In defense of those greatest of human qualities that have made civilization possible, one man sets out to show what would happen to the world if all the heroes of innovation and industry went on strike. Is he a destroyer or a liberator? And why does he fight his hardest battle not against his enemies but against the woman he loves?
Tremendous in scope and breathtaking in its suspense, Atlas Shrugged is Ayn Rand's magnum opus, an electrifying moral defense of capitalism and free enterprise which launched an ideological movement and gained millions of loyal fans around the world.
©1985 Eugene Winick, Paul Gitlin and Leonard Peikoff; (P)2008 Blackstone Audio, Inc.
Avid reader and listener, of both fiction on non-fiction. I especially love history, adventure, and creative, clever and unusual characters!
There is a reason that the classic Atlas Shrugged has remained one of the best selling books for over 50 years: it is simply a phenomenal tale, before its time in many ways, and filled with fascinating characters and unpredictable plot elements. Scott Brick is not my favorite reader, but he does a reliable job in telling this complex story. This audio version remains one of my favorite listens ever, and my husband and I have both listened to it several times. It is an undertaking, to be sure, at 63 hours, but there is so much story to be told that you will relish every hour.
I will not give any spoilers to listeners who have not read the book, but suffice it to say that the events of Atlas Shrugged sound as if they are taken from current headlines; you will have a hard time believing that this was written more than half a century ago. The American economy is in shambles, the government repeatedly tries to fix it with legislation that only compounds the problems, the few remaining productive sectors of the economy are villified as being "greedy," and forced to hand over all they earn for the "good of society," and successful businessmen are disappearing, leaving their once profitable companies to be looted by beaurocrats. One man's dramatic solution does indeed leave you wondering "Who is John Galt?"
Enjoy this marvelous classic! You will never look at society, government and the economy in the same light again.
Brick was actually pretty dang good. Start listening at 1.25X then slowly move up to 3X (if you would like to). Brick talks slowly but probably sounds the best at 1.5X. I had full comprehension at 3X and thought it was very engaging. Have a great time listening most def worth it!
9 out of 10.. I'm not sure what ten was but it was so far above the other books I've heard, that it's way up there. They do a good job of painting a political picture of where the world is and/or can go and connects it to you personally at a human level, all while holding suspense, mystery, and excitement. The narrator does a great job of painting the picture of the each scene and individual.
Francisco was a self- motivated, 12 steps ahead individual who thought on multiple levels outside of the perverbial box. This is the way all humans should strive to be.
I don't have a favorite
Wish I could, but 60 hrs doesn't fit in one sitting..
The reader made the story come alive. I don't think I would make it through reading over 1000 pages.
When Daphne crashed landed in the valley and John Gault was the first person she saw.
See the above answer.
Engaging, relevant, & lengthy
A clever, coherent defense of the benefits of capitalism in an engaging story.
Although written in 1957, the book seems more relevant today that it probably did in 1957. Some minor social norms have changed since the 50's, but this only adds to the interest of this story.
However, be aware this is a long book. Sometimes the dialog is made up of short, rapid fire, back-and-forth conversations, but I guess that's what happens when you have 1,100 pages to fill.
Don't be fooled by the recent movie. This is a very engaging story.
The story of Robin Hood.
He did a good job of changing tone and inflection to represent characters.
Dagny Taggerd. She's honest.
I would absolutely listen to this audio book a second time in order to appreciate the rich details.
The paragraph in which the title of the book was explained.
I thoroughly enjoyed his range of characters which brought the characters to life.
Extinguish the Lights
The story moves along and I wanted to hear what happens next. But the same speeches are made over and over again by different characters or in different circumstances were punishing. That it was in audio helped to make the burden easier to bear.
I went back to the introduction after listening to the book. Rand's explanation that fundamentally the book was for her and only shared with us later made the book easier to take. I don't agree with her belief in the critical importance of the creators as a narrow class but I value her book as an expression of her belief.
As an example of her time and reaction to communism/socialism the book is both valuable for that but dated when it comes to more universal prospectives.
The reader did a wonderful job, especially with scenes in which two or more speaker are talking. It oddly made me enjoy the experience just a tad more when I very occasionally questioned some part of the reading where the text described how the voice should have sounds and I questioned whether the reader got it right.
Absolutely. It was the longest book I've listened to on audible, but it's just the kind of book I want to read. If I read it on paper, it would take me forever. It only took me a few weeks this way because I was so interested in the story, and could listen to it anytime.
Dagne, because she persisted and believed so strongly in herself.
That's a hard choice, since Scott Brick is one of my favorite readers. But I think my favorite was Francisco, because his double life was so well differentiated by the reading.
Wanted to? Maybe. Possible? No way, unless you can stay up for 60 hours at a time.
I chose this book because of the controversy surrounding it. I'm glad that I did. The story by Ayn Rand was well written, and the conclusions were interesting, but it was truly built on some glaringly false premises. A bit of a straw man. Still, I enjoyed it.
He's a fantastic reader.
Dagny. Sounds hot.
"John Galt would have liked it"
A minor criticism first. The first track in this audio book is an introduction with spoilers, so you should skip it if you don't want the surprise to be spoiled. The narration is clear and well acted and the sound is good.
Atlas Shrugged is two books in one: a novel and a book of philosophy. As a novel, AS is very good. It has interesting characters that change over the course of the book in ways that seem reasonable given their worldview and the world they live in. The plot also makes sense and is very effective at presenting Rand's worldview.
Many people complain about AS. I think these complaints are largely due to them disagreeing with the philosophy without having any good arguments against it. Do characters speak more eloquently than most people do in real life? There isn't a novel worth reading where that isn't true. The characters sometimes give speeches when they have something to say that requires a speech. People disapprove of this stuff because they dislike the content of the speech, not because there is a speech. My suggestion about how to approach the book is this: every time you feel outraged ask yourself whether you have a logical argument against what Rand is saying. If you don't then you should be willing to admit that you might be wrong and keep going.
So, to conclude, this audiobook is a well-narrated presentation of a challenging and dramatic novel.
"Has challenged me to rethink ideas"
For a long time I was reluctant to start reading this book, as it is a very long book, but it has been a great "read" for many hours of driving. Yes, it is long, but it has kept me interested and curious for the next turn of events.
I knew it was a political/philosophical book and it has certainly provoked my thinking - more than I really like, as I normally do not see myself as such a radical liberal as promoted here. The "looters" seem so obvious wrong in this book, that it is scary how often we see and hear their ideas promoted in real life also now in 2013. Having travelled around the world, I see countries almost purely based on the model promoted by the "looters" here - and not surprisingly these countries seem on the brink of catastrophe.
Probably the most thought provoking book I have "read" in years.
This is a fantastic eye opening read. It gives the reader a whole new view of the economy today even though it was written in the late 50s. I would recommend this audio especially for those who find reading a book of this size difficult. Definitely a must have!
"Well Worth the Effort"
I was so pleased when I saw the unabridged version of Atlas Shrugged had been released on Audible. I tried to fight my way through the tiny font 1168 page paperback I bought a few years ago but I only have so much determination. This is what audiobooks were meant to be.
As many know this set in an America where socialism has gone bad. At times you do feel as though Rand is hitting you over the head with her message, but I suspected it was always going to be that way.
After a slow start Rand manages to keep my interest in the plot, although I have to admit that it's lovers of philosophy who will get the most out of this book.
Well read by Scott Brick; next up for me in the unabridged Fountainhead.
The longest book I have ever bought and definitely value for money.
"A work of fiction, a work of philosophy."
I really can not describe how much this novel has affected me. The value this book presents is just unmatched by any other work of its kind. For me Atlas Shrugged feels like a classic that is actually a classic. Themes of the book weave together like nothing I have ever read. If you enjoy a good thought provoking book, Atlas Shrugged will change your life.
"Atlas Shrugged - 30th Edition complete with extras"
A titan of a book, by any standards, would need to give it a while before revisiting, will be trying The Fountainhead though.
Narration perfectly executed by Scott Brick.
Brick's take on all the characters is excellent, but his Hank Rearden was the best.
Such a great book, narrated so well, with notes from the author etc thrown in for good measure.
One of the best purchases I've made on Audible.
"An Explanation of Our Current Folly."
Prophetic vision of our future written Sixty years ago. This is a gripping read that seems to explain today's headlines. Well read in the audible format. An excellent explanation of why ,"There is no free lunch."
I first read this book many years ago, and have been checking Audible for the last three years, waiting for it to come out on audio. I forgot a lot of the plot of this book, but I absolutely love it. Ayn Rand was a genius!
"Surprisingly impressive book"
Scott Brick is a talented narrator with a fluent command of the different voices.
There are many characters in this book and Brick managed to make a different voice for every one of them.
It made me think.
There were holes in the plot and a lot of unanswerable questions. The Utopia which Rand describes is not workable. The Distopia she describes could not happen at that sort of pace in that way. However, later events -- typified in the collapse of Soviet society for example, or the rise of politicly correct language in Western countries -- which she could only predict at the time she wrote the novel, prove her to have been remarkably prescient and although her views seem extreme this book carries warnings we should heed.
"What to make of Atlas Shrugged"
The train facing the tunnel and beyond.
No. This is a tome concerning the rights of Capitalism but the principles expressed simply don't work. Very interesting read though.
Ayn Rand's diatribe, for that's what it essentially is, creates a world where 'capital' fights it's cause. The key premise is that those accruing vast capital do so by their own efforts solely and therefore have no responsibility to their society. This is an inane argument as we all must accept that there is no such person as 'the self made man' and it only the notional power of money that could conclude otherwise. This is novel that tells us that power (in this case wealth) never tells the truth or (more specifically) never admits it's wrong.
In a way this is much the same argument that many 19th century intellectuals and philosophers use to describe their thoughts and although not specifically related to capital you'll find similar arguments used by Adolf Hitler in his books of the 1920s leading to the 2nd World War.
Ayn offers no ideas and merely suggest a future of economic hegemony and of a withdrawn capital owning class and fails completely to understand that such a withdrawn culture makes capital ownership actually worthless.
There's a strong sexual component too and one (certainly me) can't help feeling that her mass argument amounts to nothing more than sexual longings of her own. Herself a very plain and rather unattractive woman it's quite hard not to see her female characters as possessed of a beauty and sexuality she may have lacked. While I may hear feminists bounding up to her defence I very much doubt that I'll hear many similarly bounding toward her ideas - as expressed in Atlas Shrugged.
Basically the central premise of this novel is just plain silly. It has truths (in my opinion), it most certainly isn't worthless. For me it just astounds - however, I have a longer view and my own arguments with capital are 70 years more knowing and probably a great deal more damning than this trite piece of 1950s kitsch. A good read overall.
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