The Prime Ministers

  • by Yehuda Avner
  • Narrated by Derek Perkins
  • 24 hrs and 20 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

The Prime Ministers is the first and only insider account of Israeli politics from the founding of the Jewish State to the near-present day. It reveals stunning details of life-and-death decision-making, top-secret military operations and high level peace negotiations. The Prime Ministers brings listeners into the orbits of world figures, including Menachem Begin, Yitzhak Rabin, Ronald Reagan, Jimmy Carter, Henry Kissinger, Yasser Arafat, Margaret Thatcher, Princess Diana and the Lubavitcher Rebbe.
Written in a captivating literary style by a political adviser, speechwriter and diplomat, The Prime Ministers is an enthralling political memoir, and a precisely crafted prism through which to view current Middle East affairs. The Prime Ministers presents first-hand accounts of major historical events, including:

Menachem Begin's decision to bomb Saddam Hussein's nuclear reactor
Yitzhak Rabin's handling of the Entebbe rescue mission
The Egypt-Israel peace process
The shelling of the Irgun arms ship, the Altalena Deir Yessin
It offers keen observations of key personalities, and unforgettable descriptions of political rivalries, diplomatic blunders, White House and Buckingham Palace banquets and more, to bring Israel's history to life in a way no book has done before.


Audible Editor Reviews

Yehuda Avner brings a fly-on-the-wall perspective to six decades of Israeli history. Part memoir, part multi-faceted biography, and part novelistic narrative, Avner takes listeners deep into the innermost worlds of four prime ministers, as only a former advisor can.
Derek Perkins, whose narrator rating on Audible is consistently near perfect, hails from the UK. His voice is both intimate and intellectual, immediate and poetically lofty. In short, attending his performance is a pleasure.
The audiobook opens with a helpful glossary, introducing the listener to the international cast of characters that will populate the dynamic history. If fans of The Prime Ministers still hunger for more at the end of this recording, they can check out the full-length documentary film inspired by the memoir.


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Great and fascinating book, wrong narrator.

I started reading the dead tree version of the book and was completely hooked. I thought I knew the history well, but the author provides some fascinating insights and background color to some of the most monumental and historical events in the modern State of israel.

I don't know who decided to choose the narrator (who is actually a fine narrator - heard his other books) but he just can't do the hebrew and yiddish phrases peppered throughout the book. (After all this is a book about Israeli prime ministers, who were all natives of Eastern Europe -except one, Rabin). Even as a trilingual speaker, I had a hard time understanding his rendition or pronunciation of common hebrew and yiddish phrases, let alone the rich inflection necessary to convey the necessary nuance.

So overall, this is a fascinating and well written book that I would highly recommend. If the mispronunciation of the hebrew or yiddish will bother you, then think about the print version)
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- Eli

Hard to Stop Listening - Gripping History

Would you listen to The Prime Ministers again? Why?

Absolutely. Ambassador Avner explains what it was like to be an insider in the Israeli government for over 20 years. He was very close to Menachim Begin who never wrote his memoirs. This may be as close as we can get to that.

What does Derek Perkins bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Excellent pronunciation and tone. He is British but when he recounts something uttered by an American his accent is quite convincing.

Any additional comments?

One of the best audiobooks I have had the pleasure to hear.

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- David Enzel

Book Details

  • Release Date: 07-02-2013
  • Publisher: Audible Studios