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Publisher's Summary

Pulitzer Prize Winner, History, 1995

No Ordinary Time describes how the isolationist and divided United States of 1940 was unified under the extraordinary leadership of Franklin Roosevelt to become the preeminent economic and military power in the world.

Using diaries, interviews, and White House records of the president's and first lady's comings and goings, Goodwin paints an intimate portrait of the daily conduct of the presidency during wartime and the Roosevelts' extraordinary constellation of friends, advisers, and family.

Bringing to bear the tools of both history and biography, No Ordinary Time relates the unique story of how Franklin Roosevelt led the nation to victory against seemingly insurmountable odds and, with Eleanor's essential help, forever changed the fabric of American society.

©1995 Doris Kearns Goodwin, All Rights Reserved. (P)2011 Simon & Schuster

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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

Love Doris Kearns Goodwin!

I loved Lincoln and I love this! Doris Kearns Goodwin has a way of making history more interesting than I ever thought it could be. The book weaves facts and history with insight into Eleanor and FDR as human beings with desires and flaws. The WW2 details are incredible. This book will alter your perspective on the state of the world.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Laurie
  • United States
  • 02-02-14

Interesting detail

What did you love best about No Ordinary Time?

The amount of research that Doris Kearns Goodwin puts into her writing is commendable. Knowing that what you are reading or listening to is not historical fiction, but fact based upon evidence is refreshing.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Eleanor Roosevelt was an amazing woman. Her strength of character and her ideals lead to some of the most radical changes in American culture.

Have you listened to any of Nelson Runger’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

I have not listened to other recordings by Nelson Runger, but this one was good. My only complaint is that some of the pauses between sections were so long that I thought he was moving on to another chapter.

If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

Inside the Roosevelt White House

Any additional comments?

Great story, the organization of details is sometimes disjointed, but overall easy to follow the characters through time.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • CA
  • Boynton Beach FL
  • 01-09-14

Great history of a remarkable time.

If you could sum up No Ordinary Time in three words, what would they be?

This is a must read if you are interested in American history. I am 65 and I have read hundreds of books on WWII. None told the story as well as this book. It is hard to imagine the US in 1939 and to compare the world my parents grew up in and the world I grew up in the 1950's. It has the best analysis of our entry into the war and a better explanation of why the US took some actions or did not take others than any I have every read. Most history book concentrate on what happened. This explains why it happened and the great changes that occurred in the US in the 1940's. If you want to understand things in 2014 you should read or listen to this book.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Stan
  • Belmont, NC, United States
  • 10-01-13

Awesome Book about Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Definitely for anyone interested in the period before and during WWII on the homefront.

Have you listened to any of Nelson Runger’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

Yes, he's a very good narrator.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yes, but ended up listening to this book in spurts on many drives.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Doris At Her Finest

What made the experience of listening to No Ordinary Time the most enjoyable?

What didn't? Seriously, an impeccably researched and written story from a unique period of time. It's long, but I couldn't put it down. I thought I might be tempted to intersperse it with another listen, but not necessary. Wouldn't be a problem if you did.

Who was your favorite character and why?

The storyteller. Doris Kearns Goodwin is a wonderful storyteller who doesn't spare the interesting asides.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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Speed it up!

Listen at 1.5 or it is unlistenable. Narrated talks slow with long pauses. More words. More word.

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Wonderful time capsule

This book was long, but every word brought me into their world. May re-read it.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Superb! Very fluid, a page turner!

Very great story told in fluid way. Not one bit bored. Well balanced with war, politics, affairs at home and more. Every history bug should read this book. Let's not forget the very talented narrator. I LOVED THIS BOOK

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incredible story

the story of war-time US is amazing, well written, and well told. The delicate and precise orchestration required in balancing industry, labor, race relations, and foreign policy is awe-inspiring.

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Excellent biography

This is an excellent biography which is also an historical review of important events taking place during their lifetimes. When listening to the book. One can experience first hand the decisions made during that time and the courage of our former leaders. It is not possible to avoid comparison between this time and our current days. There are many differences but some things never change. I recommend this book highly. Narration perfect and added to the enjoyment.