In 1931, wheeler-dealer, gambler, and promoter Charles Flanagan offers an enormous jackpot to the winner of the first-ever Trans-America race. Over 2,000 people sign on, including professional and amateur athletes; ordinary, out-of-shape folks hit hard by the Depression; a contingent of Hitler Youth; a burlesque dancer; and many others. The novel chronicles far more than a cross-country footrace, and narrator Rupert Degas keeps the 3,000-mile journey exciting, exhilarating, and exhausting. Degas gives substance to McNab's detailed character snapshots with impeccable accents and energetic personality shifts. His narration of the constantly changing American landscape provides a keen sense of place. Degas's sensitive performance of this epic adventure makes the listener the clear winner.
During the Depression the ebullient American entrepreneur Charles Flanagan assembles 2,000 runners from all corners of the earth, to run from Los Angeles to New York for prize-money of $150,000. Flanagan’s Trans-America runners face 3,000 miles, across the Mojave desert and the frozen Rockies, running a daily average of 50 miles for three months. The American sports establishment, however, is desperate to crush what it sees as a professional challenge to the 1932 Los Angeles Olympics. Every day is therefore a struggle for survival, for Flanagan himself as well as the runners. Flanagan’s Run is an epic tale, and a testimony to the strength of the human spirit.
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