The Ayn Rand Centennial Collection Boxed Set

ISBN: 0452291917
ISBN 13: 9780452291911
By: Ayn Rand

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About this book

Two great novels that will change the way you look at the world.Atlas Shrugged is the astounding story of a man who said that he would stop the motor of the world--and did. Tremendous in scope, breathtaking in its suspense, Atlas Shrugged stretches the boundaries further than any book you have ever read. It is a mystery, not about the murder of a man's body, but about the murder--and rebirth--of man's spirit.The Fountainhead has become an enduring piece of literature, more popular now than when published in 1943. On the surface, it is a story of one man, Howard Roark, and his struggles as an architect in the face of a successful rival, Peter Keating, and a newspaper columnist, Ellsworth Toohey. But the book addresses a number of universal themes: the strength of the individual, the tug between good and evil, the threat of fascism. The confrontation of those themes, along with the amazing stroke of Rand's writing, combine to give this book its enduring influence.

Reader's Thoughts


If Ayn Rand were a good writer, this book is the point in her career at which she should have stopped while she was ahead. One of the greatest literary villains of all time, Ellsworth Monkton Toohey, is surrounded by typical Randian caricatures spouting stiff Randian self-idolatry. An alternate universe in which the arts stalled creatively when Europe rediscovered Ancient Greece and Rome is projected forward to 20th Century New York. A hero arises to challenge the creative establishment. Lather on several layers of love, sex, adultery, S&M, professional competition, politics, courtroom drama, industrial espionage, social commentary, betrayal, abandonment, suffering and ultimate triumph and you have the makings of epic story telling. And did I mention Ellsworth Monkton Toohey?Unfortunately, what you have instead is an Ayn Rand novel. Doubly unfortunately, The Fountainhead's potential for greatness will give many unsuspecting readers hope that perhaps "Atlas Shrugged" will fulfill that promise. It doesn't. Take my advise: Read "The Fountainhead" then quit while you're ahead.


Picking up a battered old copy of Ayn Rand‘s "The Fountainhead" when I was twenty-nine was a life-changing experience that snapped me out of my routine-induced stagnation and reignited my thinking processes. Ayn Rand and I differ on many positions (big time!) but this tale of architect Howard Roark, the living embodiment of integrity, is a thrilling portrayal of what a human being is capable of becoming and creating. After reading this book, I put off reading Rand’s follow-up magnum opus, "Atlas Shrugged," because I wanted to delay the pleasure I knew I would receive from reading it. A couple of years later, I did read it; I laughed, I cried, I cheered. It was, in a word, awesome. Say what you want about Rand’s philosophy but give the lady her due—boy, could she write!What I like about Rand's philosophy is her celebration of an individual's integrity, self-reliance and courage to follow his or her heart. What don't I like about Rand's philosophy? Just about everything else!


I have to do this. I keep reading how these books are so popular now because our president is a socialist.I read both of these in high school, separately. I enjoyed them as novels. They work great at showing how Ms. Rand's ideas will result in an improved society. They can do this because she has written about society as she wants it to work. That's what fiction does. One needs to note the differences between a fictional setting and the reality it purports to describe (if any) before extrapolating the lessons and solutions from a book to the real world. Ms. Rand's world contains no children, except a brief description of the privileged early lives of some of her protagonists. Ms. Rand's world contains no disabled people. There are other differences, of course, but these are the two I need to be on public record as having pointed out. (My simple sentence: Ms. Rand's world is irreproducable because her characters do not reproduce.)In the case of Reardon, and here I extend my review to include _We_the_Living_, which I have also read, a character is presented as unhappy and poorly treated due to their choice (soon to change) of suppressing their needs in favor of living by society's rules or subjecting themselves to the tyranny of those who spitefully run down the great. Maybe the situation is more a result of the character's choice of association? You see, I believe in my responsibility to my fellow man, and I would have worn the Reardon-steel bracelet with pride. Fiction can be either/or. Real life never is.


Couldn't find just "THe Fountainhead". I was long overdue to read this having fallen in love with "Atlas Shrugged" 10 years ago. THere are few books more inspiring than this one. I feel totally understood by the author regarding my own views on what honesty and integrity mean and how society often fails to recognize true talent and instead the masses subscribe to whatever belief/talent/skill is popular at the time.

Doloreza Sinani


Abhijit Joshi

I was highly influenced by this when I read it first (young age). Over the years I realized how this philosophy misses the human element and therefore useless for human life. Also its not much different than most religions in its extremity. Still a great read and would recommend it.

Deanna Shelor

I learned not to make your AP class read something they really detested. WHile I loved the book I come form a different sensibility than my 21st century students and they had a really hard time juggling this book while attempting three or more other AP classes. This book is definitely for someone interested in philosopical issues and humanitarian issues as well as political agendas. A background in history would be necessary to 21st century AP students being able to assimilate the information being dealt with and to understand Rand's sensibilities. It is a bit much for even a semester because of the philosophic intensity. I used Neitzchian concepts as a segue and juxtapose into Rand's philosophical bent.


I need to give The Fountainhead another chance, because it started out well and then then I got too frustrated with Dominique's manipulation and Howard's stubbornness. I know he's supposed to represent someone with high standards and uncompromising ideals, but I wanted him to have some success and I didn't read far enough to see if things get better for him. I can pick it up again this summer.


I read this book in high school, and at the time became immediately drawn into the story. At the time I was unable to completely digest Rand's 'selfish/individualism/pro-capitalism' philosophy, but in hindsight, I still think the story itself has its merits. There are interesting plot twists, and even though the characters are pretty 1-D, they serve to better portray Rand's philosophy. I don't agree with her philosophy but I give credit to this book for waking me up, and challenging me to question what I really knew. I will pass along the same wisdom my 10th grade english teacher told me when I set out to tackle this book, "Just don't get too brainwashed by it, and keep your ego in check."


These books are the foundation of true capitalism. Ayn Rand is an inspiring author and many of her fans are almost have a cult following. I read her early in my life and she was a great influence. Later in life I found things at odds with her philosophy of Objectivism. I felt that she to embraced this concept of a higher being or self (John Galt in AS) and never admitted to this concept?All in all a very good author that everyone must read/


second (or third?) time around it's even more tedious. constant moralizing wears on me. i love the relentless faith in the individual, but the characters are so flat in order to hammer her political agenda, that the plot ceases to be entertaining and leaves me wishing i'd just read a paragraph summary of objectivism and spent the other 1800 hours reading something less redundant and more entertaining


i remembered having heard of "atlas shrugged" years before reading it. finally, my mother actually reco'd it to me and i bought it and loved it. it's not a short book but it's worth anyone's time. the other book in this compilation of both Rand's novels is "the fountainhead" and it's just as good, if not better. perhaps my favorite book of all time. i own a early second edition that still contains the same errors as the first edition.

Anna Chudnovsky

I`ve just finished the reading. That two books is important for exectly the moment of my life expericnce. First, I realized I am not alone with my instinctive and philosophy credo. Second, Ayn Rand gives me the most clear understanding about surrounding I`ve ever had. The most depressive information from the books is the most important to take it in mind in my future mapping. Things I counted as a rare personal circumstances now seems as a system characteristics. Reading the books I was wondering all the time about the accuracy of particular details, because I was in such situations by myself and I listened the same words and witnessed the same behaviour as it was described. It is a kind of good proof, both exciting and depressive. So, what`s the next step? I prefer to take all I`ve read as a kind of warning, especially because it is so clear done. Thanks my friends who pointed me to that books just in time.

Dallin Bruun

Finally. What, 2000 pages? 2 full years? These books deserve 4 stars because they shift your thinking. I look at factories now and I don't say "Ugly" but "That is the physical manifestation of man's brainpower."They also shed light on the vicious "Robin Hood" myth: it is immoral to be wealthy, and perfectly moral to be poor and envious of the rich.Further, it defines well what it is 'to be.' Ayn Rand defines "to be" (as a MAN) is to use your brain, to achieve, to aspire, to accomplish greatness. "Man as man."The story is entertaining. It's a bit romantic in that there are clear heroes and villains and large dramatized themes. My biggest disappointment is that she assumes she is right. There is no room for argument. In this way it feels didactic.

Shraddha Gupta

I hate how cold the books are. Ouch. I don't think Ayn Rand ever hugged anybody. Its the best screening test I've ever come across. If you love Ayn Rand, its unlikely we'll ever be friends. I know, saves us so much trouble.

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