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  • The Debutante

  • By: Jon Ronson
  • Narrated by: Jon Ronson
  • Length: 3 hrs and 11 mins
  • 4.3 out of 5 stars (100 ratings)

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The Debutante

By: Jon Ronson
Narrated by: Jon Ronson
Free with 2 month trial

AUD $16.45/mo after 2 months. Renews automatically. Cancel anytime.

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Publisher's Summary

This is the story of a Tulsa debutante who, as a result of a series of unlikely and often very bad life choices she made in the ‘90s, found herself in the midst of one of the most terrible crimes ever to take place in America.

Thirty years ago, award-winning journalist Jon Ronson stumbled on the mystery of Carol Howe—a charismatic, wealthy former debutante turned white supremacist spokeswoman turned undercover informant. In 1995, Carol was spying on Oklahoma’s neo-Nazis for the government just when Timothy McVeigh blew up a federal building in Oklahoma City, killing 168 people.

Ever since then, Carol has haunted the imaginations of survivors and investigators because of a rumor that had begun to swirl: If her information had only been listened to, she could have prevented the worst domestic terrorist attack in US history.

The question mystified Ronson. In The Debutante, he embarks on an investigative journey to seek the truth about the woman who grew up in a world of privilege and opportunity and whose teenage rebellion spiraled out of control, leading her to extreme radicalization.

The Debutante takes a closer look at Carol’s world, where truth is shrouded and seldom guaranteed. Rare court tapes, diary entries, undercover ATF surveillance audio, and interviews with those who crossed paths with Carol depict a complex woman whose motivations have been hypothesized about for decades. With curiosity and insight at the forefront of his work, Ronson delivers a new perspective on the extraordinary story of Carol Howe.

©2019 Audible Originals, LLC (P)2023 Audible Originals, LLC.

What listeners say about The Debutante

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    3 out of 5 stars

Not sure there’s a story here

It was hard to keep track of the detail presented here, and I’m not sure it’s much of a story anyway.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

A well told and interesting story, but hard to follow.

Always enjoy listening to Jon’s work and this was no different. The story is difficult to follow at times, both the timelines and the different people involved. Overall, still a worthwhile listen!

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A wild ride

I didn’t know anything about the podcast before listening, other than the title and author, and was amazed at how it started out so run-of-the-mill and pretty rapidly went places I never saw coming. They did a great job of bringing me along down various dead-ends and even getting me to check my biases. Fantastic work. I’ll definitely check out their other work

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fantastic

very interesting story ,highly recommend you have a listen, it won't disappoint. the 3 hours go so fast

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Good short listen

I didn’t realise this was a true story when I started. I did enjoy the exploration of this mystery.

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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A new dimension to an old narrative

Really fascinating and at times frustrating story. A new side to the bombings. Loved the narrators voice.

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Interest and worthwhile

I found this engrossing and well structured - listened to the whole thing in one go gardening.

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Interesting

Very interesting take on the 90s and entertaining well read something I knew very little about being in Australia.

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What a great freebie

I discovered Jon Ronson due to audible book of the month for “so your have been publicly shamed” and then again for “the butterfly effect”. This book didn’t disappoint. Thoroughly enjoyable and intriguing.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

JRon never fails.

As always, a truly interesting topic, impeccable research, detail and fabulous sideways journeys. Above all, I love his narration and the way he always leaves you wanting more.

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