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John Adams Audiobook

John Adams

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Publisher's Summary

Pulitzer Prize, Biography/Autobiography, 2002

In this powerful, epic biography, Pulitzer Prize-winning historian David McCullough unfolds the adventurous life-journey of John Adams, the brilliant, fiercely independent, often irascible, always honest Yankee patriot who spared nothing in his zeal for the American Revolution. Adams thought, wrote, and spoke out for the "Great Cause" come what might; he traveled far and wide in all seasons and often at extreme risk; he rose to become the second president of the United States and saved the country from blundering into an unnecessary war; he was rightly celebrated for his integrity, and regarded by some as "out of his senses"; and his marriage to the wise and valiant Abigail Adams is one of the most moving love stories in American history.

Much about Adams' life will come as a surprise to many. His rocky relationship with friend and eventual archrival Thomas Jefferson, his courageous voyage on the frigate Boston in the winter of 1778, and his later trek over the Pyrenees are exploits few would have dared and that few listeners will ever forget.

McCullough's John Adams has the sweep and vitality of a great novel. This is history on a grand scale, an audiobook about politics, war, and social issues, but also about human nature, love, religious faith, virtue, ambition, friendship, and betrayal, and the far-reaching consequences of noble ideas. Above all, it is an enthralling, often surprising story of one of the most important and fascinating Americans who ever lived.

©2001 David McCullough; (P)2001 Recorded Books, All Rights Reserved; AUDIOWORKS is an imprint of Simon & Schuster Audio Division, Simon & Schuster Inc.

What the Critics Say

"Brilliant...a winner." (Publishers Weekly)
"McCullough writes to be heard as well as read." (AudioFile)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.5 (3830 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Kelli Stokes 12-29-16 Member Since 2016
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    9
    2
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great Book, Okay Narrator"
    Would you consider the audio edition of John Adams to be better than the print version?

    I don't think you can compare the two. I both read parts, and listened to parts. It was a matter of what suited my needs at the time.


    What do you think the narrator could have done better?

    He was one of the slowest readers I have come across so far. The abnormally long pauses between paragraphs started to become infuriating. Because of this it started to drag on.


    Any additional comments?

    This book is great! After reading other biographies of presidents in Adams' time, I was worried that it would be a very dull read (because he had been portrayed so by biographers of his contemporaries). I was very pleasantly surprised and learned a lot!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Merle nye 12-18-16
    Merle nye 12-18-16 Member Since 2014
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    6
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Entertaining and great overview of the period."
    Where does John Adams rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    One of the most enjoyable and engaging biographies I've ever listened to. Like many of McCullough's books, I found myself spacing out less than with other historical works.


    What did you like best about this story?

    I loved the use of the letters between the Adams to tell the bulk of the story


    Have you listened to any of Nelson Runger’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    Yes. This is on par with his other narrations in McCullough's books.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    No. I felt it was better digested in increments.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Anthony 12-14-16
    Anthony 12-14-16 Member Since 2016
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    5
    4
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    "Great in every way"

    The narration was very good and the story engrossing. A very comprehensive portrait of the man.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jon Doolen 12-14-16
    Jon Doolen 12-14-16 Member Since 2016
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    37
    10
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    Performance
    Story
    "just ok"

    this book should have been titled a bromance about the life of Adams and Jefferson. There was what seemed to be as much about Jefferson here as Adams. The book was okay but if you're looking for a deep dive into the life of John Adams is not the one.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 12-04-16 Member Since 2016
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    8
    8
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "so complete "

    it made me feel as though I too was part of the Adam's family. incredible corresponde exchange and insight into their ways of thinking.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    bmiko728 11-20-16
    bmiko728 11-20-16 Member Since 2016
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    REVIEWS
    1
    1
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    Performance
    Story
    "My favorite book that started my love of the FF."
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I read it right before the HBO Series came out and it turned me into a Founding Father frenzy. Ten years later I have a bookshelf of used books on the founding fathers. David McCullough is now my favorite author because he takes into the mind of John Adams and Abigail Adams of not only their struggle of the revolution, politics and fame but gives the struggle of raising a family from John Adams early life to his death. You can't get any more personal of a founding father than this book. Just a Masterpiece!!!!!


    What other book might you compare John Adams to and why?

    Alexander Hamilton by Ron Chernow. Author does a good job like McCullough of putting you in the place of the subject (Hamilton) shoes from birth to death. You see the family/personal side to Hamilton as he struggles with founding a nation/government.


    What about Nelson Runger’s performance did you like?

    Good Narrator.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    I wish I could sit in one setting but it's too long.


    Any additional comments?

    Put this Book on your wishlist, you won't regret it!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Shawn WEber 11-20-16
    Shawn WEber 11-20-16 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
    ratings
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    11
    3
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    FOLLOWING
    0
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    Story
    "Oh the mouth sounds!"

    The was a wonderful book. However, the narrator's mouth sounds and breathing sounds were so pervasive and frequently loud, I was driven to distraction.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Candace P. Skurnik 11-19-16
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
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    4
    3
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    FOLLOWING
    0
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    Performance
    Story
    "I learned so very much."

    My only complaint is that at either chapter ends, or section the pause in between is too long. I kept thinking that my phone application had accidentally been turned off.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 11-17-16 Member Since 2016
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    REVIEWS
    5
    2
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    "An American Hero"

    It is inspiring to learn of a man who had such high ideals which he struggled so hard to fulfill. There were 1 or 2 chapters that were difficult to get through but those mostly focused on someone other than John Adams.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    M. McMahon 11-16-16
    M. McMahon 11-16-16 Member Since 2016
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    4
    1
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    Performance
    Story
    "great."

    a lot of mouth noise from narrator at times. easily dismissed. wonderful book i will read again.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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  • Kirstine
    Bonnyrigg, United Kingdom
    11/3/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A great life that kept me listening"

    Having enjoyed listening to Benjamin Franklin’s biography (by Walter Isaacson) I chose this book to get a different slant on the birth of America as an independent country. John Adams wasn’t as colourful a character as the polymath Franklin, but he probably had a greater influence on the creation of the USA as one of the key men in writing the Declaration of Independence and in formulating the Constitution. An example, like Franklin, of a man from humble beginnings achieving greatness through his intelligence, hard work and courage. Adams dedicated his life to his country, but one has also to give much praise to Abigail, his devoted wife, who endured long absences by Adams as he travelled in Europe negotiating with the British, French and Dutch governments to try and bring peace and prosperity to his country.

    While the book illustrates the epic history of the birth of a nation, it is enriched by the personal side of Adams’ life and his relationships with his family as well as with the famous people of his time. I’m often struck by the fact that the personalities and relationships among the main players quite often have a pivotal role in the direction of history. Much of the detail of these relationships is furnished by the copious amount of letters that have survived. I wonder will biographies of the future have this rich source of personal information with so much communication now being done by ephemeral e-mails and texts?

    On tends to learn history at school from the point of view of ones own country so it it's educational to hear about the American War of Independence from the other side.

    Though a long book the story is engaging and the narration excellent.

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • Ian
    2/17/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Dayum"
    What made the experience of listening to John Adams the most enjoyable?

    Nelson Runger has a really pleasing rustic voice. Good for colonial American history.


    What did you like best about this story?

    John Adams. What a great person to write a readable story about. He's unbelievably prolific in his writing and straight-forwardly opinionated on every topic.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    John and Tom's Magical English Garden Tour '86


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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