Common Sense

  • by Thomas Paine
  • Narrated by Adrian Cronauer
  • 1 hrs and 41 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

This pamphlet, first published in 1776, set in print the word every American was thinking about, but none dared say: independence! It was published anonymously in New York, selling 120,000 copies in the first 3 months and half a million in that same year. Its author, Thomas Paine, wrote in a language that could be understood by any reasonably literate colonist. But more important than it being so well received, is that it captured the American colonists' imaginations and was a primary catalyst to the independence movement in the United States. Noted American historian Bernard Bailyn called it "the most brilliant pamphlet written during the American Revolution, and one of the most brilliant ever written in the English language."


Audible Editor Reviews

This is the pamphlet that started the American Revolution. Political activist Thomas Paine's groundbreaking work lays out in simple terms the rationale for American independence. One wouldn't want to hear this seminal work read by anyone other than radio personality Adrian Cronauer. He handles the vernacular of the day with such ease that listeners feel as if they are hearing Paine himself lay out his argument. Cronauer uses pauses and varied intonations to ensure that this piece, despite its age, is accessible to a modern audience.


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

revolutionary ideas for sure

This was a little difficult to get through but I'm very glad I listened to it all. I remember reading about this book when I was in high school and always wondered what it said. The main thing it showed me was how many of our rights in this country we take for granted and how different the thinking was back then. If you read it with an 18th century perspective it is amazing. I highly recommend it for it's historical value. It's no wonder it was a best seller in its day.
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- reggie p "reggie"

Thomas Paine is God!

I could never give Tom Paine less than the fullest possible complement of stars. Audible has done us all a favor for releasing this part of the Gospel. I await "The Age of Reason" and "The American Crisis" with great anticipation. In the meantime, Bob Dylan will have to do:

As I went out one morning
To breathe the air around Tom Paine's,
I spied the fairest damsel
That ever did walk in chains.
I offer'd her my hand,
She took me by the arm.
I knew that very instant,
She meant to do me harm.
"Depart from me this moment,"
I told her with my voice.
Said she, "But I don't wish to,"
Said I, "But you have no choice."
"I beg you, sir," she pleaded
From the corners of her mouth,
"I will secretly accept you
And together we'll fly south."
Just then Tom Paine, himself,
Came running from across the field,
Shouting at this lovely girl
And commanding her to yield.
And as she was letting go her grip,
Up Tom Paine did run,
"I'm sorry, sir," he said to me,
"I'm sorry for what she's done."

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- James

Book Details

  • Release Date: 12-16-1999
  • Publisher: Recorded Books