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The Golden House Audiobook

The Golden House: A Novel

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Publisher's Summary

A modern American epic set against the panorama of contemporary politics and culture - a hurtling mystery that is equal parts The Great Gatsby and The Bonfire of the Vanities.

On the day of Barack Obama's inauguration, an enigmatic billionaire from foreign shores takes up residence in the architectural jewel of "the Gardens", a cloistered community in New York's Greenwich Village. The neighborhood is a bubble within a bubble, and the residents are immediately intrigued by the eccentric newcomer and his family. Along with his improbable name, untraceable accent, and unmistakable whiff of danger, Nero Golden has brought along his three adult sons: agoraphobic, alcoholic Petya, a brilliant recluse with a tortured mind; Apu, the flamboyant artist, sexually and spiritually omnivorous, famous on 20 blocks; and D, at 22 the baby of the family, harboring an explosive secret even from himself. There is no mother, no wife, at least not until Vasilisa, a sleek Russian expat, snags the septuagenarian Nero, becoming the queen to his king - a queen in want of an heir.

Our guide to the Goldens' world is their neighbor René, an ambitious young filmmaker. Researching a movie about the Goldens, he ingratiates himself into their household. Seduced by their mystique, he is inevitably implicated in their quarrels, their infidelities, and, indeed, their crimes. Meanwhile, like a bad joke, a certain comic-book villain embarks upon a crass presidential run that turns New York upside-down.

Set against the strange and exuberant backdrop of current American culture and politics, The Golden House also marks Salman Rushdie's triumphant and exciting return to realism. The result is a modern epic of love and terrorism, loss and reinvention - a powerful, timely story told with the daring and panache that make Salman Rushdie a force of light in our dark new age.

©2017 Salman Rushdie (P)2017 Random House Audio

What the Critics Say

"A ravishingly well-told, deeply knowledgeable, magnificently insightful, and righteously outraged epic which poses timeless questions about the human condition. Can a person be both good and evil? Is family destiny? Does the past always catch up to us? In a time of polarizing extremes, can we find common ground? Will despots and their supporters be forever with us? Will humankind ever learn? Can story and art enlighten us? As [Salman] Rushdie's blazing tale surges toward its crescendo, life, as it always has, rises stubbornly from the ashes, as does love." (Booklist )

"Where Tom Wolfe's Bonfire of the Vanities sent up the go-go, me-me Reagan/Bush era, Rushdie's latest novel captures the existential uncertainties of the anxious Obama years.... A sort of Great Gatsby for our time: everyone is implicated, no one is innocent, and no one comes out unscathed." (Kirkus Reviews)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.3 (88 )
5 star
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4.3 (78 )
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4.5 (77 )
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Performance
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  •  
    D. Donohue New York, NY USA 09-20-17
    D. Donohue New York, NY USA 09-20-17 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Delirious antidote to wallowing in self-pity"

    Been suffering with the blues in these mindless deplorable days? Listening to this book may help. It's a reminder how much thinking, reading and humor heal. The narrator lacks some essential coaching on pronouncing some key names... Houston Street is not pronounced like that city in TX. Otherwise he is excellent.

    5 of 9 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Allen H. Kelson Lincolnwood, IL United States 10-18-17
    Allen H. Kelson Lincolnwood, IL United States 10-18-17
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    "Superb"

    An intellectual game of storytelling with loads of obscure literary, musical, and historical allusions. The narrator, a young New Yorker and would-be film writer-director becomes an intimate friend with a multigenerational family of extraordinarily wealthy immigrants from an undisclosed country. The family members—each of whom has intriguing mental states, personal histories (temptingly doled out bit by bit), or relationships with the narrator—are the vehicle by which the tale unrolls. It’s wonderfully addictive and unpredictable.

    The reader does a magnificent job differentiating characters of several countries, a range of genders, and all ages.

    I was mildly irked by the director’s failure to correct mispronunciation of some English words and New York place-names that even I, a non-New Yorker, was familiar with. Those minor irritants broke the story’s compulsive pacing.

    On the whole, this is a very enjoyable and original book, excellent in audio form.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Garrett 10-13-17
    Garrett 10-13-17 Member Since 2017
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    "Amazing."

    Rushdie always has a way with words, and this narrator somehow manages to do 5 different accents. It was a true pleasure to listen to this.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Barry Peach Orchard, MO United States 10-03-17
    Barry Peach Orchard, MO United States 10-03-17
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    "He protesteth much"

    Equal parts an exploration of American culture in the 2010s and a Rushdie story of Indians straddling the parallel worlds of East/West, Islam/Christendom, Asia/Europe, etc. A page turner from page 1. I was sorry when it ended.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    ilene 09-28-17
    ilene 09-28-17 Member Since 2015
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    "PERFECTION"

    Beautifully written with narration that takes you to another place . Emotional, political, sad but still very satisfying. Highly recommend this experience.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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