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Golden State

Narrated by: Kiff VandenHeuvel
Length: 10 hrs and 26 mins
4 out of 5 stars (62 ratings)
Regular price: $29.65
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Publisher's Summary

From award-winning New York Times best-selling novelist Ben H. Winters comes a mind-bending novel set in a world governed by absolute truth, where lies are as dangerous as murder.

In a strange alternate society that values law and truth above all else, Laszlo Ratesic is a 19-year veteran of the Speculative Service. He lives in the Golden State, a nation standing where California once did, a place where like-minded Americans retreated after the erosion of truth and the spread of lies made public life and governance impossible.

In the Golden State, knowingly contradicting the truth is the greatest crime - and stopping those crimes is Laz's job. In its service, he is one of the few individuals permitted to harbor untruths, to "speculate" on what might have happened.

But the Golden State is less a paradise than its name might suggest. To monitor, verify, and enforce the truth requires a veritable panopticon of surveillance and recording. And when those in control of the facts twist them for nefarious means, the Speculators are the only ones with the power to fight back.

©2019 Ben Winters (P)2019 Hachette Audio

Critic Reviews

"This near-future thriller by Edgar winner Winters is likely to provoke discussion." (Publishers Weekly)

"Thought-provoking, genre-bending...Winters seems to have a real affection for unusually compelling premises.... He certainly knows how to bring those premises to life in a way that keeps readers flipping pages.... What's especially intriguing about the book is the way Winters dispenses information, dropping a hint here, a key sentence there, and letting us figure out what happened in the past that led to a society in which the punishment for telling a lie could be exile.... Another fine novel from a writer whose imagination knows no bounds." (Booklist)

"A skillful and swift-moving concoction.... For those who like their dystopias with a dash of humor. No lie." (Kirkus Reviews)

What members say

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As good as Underground Airlines, probably better!

“Imagine if everyone did it. Imagine if each person were allowed the luxury of claiming their own truth, building a reality of their own in which they can live. Imagine the danger that would pose. How quickly those lies would metastasize and the extraordinary threat that would pose to the world.” (Laszlo Ratesic)

Sounds like today’s politics!

I loved Winters’ last novel, Underground Airlines, and I wasn’t disappointed. In an alternate California, in a universe where truth is the ultimate law and lies are punishable by imprisonment or exile, Laszlo Ratesic is a veteran of the Speculative Service, the “truth police.” But the Golden State is not the paradise that its name suggests. The truth is monitored, verified, and enforced by 24-hour intrusive surveillance and recording. And when those in control of the facts twist them for nefarious means, the Speculators are the only ones with the power to fight back

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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i cannot lie....it's okay....I think

In this audiobook it is a felony to tell a lie, so in the spirit of truth I must say that Golden State was a bit of a disappointment. I was looking forward to this release because I really liked Winters' last novel, Underground Airlines. Golden State has its moments, but there are not many of them, and it just wasn't all that engaging. The idea was okay. The story was okay, and the narrator was okay. Overall, it was just okay.

Overall rating: 3.02 stars

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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Great book!

Totally gripping and unpredictable . A contemporary Brave New World. Perfect Narration, great story. School kids should read this book.

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  • SM
  • 02-14-19

Modern Day 1984

This book is a gem. I feel like writing anything more would be a disservice to the writing and the story. But every once in a while a book comes along and changes a bit of your life. This is that book for me and it could be for you.