Whittaker Chambers

  • by Sam Tanenhaus
  • Narrated by Edward Lewis
  • 18 hrs and 33 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

This first-ever biography of the enigmatic Whittaker Chambers draws on materials from 40 archives, including still-classified KGB dossiers, to trace the remarkable journey that led Chambers to center stage in America's greatest political trial. This complex portrait is rich in startling new information about Chambers' years as a Communist agent and then defector, hunted by the KGB; his conversion to Quakerism; his secret sexual turmoil; and his turbulent decade at Time magazine, where he rose from obscurity to transform the magazine into an oracle of apocalyptic anti-Communism.
But all this was a prelude to Chambers' memorable testimony against Alger Hiss in the spy case that changed America. Tanenhaus re-creates the Hiss case in all its improbable twists and turns, disentangling the motives that propelled a vivid cast of characters in unpredictable directions.


What the Critics Say

"Riveting....an invaluable contribution....compelling to read as any espionage thriller." (Commentary magazine)
"[Lewis] masterfully handles this comprehensive biography....The high point, [Lewis'] reading of the Hiss trial, communicates the many suspenseful twists of the event." (AudioFile magazine)
"Tanenhaus writes well and sometimes brilliantly....Expect this book to stoke fires already burning for nearly half a century." (Kirkus Reviews)


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful


This is a great book. Gave me an understanding of a era that has been obscured by cliche. Really changed my perspective of the Cold War and the US/Soviet Union relationship in the decades before.
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- bonnie peregoy

Life in Times

Chambers' search for his way of life gives us a glimpse of history and politics in 20th Century.
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- Joanne

Book Details

  • Release Date: 01-11-2010
  • Publisher: Blackstone Audio, Inc.