Extended Audio Sample

Download Washington: A Life Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample Washington: A Life, by Ron Chernow Click for printable size audiobook cover
0 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 5 0.00 (0 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Ron Chernow Narrator: Scott Brick Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
Regular Price: $40.00 Add to Cart
— or —
FlexPass™ Price: $29.95$5.95$5.95 for new members!
Add to Cart learn more )

Washington: A Life was written by Ron Chernow and received the Pulitzer Prize for Biography. Chernow received wide acclaim for this volume because it painted a much more human portrait of Washington than readers were previously familiar. Extraordinarily comprehensive in its scope, it Chernow's understanding of human nature which has brought this biography it's greatest recognition.

The source material from which the narrative was drawn is from a research project of the University of Virginia, which began in 1968, giving the readers, through the details exposed, a unique and fresh insight on Washington's life and character. Indeed, the uncovered papers: correspondence documents, maps, and images, provided Chernow with a wealth of material to paint a more intimate, more human portrait of our nation's first, and perhaps most indispensable political figure.

Covered in the biography is Washington's life from childhood through the Constitutional Convention and his presidency. Washington's participation in the French and Indian war as well as the American Revolution are also discussed. Among the more intimate details of his life covered are his leisure activities and hobbies, his role in the fruition and maintenance of Mount Vernon, his trying relationship with his mother, his involvement with a married woman Sally Cary Fairfax, and his wife Martha Dandridge Custis, whom he married just after, and his adopted children, stepchildren, and grandchildren.

Ron Chernow is a freelance journalist, historian, writer, and biographer. Born in Brooklyn, New York in 1949, he graduated from Yale with honors and received his doctorate in English literature from Cambridge. He has appeared as an expert in documentary films and is a contributor on the subjects of financial policy, politics, and business for national radio and television.

In Washington: A Life, celebrated biographer Ron Chernow provides a richly nuanced portrait of the father of our nation. With a breadth and depth matched by no other one-volume life of Washington, this crisply paced narrative carries the listener through his troubled boyhood, his precocious feats in the French and Indian War, his creation of Mount Vernon, his heroic exploits with the Continental Army, his presiding over the Constitutional Convention, and his magnificent performance as America’s first president.

 Despite the reverence his name inspires, Washington remains a lifeless waxwork for many Americans, worthy but dull. A laconic man of granite self-control, he often arouses more respect than affection. In this groundbreaking work, based on extensive research, Chernow dashes forever the stereotype of a stolid, unemotional man. A strapping six feet, Washington was a celebrated horseman, elegant dancer, and tireless hunter, with a fiercely guarded emotional life. Chernow brings to vivid life a dashing, passionate man of fiery opinions and many moods. Probing his private life, he explores his fraught relationship with his crusty mother, his youthful infatuation with the married Sally Fairfax, and his often conflicted feelings toward his adopted children and grandchildren. He also provides a lavishly detailed portrait of his marriage to Martha and his complex behavior as a slave master.

At the same time, Washington is an astute and surprising portrait of a canny political genius who knew how to inspire people. Not only did Washington gather around himself the foremost figures of the age, including James Madison, Alexander Hamilton, John Adams, and Thomas Jefferson, but he also brilliantly orchestrated their actions to shape the new federal government, define the separation of powers, and establish the office of the presidency. In this unique biography, Ron Chernow takes us on a page-turning journey through all the formative events of America’s founding. With a dramatic sweep worthy of its giant subject, Washington is a magisterial work from one of our most elegant storytellers.

Download and start listening now!

BK_PENG_001588

Quotes & Awards

  • Truly magnificent… [a] well-researched, well-written and absolutely definitive biography Andrew Roberts, The Wall Street Journal
  • Superb… the best, most comprehensive, and most balanced single-volume biography of Washington ever written. [Chernow’s] understanding of human nature is extraordinary and that is what makes his biography so powerful. Gordon S. Wood, The New York Review of Books
  • Chernow displays a breadth of knowledge about Washington that is nothing short of phenomenal… never before has Washington been rendered so tangibly in such a smart, tenaciously researched volume as Chernow's opus… a riveting read... Douglas Brinkley, The Los Angeles Times
  • Until recently, I’d never believed that there could be such a thing as a truly gripping biography of George Washington…Well, I was wrong. Ron Chernow’s huge (900 pages) Washington: A Life, which I’ve just finished, does all that and more. I can’t recommend it highly enough—as history, as epic, and, not least, as entertainment. It’s as luxuriantly pleasurable as one of those great big sprawling, sweeping Victorian novels. Hendrik Hertzberg, The New Yorker
  • [Ron Chernow] has done justice to the solid flesh, the human frailty and the dental miseries of his subject—and also to his immense historical importance… This is a magnificently fair, full-scale biography. The Economist
  • “Truly magnificent…[A] well-researched, well-written, and absolutely definitive biography”

    Wall Street Journal

  • “Until recently, I’d never believed that there could be such a thing as a truly gripping biography of George Washington…Well, I was wrong. Ron Chernow’s huge Washington: A Life, which I’ve just finished, does all that and more. I can’t recommend it highly enough—as history, as epic, and, not least, as entertainment. It’s as luxuriantly pleasurable as one of those great big sprawling, sweeping Victorian novels.”

    New Yorker

  • “Chernow displays a breadth of knowledge about Washington that is nothing short of phenomenal…Never before has Washington been rendered so tangibly in such a smart, tenaciously researched volume as Chernow’s opus…A riveting read.”

    Los Angeles Times

  • “Superb…The best, most comprehensive, and most balanced single-volume biography of Washington ever written. [Chernow’s] understanding of human nature is extraordinary, and that is what makes his biography so powerful.”

    New York Review of Books

  • “[Ron Chernow] has done justice to the solid flesh, the human frailty, and the dental miseries of his subject—and also to his immense historical importance…This is a magnificently fair, full-scale biography.”

    Economist

  • “With so much that can be said—and said positively—about this magisterial biography, it is difficult not to write a review as long as the book itself…A vastly enlightening, overwhelmingly engaging treatment of a great man. The subject of the book needs only, by way of identification, the one word that Chernow uses as his title: Washington. Another book on Washington? is a question rendered pointless by this one, which happens to be the author’s masterpiece. Definitive Washington is the point and effect of this biography. Our first president is thought of as more marble statue than living, hurting, loving human; however, Chernow’s Washington stands not in the opposite corner as hot-blooded and animated.”

    Booklist (starred review)

  • A New York Times Bestseller
  • Recipient of the 2011 Publishers Weekly Listen-Up Award for Nonfiction
  • Selected for the November 2010 Indie Next List
  • Winner of the 2011 Pulitzer Prize for Biography
  • Winner of the AudioFile Earphones Award
  • An ALA Notable Book
  • New York Times Book Review 100 Notable Books for Fiction, 2010
  • A 2010 Los Angeles Times Book Prize Nominee for History

Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Michael | 5/23/2011

    " An amazing biography about a man I thought nothing else could be written about. A great read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Cwoda | 5/17/2011

    " Meaty. A good companion to Stanford on iTunes class, "Colonial and Revolutionary America" byJack Rakov. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Nan | 5/9/2011

    " Half-way through....this book is very long and quite interesting. So far, I'm amazed by the amount of attention Washington spent on specific clothing details. He is also a master-of-his-emotions, not cold, just very, very careful....more later. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Eugene | 4/14/2011

    " Great bio on Washington without the hero worship. Presents that first president as aman with warts and all. "

  • > Show All
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