We are currently making improvements to the Audible site. In an effort to enhance the accessibility experience for our customers, we have created a page to more easily navigate the new experience, available at the web address www.audible.com/access.
Washington: A Life | [Ron Chernow]

Washington: A Life

In Washington: A Life celebrated biographer Ron Chernow provides a richly nuanced portrait of the father of our nation. This crisply paced narrative carries the reader 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.
Regular Price:$41.97
  • Membership Details:
    • First book free with 30-day trial
    • $14.95/month thereafter for your choice of 1 new book each month
    • Cancel easily anytime
    • Exchange books you don't like
    • All selected books are yours to keep, even if you cancel
  • - or -

Your Likes make Audible better!

'Likes' are shared on Facebook and Audible.com. We use your 'likes' to improve Audible.com for all our listeners.

You can turn off Audible.com sharing from your Account Details page.

OK

Publisher's Summary

Pulitzer Prize, Biography/Autobiography, 2011

From National Book Award winner Ron Chernow, a landmark biography of George Washington.

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 massive 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.

©2010 Ron Chernow (P)2010 Penguin Audio

What the Critics Say

"Tenaciously researched...This new portrait offers a fresh sense of what a groundbreaking role Washington played, not only in physically embodying his new nation's leadership but also in interpreting how its newly articulated constitutional principles would be applied...deeply rewarding.” (New York Times)

"Just as he resuscitated Alexander Hamilton in a heralded 2004 biography, Ron Chernow now resurrects Washington...[A] remarkable book." (Entertainment Weekly)

"Whether he's debunking the legend of Washington's wooden teeth (ivory that cracked and discolored over time) or the purely fictional tale of the cherry tree, the massive yet briskly paced Washington: A Life is a rollicking read, sure to redefine perceptions and correct assumptions." (Kirkus Reviews)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.4 (1613 )
5 star
 (923)
4 star
 (503)
3 star
 (130)
2 star
 (34)
1 star
 (23)
Overall
4.5 (1096 )
5 star
 (670)
4 star
 (309)
3 star
 (84)
2 star
 (22)
1 star
 (11)
Story
4.4 (1100 )
5 star
 (633)
4 star
 (346)
3 star
 (88)
2 star
 (17)
1 star
 (16)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    peter Jersey City, NJ, United States 01-25-12
    peter Jersey City, NJ, United States 01-25-12 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    36
    2
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Superb - brings the legendary man to life"

    An exceptional biography, just enough focus on GW's childhood before moving onto his adult exploits and heroics. In-depth accounts of the French-Indian War and the Revolution as well as his personal life, but I would have liked a little more content on his role at the Constitutional Convention and the second term of his Presidency. Altogether an amazing account of the man's life that gets past the hyperbole to give a three-dimensional account of the human being himself. Scott Brick's stately narration is flawless as always.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    russell levittown, NY, United States 11-05-10
    russell levittown, NY, United States 11-05-10 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
    72
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    23
    9
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    2
    0
    Overall
    "Washington A Life"

    I've been listening to audio books for almost 4 years now I always have the headphones on my head and drives my wife crazy. So I am a hard-core listener and I enjoy nonfiction books. This has to be one of the best I've listened I've listened to two other books about George Washington but this one's the top. The narrator also did a good job. For me George Washington truly is the father of United States. I think Mr. Obama should listen to this audio so he can understand what a real president is. This book also is on the New York Times bestsellers and well worth it. My compliments to the author he did an excellent job writing this book. So don't hesitate absolutely download this book.

    19 of 38 people found this review helpful
  •  
    michael poway, Ca, United States 10-01-11
    michael poway, Ca, United States 10-01-11 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
    24
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    73
    21
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    2
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Too much info minutia...made difficult read"

    This book went on and on about minutia...cut in half makes a much better read

    3 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    History Buff Berkeley Heights, NJ, US 05-14-12
    History Buff Berkeley Heights, NJ, US 05-14-12 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    45
    13
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Might be a great book, but Performance drags"
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    I have subsequently purchased and read this book - it is as good as other Chernow biographices. However I would not listen given the narration. The book is biographical, and the performance was dry.


    What other book might you compare Washington: A Life to and why?

    Hamilton by Chernow


    What didn’t you like about Scott Brick’s performance?

    He was not melodic nor enthusiastic when he should have been, droning on during battle descriptions, horse back rides, and other times when ones interest should be piqued.


    Was Washington: A Life worth the listening time?

    I couldn't finish it.


    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    A. Willis www.sevendogsandababy.com 10-24-12
    A. Willis www.sevendogsandababy.com 10-24-12 Member Since 2009

    Angela at Seven Dogs and a Baby

    ratings
    REVIEWS
    46
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "I just couldnt do it."
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    I know everyone was all about this book in the reviews.. but I honestly couldnt make it past the first thirty minutes. It was dull and dry and not at all what I expected.


    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Natural World 08-27-12
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    2
    2
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great book, avoid the audible download, read it"
    If you could sum up Washington: A Life in three words, what would they be?

    Seamless, complete, wanting more


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Washington: A Life?

    too many to list


    What about Scott Brick’s performance did you like?

    I would have liked it better if he had announced every chapter so you can leave it off at he end of each chapter if you'd like. I never had any idea where I was leaving it off because it was chapter one, and then the next time the chapter was announced was Chapter 67. Ridiculous to set up an audio book in this manner.

    I thought Mr. Brick should have used more inflections in his voice. He does not sound American, and I thought the even tone was monotonous, and I often thought I had heard this section already because mr. Brick's inflections did not change. Audible should ask what did you like or dislike. AUDIBLE: You are too heavy handed in not wanting negative reviews. You are like a communist country where the individual is silenced or like a totalitarian regime not allowing dissent.


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

    No I didn't want to listen to a 42-hour audio book in one sitting.


    Any additional comments?

    AUDIBLE: You are too heavy handed in not wanting or willing to post negative reviews. You are like a communist country where the individual is silenced or like a totalitarian regime not allowing dissent. THIS IS AMERICA: GIVE ME LIBERTY OR GIVE ME DEATH.

    The Audible download makes it impossible to know where you are in this 42-hour book. It is supposed to restart where you left off, and several times it didn't. So I missed certain portions. Audible does not state the beginning of each and every chapter, so if you stop, you have no idea where you are in the book. Do not download 42-hour books. Audible is best served by 10-12 hour books. This book was so well written that I now must read the book, which means the time I spent trying to listen to the book was wasted. Audible only prints the 5 star reviews, so no one will ever see this review.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    CHESTER LAS VEGAS, NEVADA, United States 03-25-12
    CHESTER LAS VEGAS, NEVADA, United States 03-25-12 Member Since 2007

    Chet Yarbrough, an audio book addict, exercises two cocker spaniels twice a day with an Ipod in his pocket and earbuds in his ears. Hope these few reviews seduce the public into a similar obsession but walk safely and be aware of the unaware.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    15
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    576
    71
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "BIOGRAPHIC MYSTERY"

    Ron Chernow is a respected biographer. He has written biographies of J.P. Morgan, The Warburgs, John D. Rockefeller, Alexander Hamilton, and now ???Washington: A Life???, a 2011 Pulitzer Prize winner for biography.

    Chernow provides fascinating glimpses of George Washington, the surveyor, the slave holder, the Virginia Scion, the first President of the United States. Information about America???s great revolution is worth a near 42 hour listen. Like Schiff???s biography of ???Cleopatra???, a reader/listener does learn a great deal about documented facts of a great historical figure. But Washington, like Cleopatra to this reviewer, remains a mystery.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Fran Pearson Fayetteville, AR United States 03-10-12
    Fran Pearson Fayetteville, AR United States 03-10-12 Member Since 2002
    HELPFUL VOTES
    22
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    505
    27
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    2
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Much more than your third-grade teacher told you.."

    This is an engaging biography of someone we have heard about all our lives, but probably didn't really know that much about. It's a well-written story of Washington's boyhood, his roots and subsequent family, with their many foibles and accomplishments.
    This book tells you the good and the bad about him and of the other famous men of his time. It's a wonderful account of the early formation and politics of our government and how the detail were hammered out. It's non-fiction even a fiction lover could love.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Frank Jacksonville, FL, United States 03-04-12
    Frank Jacksonville, FL, United States 03-04-12 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    8
    5
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Not very exciting."

    Not quite what I expected based on the previous reviews. I found it kind of average.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 121-129 of 129 results PREVIOUS11213NEXT

    There are no listener reviews for this title yet.

Report Inappropriate Content

If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.

CANCEL

Thank You

Your report has been received. It will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.