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Publisher's Summary

From "America's nerviest journalist" (Newsweek) - a breathtaking epic, a magnificent adventure story, and an investigation into the true heroism and courage of the first Americans to conquer space. "Tom Wolfe at his very best" (The New York Times Book Review)

Millions of words have poured forth about man's trip to the moon, but until now few people have had a sense of the most engrossing side of the adventure: namely, what went on in the minds of the astronauts themselves - in space, on the moon, and even during certain odysseys on earth. It is this, the inner life of the astronauts, that Tom Wolfe describes with his almost uncanny empathetic powers that made The Right Stuff a classic.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Tom Wolfe is the author of more than a dozen books, among them such contemporary classics as The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test, The Right Stuff, The Bonfire of the Vanities and A Man in Full. A native of Richmond, Virginia, he earned his B.A. at Washington and Lee University and a PhD. in American studies at Yale. He lives in New York City.

ABOUT THE NARRATOR

Dennis Quaid is renowned for his distinct portrayals in both comedic and dramatic roles over the past forty years. Quaid can next be seen in Roadside Attraction's faith-based film I Can Only Imagine which will be released on March 16, 2018.

Dennis most recently stared in Crackle's auctioneering drama The Art of More on which he also served as an executive producer. On the big screen, he was recently seen starring in Universal's A Dog's Purpose as well as in the fact-based drama Truth. He will next begin filming the third season of the BAFTA award-nominated television series Fortitude and recently completed production on Lionsgate's Kin with James Franco.

Quaid began to gain attention in the late 1970s for roles in such films as Breaking Away before gaining public and critical acclaim for his role in the 1983 release The Right Stuff. Other notable credits include The Rookie, The Day After Tomorrow, Traffic, Vantage Point, Frequency, The Parent Trap, and Soul Surfer. For his role in Todd Haynes' Far from Heaven he won the New York Film Critics Circle Award for Best Supporting Actor, the Chicago Film Critics Association Award for Best Supporting Actor, the Online Film Critics Society Award for Best Supporting Actor and the Independent Spirit Award for Best Supporting Male. In 2010 he was nominated for numerous awards including a SAG Award®, an Emmy© and a Golden Globe© for his portrayal of Bill Clinton in the TV Movie, A Special Relationship.

©1979 Tom Wolfe (P)2017 Audible, Inc.

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Splendid Narration of One of My Favorite Books


It has been a long wait for the audiobook of The Right Stuff.

I read the Tom Wolfe book right after its publication in the late 1970s. It was great. Being in the Air Force then, I could appreciate Wolfe’s preparation and research for the book, his general accuracy in telling readers about the life of test pilots and astronauts, and his writing style. It was often funny and sometimes exciting, and always interesting.

The movie version was a near-flawless version of the book, and it still holds up. It won four Academy Awards.

I always figured somebody would produce an audiobook of The Right Stuff, since other Tom Wolfe books are sold at Audible, but the years kept adding up.

Well, the wait has been worth it. The depth of talent in the movie was ridiculous - like the 1927 Yankees - lots of people from the movie could have narrated it. Dennis was probably my top choice. He played the role of astronaut Gordon Cooper. He even spoke the last words on camera in the movie.

Quaid’s narration is superb. Hearing it was like reading the book and watching the movie again. It was funny hearing him speak words and phrases which he had spoken in the movie, such as “Star Voyager.” He mastered the Tom Wolfe style so well, you would think Dennis was telling his own favorite stories about pilots and astronauts.

I rate this one A-Okay.

17 of 18 people found this review helpful

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  • Gillian
  • Austin, TX, United States
  • 02-08-18

Righteous Book, Righteous Narrator, Righteous MEN!

I can't say when I've had more fun wallowing in such terrific writing, such sassy, let it all hang out narration!
Tom Wolfe's The Right Stuff is FINALLY an audiobook, and boy has it been worth the wait, or what?!
Dennis Quaid, who played Gordo in the movie, one of the most likable people/characters you'll ever want to see on the big screen, brings marvelous narration--truly, it's as though he loves the material, respects the hell out of the men (and the wives too)! He knows the book backwards and forwards, gives ya drawls, gives you the monotone of space control, gives you the sneering smile of snide comments. He's what bring Wolfe's wonderful words to life.
And boy can Wolfe write! He takes the technical and brings it seasoned emotion that the layman can bite his nails to. He, and the fighter jocks, bring it all to the edge, push that envelope so far that the reader/listener is on the edge of their seat, waiting breathlessly for that next word, that next wonderfully turned phrase.
15+ hours fly by (or maybe zoooom by like a rocket blasting off) when you're having this much fun listening to men as they dare the unknown, as they try to avoid screwing-the-pooch.
Other than Quaid butchering a French word here and there, this book was absolute perfection, and I do hope Wolfe is soaring with pride that his beloved book was produced with such care and such joy!

20 of 22 people found this review helpful

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An outstanding performance of an outstanding book

I read The Right Stuff when it was published, and saw the movie, enjoying both. So when I preordered the Audible release, I anticipated a pleasant revisit with a friend. I wasn’t disappointed. But I wasn’t prepared for Dennis Quaid’s wonderful performance, which brought the text alive. An outstanding performance of an outstanding text!

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • Sully
  • San Franicso, CA
  • 02-26-18

Exceptional!

Fantastic story and made even better, if that’s possible, by the read and the performance of Dennis Quaid. The right stuff. Yes, I just said that.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Great book, well narrated

I first read the print version of this book shortly after it was released, and I enjoyed it so much that I have been checking Audible’s site for it regularly for perhaps the last year. When it finally showed up I grabbed it, only waiting to finish my current book before I started listening. It was a long wait for this book to get to Audible, but it was worth it.

Mr Wolfe does an amazing job in so many ways in this book. His description of the environment of the test pilot shortly after the end of World War II is excellent and his description of Chuck Yeager and his influence on the pilot community is nothing less than wonderful. He then goes on to describe the competing efforts to get the US into space, the X-15 and X-20 Dyna-Soar projects as well as the Mercury effort. Those who have seen the movie version of the book will recognize much as the movie hewed fairly closely to the book, but Mr Wolfe’s writing is so good that the book is far superior. The importance of this book to the history of manned space flight is so great that Mr Wolfe’s description of the astronauts as being “single combat warriors” survives to this day and can be found in much of the popular history of that period.

The Right Stuff touches all of the important parts of the US effort to get into space - the backgrounds of the astronauts, their families and family life, the competition between them, the competition between the test pilots and the astronauts, the political basis for the manned space effort, the awe that the astronauts were held in, their efforts to get to the top of the test pilot “pyramid” and how the entire space effort changed the test pilot world. Like the movie, the book is both serious and full of humor and tells a story that is both highly entertaining and incredibly serious. For those who were not alive during the 1950s and 1960s it may be hard to understand how the entire space effort, and the Mercury Program specifically, held the public attention, how people stopped what they were doing and sat for hours in front of the TV during Mercury launches and how people listened to their radios for news on the return of the astronauts from their trips into space, but the book makes all of those events clear and describes the feelings of the general public. The comparison with today’s view of astronauts as just being another type of pilot is striking.

This is simply a wonderful book, full of information, that captures the feeling of the time and presents it, full of both the humor and deadly seriousness. The writing and the narration are so good that the reader can feel and understand the experience, even if not alive during the actual events. While the book covers all of the events surrounding the Mercury program it never loses sight of the astronauts themselves, nor of their families.

Dennis Quaid narrates the book and, since he portrayed the astronaut Gordon Cooper in the movie, that seems appropriate. He does an excellent job. Simply a first class book narrated in a first class manner, worthy of 5 stars.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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I couldn’t stop listening

I hope this new audio version renews interest in the space program. The book is a masterpiece and Dennis Quaid’s performance is spectacular. He was the perfect choice. I loved it and will absolutely listen to it again!

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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The movie is great but the book is AMAZING

Seriously, the book makes the movie look like shadow of the real story.
Enjoy every second, brilliant narration by Dennis Quaid!
My first review in Audible, I just could not miss the chance.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Bob
  • Massachusetts
  • 04-23-18

Pretty Good rendering

Very very good. Should have been some fact checking on pronouncing the military acronyms though...Its B. O Q. say each letter,
not “boch”. a minor quibble but every time I heard it I was involuntarily grinding my teeth. Go ahead and spend the credit




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great telling of a classic

great audiobook all around. loved the movie as a kid, and Dennis Quaid doing narration was a pleasant surprise. in some places, he seemed a bit off. not sure if he was in character or not.

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If you’re mildly interested in the space program this is THE book

Dennis Quaid does an outstanding job. Such a pleasure to listen to. The inflections he uses are right on and brings the listener in. Highly recommend.