The Last Days of August – Jon Ronson

In December 2017 the famous porn star August Ames committed suicide in a park in the Conejo Valley. It happened a day after she’d been the victim of a pile-on, via Twitter, by fellow porn professionals – punishment for her tweeting something deemed homophobic.

A month later, August’s husband, Kevin, connected with Jon Ronson to tell the story of how Twitter bullying killed his wife. What neither Kevin nor Ronson realized was that Ronson would soon hear rumors and secrets hinting at a very different story – something mysterious and unexpected and terrible.

In The Last Days of August, Ronson unravels the never-before-told story of what caused this beloved 23-year-old actress’ untimely death.

Please note: This audio features sexual content, adult language, and references to suicide and violence that may be upsetting to some listeners. Discretion is advised.

This is an Audible Original Podcast. Free for members. You can download all 7 episodes to your Library now.


Jon Ronson is a writer and documentary filmmaker. His work includes the international bestsellers Them: Adventures With Extremists and The Men Who Stare at Goats, which was adapted into a major motion picture starring George Clooney, Ewan McGregor, Kevin Spacey and Jeff Bridges.

A contributor to The Guardian, Ronson is the author of the columns “Human Zoo” and “Out of the Ordinary”. He writes and presents the BBC Radio 4 series, Jon Ronson On…

For Channel 4, Jon has made a number of films including the five-part series Secret Rulers of the World and Tottenham Ayatollah. His most recent documentaries are Reverend Death (Channel 4), Citizen Kubrick (More4) and Robbie Williams and Jon Ronson Journey to the Other Side (Radio 4).

In the US, he is a contributor to Public Radio International’s This American Life.

My Review:

Having just finished listening to my first ever Podcast The Butterfly Effect, I immediately downloaded The Last Days of August (only available on Audible) by Jon Ronson which investigates the untimely and sad suicide of a young, female pornstar August Ames.

Whilst The Butterfly Effect is sobering enough about the reality of working within the porn industry, The Last Days of August is a really sad tale of mental illness, online bullying, domestic abuse and suicide.  It made for a really uncomfortable listen, especially as the interviews were conducted so close to her suicide and by her grieving friends and relatives.

Throughout each episode Ronson delves deeper into August’s frame of mind, childhood past and relationship with her much older husband.  He examines every aspect, rumour and comment in minute detail throughout the podcast and whilst he appears to remain unbiased towards some of the less likeable characters, it’s quite easy to “hear between the lines” and draw your own conclusion as to who is to blame for this tragic event.

Compelling, fascinating, sad and tragic.