• The Americans

  • The Kent Family Chronicles, Book 8
  • By: John Jakes
  • Narrated by: Marc Vietor
  • Length: 26 hrs and 35 mins
  • 4.7 out of 5 stars (454 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

The definitive volume in Jakes’s best-selling series finds the Kent family reaching to finally embrace its legacy - and its futureIn the final installment of the Kent Family Chronicles, the remaining Kents seek to fulfill Philip Kent’s original American dream.

As Gideon Kent’s health deteriorates, he fears for the future of his family. Their dynasty, now in ruins, stands as a tarnished symbol of all the Kents have lost in the unstable years of war and expansion. It falls to young Will to bring the family together - a task of epic scope. Only expert storyteller John Jakes could craft such a gripping finale to this beloved family saga, bringing the Kents’ drama - and the nineteenth century in America - to its riveting conclusion.

©1980 John Jakes (P)2013 Audible, Inc.

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The Americans

Any additional comments?

These comments address The Kent Family Chronicles, the entire series of eight books, in audiobook format. All books are narrated by Marc Vietor. The entire series is approximately 125 hours of listening. Shortest book is 15.5 hours, longest over 26 hours. Vietor does a good job with narration, although the uniqueness of male voices is problematic. Most significant, you’ll have little difficulty determining who-says-what-to-who. Tempo and pacing fine, albeit the narration is a bit slow for my taste, bumped it to 1.25.

The entire series is a broad spectrum history of the United States from just pre-Revolutionary War through the 1890s and a chronicle of the Kent family through this time. Beginning with Phillip through the generations to the children of Gideon, a great-great-grandson. Members of the clan fight in the Revolutionary War, the War of 1812, the Civil War, are at the Alamo, the California Gold Rush, the Great Chicago Fire, the Johnstown Flood, and much more. The author skillfully intersperses vignettes of imagined and factual history. For example, two of the fictional characters of the series are sheltered for a few days at the home of the Lincolns in rural Kentucky - a baby is part of the family, young Abraham. One of the fictional characters is counseled by Benjamin Franklin. Fiction, Phillip’s childhood friend is Marquis deLafayette, non-fiction: deLafayette’s role in United States and French military. The series is rife with this type of paradigm, but it is not difficult to determine what is true and what is fiction. All the instances that involve the Kents and John Jake’s other fictional characters are products of his imagination. Much of the rest is a fun methodology of conveying historical events.

The stories are very listenable. I found no need to re-wind or fast-forward; no segment boring or irrelevant. Theses books are not ‘love stories’ in the typical sense, albeit familial relationships, the crux of The Kent Family Chronicles, must include love stories, n'est-ce pas? In those areas where a sexual encounter is defined it is relevant to the plot and tastefully written. This does not occur often, but the clan does proliferate :-). A word to the prudish: there are a couple of rapes vividly described.

Very typical of the time written, the 1970s, writing is a bit verbose. Several of these books were adapted for television mini-series, popular at the time.

John Jakes is a terrific historical fiction author, recommended. Enjoy!

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gratifying conclusion!

a wonderful conclusion to a great historical series. highly recommended reading for those Love American history

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I'm Sorry That It Has Ended!

Great series. Hats off to the author. Excellent job. I feel as if I am a part of the Kent family. I wish there were more books as I do not know what to do with my time now!!

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marvelous!!

as marvelous as it was the first time I read this series in the late 1970s early '80s when they first came out. the narrator really brings the story to life and of course John Jakes is just a superb author especially if historical fiction!

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Compelling

I know all good stories must come to an end but, I wish this one hadn’t. Once again truth and justice wins out. There is murder, mayhem, action and love. Always know love never ends. Travel and adventure lives on. MR Jakes you are a marvel.

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Going to miss these Kent family characters

this is the 8th Kent Chronicles book I have listened to what an amazing story

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What an Awesome series!!

listening again, I see how one can get a great review of history and politics in America. Kinda help put recent events in to perspective.

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Wonderful

I read this series in high school and just listen again on audio.. I still remembered so many parts of the book and it always helped me with my American history. Just remembering so many specific events like Johnstown et cetera after after 40 plus years, means it's a really good book.

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Great book!

Loved this series. I think this was the best book of all. Hated to see it end.

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The Americans

What a wonderful experience to hear the words of John Jakes come to life all over again, as I had read them oh so many years ago at the time of their original release.

John Jakes’ bicentennial series will be forever in my heart as some of the best books I have ever read. This statement has more meaning when you know that I was never much of a reader growing up. In part, I owe my love of reading to John Jakes as well, as he introduced me to a family I could connect with...true patriots of this land we call America.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 06-20-18

5/5 for whole series

What an awesome book to wrap up what has been the best series of books I have come across. Gripping storyline that is never predictable and historically accurate to boot. And brilliantly narrated by Mark Vietor. I found myself never wanting the story to end and when it did, it almost brought a tear to my eye.
The Kent family may be fictional, but they provide a moral blueprint by which any decent person should aspire to!

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  • dorothy
  • 01-24-18

Great series

Thoroughly enjoyable history lesson. I would love to see a further volume about the rise of the religious right in America contrasted with the rise of religious skepticism. Parallel with the rise of the religious right in Muslim Middle East.