cover image Legacy of Ashes: The History of the CIA

Legacy of Ashes: The History of the CIA

Tim Weiner, , read by Stefan Rudnicki. . Blackstone Audio, $34.95 (0pp) ISBN 978-1-4332-0199-8

Pulitzer Prize–winner Weiner combed through the history books and recently declassified records to offer up this fascinating, comprehensive and sometimes appalling history of the Central Intelligence Agency. Weiner documents everything from the agency's formation in the aftermath of WWII to its failure to prevent the events of September 11, 2001, and every misstep, blunder and international incident in between. For an important book like this one, it's important for an audiobook narrator to have a certain gravitas, and Rudnicki has plenty. His deep, resonant voice keeps the listener riveted and is ideally suited to the serious, historical—and often grim—subject matter. Rudnicki occasionally uses accents to add flavor to the text when reading quotations, but for the most part wisely eschews this practice and simply brings Weiner's words to life. Rudnicki is one of the best narrators in the business, and he's in top form here—Legacy of Ashes is one of the best audiobooks of the year. Simultaneous release with the Doubleday hardcover (Reviews, June 4). (July)