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Download The Man without a Face: The Unlikely Rise of Vladimir Putin Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample The Man without a Face: The Unlikely Rise of Vladimir Putin Audiobook, by Masha Gessen Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (629 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Masha Gessen Narrator: Justine Eyre Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: February 2012 ISBN: 9781470806255
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The Man without a Face is the chilling account of how a low-level, small-minded KGB operative ascended to the Russian presidency and, in an astonishingly short time, destroyed years of progress, making his country once more a threat to her own people and to the world.

Handpicked as a successor by the “family” surrounding an ailing and increasingly unpopular Boris Yeltsin, Vladimir Putin seemed like the perfect choice for the oligarchy to shape according to its own designs. Suddenly the boy who had stood in the shadows, dreaming of ruling the world, was a public figure, and his popularity soared. Russia and an infatuated West were determined to see the progressive leader of their dreams, even as he seized control of the media, sent political rivals and critics into exile or to the grave, and smashed the country’s fragile electoral system, concentrating power in the hands of his cronies.

As a journalist living in Moscow, Masha Gessen experienced this history firsthand, and for The Man without a Face she has drawn on information and sources no other writer has tapped. Her account of how a faceless man maneuvered his way into absolute—and absolutely corrupt—power has the makings of a classic of narrative nonfiction.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “In a country where journalists critical of the government have a way of meeting untimely deaths, Ms. Gessen has shown remarkable courage in researching and writing this unflinching indictment of the most powerful man in Russia.”

    Wall Street Journal 

  • “Part psychological profile, part conspiracy study…Gessen’s armchair psychoanalysis of Putin is speculative. But it is a clever and sometimes convincing speculation, based on a close reading of Putin’s own inadvertently revealing accounts of his life, and on interviews with people who knew Putin before he mattered.”

    New York Times Book Review 

  • “A perceptive account of the new czar.”

    Newsweek/Daily Beast

  • “Gessen is a talented and versatile journalist.”

    Financial Times (London)

  • “[A] luminous study of Russia’s forever leader…demolishing the numerous myths and legends that have accumulated around her subject.”

    Guardian (London)

  • “Engrossing and insightful.”

    Bloomberg BusinessWeek

  • “Gessen conveys the atmosphere—whether of the last months of the Soviet Union, the chaotic years of Yeltsin, the strange transfer of the presidency to Putin, or the disappointments of his period—more accurately than any recent chronicler of the period.”

    Independent (London)

  • “An electrifying read.”

    Columbia Journalism Review

  • “[Gessen’s] engaging prose combines a native’s passion with a mordant wit and caustic understatement that are characteristically Russian.”

    Daily Telegraph

  • “[A] courageous, enlightening account of Putin’s rise to power…Brave voices like Gessen’s…have helped shed some much needed light on Putin’s ‘criminal tyranny.’”

    Independent on Sunday (London)

  • “Despite news reports, Putin doesn’t have quite the notoriety in the West he deserves; Gessen should push him to the forefront.”

    Library Journal

  • “A chilling and brave work of nonfiction…Gessen has succeeded in convincingly portraying the forces that made Putin who he is today”

    BookPage 

  • A New York Times Editor’s Choice
  • A Library Journal Bestseller
  • A Slate Magazine Best Book of 2012: Staff Pick
  • A New York Times Bestseller

Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Dave | 2/16/2014

    " Very fascinating! A must read for anyone who wants to understand what's going on in Russia right now. I finished the last page anxious for the people of Russia and inpatient to see how this will all end up over the next few years. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Gordon Howard | 2/15/2014

    " Passionately written (yet also cynical, how Russian!) story of the monster ruling Russia today. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Laura | 1/24/2014

    " Unlike George Bush, I've always through Vladimir Putin was evil. This book confirms it. An interesting look at post USSR politics. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Mijito Chishi | 1/24/2014

    " Revelatory. Made me cringe. There's too much to pretend its not happening. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Liza | 1/22/2014

    " This was a book that put everything that I have suspected together. Even though I have always known Russia is corrupt, I have not realized the extent of this corruption. It is amazing to realize how much people did not know about Putin and for how long they did not know it. It's a very important book because when there is no way that the people of Russia can legally take back their power, journalists like Masha Gessen are the ones who fill the power gap. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Mikaela Shaw | 1/19/2014

    " Informative, but I have definitely read less biased, more enrapturing biographies before. "

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

    " Absorbing tale of what really seems to have been going on in post Cold War Russia and the imminent change at hand "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Marin | 12/21/2013

    " While detailed and clearly connected to the events, the author is unquestionably biased. She has a few moments of brilliance that paint a scary, scary Russia and monster of a person in Putin. However she also displays a naivete that casts a question on the rest of her claims. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Ro Laberee | 12/4/2013

    " I was stunned by this book. Stunned at the casual nature of Putin's rise and stunned to learn how little his comrades knew about him before he took office. This is a terrific book for anyone interested in international politics. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Sean Carman | 11/15/2013

    " Readable and engaging history of Vladimir Putin's rise to power, portraying him all his creepy and thuggish particulars. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Carl Phillips | 10/20/2013

    " Really revealing and scary report on Putin's corrupt regime. So pervasive and far reaching I am almost afraid to post a negative review! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Mark | 7/7/2013

    " Solid, solid take-down and shine-light on Putin and his tundra-cold machinations. Clean and crackling prose. Damning. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Motorcycle | 6/17/2013

    " So. Putin's a bad guy, according to Gessen. I guess I don't have a hard time believing that. Isn't it an old Russian saying, "Meet the new boss. Same as the old boss." "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Keith | 6/8/2013

    " In this fearless, scrupulously reported, and engaging portrait of Post-Soviet Russia's transformation from fledgling democracy to authoritarian state to tyranny, Gessen distills her 20 years of experience as a journalist in Russia with a mixture of skepticism and hope for the future. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Mary | 4/20/2013

    " A must read for anyone who loves history and wants to see it play out in close to real time. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Nikolai Joseph | 6/18/2012

    " Not what I was expecting. Not nearly enough about how Putin came to power, and way too much about how Masha Gessen thinks he is the worst person of all time. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Nicole Sunderlin | 6/8/2012

    " I am terrified of Putin now. So happy to live in America! This author writes a chilling book that reads like a thriller. I loved it. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Wendy | 5/14/2012

    " If all the info in this book is true then it is certainly very scary. "

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About the Author
Author Masha GessenMasha Gessen is a Russian American journalist and the author, most recently, of the national bestseller The Man Without a Face: The Unlikely Rise of Vladimir Putin and Words Will Break Cement: The Passion of Pussy Riot. Her award-winning work has appeared in The New York Times, Slate, Vanity Fair, and elsewhere. A longtime resident of Moscow, Gessen now lives in New York.
About the Narrator

Justine Eyre is a classically trained actress who has narrated dozens of audiobooks and has a prestigious Audie Award and two AudioFile Earphones Awards under her belt. Eyre is multilingual and known for her great facility with accents. She has appeared on stage, with leading roles in King Lear and The Crucible, and has had starring roles in four films on the indie circuit. Her recent television credits include Two and a Half Men and Mad Men.