I am so happy that I decided to listen to this story. I love books that use historical facts as a base and then provide a gripping story for the readers/listeners. I am on book two and will definitely finish the series. But the greatest part of all is that Humphrey Bower does complete justice to the characters. When a narrator tries to play different parts and does a horrible job, I don't care if the book is on every Best Seller list, it can ruin it for the listener. Mr. Bower does a remarkable job with every character and is one of the reasons I will continue with the trilogy. Well Done!!
The background and the development of the characters and storyline.
With his great accent, he makes you feel like you are a part of the story. If I was reading the book, it would still be awesome because the story itself is, but the extra pizzazz that is added by Mr. Bower's story telling would be lost.
The alternating perspectives of the brothers. Humphry Bower as always was incredible. Normally, with alternative first-person perspectives like this, I prefer there to be two narrators, but Humphry is so gifted that he can pull it all off.
When Hawk meets Maggie... it made me smile.
I was a little wary reading the reviews that described the graphic passages, including moaning. I expected something different... while those passages do exist, there are only 2 of them of any length, and they are fast-forwardable. To be honest, I found the Potato Factory had more graphic scenes and innuendo (though minus the moaning).
I am glad I toughed this one out... I grew to love Tommo and Hawk both, even though in real life if I ran into them in a pub I doubt I would've looked passed their roles of gentle giant and con man. Hawk's conscience and fighting for the underdog made me prefer him, but Tommo provided comic relief and compassion for his addiction.
Greatly looking forward to reading Solomon's Song; though reviewers are not praising it that highly... I guess one has to read it for oneself!
I didn't enjoy T & H nearly as much as I did the Potato Factory. Too much gratuitous violence for my taste (were the whale ship lashings really necessary?) and a number of characters from volume 1 of the series either drop out of sight for no reason or else get recycled. Found myself irritated and somewhat offended that with few exceptions, the women in this series are all prostitutes, either current or former. Maybe that was the reality of this time and place, I don't know. Even so, there was no need to pepper the dialogue with comments like "she is only a whore," "all women are whores" etc. Ugh.
Live on edge of National Forest with lake, birds & wild animals. No more perfect place to indulge life-long love of reading.
This is book 2 in the Australian Trilogy. The characters are equally well drawn in both books 1 and 2; and the stories are both quite compelling. However, book 2 has an aura of darkness that isn't as pervasive in the first book.
I greatly appreciate Courtenay's ability to present themes of brutality and horror without sensationalizing the scenes. You quickly get the picture of what is happening, but the scenes aren't dragged on with unnecessary exploitation. That alone would make me a Coutenay fan -- however he has many other gifts as an author ... besides the fascinating characters, he also gives the reader an action packed story with just the right amount of contemplation. It's a rare gift when an author can get those two in the right balance.
Other reviewers seemed to be bothered by the sex scenes. To start with, there were only a few of "those" scenes, and to be perfectly honest I found them more boring than upsetting. Overall, this is a masterful story of family loyalty, fierce determination and survival. My comment re "rather dark" is based on the underlying sadness in the development of the story. However, I whole-heartedly recommend it.
Now, on to book 3 in this wonderful trilogy.
I loved The Potato Factory and The Power of One, both by Courtenay
none, since murder and mayhem do not appeal to me
This is a man's book. If you love the filth and violence of whale boats, graphic violence, highly descriptive sex, and endless repetition, then you've found your book. If you have delicate sensitivities, steer your ship to safer harbors.
It was really good. Gripping! I didn't want to stop listening
All I can compare it to is the first book in the series. It might be better.
As always, an outstanding performance.
Cant wait to hear the third in the series.
After listening to the Potato factory I could not wait to hear about Tommo and Hawk. So different and jet so much brotherly love and understanding. All what these twins go through on the sea and later on land with the people whom they shared unbelievable faith. Bryce Courteney is a first class storyteller and Humphrey Bower is a first class narrater.
Yes,Good story. GREAT reader.
The first in the series, The Potato Factory, was better. That book was one of the best ever. A 5/5
Still tis was a 4.5/5
The vehicle of changing 1st person narratives between brothers was creative, but annoying.
An unusual story during a difficult time in history for working people. setback after setback, hardship on top of human interaction at its worst and at its best.
Tommo was my "most interesting" because he had all of the human frailties and failings, but accepted the love of his brother and was just smart enough to allow Hawk to help him.
Tommo wanting to throw the spunge in to stop the fight and safe his brother from getting hurt more and Hawk not allowing it and ultimately winning their freedom
Stength always wins in the end.
So unusual of a story that I was afraid there would be a tragic ending. Not so. Wonderful experience to be entertained and to learn. Narrator is outstanding.
Courage, hope, redemption.
The pairing once more of Bryce Courtenay's epic storytelling with Humphrey Bower's amazing narration; and the knowledge that the third installment of this masterful trilogy was waiting to be listened to when I finished listening to this one.
I cannot pick just one!
Never, ever surrender.
I wish I could turn all Audible listeners on to this author and narrator.