• They Knew

  • How a Culture of Conspiracy Keeps America Complacent
  • By: Sarah Kendzior
  • Narrated by: Sarah Kendzior
  • Length: 9 hrs and 49 mins
  • 4.7 out of 5 stars (162 ratings)

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They Knew

By: Sarah Kendzior
Narrated by: Sarah Kendzior
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Publisher's Summary

This program is read by the author.

In They Knew, New York Times bestselling author Sarah Kendzior explores the United States’ “culture of conspiracy,” putting forth a timely and unflinching argument: uncritical faith in broken institutions is as dangerous as false narratives peddled by propagandists. Conspiracy theories are on the rise because officials refuse to enforce accountability for real conspiracies.

“The pathos of truth-seeking left me thinking of Herman Melville. I can't remember the last time I read a book where every sentence delivered."—Timothy Snyder

The truth may hurt—but the lies will kill us.

They Knew discusses conspiracy culture in a rapidly declining United States struggling with corruption, climate change, and other crises. As the actions of the powerful remain shrouded in mystery—like the Jeffrey Epstein operation—it is unsurprising that people turn to conspiracy theories to fill the informational void. They Knew exposes the tactics these powerful actors use to placate an inquisitive public.

In Kendzior’s signature whip smart prose and eviscerating arguments, They Knew unearths decades of buried American history, providing an essential and critical look at how to rebuild our democracy by confronting the political lies and crimes that have shaped us.

A Macmillan Audio production from Flatiron Books.

©2022 Sarah Kendzior (P)2022 Macmillan Audio

What listeners say about They Knew

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    3 out of 5 stars

Important message w/a side of self-congratulation

I honestly feel that the story/reporting taking place in this book is IMPORTANT. I think that readers would to well to heed it, and take the lessons they can moving forward. There needs to be more critical thinking when it comes to what we are imbibing as well as the motives of those who are in power. It's a terrifying truth, but one we need to live with if we are going to change it.

Of course, much of that truth is buried under the author repeatedly crowing that she predicted much of what is happening (which I understand, I really do, but being reminded again, and again, and again, AND AGAIN) makes it feel much more like the author wants to be vindicated rather than drive home the importance of what she wishes to be vindicated against. And throughout much of the book she pushed back against the vilification of those who are "just asking questions," ignoring that, while yes there are many good ppl who are just asking questions, that excuse has also been used by bad faith actors to introduce dangerous and toxic ideas into society, ideas that have gotten people killed.

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Everyone should read

Sarah is a brave and necessary person in the history of the United States and I hope her amazing works will be recognized as such.

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As beautiful as it is terrifying.

Sarah Kendzior is a fantastic writer. Her prose and the way she expresses her thought is majestic; the content she writes about will give you nightmares.

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put down everything & read this. then read it again.

sarah has quite literally put her life on the line to pursue an honest telling of our american present. her writing is beautiful, compelling, and almost eerie.

this is the kind of book that changes how you live, what you believe, and what you are willing to accept. you are guaranteed to learn new stories about our shared histories and will be left with more questions and concerns than answers. that is the point. this is the time for community and engaging together in a collective reckoning with truth.

protect sarah kendzior at all costs. sarah, thank you for all that you’ve done. you’ve changed my life more than you’ll ever know.

to prospective readers—hurry up and buy this book now.

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This will be book of the year for 2022

If you haven’t read the entire collection of books by Sarah Kendzior, then I cannot imagine what you’re doing with your life. She’s so prescient. I imagine a world where we listen to her warnings, prepare and take actions to find truth, secure justice and thrive in this society. At least I hope we do.

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Truly a great book

This book should be available in every library and class room (age appropriate) in the country. Thanks to Sarah for being courageous and brave!

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Just another doom and disparity book, no facts

Just a book of personal opinion with no facts. Couldn't finish it because it was just a waste of time.

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i don't know...

here is what I learned. no noun should be without its adjective. and all can be reduced to metaphors about water and roads. read the epilogue first. if it suits your fancy, then by all means, dive in.

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they knew & we should too

An audible Charon ferrying American democracy down river Styx, telling us how we got here. Superb

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Must read!

this book is a must read for multiple reasons. more importantly it is a must understand which will be a little harder as understanding it will push boundaries and imagination and center accountability. it is as bad as you think. it doesn't have to be that way and the truth could redeem our future.

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  • Moneenroe
  • 11-14-22

Brilliant. A must read or listen to on Audible.

Sarah is an unique American. She is as honest as you can get. And this is reflected in her books. They Knew is an excellent exposé of all the hypocrisy of all layers of US society. One expects at least 10% in every country to be criminal/corrupt etc. In the US its a least 50%. Ref The Midterms. The book is of historical value & future generations may or should appreciate it. Buy it before its banned after 2024. Thank you Sarah.

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  • Isabel G.
  • 09-22-22

The sharpest analysis you're going to f

Sarah Kendzior is the sharpest and bravest writer of what is happening in America that I read - and I have read many. Her analysis is much more deep and profound than I have ever come across, and in addition to that she is a wonderful poetic writer. A true gem.

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  • carolyn
  • 09-22-22

A tragedy & poetic Story about the reality in Amer

We need to wake up, and face the reality instead of buying the same stories of lies again, to give us a chance to fight for our future. This book help us face the reality that can help us fight for our future.

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  • Brian
  • 09-18-22

Brilliant, as always.

Another great and chilling book by Sarah Kendzior. Her narration , done with real emotional depth adds to a great piece of dystopian investigative journalism.

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 09-26-22

Thought provoking

A thorough and thought provoking book. Ms Kendzior delves deep into the underworld of crime, politics and the future in our currently unstable world. She interlinks geopolitical instability, climate change and American politics in a lucid and frightening way. I could not put it down. I highly recommend this book and her other work which background this title

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 09-26-22

The dark octopus tentacles of our species...

Sarah is both a brilliant writer and powerful journalist. The dark underbelly of our species is revealed and yet Sarah, somehow, enables us to be positive and hope that change will come. Thanks Sarah. You are amazing.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 09-20-22

Absolutely Brilliant

Sarah writes so beautifully about such dark topics. This book (and her others) a must read for anyone who wants to stay informed.