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Double Star  By  cover art

Double Star

By: Robert A. Heinlein
Narrated by: Bronson Pinchot
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Publisher's summary

Every stand-in dreamed of the starring role - but what actor would risk his life for the chance?

One minute, down-and-out actor Lorenzo Smythe is, as usual, in a bar, drinking away his troubles while watching his career circle the drain. Then a space pilot buys him a drink, and the next thing Smythe knows, he’s shanghaied to Mars. Smythe suddenly finds himself agreeing to the most difficult role of his career: impersonating an important politician who has been kidnapped. Peace with the Martians is at stake, and failure to pull off the act could result in interplanetary war. 

Smythe knows nothing of the issues concerning free interplanetary trade and equal rights for aliens and cares even less, but the handsome compensation is impossible to refuse. He soon realizes, however, that he faces a lifetime masquerade if the real politician never shows up.

©1956, 1984 by Robert A. Heinlein. © 2003 by the Robert A. and Virginia Heinlein Prize Trust (P)2020 by Blackstone Publishing

What listeners say about Double Star

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Hugo Award Well Deserved. A+

A must read/listen for Heinlein fans, young and old. The reading by Bronson Pinchot made the story even more believable. He is one of the very best in the business.

Don’t let the formulaic revision of “Man In The Iron Mask” hold you back from this story. You will cheer for our band of political brothers as they survive a series of hazards through initiative, talent and showmanship.

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8 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

amazing narration

I've read this book before, but the narrator brings this book so amazingly... He might just be the best narrator I've heard so far.

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3 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Super double star

What a great job by Bronson Pinchot. What a fantastic reading of a great book. This book blew by so fast it is unbelievable. I am a huge fan of Heinlein and this is as good as any book he’s ever written. Thank you for this gem.

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2 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Excellent story and superb reading.

I absolutely recommend reading it and this is my second time through this story and I love it

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1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Fantastic

The narrator was absolutely fantastic at portraying all the various characters and keeping them unique. The story was very good, but the narrator was superb!

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1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Terrible, terrible narrator

This is an old favorite, I confess. So I do have preconceptions about the characters. The book itself has some problematic aspects. I anticipated enjoying this ... but the reader is _intolerable_.

It is possible that Pinchot is attempting a satire. If so, I have completely missed the joke. His characterizations are thin, trite, and contradicted by the plain text.

Dak Broadbent _always_ sounds sarcastic. Smythe not only sounds supercilious (which could be a defensible choice) but _stupid_. Pinchot has him putting the emphasis on terms that Smythe would have found commonplace, making Smythe sound ridiculous. The accent Pinchot uses for Bonaforte is not home-spun, but a drawl with no particular provenance. The deal-breaker, though, was Penny, whom Pinchot has chosen to voice like a cheap and incompetent phone sex worker.

So I'm out of here. I will not finish. I will take down my ancient paperback and read the rest.

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1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Great book. Poor read

This is a wonderful book, but I have heard much better readings than this one

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1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

65 years old. Dated.

Yes, the technology is in error, but there are many decisions made by the characters that were unrealistic. The ending was preposterous.

The reader had to accept that the planets were populated. Today we know better.

The reader does not have enough range to make a clear distinction between characters. His interpretation of Penny is laughable.

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1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

The dean of the golden age at his peak!

A tale of an actor-politician the the role of his life. (I would have so loved to have attended the meeting when RAH met Ronald Reagan.)

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1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Wonderful Book, Almost Wonderful Narration...

I've read the book before and it's great, and Bronson Pinchot's performance is great as well, with a single glaring exception: his characterization of Penny. He performs her with a kind of slow, breathy lethargy that is perplexing. It's literally like she's taken a fistful Xanax. The character as written is a high energy person, with wit and verve. I simply can't understand his choice in this case, as he's usually so good in everything else. Perhaps a voice director or producer dictated this choice? I have no idea. But it pulls the book from five stars down to three.

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1 person found this helpful