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Alas, Babylon | [Pat Frank]

Alas, Babylon

This true modern masterpiece is built around the two fateful words that make up the title and herald the end - “Alas, Babylon.” When a nuclear holocaust ravages the United States, a thousand years of civilization are stripped away overnight, and tens of millions of people are killed instantly. But for one small town in Florida, miraculously spared, the struggle is just beginning, as men and women of all backgrounds join together to confront the darkness....
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Audible Editor Reviews

Why we think it's Essential - Pat Frank's post-apocalyptic novel about a cold war that's finally boiled over into a nuclear doomsday over is over 50 years old, but it still feels entirely fresh. The post -apocalyptic world asks: Without our job, our social status, and our possessions what would we have left? Alas, Babylon answers unequivocally: our sense of duty to our fellow man, our bonds of love with family and friends, and, above all, our will to survive. Will Patton is electrifying as narrator, and his thunderous delivery of the novel's titular cry will remain with you long after you finish. — Michael

Publisher's Summary

This true modern masterpiece is built around the two fateful words that make up the title and herald the end - “Alas, Babylon.” When a nuclear holocaust ravages the United States, a thousand years of civilization are stripped away overnight, and tens of millions of people are killed instantly.

But for one small town in Florida, miraculously spared, the struggle is just beginning, as men and women of all backgrounds join together to confront the darkness. Will Patton's narration paints this classic tale as an ominous picture of the terrible possibilites of the nuclear age.

©1959 Harry Hart Frank (P)2010 Audible, Inc.

What the Critics Say

  • Audie Award Winner, Fiction, 2012

"An enthralling and vivid story of the follies and failures of people, their courage and cruelty, their treachery and triumphs. Mr. Frank is a magnificent writer." (Chicago Sunday Tribune)

"A warm, continuously interesting story of what can happen to a group of ordinary people in a perilous situation." (New York Herald Tribune)

“Will Patton is a calm and steady narrator whose quiet intensity wraps around this post-apocalyptic saga...He reflects the tones of deference of women to men, nonwhites to whites, and children to adults. In a conversational tone, he quietly brings the characters and their relationships to life.” (AudioFile)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.3 (5010 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Patti North Carolina, USA 09-24-12
    Patti North Carolina, USA 09-24-12
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    1
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    "excellent. Read the book years ago enjoy it again"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    yes. teaches about starting over to survive disaster.`


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

    Not yet


    Any additional comments?

    not at this time, am not finished with it yet.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Laura BROOMFIELD, CO, United States 09-24-12
    Laura BROOMFIELD, CO, United States 09-24-12
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    1
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    "This will make you think and may change your life"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I have recommended this book to others, loaned out copies, and had copies stolen. All to the good, for the messages (and there are many) are for everyone.


    What does Will Patton bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    I wasn't too certain this would be an enjoyable experience because Will Patton's voice is much different from the voice that plays inside my head when reading the paperback, however...it was easy to adjust to Mr. Patton's style. He gave different inflections to some parts of the novel than I would have, but nonetheless very pleasing.


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

    Definitely


    Any additional comments?

    I was born in the midst of the Cold War and have never known a day without the threat of global annihilation. The only sensible thing to do in an untenable situation is to learn and prepare as much as is humanly possible. Vital to any survival situation is the presence of "hope". This is the story of a group of people with the drive and courage to make the best of what life and geopolitics handed them. This is a story of hope...and a *must* for every emotional toolbox.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    P. Burdge 09-22-12
    P. Burdge 09-22-12

    wordrioter

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "As Relevant Today as it was When Written"

    Other than the absence of computers and cell phones this story could be written today and be just as meaningful. Great characters, great story stands the test of time.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Pamela M. Southern California 09-17-12
    Pamela M. Southern California 09-17-12 Member Since 2012

    A book can get you out of your house, your town, even out of the country. I'm an avid reader believing reviews help find the good ones.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Great Listen!"

    I was amazed this book was written so long ago yet it wasn’t dated at all. The story could have been written yesterday. The Author did a great job with the way the events unfolded. I liked how I got to know each of the characters just enough and not every stinking detail. The reader was excellent and he read the book beautifully.

    This is one of those stories that really make you stop and think and it makes you take a look around you with questions of could I have made it. I love books that leave an impression and make you think of them weeks later.

    I was sad when this booked ended. Several days later I found myself missing the characters. It was a credit well spent!

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jamie Kansas City, MO, United States 09-07-12
    Jamie Kansas City, MO, United States 09-07-12

    Jamie in Missouri

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    "Oldie but still good."
    What made the experience of listening to Alas, Babylon the most enjoyable?

    This book is a classic Sci Fi of the Doomsday Genre. Although I had read the paper book many times, the narration really added to the enjoyment of the story.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The many ways the families found to cope with a horrible disaster.


    What does Will Patton bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    By doing such a great job of changing his voice to match the character it was almost like hearing a whole cast of people.


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

    I really wanted to but, since this was my first and only book, I tried to make the experience last as long as possible.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mishel San Diego, CA, United States 08-27-12
    Mishel San Diego, CA, United States 08-27-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Beautifully written and very timely"
    Where does Alas, Babylon rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    It's way up there, not as good as Unbroken or The Help


    What did you like best about this story?

    You'd never know this was written in the 50's - the writing is beautiful, modern and very timely


    Any additional comments?

    If you can get past the first half of the first part you will not be able to stop listening. I loved the narrator

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    C. Durdin Memphis, Tennessee 08-23-12
    C. Durdin Memphis, Tennessee 08-23-12 Member Since 2008

    Fengshui502000

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    13
    3
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    Story
    "Well done, sir"
    Would you listen to Alas, Babylon again? Why?

    For a book that was written 50 years ago, I was amazed at how timely the references were and how current the story line was. Just replace the nuclear war with the economic crisis in 2008 and you almost have a story that could have been written right now.


    What other book might you compare Alas, Babylon to and why?

    I would compare the character development to John Irving. Just enough insight to their motivations without being overloaded and boring.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    I am not through with the book yet but only have1 hour of listening left. I think it was the scene where the banker came to the realization that money was of no value anymore.


    Any additional comments?

    I read a short biography of the author just a few minutes ago and I was surprised. For a man who was a "bigger than life" character, he understood the nuances of love and family very well.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Shelli Midland, MI, USA 08-21-12
    Shelli Midland, MI, USA 08-21-12 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Stuck in the nuclear age"
    What would have made Alas, Babylon better?

    The book would have been better if the author was not stuck in the 1950's in regards to his opinion of women.


    What could Pat Frank have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Really, a woman who, in the wake of an atomic attack that has devastated her community, her state, and her nation, CRIES because her goldfish is dead and her cat has let her down ?? This author has zero understanding of the character and strength of women.


    You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    Yes, I liked it at first. I thought the main character, Randy, was quite likable. But the author's obviously patronizing attitude toward women was a complete turn-off.


    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Nancy Wilson 08-20-12
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    "An interesting look at post nuclear war America."
    Would you consider the audio edition of Alas, Babylon to be better than the print version?

    Somewhat dated in reference to technology, but absolutely right on about people and possible scenarios in a small town in Florida after a nuclear war. One difference between this book and other similar books is that we get to experience the actual war.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Eric LAS VEGAS, NV, United States 08-20-12
    Eric LAS VEGAS, NV, United States 08-20-12 Member Since 2012
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    3
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    "This is why I love Audible."
    Where does Alas, Babylon rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    This is one of my top three favorite audiobooks so far. It is a great story combined with perfect narration. I wish every book I got on audible were as entertaining as this one.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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