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Going All the Way (3 Cassettes), Vol. 2

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3.64  ·  Rating Details  ·  183 Ratings  ·  29 Reviews
Chronicles the beginnings of the sexual revolution in 1950s America including phrases like "making out" and "going all the way".
Audio
Published July 28th 1997 by Audio Literature (first published 1970)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 431)
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Jennifer Vensel
Oct 27, 2014 Jennifer Vensel rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Dan Wakefield was a professor I had at FIU and I really liked him and his subtle way of teaching and inspiring. I was looking for a book to read and so I though of him and read Going All the Way. I remember him telling us the story of being on the set when they were making the movie with Ben Affleck, Affelcks fame and talent exploded to stardom. Mr. Wakefield was so happy to have had that experience. It was a pleasure taking his class. The book is well written and a fast read and really give you ...more
Mary
Oct 30, 2013 Mary rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone who likes historical fiction
Recommended to Mary by: Paperback Swap
Two former soldiers who served during the Korean War meet each other on the train going back home to Indiana. Willard 'Sonny' Burns - the photographer for the school newspaper when he was in high school - was a quiet, shy and rather introverted student, whose high school years were wholly unremarkable. Sonny has grown into a quiet, shy and rather introverted adult - preoccupied with thoughts of sex and women. Tom 'Gunner' Casselman - the typical 'Big Man on Campus' when he was in high school - w ...more
brook
May 27, 2009 brook rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another Indianapolis author, with a recommendation on my old edition from Kurt Vonnegut as "one of the best teen sex novels." Didnt know that was a genre, Kurt.
For Indianapolis natives, it will be a treat to identify 1950's-era stores and landmarks of the city, as well as streets, etc. For those not from the area, it is a very, very honest novel about the life of a teen/young adult as it regards sex and relationships. Readers will likely recognize in the behavior of the male lead and female and
...more
Mike Cuthbert
This is a curiously skewed piece of sexual Americana, set in post-Korean War Indianapolis. Sonny and Gunner are out of the service and investigating things to do next. Mostly, given the lack of ambition of both of them, they look for sexual conquests, easier for Gunner than Sonny. Gunner was a top athlete in high school, a “Big Rod.” Sonny was the part-time team photographer. It was assumed by all that Gunner was sleeping with the girl of his choice and he usually was; Sonny more often slept alo ...more
Bill
Jan 29, 2016 Bill rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read this years ago and I remembered it as a very sexy novel, fresh and funny, and yet reading it now, it seems to me sad, pathetic, with the same bittersweet feeling that CATCHER IN THE RYE has after you’ve gotten over the shock of humor in that book.

More to the point, GOING ALL THE WAY seems to me a more modern version of THE SUN ALSO RISES, Sonny Burns a kind of mid-50s Jake Barnes, despair, in the midst of aimless drinking and parties – the parallels are astonishing.

Hope – a future – perha
...more
Bill
Jan 29, 2016 Bill rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read this years ago and I remembered it as a very sexy novel, fresh and funny, and yet reading it now, it seems to me sad, pathetic, with the same bittersweet feeling that CATCHER IN THE RYE has after you’ve gotten over the shock of humor in that book.

More to the point, GOING ALL THE WAY seems to me a more modern version of THE SUN ALSO RISES, Sonny Burns a kind of mid-50s Jake Barnes, despair, in the midst of aimless drinking and parties – the parallels are astonishing.

Hope – a future – perha
...more
Sarah Wagner
May 26, 2016 Sarah Wagner rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics
I really want to quip about this book being a 300-page discussion of sexual dysfunction. The main character, Sonny Burns, is a soldier returned from the Korean War (although he never left the US during his service) to his hometown of Indianapolis, Indiana. As a resident of Indiana, I really enjoyed the local references throughout this book and the historical period it evoked. I could sympathize with Sonny to a degree, but one of his problems in his failed relationships is a focus on women as bed ...more
jim
Oct 08, 2013 jim rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to jim by: Kurt Vonnegut
Well. That one's done...
I'd never heard of this book (or the film adaptation) prior to seeing some random article that made me want to pick it up solely on the merit of Kurt Vonnegut's forward. I was, therefore, probably approaching this with some skewed expectations. I was hoping to be struck by this in a similar fashion to the way in which I immediately took to Vonnegut's works, but that just never materialized. It did, however, become apparent fairly early on that I could not read this novel
...more
Daniel Petersen
Sep 16, 2013 Daniel Petersen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
'Help me, God, God help me. I hate your ass, but help me if you can. Help me lie down beside the still waters.' (P. 236)

This book is one of the most compulsive reads I've experienced. It's 'literary' in its themes and form, but it crackles along easy as pie. I'm a very slow reader normally, but I read this in about three concentrated sittings.

I wanted to read it because it is the rare novel set in my home town of Indianapolis, Indiana and the author was a friend of Kurt Vonnegut's (both of them
...more
Paul
Nov 25, 2008 Paul rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A book by an Indianapolis bred author, about Indianapolis in the '50s. Two recent veterans of the Korean War, former high school classmates, hook up together. One a noted athlete, the other a bit of a nerd. I read the book because the person upon whom the athlete is based, a college classmate of mine, told me about it. The ex-athlete is a painter and film producer who has lived in Greenwich Village for many years and was in Shortridge with the author. The preface is by K. Vonnegut, another Short ...more
Luke
Nov 17, 2008 Luke rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read this because the forward to the book was included in Kurt Vonnegut's book Foma, Wampeters, and Grandfallons, a collection of his non-fiction writing. Being a big fan, I trusted K. Vonnegut's judgment.

After the first few pages I was disappointed that it read nothing like Vonnegut. I was also disappointed that I didn't find any of the "belly laughs" Kurt Vonnegut so gleamingly wrote about.

However, once I was 3 or 4 chapters deep I started to really like the characters and care what happene
...more
Grant Talabay
Feb 16, 2014 Grant Talabay rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Awesome! If you are from the Midwest and desire a great coming of age story that is more sultry than sweet, this is the book for you! Set in Indianapolis, the story holds true to the geography of the city. The characters visit real landmarks, drink in real bars and attend real colleges and institutions. I can't recommend this book enough, especially to my Midwestern friends!
David Walsh
Oct 11, 2014 David Walsh rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Dated. Felt like a stale library book, both in form and story. The characters held promise, but none of them ever grew or broke ranks with their past. I kept waiting for a change in tone or in narrative direction, but when it finally arrived at the end of the book, it was predictable.

Rosie
May 17, 2013 Rosie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fiction fans
Shelves: fiction
A sex-filled book that isn't actually about sex. I really liked the Indianapolis setting! At the end of the audiobook, Kurt Vonnegut (Indy native and friend of the author) weirdly trashes Indianapolis. His estimation of the city is clearly based on decades past. I took the author's view of life in Indy as being told by a twenty-something eager to escape the city of his birth - a universal sentiment. Vonnegut makes it sound like the author meant for the characters to be running from the Midwest. ...more
Mark
Mar 23, 2013 Mark rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
I read this just out of high school or very close to then anyway- a ridiculously silly half-memoir of a guy growing up in dull old Indianapolis (Vonnegut said the book ought have been titled "Getting Laid in Indianapolis")- Funny for me since I had no problems of the like at the time, living in the bay area, about a decade after this book is set- in the greaser years of the late-mid 50's when car jocks trying to be cool nursed deep neuroses beneath the sweat and swagger- like these guys! I don't ...more
Mollie
Apr 02, 2016 Mollie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves:
Thanks, Kurt, for helping to explain this book. Sure, I got it, but you helped to clarify what this book really means . . . after all, I'm not a native Hoosier. #Wisconsinite
Surreysmum
May 03, 2010 Surreysmum rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: general-fiction, 1983
[These notes were made in 1983:]. Catchy title, eh? And probably about the best thing going for the book, although it has a certain easy style and captures in an almost painfully accurate way the mundane goings-on of reg'lar folks in the reg'lar Mid-West (Canada or the U.S. - it doesn't matter). But what it chronicles - and in chronicling, celebrates - is precisely that sort of late-teen masculine befuddlement, that incessant drive after sex, and the amazing(?) discovery that there's more, that ...more
Marti
May 04, 2014 Marti rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Male author, male characters. Indiana author. Glad to have a Sunday afternoon to sit on the porch & read.
Joy
Jun 16, 2008 Joy rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This book is a look back to the ideals of the 50s. It's about a young man waiting for the real world to hit him. Unfortunately, I could not bring myself to connect with the main character. I found him an utterly pathetic and stagnant character. His sexual confusion is supposed to be funny, but you end up pitying him and then finding him absolutely revolting. At the end, I think Wakefield intends for Sonny to have a dramatic shift, but the reader really can't tell any difference. This is an endin ...more
Anna H
Jul 02, 2015 Anna H rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Absolute MUST for anyone who grew up in Indy. A great second coming-of-age novel!
Brad
Sep 13, 2013 Brad rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
Despite the title this is a book, fundamentally, about the angst of youth. For many, that period of college after you graduate and before you get a career. The suspended animation of thinking that "real" life has not yet begun and wondering what it will be like.

The whole story takes place in the summer of 1954 and centers around the narrator Sonny and his friend Gunner.

Dan Wakefield does a great job of capturing the feelings of drift and how it feels for everyone no matter what your age or condi
...more
Kirsten Kowalewski
The best reason to read Going All The Way is not because it is fabulous writing or even that great of a story. In fact, the main character isn't even very likeable.

But if you grew up in the Midwest, especially Indianapolis, you really ought to read it. It is a portrait of the city in the 1950s which was at the time controversial enough here that Wakefield couldn't come back for thirty years.
Ben
Sep 01, 2008 Ben rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm from Indianapolis, so this gets an extra star. Decent portrait of the '50s at the height of the Red scare. A lot of fun to read about a city that doesn't seem to extend beyond 50th st (hah!). But annoying characters, Sonny in particular.
Andrew
Jul 23, 2015 Andrew rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"The summer was melting away like the unfinished ice cream Sonny left on his plate at breakfast, running out in a soupy mess."
Peg
Oct 03, 2013 Peg rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Certainly not what I expected based on the descriptive quote from Kurt Vonnegut, Jr. A light entertaining read.
Susan
May 08, 2013 Susan rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: couldn-t-finish
Gave it a shot. Couldn't stand it. Too much about the guy grabbing himself. Blah.
Paul Wilner
Dec 10, 2007 Paul Wilner rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Coming of age in the Midwest. Beautifully done; turned into a pretty good movie, too.
Tina
May 04, 2008 Tina rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Very funny! Set in Indiana after the Korean war. Comming of age novel.
Evan
Jan 25, 2008 Evan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Certainly better than the movie.
James Figy
James Figy marked it as to-read
May 25, 2016
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