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Miles Gone by (Playaway Adult Nonfiction) Preloaded Digital Audio Player – May 1, 2012

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--This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

The conservative writer and Firing Line host has published so many millions of words in five decades of polemics and public musing that amassing a sort of autobiography required little more than sandwiching a selection of 50 essays between a brief preface and epilogue. The extracts range in subject from his silver-spoon boyhood and boarding-school days to the lives and deaths of the many prominent people he has known. Fame came early, with Buckley's 1951 God and Man at Yale, excerpted here, which lambasted liberal bias at elite American colleges. (Far superior, though, is the sparkling memoir of his war-veteran class of 1950 at Yale.) An instant darling of conservatives who needed a spirited new voice, Buckley founded the National Review, whose writers became the core of his widening circle of influential acquaintances. While sailing, touring and media punditry take up much of the collection, the most memorable pieces are about such offbeat friends as the tragic Whittaker Chambers. Nevertheless, some portraits are merely laudatory epitaphs. Approaching 80, Buckley notes that his sporting days are about over, but "[s]o to speak, I can still ski on a keyboard." Like skiing, his keyboard has its ups and downs. B&w photos.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From the Publisher

This book includes a free audio CD featuring 48 minutes of excerpts read by William F. Buckley Jr. and each introduced by the legendary voice of Walter Cronkite. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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Product Details

  • Series: Playaway Adult Nonfiction
  • Preloaded Digital Audio Player
  • Publisher: Blackstone Audiobooks (May 1, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 145516044X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1455160440
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (44 customer reviews)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

47 of 48 people found the following review helpful By Craig Matteson HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on October 27, 2004
Format: Hardcover
I feel that I owe a great deal to William F. Buckley Jr. for all he has taught me and the pleasure he has provided me over the past several, well, decades. While I enjoy the political discourse, and have had fun with his novels, for me Mr. Buckley's writing is at its very best when he gets personal. Read his descriptions of being on watch alone at sea, or his tribute to Whittaker Chambers, or his loving obituaries to his parents and you will know what I mean.

I have been moved by his writing about his youthful adventures, his faith, his son Christopher, computers, limousines, sailing, and music. The other thing is, Mr. Buckley is also very funny. I mean laugh out loud story telling. While Christopher Buckley's written humor is different than his father's, it is clear that there is an inherited component.

This book, "Miles Gone By" is an edited collection of previous writings about his life so we get a largely chronological understanding of his life. This is a beautifully done book and I think its rich feel, the beautiful paper, the interesting pictures that capture important and changing times, and the audio CD with the famous Buckley voice reading us brief selections from the book, all contribute to the importance of this book for those of us who have been wanting WFB to tell us about his life in bound pages.

Since all of this has been printed before, why buy the book? Simply because the editing makes the story more seamless than simply reading articles here, there, and across the pond. The writing remains fresh and a delight to read at an unhurried pace. I so much enjoyed taking my time reading the work of this self-proclaimed fast writer. I enjoy enjoying the act of reading.
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51 of 55 people found the following review helpful By David H. Schmick on March 27, 2005
Format: Hardcover
"Miles Gone By" is a wonderful account of the life of a conservative icon. I must admit issue by issue I do not always find myself in agreement with Mr. Buckley and his coterie of advocates. Free markets are vital, but sometimes the public interest must play a role in things..however, that being said this book centers on WFB's life and experiences.

You may judge a book on many levels, but this being more of a biography than anything else you find yourself conflicted on how to judge a life. It is clearly evident here what made Buckley, Buckley. He lived a very sheltered life in a time where America afforded that to the richest among us. He was the product of a British education and was conducted through life by those in his church who charted his values for him. Those days are long gone in today's America, and so this account will seem foreign to so many readers. But it was status quo for much of the elite in Buckley's era.

But the humanity comes through as well. The man's love of music, his interest in human events, and despite what others may say, his dedication and just genuine hard work. This man was no slacker and he did indeed accomplish much through honest difficult work. Yes he could have bought a forum for comment, but this man clearly earned what he got in life. He excelled in writing and his love of learning. In that he is not a fossil of the last century, but a role model for Americans who still believe in the American dream. Did he have advantages others did not? Yes he did. But he used his brain and his qualities of fairplay, kindness, and sometimes skepticism to attain his position of the leader of the conservative movement in the United States. His optimism is to be commended...
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39 of 41 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 13, 2004
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
William F. Buckley pulled precisely the right excerpts from his large store of material to give a vivid picture his extraordinary life, full of verve and that irrepressible twinkle in his eye. I have laughed, smiled, chuckled, or groaned at least once with every page. This is truly a delightful, entertaining, and brilliantly written account. It's an unusual way to "write" an autobiography, but then who would expect less than the unique from Bill Buckley?
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22 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Timothy J. Reed on September 28, 2004
Format: Hardcover
My image of William F. Buckley has him in his "Firing Line" posture, tightly wound, legs crossed, arms folded, head back and pencil eraser resting on his lower lip. A visual metaphor that the "pen (or pencil) is mightier than the sword". Buckley the writer-thinker who, too many of us, resides on the pantheon of conservativism with Reagan, Friedman, and Hayek has assembled his autobiography, Miles Gone By, from roughly fifty articles he has written over a lifetime. This format provides an interesting portrait because this autobiography is not written by someone approaching eighty, but by a writer moving through life.

And what a life!

He writes at length of his love of the sea and the idiosyncrasies of his various yachts, skiing Utah with Milton Friedman or the Alps with Roger Moore. His unsuccessful run for mayor of New York City, and landmark book God and Man at Yale, that describes liberal (progressive, socialist) influence in the curriculum and the major stir it caused at Yale and among the chattering class. His founding of National Review, etiquette at cocktail parties and adventures in his jointly owned (with fellow students) two-seater airplane, his childhood as one of ten children living in Connecticut and Great Britain and relationship with his parents. His wit and sense of humor are throughout the book and makes it very enjoyable to read.

The psychoanalysis can be left to the biographers; in Miles Gone By, Buckley has assembled a mosaic that, as you stand back, allows you to truly appreciate the man, his principles, courage and contributions.
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