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Atlas Shrugged: (Centennial Edition)

Atlas Shrugged: (Centennial Edition) [Kindle Edition]

Ayn Rand , Leonard Peikoff
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (190 customer reviews)

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Product Description

Product Description

This is the story of a man who said that he would stop the motor of the world—and did. Was he a destroyer or the greatest of liberators? Why did he have to fight his battle, not against his enemies, but against those who needed him most, and his hardest battle against the woman he loved? What is the world’s motor—and the motive power of every man? You will know the answer to these questions when you discover the reason behind the baffling events that play havoc with the lives of the characters in this story.Tremendous in its scope, this novel presents an astounding panorama of human life—from the productive genius who becomes a worthless playboy—to the great steel industrialist who does not know that he is working for his own destruction—to the philosopher who becomes a pirate—to the composer who gives up his career on the night of his triumph—to the woman who runs a transcontinental railroad—to the lowest track worker in her Terminal tunnels.You must be prepared, when you read this novel, to check every premise at the root of your convictions. This is a mystery story, not about the murder—and rebirth—of man’s spirit. It is a philosophical revolution, told in the form of an action thriller of violent events, a ruthlessly brilliant plot structure and an irresistible suspense. Do you say this is impossible? Well, that is the first of your premises to check.


The decisions of a few industrial leaders shake the roots of capitalism and reawaken man's awareness of himself as an heroic being.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 2300 KB
  • Print Length: 1188 pages
  • Publisher: Plume (21 April 2005)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B003V8B5XO
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (190 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #12,017 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Ayn Rand's first novel, We the Living, was published in 1936, followed by Anthem. With the publication of The Fountainhead in 1943, she achieved spectacular and enduring success. Rand's unique philosophy, Objectivism, has gained a worldwide audience and maintains a lasting influence on popular thought. The fundamentals of her philosophy are set forth in such books as Introduction to Objectivist Epistemology, The Virtue of Selfishness, Capitalism: the Unknown Ideal, and The Romantic Manifesto. Ayn Rand died in 1982.

(Image reproduced courtesy of The Ayn Rand® Institute)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
95 of 106 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting, Thought Provoking but Overlong 19 Mar 2009
This novel hardly needs a review to encourage someone to buy it, when you consider one point alone: It is over 50 years old and people still read it and enjoy it. It is a classic and nothing I can say can detract from that.

But it is also a product of its time, espousing a philosophy that is only internally consistent if one makes rather more assumptions than the author admits to. The characters all speak with Ayn Rand's voice, in a manner that might be familiar to readers of Galileo perhaps, but not so much with readers of a good modern novel. The characters feel unreal. The whole setting is preposterously unreal, and here is a novel that would have been better set in an alternate universe of a science fiction writer, in the manner - say - of Philip Dick's "The Man in the High Castle". Perhaps that was her intent in fact, but she gives us no anchor into the world she is describing and the action of the novel dances across an empty stage.

For anyone seeking rich characterizations, realistic interactions, or a sense of place in the narrative, you will be disappointed in this novel. The novel is merely the platform for Rand's polemic, and jumps from unbelievable to the preposterous without apology.

This being said, it was still a jolly good read. The conflict in the novel is engrossing and draws you in quickly. The first time someone defeats a "looter government", you want to applaud. When Dagny (the protaganist) completes a railway line against all the odds you can feel her exhilieration - even if you wonder how she managed it! The concept of the plot is refreshingly original, and readers will want to finish the novel.

Given its length though, finishing can be tricky - especially where it comes to a 90 page speech espousing Rand's epistemology.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
By Nicholas J. R. Dougan TOP 1000 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Atlas Shrugged may be the most demanding work of literature I have read since university. It is certainly the only novel since then for which I have also bought a reader, Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged: A Philosophical and Literary Companionfiftieth anniversary collection of essays, and it is only now, having finished that, that I am turning to writing a review. At about 1,200 pages (always a bit hard to tell from a Kindle edition) it is also, give or take the occasional "space opera", the longest work I've read for a long time. So: was it worth it?

Arguably this is a work of fiction that is more germane today that it ever was. In a month where the government of one European state, Cyprus, exercised a "levy" thought to be over 40% on investors with over 100,000 on deposit, it's worth considering Rand's depiction of the causes and effects of state-backed "looting and mooching". While I find it surprising, 55 years on, that she could have seen the seeds of such statist decadence in the US of the 1940s and 1950s, the New Deal notwithstanding, there is no doubt that the European Union would have represented, to Rand, an (un)worthy successor to the Soviet Union as the archetype of a well meaning but ultimately corrupting and self-defeating super-state. Every day the news abounds with stories of government spending tax payers' money because they feel that "something must be done", or perhaps just that they feel that they ought to be seen to be doing something. Rand was clear: the best thing government can do is stick to maintaining freedom through the rule of law, and then by getting (the hell) out of individuals' way.
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31 of 36 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Clarion call of a bygone era 17 Oct 2012
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Perhaps the most significant book in post-war American literature, one which has regained popularity since the start of the economic crisis, Altas Shrugged is the embodiment of an ideal society, the ultimate vehicle for Ayn Rand's philosophy of objectivism. Weighing in at over 1,000 pages of tightly-packed print, it's also one of the longest novels in English literature. Is it any good?

Well, as a novel, Atlas Shrugged unfortunately falls flat, in ways that Rand's first novel, We the Living (Penguin Modern Classics), didn't. There is foremost no humanity in the novel, the characters are dismembered, dessicated mouthpieces to Rand's philosophical diatribes, with everyone fitting neatly into 'good' and 'bad' camps. Rand herself claimed that using characters as symbols was never her intention: "My characters are persons in whom certain human attributes are focused more sharply and consistently than in average human beings." But what we are left with are flimsy apparitions, lobotomised automatons fulfilling the roles required of them to extol the virtues of her philosophy. Even this is taken to extremes, with one of the proponents delivering a 60-page long theoretical speech around which the rest of the novel might well be seen as scaffolding.

To complement this set of lifeless characters is a plot which similarly confounds understanding. In an America which technologically resembles the period in which Rand was writing, yet industrially feels set in an earlier period, and borrows heavily from the Great Depression, the main events and the decisions of the characters jar heavily with what the reader knows and expects from society.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Atlas Shrugged
Fascinating and timeless. Should be a mandatory school text! Instills the virtue of thinking for oneself and emphasizes it's importance.
Published 4 days ago by Margaret Bond
1.0 out of 5 stars the worst book I have ever read
This is the worst book I have ever read. There are too many awful things to be able to list them all, but a few might suffice to put off the curious. Read more
Published 6 days ago by Prof Rod Griffiths
2.0 out of 5 stars food for thought, but excessively long & nasty
An interesting exposition of Rand's Egoism philosophy through an enjoyable yarn, but a needlessly long book. Read more
Published 6 days ago by Francis L
5.0 out of 5 stars Profound
Published 11 days ago by Yardley
4.0 out of 5 stars Bashing Communism, Pro Capitalism - Bible
A robust and sometimes overly simplistic attack on communism and socialist ethos. A tough and gritty read with a few Castro length lectures on capitalist doctrine. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Steven16
1.0 out of 5 stars One Star
I just don't get it???

Maybe I need to read it again
Published 1 month ago by Pam
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant but not for everybody
I have read many reviews and they are all either very flattering or very critical. Personally I found this to be a liberating book. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Olga
3.0 out of 5 stars Started off well but the plot became ridiculous
Started off well and set the reader up with an understanding of the characters and an interesting story that made you want to read more, you want to know what is going to happen... Read more
Published 3 months ago by Ronnie Randall
4.0 out of 5 stars Very interesting, long, thought-provoking
It is indeed a lengthy book to read. Fictional, but in many parts this body of work gives way to a deeper philosophical/sociological quality. Read more
Published 3 months ago by roberta profeta
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent
Potentially the longest fiction book I have ever read, but well worth it. An interesting story with some contentious underlying principles.
Published 4 months ago by Charlie
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