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Extended Audio Sample Thunderstruck, by Erik Larson Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (12,096 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Erik Larson Narrator: Tony Goldwyn Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Abridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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A true story of love, murder, and the end of the world’s “great hush”

In Thunderstruck, Erik Larson tells the interwoven stories of two men—Hawley Crippen, a very unlikely murderer, and Guglielmo Marconi, the obsessive creator of a seemingly supernatural means of communication—whose lives intersect during one of the greatest criminal chases of all time.

Set in Edwardian London and on the stormy coasts of Cornwall, Cape Cod, and Nova Scotia, Thunderstruckevokes the dynamism of those years when great shipping companies competed to build the biggest, fastest ocean liners, scientific advances dazzled the public with visions of a world transformed, and the rich outdid one another with ostentatious displays of wealth. Against this background, Marconi races against incredible odds and relentless skepticism to perfect his invention: the wireless, a prime catalyst for the emergence of the world we know today. Meanwhile, Crippen, “the kindest of men,” nearly commits the perfect crime.

With his superb narrative skills, Erik Larson guides these parallel narratives toward a relentlessly suspenseful meeting on the waters of the North Atlantic. Along the way, he tells of a sad and tragic love affair that was described on the front pages of newspapers around the world, a chief inspector who found himself strangely sympathetic to the killer and his lover, and a driven and compelling inventor who transformed the way we communicate. Thunderstruck presents a vibrant portrait of an era of séances, science, and fog, inhabited by inventors, magicians, and Scotland Yard detectives, all presided over by the amiable and fun-loving Edward VII as the world slid inevitably toward the first great war of the twentieth century. Gripping from the first page, and rich with fascinating detail about the time, the people, and the new inventions that connect and divide us,Thunderstruck is splendid narrative history from a master of the form.

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Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Dan Gabree | 2/15/2014

    " Great story. You will never look at a radio the same again. As usual, Larson mixes two stories together with a great background in the history of Marconi and the development of early radio. Complete with the national politics and the ultimate utilization of this new technology, this book is gripping from start to end. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Simone | 2/3/2014

    " Loved the murder mystery, but the Marconi parts drug on a bit too much for my taste. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Tim | 1/31/2014

    " Somewhat interest novel of two historic events that cross paths "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Jackie | 1/30/2014

    " Loved it. Wonderful historical fiction during a great era. "

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