Empire

Empire

3.7 13
by Gore Vidal
     
 

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"Mr. Vidal demonstrates a political imagination and insider's sagacity equaled by no other practicing fiction writer I can think of. And like the earlier novels in his historical cycle, Empire is a wonderfully vivid documentary drama." —The New York Times Book Review

In this extraordinarily powerful epic Gore Vidal recreates

Overview

"Mr. Vidal demonstrates a political imagination and insider's sagacity equaled by no other practicing fiction writer I can think of. And like the earlier novels in his historical cycle, Empire is a wonderfully vivid documentary drama." —The New York Times Book Review

In this extraordinarily powerful epic Gore Vidal recreates America's Gilded Age—a period of promise and possibility, of empire-building and fierce political rivalries. In a vivid and beathtaking work of fiction, where the fortunes of a sister and brother intertwine with the fates of the generation, their country, and some of the greatest names of their day, including President McKinley, Theodore Roosevelt, William Jennings Bryan, William and Henry James, the Astors, the Vanderbilts, and the Whitneys, Gore Vidal sweeps us from the nineteenth century into the twentieth, from the salvaged republic of Lincoln to a nation boldly reaching for the world.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Lustbader (The Ninja, Shan) seems here to be attempting a combination of Shogun and The Godfather, with some Ludlum tossed in, but it doesn't work. Philip Doss, assassin for a secret U.S. agency, dies in a car wreck in Hawaii. Top Japanese gangsters, a Japanese business cabal and the U.S. agency all try to discover the culprit. Masashi Taki, head yakuza (Japanese Mafia) has plans to bomb China; the businessmen want to recover a secret diary wthat would expose and ruin them; and the secret agency is trying to find a very high-level mole. Doss's son Michael, painter and martial-arts ace, is recruited by his father's boss to solve the mystery, which, we are told in long flashbacks goes back to 1946 occupied Japan. What seems like a cast of thousands thrashes through 40 years of operatic plot that ends with a plop. We move across the Pacific, the past and the present, but the scenery never changes. Even with all the violence, the cardboard characters and inane plot have as much punch as cotton candy. (May)
Library Journal
Fictional creation Caroline Sanford, owner of the Washington Tribune, is the central character in this historical novel that focuses on late 19th/early 20th century America's emergence as a global power. A well-written tale in the tradition of the author's Burr and 1876, it encompasses the Spanish-American War of 1898, U.S. takeover of the Philippines, President McKinley's assassination, and the stormy presidency of Theodore Roosevelt. Interesting and well-developed real-life characters abound, including, most memorably, Secretary of State and Lincoln's old friend John Hay. Intermixed with the well-researched backdrop of historical characters and events is Caroline's personal story. The fifth novel in Vidal's ``American Chronicle'' series, this is yet another winner. Highly recommended. BOMC main selection.James B. Hemesath, Adams State Coll. Lib., Alamosa, Col.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780375708749
Publisher:
Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Publication date:
08/01/2000
Series:
International Series
Edition description:
VINTAGE
Pages:
496
Sales rank:
206,874
Product dimensions:
5.16(w) x 7.99(h) x 0.98(d)

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3.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 12 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
We will never get defeated.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
In case we are defeated and seek refuge. (Which will never happen.) But just in case.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This novel from the sequence of Narratives of Empire reveals Vidal predisposition as a playwright; whereas, in previous novels the reader is reading firsthand the journal of an historical character. Each description is a stage setting where Vidal directed the dialogue and movement of his actors. The major challenge for leisurely reading would be the descriptive references which are highly cultured and may be seen as pretentious by some.
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