• American Empire: The Center Cannot Hold

  • By: Harry Turtledove
  • Narrated by: George Guidall
  • Length: 24 hrs and 36 mins
  • 4.7 out of 5 stars (359 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Harry Turtledove, Ph.D., critically acclaimed novelist and "Master of Alternative History", enriches his compelling narratives with authentic period details. In this enthralling epic begun by Sidewise Award-winner How Few Remain and continued in Blood & Iron, the Great Depression devours the Roaring Twenties - leaving the USA and the CSA vulnerable.

As the Socialist Party battles Coolidge to retain the presidency in 1924, it seems as if it can do no wrong. The stock market soars, and the USA prospers. Although victors in the War of Secession, the CSA still reels from its loss of the Great War while the Freedom Party promises new vigor and pride. But should these gray-shirted fascists seize power, they may prove dangerous. Sharing world supremacy with Germany and bloated with prosperity, the USA fails to notice ominous events inside the weakened CSA.

©2002 Harry Turtledove (P)2008 Recorded Books, LLC

What listeners say about American Empire: The Center Cannot Hold

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

Another amazing installment in this franchise.

Great story. Great performance. 100/100. Truly one of the best pairings of source material and voice talents on the platform. On to the next one!

1 person found this helpful

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Just Terrific

Story; Great
Narration; Great
Loved this book.
10/10 gonna read again, can't wait to finish the series.

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

The Rise of FAS-- I Mean FREEDOM

This Series is More than the some of its parts. At times it is difficult to tell where one starts and another ends.
This Installment showcases the second term of President Sinclair. The Elections of 1927 {C.S.A.} and the Elections of {1928} respectively.
The Crash of the Economy in 1929. The Resurgence of Extremism in light of said Crash.
And so much more politics.

However I do have some Criticism; I lot of crazy stuff just happens off the Page. Canadian Uprisings. The Rise of Action François. The Mexican Civil War and some stuff with Japan.

I think because all of the Soldier Characters have moved on to other things, We can't get too much regarding the Frontlines of any conflict anymore, Also they gotta move through 10 years in 20 chapters so some stuff is gonna get skimmed over.
But IDK sometimes it was wanting of more details.

But on a more Positive note; I liked that we got to see a bunch of the Characters who started as Children grow up. I can tell they're gonna become POVs in future installments and setting them up here just makes its better. It Gives us more of a connection to the Next Generation. And in the same vein it's really cool to see technology develop more, The Starts of Film and Radio and Automobiles alongside a cultural Evolution. It's Bul-- I mean SWELL.

I Really Love this Series and I intend to keep reading.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Filler

American empire series isnt bad, its entertaining but I cant recommend these to anyone. They're too long and too much filler. Performance is excellent as always. I hate the mcgregor family with a passion and cant wait until mary blows herself up. Good new pov characters besides her dumb ass tho.

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Freedom party stays catching dubs!

Freedom! freedom! Can’t wait to see what happens in the next book. Love this series!

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Good stuff, poor production

The story and narration are excellent, but as unfortunately the norm for this series the mixing of the audio is awful. Lots of odd pauses and absolutely NO management of subchapters - one sentence will be from one character's perspective, and the next second you're in an entirely different one.

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5 stars!!!!

loved this book so much
harry turtledove is great and the performance was amazing !!!!! 5 stars!!!!

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Another great installment in the series

Turtledove is really a master at the Alternative History genre. Of course, it's supposed to be an analogy to 1920s/1930s Germany but the way the author paints the story in English and in an American context is well done. It's easy to see modern populists also coming through when he paints the main character: Jake Featherstone in this story.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Tedious second entry in American Empire series

All of the flaws of Turtledove with very few pleasures. Turtledove insists on beating each character's signature trait into the ground. The sailor who sunburns is particularly annoying. Only a couple of the many many subplots are compelling (Cincinatus Driver, Clarence Potter). Some like the Mexican veteran are totally pointless. Tragic deaths and unlikeable characters galore. Gratuitous references to real historical events. (Hoobert Heever...ha,ha.) Not a fun read. Bring on WWII already.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

A wonderful and masterful book

Turtledove again has made an incredibly detailed interpretation of alternate history.

I will get what I dislike about the stories out of the way. Turtledove has the infuriating habit of over analyzing things. A small detail may come up that has little bearing on the story. And I cannot count how many times he has used the phrase “__ and __ were two different things” or something like that in this series.

That being said, Turtledove I have come to realize is playing the long game when it comes to book writing and if you have patience this is an extremely rewarding series. Little nods to historical facts can rise up and you realize he did it before many self described historians told you about it.
You don’t Love all characters in the series but there is enough for anyone to find one they like, and I found myself genuinely attached to some. Thoughtful reimagining of certain parts of history come up that are not wild to believe in this universe ( although some are doubtful I.E. the invention of tanks). But in the end turtle dove has created an immersive a complicated story and has done a great job and I am excited for the next one!