this, I didn't find this book boring in the least. The pacing toward the beginning is a bit awkward, as the author makes the mistake of introducing the entire cast of characters in a big info-dump at the beginning which makes them all run together, but once you get past that, the book is a lively, wry, well-written, scrupulously honest account of Dahl's small part in Britain's top-secret spy agency and propaganda machine within the US during WWII. I picked this book up because I'm a fan of Roald Dahl's later writing, so it was great fun to learn about how intimately connected his spy and literary careers were. It's a bit mind-boggling to imagine the crusty-looking man in the open-toed sandals on the back cover of "The BFG" hobnobbing with the political elite, spending Independence Day with FDR at his private family home, and seducing heiresses and socialites, but really, that seems to be the whole purpose of the book. You'll enjoy this if you're a Roald Dahl fan, if not just for the exchange of blisteringly satirical letters exchanged by Dahl and his friend Charles Marsh mocking the British ambassador. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Tim | 2/7/2014

    " Parts of this book were interesting, but I was expecting something more in the nature of a "true life spy thriller". A more appropriate description of the book is a "tell all, sex lives of the rich and famous, tabloid". "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Glenj | 2/2/2014

    " Not quite what I was hoping for, based on the intriguing blurb that got me interested in this book, but still interesting. Learning about the role Dahl & others had in basically spying on the US for the interest in British commercialism & public morale during the war is interesting, but the book really becomes tough to get through, as hundreds of pages are spent on nothing more than just listing various Washingtonians & minute details of Dahl's rather monotonous affaris. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Kevin | 1/20/2014

    " Very interesting topic, but never hit the point of being a great book. I'm glad I read it, but I certainly don't recommend it. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Lee | 1/9/2014

    " Very interesting recount of Dahl's life during WWII. It touched very little on his famous children's books (which was fine by me), so if you're looking for background on how he came up with Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, this is not the book for you. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Joseph Harris | 1/8/2014

    " Amazon.com Review Amazon Best of the Month, September 2008: Long before Willy Wonka sent out those five Golden Tickets, Roald Dahl lived a life that was more James Bond than James and the Giant Peach. After blinding headaches cut short his distinguished career as a Royal Air Force fighter pilot, Dahl became part of an elite group of British spies working against the United States' neutrality at the onset of World War II. The Irregulars is a brilliant profile of Dahl's lesser-known profession, embracing a real-life storyline of suave debauchery, clandestine motives, and afternoon cocktails. If this sounds oddly familiar, it's no coincidence: both Ian Fleming (the creator of 007) and Bill Stephenson (the legendary spymaster rumored to be the inspiration for Bond) were members of the same outfit. Although "Dahl...Roald Dahl" doesn't quite carry the same debonair ring, there is no discrediting this fascinating look at the British author's covert service to the Allied cause during WWII. --Dave Callanan From Publishers Weekly This carefully researched chronicle of Dahl's WWII espionage ought to be more interesting than it is—the word spy ring suggests thrilling acts of derring-do, yet they never come. While occasionally intriguing, this is too frequently a dry collection of old gossip with too many tangents discussing minor characters, their real estate and their clothing. Simon Prebble reads creditably and distinctively, and his English accent is perfect for the subject. But even he cant hold ones attention in this excessively digressive, slowly paced academic work. Its a pity, because this is a comprehensive look at a topic that most people probably know little about: England's efforts to counter American isolationism. A Simon & Schuster hardcover (Reviews, June 9). (Sept.) Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Brian White | 1/1/2014

    " Pretty interesting read, the amount of intruige that went on leading up to the United State's entry intop WWII is mind boggling. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Weesti | 12/30/2013

    " This was very interesting as I love Dahl's children's books and wanted to learn more about the author. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Ann Etherington | 12/29/2013

    " This book was SO boring. It was like reading a history textbook. There were a few good parts, but there wasn't much of a story line at all, just a bunch of facts! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Danette | 12/27/2013

    " And I thought that Roald Dahl was just a children's author. He had an interesting life, and I enjoyed reading about it. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Paul Fidalgo | 12/17/2013

    " Sorry--it was just a little too name-droppy, heavy on dish and light on substance or intrigue. 150 or so pages in, and I gave up. Not enough to keep my interest. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Terri Giltner | 12/8/2013

    " I have always been fascinated by Roald Dahl and this book about his war time activities as an British intelligence offices was very interesting. He did not treat Kentuckians Patricia Neal very well...and I lost some respect for him. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Sam | 10/30/2011

    " This book reads like a disorganized, theme-less tabloid. It gets bogged down in minutiae and loses sight of the overarching narrative, if it ever had one. I got a hundred pages in and couldn't stand it anymore. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Manda | 6/10/2011

    " This was quite interesting, especially with the mentions of lots of historical Texas politics people whose names are familiar to me, and the very large involvement of the then-owner of the local Austin paper, who was a very good friend of Dahl's. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Hope | 4/11/2010

    " Interesting, but not terribly exciting. The anecdotes about Dahl's life were quite engrossing, but the book was less about spying and read more like everyday DC politics. An unusual perspective of America during WWII; that of the politicians, the press, and the socialites in DC. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Carol Ann | 3/29/2010

    " Roald Dahl was one of those people who seem to be in the right place at the right time. While this book was entertaining you never get to know the man. I can't figure out if he ever passed any real secret of value to Britain. He is better known for his unusual tales than as a figure of espionage. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Will | 11/12/2009

    " This was not as good as the author's other books. It had more "curb appeal" (I knew Roald Dahl and Ian Fleming had to make for a good story, whereas I had no idea who Alfred Loomis of Tuxedo Park was), but I just don't think there was enough there for a book. "

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About the Author

Jennet Conant is the author of the New York Times bestsellers The Irregulars: Roald Dahl and the British Spy Ring in Wartime Washington and Tuxedo Park: A Wall Street Tycoon and the Secret Palace of Science That Changed the Course of World War II. A former journalist, she has written for Vanity Fair, Esquire, GQ, Newsweek, and the New York Times. She lives in New York City and Sag Harbor, New York.