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Publisher's Summary

A major motion picture starring Ben Affleck, Morgan Freeman, James Cromwell, Alan Bates and Michael Byrne!

Peace may finally be at hand in the Middle East - as Deputy Director of the CIA Jack Ryan lays the groundwork for a peace plan that could end centuries of conflict. But ruthless terrorists have a final, desperate card to play: They have their hands on a nuclear weapon and have placed it on American soil in the midst of an escalation in tension with the Soviet Union. The terrorists hope to rekindle cold war animosity and prevent reconciliation between Israelis and Palestinians. With one terrible act, distrust mounts, forces collide, and the floundering U.S. president seems unable to cope with the crisis. With the world on the verge of nuclear disaster, Ryan must frantically seek a solution - before the chiefs of state lose control of themselves and the world.

©1991 Jack Ryan Enterprises Ltd. (P)2014 Bolinda Publishing Pty Ltd

Critic Reviews

"He constantly taps the current world situation for its imminent dangers and spins them into an engrossing tale." ( The New York Times Book Review)
"Heart-stopping action ... entertaining and eminently topical." ( The Washington Post)

What listeners say about The Sum of All Fears

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Chris Nenke
  • 27-03-20

Give it a miss. Bolinda buggers it up again

One of the worst narrator's I've heard, sounds like a robot, almost no variance in his voice. obviously the recording wasn't checked as in the first chapter they reference the KBG, not the KGB.
last time I buy a book from the Bolinda group which is a shame as they seem to have the rights to a number of Clancy's books in Australia

1 person found this helpful

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  • kris
  • 02-07-16

Lots of details for the "fans"

What did you love best about The Sum of All Fears?

I love the way Clancy always acknowledges his readers are intelligent enough to manage several "back" stories. He doesn't have to step you through the characters, they are so well written you don't need reminders or prompts. The Sum of All Fears is just such a story.. Clever, well proportioned and credible characters.

What other book might you compare The Sum of All Fears to and why?

Matthew Reilly gives the reader the same impression of deep research. and having done same wants to share every morsel with the reader. I feel I'm not just being entertained I am learning... Very satisfying experience

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

Nice to hear someone who can read without taking breathes and gasps midsentence (like Lou Diamond Philips) this destroys the story. I have sought out and listened to more McDonald and he is good.. Wish he could re-read all the ones Phillips has mutilated..

If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

Ryan saves the world (again) .....

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  • Laurence
  • 25-04-15

Almost as good as Patriot Games

As with a lot of Tom Clancy it takes a while to wind up and has some very slow portions but that's the price you pay for a well developed story. Well worth it. Best Narrator so far on the Jack Ryan series.

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  • James
  • 15-06-14

A book of nuclear proportions

Where does The Sum of All Fears rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

It rates as one my favourite audiobooks, not because of the narrator, but because Tom Clancy was on of my favourite authors.

What did you like best about this story?

The fact that Tom Clancy was brave enough to let the bomb explode.

Which scene was your favorite?

The terrorists, drug cartel and Cutter getting their comeuppance.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

The sheer length of Tom Clancy's books prevents reading in one sitting.

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  • Tessa
  • 17-05-18

Pretty sure this is being read by a robot

I would give more information but the narration has put me off. I have managed 5 minutes and have lost the will to live.

9 people found this helpful

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  • Richard Davis
  • 28-06-19

Poor sound quality

First to have to say, this is a fantastic book. Unfortunately it sounded like Stephen Hawkins was reading it. It’s the first time I’ve heard such poor quality from Audible. Hopefully I won’t again.

7 people found this helpful

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  • Alex A.
  • 01-03-22

Who decided this was ok to release?

This may be an unfair review as I’m only 2/3 of the way through the first chapter but felt compelled to write a review and share the pain I’m sure many others have felt!!

When I first started listening to this title I instantly had to check who the narrator was. Having gotten used to the smooth tones of Michael Pritchard in prior Tom Clancy books I thought that Bolinda may have given Steven hawking a go at reading this one! I am going to stick this one out as the rest of the books I have listened to (starting with the John Clarke series and then on to the Jack Ryan universe) have been very enjoyable hence the overall rating I gave this. I’m sure the story itself will be brilliant hence the story rating but wowzer is this difficult to listen to! It’s not so much reading a story, it’s more like just reading words from a poorly structured sentence.

Poor form from Bolinda for releasing this title in this state, it’s going to be an arduous 33 hours!!

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  • Elmsy
  • 27-07-21

the worst narration ever

I loved the book. but this narration is like listening to a mid nineties Microsoft office voice.
it's terrible. nasal. metallic. just awful

2 people found this helpful

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  • DPN
  • 18-05-21

Such a great book but john macdonald ruins it

I’ve read the book, watched the film currently listening to this after 3 other Tom Clancy books and this is just horrible to listen to the voice sounds slurred or stoned and so you can’t hear the crispness which makes listening easier, his voice is slow and monotone the worst story teller I have ever heard!! Awful what an absolute shame as I was really looking forward to this.

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  • jack
  • 03-02-20

Alexa has more range in her voice than John

Have listened to the previous works of Tom Clancy suburb righting and previous narrator was excellent John macDonald is unbelivbley monotone

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  • Lotus
  • 16-01-15

Great story line

I read the original book when it first was published and am now working my way through the series as audiobooks to refresh what happened to who and where.
This book was yet another great story and it's interesting to read the plots now that technology has moved forward some what.
However it was a bit long winded in places and I struggled slightly with the scene changeover from one part of the story to the next as the narrator didn't pause long enough and sometimes it was quite confusing however I did enjoy it overall and would recommend it to others

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  • John Guthrie
  • 10-05-21

Tense!

I’ve read all the original Clancy books, probably more than once over the years but am trawling through the Ryan series again on Audible. I’ve seen several reviews on here saying this narrator was ‘un-listenable’...& I wasn’t too keen when I first heard him either! Stick with it...as you get used to his tone, it’s actually pretty good however I would say he needs to get his pauses better between opposing voices in a conversation
As for the story, top class as always from Clancy. If your only exposure to this story is the very poor movie, then your in for a great ride

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  • cookybuoy
  • 12-08-22

Too close for comfort

Having read the book a few years ago, I thought I'd listen to it whilst sat on the beach, fishing.

The story is still as good now as it was when I first read it. As with all Clancy novels, it's pace, language and detail are fantastic and keep you involved.

I missed several bites on the line whilst listening...

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  • mr s j wren
  • 07-07-21

Great story from great storyteller RIP Tom clancy

Forgot how good this was, agree with comments about the audio quality although you do get used to it. I found if a slowed it a tiny bit, it scanned better. It is the audio quality, not the reader that is the problem.. Sounds a bit too computerised! Having said that, it's a great experience

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  • Danander11
  • 24-11-17

Terrible reading and production.

What can I say..? Poor voicing, poor timing, over-produced left this reading sounding at times like controlled burping or a 31 hour story read to you by the same mechanical voice as an automated weather advisory.

Too bad... this is a fairly good story.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Jenna Waters
  • 11-11-20

Emotional roller coaster

Never before had I read/listened to something that made me so angry on the behalf of the main character.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Brian Arpel
  • 23-10-21

what a brilliant book

I have to say that I have really enjoyed all the Clancy books that I have read.
However, I have to reflect on the following of his books that have been made into films. The Hunt for Red October, The Sum of all Fears, the Patriot Game and Without Remorse. The Hunt for Red October and the Patriot game were when compared with the books. however the other two movies bore absolutely no resemblance whatsoever in any way shape or form to the books and were therefore, as far as I'm concerned, a complete waste of space and time. I would like to critique the last two movies mentioned more thoroughly however there is no space for that here. My advice is not to buy these movies as they will only disappoint if you have read the books.

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  • Kym Angrave
  • 24-07-21

Great book pity about the Narrator

Well i endured the horrible AI narrator who read with no enthusiasm only because i love this series
Why didnt they get Michael Pritchard to narrate this like he did with others i do not know
I ended up speeding up to 1.5x

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  • Anonymous User
  • 12-05-21

Awful narration

After listening to the previous "Ryanverse" titles (including the two John Clark's novels) with the brilliant Michael Prichard voicing it, I had to endure the disappointment of having to listen to this amazing book with a great story with this chap narrating and ruining it...

Worse.. I confirmed he voices the next in the series (debt of honor), if I wasn't so into the Jack Ryan's series I'd just skip to the executive orders book (Prichard is back at this one)

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  • David Martinussen
  • 02-04-21

One of Clancy’s Best

I first read ‘The Sum of all Fears’ nearly 30 years ago. Still a wonderfully written story, and one of Clancy’s very best.

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  • Beau
  • 24-09-20

robotic tone

struggled at the start due to John's robotic time but it got better the further we got

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  • joshua
  • 03-12-19

Such a grind to listen to

TL;DR Narrator crap, story Great

This was such a tough book to listen to, the narrator so below average that I could not wait for it to be over... the story itself is the only saving grace.

There are a lot of weird pauses, repeats of sentences and strangeness in the EQ that it feels you're listening to a computer generated voice from the 90s. The narrator does some times vary his voice character to character but it's pretty rough.
I only persevered because I love the writing and the Jack Ryan series.
I won't be listening to this book again, so it's a definite return and spend it on something better.

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  • Jon Dobson
  • 28-08-17

So much better then movie

Another awesome Tom Clancy book. I left the Tom Clancy books that had been turned into movie to last thinking I had an idea of the stories. After Clear & Present danger and this I realise how wrong I was. Books are completely different to movies and are much better.