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Extended Audio Sample Zuckerman Unbound Audiobook, by Philip Roth Click for printable size audiobook cover
3.63 out of 53.63 out of 53.63 out of 53.63 out of 53.63 out of 5 3.63 (16 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Philip Roth Narrator: Malcolm Hillgartner Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Related: The Nathan Zuckerman Series Release Date: June 2016 ISBN: 9781504699884
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Now in his mid-thirties, Nathan Zuckerman, a would-be recluse despite his newfound fame as a bestselling author, ventures onto the streets of Manhattan in the final year of the turbulent sixties. Not only is he assumed by his fans to be his own fictional satyr, Gilbert Carnovsky (“Hey, you do all that stuff in that book?”), he also finds himself the target of admonishers, advisors, and sidewalk literary critics. The recent murders of Robert Kennedy and Martin Luther King Jr. lead an unsettled Zuckerman to wonder if “target” may be more than a figure of speech.

In Zuckerman Unbound, the second volume in a trilogy, the notorious novelist Nathan Zuckerman retreats from his oldest friends, breaks his marriage to a virtuous woman, and damages his affectionate connection to his younger brother—all because of his recent good fortune.

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Quotes & Awards

  • Zuckerman Unbound is masterful, sure in every touch, as clear and economical of line as a crystal vase.”

    New York TImes Book Review

  • “It was bold of Roth to write a novel about being famous…A comic stroll in a hall of mirrors.”


Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jill | 2/12/2014

    " MUCH better than the first book. Even though this book in several places makes fun of readers who can't differentiate between fiction and the author projecting all his biography into his "fiction," I can't help but wonder how much of this is autobiographical. There are a few particularly harrowing segments where the self-reprimanding is so intensely felt, I cannot but believe that it was, in fact, felt by the author at some point after choosing a similar path to his protagonist(who is also a Jewish author). "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Catalina | 2/11/2014

    " I liked it less than 'The Ghost Writer' but still very interesting and full of the same acute sense of analyse. Many memorable scenes and lines, culminating with an amazing final image: the start of Zuckerman change associated with the change his old town 'suffered'; the place of the Jews as the poor emigrants with a bad name taken by the blacks.... "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Michael | 1/29/2014

    " At first you think, "Roth's novel about the surrealness of celebrity after his first major publishing success -- who cares?" Then Zuckerman Unbound becomes much, much more than that, a meditation on the responsibilities of the artist to his friends, family, and himself that's severe, honest, and not full of a single ounce of self-pity. It might also be Roth's best merging of humor and sadness. In short, the reason he's one of the all-time greats. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Ami | 1/8/2014

    " I am listening to this book. It is funny in a bittersweet way. I feel back in NYC again. The writing is excellent and the "tone" just whiny enough to reflect the culture and mindset of the main character. "

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

    " Featuring a John Updike joke that made me laugh out loud in my kitchen. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 James | 12/18/2013

    " Creates a compulsive, compelling repugnant character. Sense of Roth airing his faults, but smugly loving himself at the same time. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 John | 11/15/2013

    " An excellent book, with humor and pathos. I enjoyed it very much. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Aaron | 10/17/2013

    " Liked this one a lot. Roth was rolling during this period. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Andrew Wright | 9/6/2013

    " This book wasn't quite as hilarious and mind-bending as The Ghost Writer, but Roth still has an amazing capacity for cerebral humor and unexpected courses of plot. I'm eager to get on with the series. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Andrew | 4/18/2013

    " Although this is not a bad book, I did not like it nearly as much as "Ghost Writer." It seems to lack a certain direction, and I never connected with Nathan in any meaningful way. I did, however, love Alvin Pepler. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Louis | 11/21/2012

    " Part of the first Zuckerman trilogy, which is also published as ZUCKERMAN BOUND (the trilogy, plus an epilogue). "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Charlie Clarke | 4/28/2011

    " Very good, better than the first Zuckerman book (The Ghost Writer) I think. Having read American Pastoral first you can see the motifs developing: Jewishness, involvement in and departure from, Newarks 'demise', obsessed father, fame, the writer whose freedom leaves him without family and roots... "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Nicole G. | 3/18/2011

    " I've been putting up these Roth books separately; however, I've been reading them in the bound volumes with several books together. I don't think that's a good idea, as now all of the novels are blending together and I can't remember what happened or how I felt about it. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Ethan | 8/26/2010

    " Nathan Zuckerman finally hits it big with his pornographic, Portnoy-esque novel, but he quickly learns that his dream comes with a lot of baggage he isn't prepared for. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Shawne | 11/10/2009

    " Roth, one of the great American satirists, creates here a truly miserable, eccentric main character, and fleshes out his life, world and experiences to great, amusing effect. Less heart-stopping and engaging than his latest effort though (The Plot Against America). "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Peter | 4/14/2009

    " And astonishingly powerful book. Not for the timid heart. No violence. Just an unflinching look at the human condition. Fearless writing, like all good writing. "

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About the Author
Author Philip Roth

Philip Roth is one of the most decorated writers in American history, having won the National Book Critics Circle Award twice, the PEN/Faulkner Award three times, the National Book Award, the Pulitzer Prize in fiction, and many more. He also won the Ambassador Book Award of the English-Speaking Union and in the same year received the National Medal of Arts at the White House. In 2001 he received the highest award of the American Academy of Arts and Letters, the Gold Medal in Fiction, given every six years “for the entire work of the recipient.”

About the Narrator

Malcolm Hillgartner is an actor, author, playwright, and professional narrator. Under the name Jahnna N. Malcolm, he and his wife, Jahnna Beecham, have written over one hundred books for young readers; their musicals have played in theaters across America. His audiobook credits include works by Dean Koontz, Nelson Algren, and William F. Buckley Jr. He has won four AudioFile Earphones Awards.