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  • Them: Adventures with Extremists

  • By: Jon Ronson
  • Narrated by: Jon Ronson
  • Length: 8 hrs and 16 mins
  • 4.6 out of 5 stars (225 ratings)

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Them: Adventures with Extremists

By: Jon Ronson
Narrated by: Jon Ronson
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Publisher's Summary

Them began as a book about different kinds of extremists, but after Jon had got to know some of them - Islamic fundamentalists, neo-Nazis, Ku Klux Klansmen - he found that they had one oddly similar belief: that a tiny, shadowy elite rule the world from a secret room. In Them, Jon sets out, with the help of the extremists, to locate that room. The journey is as creepy as it is comic, and along the way Jon is chased by men in dark glasses, unmasked as a Jew in the middle of a Jihad training camp, and witnesses international CEOs and politicians participate in a bizarre pagan ritual in the forests of northern California.

Them is a fascinating and entertaining exploration of extremism, in which Jon learns some alarming things about the looking-glass world of ‘them’ and ‘us’. Are the extremists on to something? Or has Jon become one of Them?

©2012 Jon Ronson (P)2012 Audible Ltd

Critic Reviews

"A funny, superbly controlled account of [Ronson’s] wanderings through the wonderland of fanaticism and delusion." (Brian Appleyard, New Statesman)
"This book is chilling and hilarious by turns. Ronson’s trademark laid-back attitude is a delight." ( Independent)
"A funny and compulsively readable picaresque adventure through a paranoid shadow world." (Louis Theroux, Guardian)
"Ronson plays up to his charming buffoonery... But he is an acute social commentator. He is compelling." ( Times Literary Supplement)

What listeners say about Them: Adventures with Extremists

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  • Overall
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    5 out of 5 stars

The truth is out there! Really out there... No, really, really out there!

Ronson treads a compelling and I think honest path examining the nature of conspiracy.

Conspiracy clearly does exist, frequently in the form of nothing more sinister than a quiet word over dinner and a bit of theatre.

People are not inherently evil (maybe they are in the case of Kissinger but he sees himself as a good guy I suspect) they are intrinsically self interested. They have personal and social agendas all the bigotries, snobbishness and racism that they were bought up with.

They fear irrationally and create rational things for others to fear (Neo nazis and anti refugee advocates come to mind as people with irrational fears who create things for rational people to fear).

The point which Ronson gently brings you to in this work is that the truth is generally mundane. That there are powerful people gaming the system is clear.

It is an engaging and entertaining work but at its heart is a very serious aspect of the human psyche, that fear creates monsters and monsters create fear...

I for one would enjoy a work by him on the Israel / Palestine atrocities and peace process... I think that we would find the same psychology mirrored there that he has described in "Them".

I'd also love to meet him for a beer and a quiet chat about love and death and life at the pub! So Ron look me up if you ever make it to Melbourne...

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2 people found this helpful

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Interesting people

Any additional comments?

This is my 2nd favourite book of Jon’s. The extremists that let him into their lives are off in another world sometimes and it’s amazing to hear how he wiggles his way into their lives over the course of sometimes year. Highly recommend.

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1 person found this helpful

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Thoroughly entertaining!

Loved it, heard Jon on Joe Rogan's podcast, glad it's his voice reading it too.

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Great story!

A great story and excellent narration. I would highly recommend this book to anyone whether frightened of lizards or not.


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    2 out of 5 stars
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Not his best work

I've listened to a few Jon Ronnson books and I like his style and topics.
Unfortunately this one fell short for me. Too disjoint and muddled to fully capture my attention. Struggled through to the end but only just...

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He does it again- genius!

I chose this book when deliberately searching for another of the author’s work- I was inexplicably & joyously glued to ‘The psychopath test’. This one is another of the author’s seemingly whimsical but actually well defined adventure in search of the less well covered parts of human nature. Why do we do what we do? What exactly do we do? Are we all really that different? And yes, we all love a bit of fun. Go for it- one of the most enjoyable shorter reads of your life awaits.

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Ronson is Great as Always

Another great bit if narrative journalism from JR. Having it read by him makes it even more fun. THEM is a recommended read for any conspiracy nuts!

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Loved it!

Really enjoyed this, and especially how Jon Ronson narrated it! It’s a very interesting and quite relevant to today’s world!

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Fascinating

Absolutely loved this. His voice and total sense of normalcy in these bizarre relationships just crack me up!

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    4 out of 5 stars

Solid Ronson though not his best

I’m a big Ronson fan and the combo of the interview + daisy chain + slightly campy narration is great for dipping in and out of daily.

This was another great study of extremism and enjoyable. It’s not up there with Butterfly Effect for example and those not familiar with Ronson’s work might want to start there, but for fans you won’t be disappointed

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