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Publisher's Summary

Pulitzer Prize, Fiction, 2001

It's 1939, in New York City. Joe Kavalier, a young artist who has also been trained in the art of Houdiniesque escape, has just pulled off his greatest feat: smuggling himself out of Hitler's Prague. He's looking to make big money, fast, so that he can bring his family to freedom. His cousin, Brooklyn's own Sammy Clay, is looking for a partner in creating the heroes, stories, and art for the latest novelty to hit the American dreamscape: the comic book.

Inspired by their own fantasies, fears, and dreams, Kavalier and Clay create the Escapist, the Monitor, and the otherworldly Mistress of the Night, Luna Moth, inspired by the beautiful Rosa Saks, who will become linked by powerful ties to both men. The golden age of comic books has begun, even as the shadow of Hitler falls across Europe.

The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay is a stunning novel of endless comic invention and unforgettable characters, written in the exhilarating prose that has led critics to compare Michael Chabon to Cheever and Nabokov. In Joe Kavalier, Chabon has created a hero for the century.

©2012 Brilliance Audio, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"Michael Chabon can write like a magical spider, effortlessly spinning out elaborate webs of words that ensnare the reader with their beauty and their style." (Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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I'm sorry I just could not finish this..

What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

the plot was as first interesting but soon evolved into a quagmire of a opuscule,a laborious work I found arduous at best....OK I can't do it... this was from listening this authors absolute inability to not write using the most obscure adjectives, I consider myself a pretty intelligent guy and found it so annoying to stop and look up the meaning of his adjectives every 2 minutes.. Dude we get it you are a verbose writer but I got to the point where I could not concentrate on the plot..It as like when you notice someone overuses a term like "you know" after a while that is all you hear, same with me and his superfluous adjectives.. I thought the book was going to end around chapter 65, but when i looked and had 40 more chapters to go..I quit at 73..Take this with a grain of salt , I am 65 and my taste may not be yours and I did not finish the book (a first for me in 25 years of listening to recorded books ) so it might have an amazing ending. but at this point..I don't care..

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Otto
  • Yucaipa, CA, United States
  • 12-10-15

I never expected to be drawn in so completely

The whole thing had a feeling of credibility and I couldn't help believing the characters and situations were genuine. It's a fascinating story, even if it is fiction.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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I don't understand all the excitement

This book was ok. The performance was great but it was still a boring story that goes off on tangents. I like some of Chabons other books, and I know this is supposedly his masterpiece, but I found it overwritten. This is not brilliant, it's an authors attempt at brilliance.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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One of the best books I have ever heard

Would you listen to The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay again? Why?

I am certain I will listen to The Amazing Adventures of Cavalier and Clay again. All of my long reading life, I have thought that, for the most part, a book worth reading is worth rereading.

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay?

The first meeting of the title characters is memorable. Two men in their teens, first cousins but strangers, have an instant rapport with each other and with the reader.

Which scene was your favorite?

It's hard to pick one favorite, but the scenes of the early love affair of Joseph Kavalier and Rosa Sachs are beautiful.

Who was the most memorable character of The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay and why?

There are four memorable characters. Three are young adults at the beginning of the story. The fourth is not yet born. He is the offspring of the poignant and powerful relationship among the three.

Any additional comments?

Once in a very long while, one finds a novel that settles deeply in the heart and stays there forever. For me, the first one of these was "Little Women." The second was "Huckleberry Finn." As an adult, one such was "Little Big" by John Crowley. Another was "The Children of Violence" series by Doris Lessing. Also the "Canopus in Argos" series by the same writer. I expect "The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay" will be another one that is with me forever.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Two cousins get in on the ground floor of comics

Michael Chabon is one of those writers that has been recommended to me and I have been meaning to read for a while. I didn’t really know anything about it, but The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 2000 so it seemed like a good choice when I saw it on sale a while back.

Joe Kavalier escapes out of Prague just before World War II breaks out and moves in with his Aunt and cousin Sam Clayman in New York City. Sam finds out that Joe is an artist and together with Sam primarily writing and Joe primarily drawing, they become the great comic book writing duo of Kavalier and Clay.

Their main comic book hero, the Escapist has great success, but World War II breaks out and things that have been going well, no longer are going well.

I really do not want to give away the story, but it is a wide ranging story. There is war, love, death, family, magic and more. Chabon is a great descriptive writer and this is a long book, but I was engaged virtually the entire time.

Toward the last third of the book I started getting a bit frustrated because it seemed everything was going wrong. But at the end I was also a bit frustrated because the book was wrapped up a little too nicely.

I have zero regrets that I read it. It is one of my favorite books I have read this year and I will totally read more books by Chabon. But endings are hard and it seems to me more and more that there are really very few good endings.
_____
originally published on my blog at Bookwi.se

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Emrys
  • Alfred, NY, United States
  • 05-29-14

Brilliant!

This is a wonderful novel, funny and poignant, imaginative yet grounded in history. One of the best contemporary novels I've ever read. The narration is excellent.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Joe
  • SEATTLE, WA, United States
  • 03-15-13

I Want The ROsa To My Joe...

Any additional comments?

This is a beautifully written, richly imagined story that ties in real world historical events into to the fictitious world that the characters live in. The relationships between Joe and Sam, between Joe and ROsa, and between Sam and Tracy are complex and dynamic thins that kept me hooked. I absolutely loved this book and was thrilled when I saw that Audible finally had an unabridged version of it.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Masterful on every level

Would you consider the audio edition of The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay to be better than the print version?

I am new to audiobooks and am reveling in their power. I'd picked up "Kavalier and Clay" several years ago and gotten bogged down by the sheer size of the volume--a real doorstop of a novel. But I'd always wanted to read it, and am grateful for this superb audio version. In that sense: yes, the audiobook was better for me than the print book.

What did you like best about this story?

The historical sweep, the sense of what World War II meant to Americans and Europeans on a personal, experiential level, the complexity and reality of the characters, and (as always with Chabon) the delicacy, respect, and sensuality with which he treats gay characters. I'm not sure where this straight author's fascination with homosexuality comes from, but he is one of the greatest of our "gay" writers. He dramatizes the struggles of Jewish people and the struggles of gay people with an almost uncanny empathy.

Which character – as performed by David Colacci – was your favorite?

David Colacci nailed everyone, but his portrayal of Joe Kavalier took my breath away.

Any additional comments?

"K & C" has the sweep and depth of a classic nineteenth-century novel--a book of great intelligence, imagination, and depth.

5 of 7 people found this review helpful

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Great fan of Michael Chabon

So glad to find this unabridged version of Kavalier and Clay. I read the novel several years ago and loved it then. The narration is excellent.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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How did I miss this one?

Somehow I wasn't paying attention when people were reading this book and raving about it. Now that I have read it, many of my literary friends are looking at me and saying -- "of course I have read it, it's fabulous!" My silly response is "why didn't you tell me?" I think this all points to the fact that I truly love reading a book that takes me somewhere else. whose words I relish over and over and whose characters I just simply miss at the end of the reading. This is such a story - not to be missed. As a matter of fact, just download it now because you won't be disappointed.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful