Hughes had always been different. Certainly his riches set him apart, but he was also tough. Orphaned and a millionaire at 18, Hughes repudiated his relatives, seized control of the Hughes Tool Company, the linchpin of his fortune, and went on to become a flamboyant movie producer, holder of many world aviation records, principal owner of Trans World Airlines, a critically important defense contractor, Hollywood's most pursued and elusive bachelor, and partner of the United States government.
This is an epic biography of an epic figure who bestrode the world like a colossus yet could not master himself.
©1979 Donald L. Barlett and James B. Steele; (P)1994 Blackstone Audio, Inc.
"Of all the books written about Howard Hughes, Empire is easily the best...." (New York Times Book Review)
"A remarkable job of investigative reporting....cracks Hughes's public persona as it disentangles the psychodrama of his private doings." (Publishers Weekly)
"[The] most responsible and authoritative biography of Hughes to date."Newsweek)
The story and the narrator where perfect.
His voice and pacing were wonderful. I could listen to him read the phone book.
an amazing life
listen to it.
The book goes on for 30-40 minutes detailing correspondence between Howard's mother and his summer camp leader when Howard was around 7 or 8. "Please make certain Howard has plenty of thick socks for summer activites", "I assure you madame, Howard will have an ample number of socks for the summer", etc., etc. 30 to 40 minutes of this? Seriously? This could have been abridged.
Howard Hughes was obviously a complex person with a fascinating history. The problem is this book is wrapped in minutiae and a a story that I would love to hear was overpowered by trivial details
The man truly did live 2 lives and was constantly at odds with his own sanity.
I never realized how much the public eye was misinformed and distorted from the reality of who he really was and what really happened through the years.
Excellent read and it is simply jaw dropping at times to hear about the different world he created for himself.
My books are during 1 hour ride to & from work, 5 days per week for 10 hours. This book had some dry spells, but overall I found it educational.
I think the pinnacle is the 'Spruce Goose', but there are so many different things he did, it's difficult to peg any one.
Least interesting was the in depth reading of the multiple hand written instructions for every aspect of his mad, mad solitude.
For the documentary present, it was well read. Par for documentary, some dry spots, but not taking away overall.
There are already movies. Most recent being "The Aviator"
A very long book, I appreciated its additional information even if it did get boring at times. I have long fascinated in HRH, mainly for his aviation interests. I learned much about the many other things he obsessed over. In the end I realized he swung onto the scene due to his parents untimely demise, and without proper direction, became a spoiled, self indulged brat. That said, he and those working for him did make great strides in the science of aviation.
A very good book but extremely detailed. Detailed to the point where I didn't even know what they were talking about. If you are interested in EVERYTHING about Howard Hughes this is the book for you.
Superbly narrated. Well organized. I genuinely enjoyed this book. I recommend it to anyone who is interested in the legend of Howard Hughes. There is so much quality information here.
Michael E. Sheaffer
The transparency and revelation of the myth of Howard jhughes and the truth of his psycopathy.
No, too long-needs serious editing-way too much detail
I've read several books about Howard Hughes throughout the years, but this book by Donald Bartlett, tops them all!
The author takes us on an intriguing adventure that totally captivates you from start to finish. Hughes, as has been well chronicled throughout the years, was an intriguing, yet dashing figure and personality throughout the mid-part of the last century. When he was younger, he had the world at his fingertips, with movie starlets for girlfriends anytime he wanted, boatloads full of money, the ear of every influential politician of his era, and so much more.
It's an intriguing tale of what we may nowadays call "mental illness", which was fueled by addictions to painkillers and narcotics, psychosis, a mistrust of people in general, fear of germs and, finally, his own "inner circle" closing in around him and taken advantage of him while he mindlessly toiled away the days/weeks watching television butt naked as he eventually lost control of his empire.
The story did get a little tedious when the author went into probably a little bit too much detail, and some of the business dealings that Hughes was able to construct, but other than that, this text will keep you on the edge of your seat throughout.
I don't know if I learned anything new about the life and times of Howard Hughes, but this rendition of the story that is been told before, is by far the very best. A must-read for those who like mystery, intrigue, adventure, featuring one of the wealthiest and best-known personalities that this country has ever produced.
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