Started this book once and just couldn't get into it. While I love Australian accents, one recounting military actions just didn't work for me. I think it's a pretty slow start, but about 1.5 to 2 hours in, it really becomes story rich.
We follow Jacko and Jimmy into two wars, the first with little action, the second with more action than they wanted. They become POWs and even attempt an escape.
Finally Jacko and Jimmy make it back to Australia and meet up with a former friend of Jackos. They all go into the fishing business, with some very intriguing stories both out fishing and from former experiences.
This was not a war story, although much of it involves the Korean War. It was much more a narrative about three people; who they are and how their lives were intertwined. I liked it because the three main characters had very interesting stories and how these characters came together as friends was also interesting. Well written by the author, and, of course, well read by Humphrey Bowser. There is no overall plot, or suspense, or action or anything like that, but I found it very entertaining.
I loved this book. It held my interest all the way through. Bruce in Van Nuys apparently did read a different book. Loved the Korea sections and the historical insights. The narrator was also great. Don't listen to the paranoid christian reviewers. They see criticism around every corner. This is a very uplifting book without being holier than thou.
Bryce Courtney is one of the best Authors I have ever had the pleaser to experience. I can feel his every word. Real life tales. They make me cry and laugh.
I also like the history lessons. Courtney mixes history with ficion with poetic chemistry.
Humphrey Bower makes Courtneys novels come alive.
He has spoiled me. Bower is a number one narrator!!!!
Can't get enough of Courtney and Bower!!
An engaging story spanning decades in the lives of three people who prove that diversity makes for strength. The combination of Jacko's passion, Jimmy's wisdom, and Nicole's brains and business acumen result in a life well lived for all three. Although in one respect this is a war story, the Korean war really just sets the foundation of the friendship, which, along with the story, continues long after the end of the war. This book is atypical of the kinds of material I usually read, and it turned out to be a good choice. 4 stars rather than 5 because the last quarter of the book dragged on a bit, and because the narrator annoyingly sings too many verses of several songs. Still, it's a good story, well worth the considerable investment of time to listen to it.
I wish more of the circumstances they faced had been a little more grounded in reality. Everything fell to neatly in place and worked out to perfectly. Like the time I went to India to shoot a Bengal Tiger and gave Gandhi a ride, and met the King of England, who asked me to be on their Cricket Team because they had a sick player, but I scored the winning point as the game ended, and was invited to dive off of the Gibraltar Rock, which I did, and swam the straits in a hurricane while having a Throwdown with Bobby Flay in an intertube.
What an amazing narrator!!! I can't say enough about how great he is and the unbelievable feat he accomplished by creating so many disparate and believable charactor voices. Bryce Courtenay is also an incredible writer. Interesting and real characters... intriguing storylines... heartwarming relationships... great dialogue (loved his colloquial speech)... BUT, I think this book would be better read vs. listened to. Courtenay has a habit of saying the same thing in many different ways. It gets tedious and repetitive and I found myself daydreaming while I was listening. Much could have been cut out. That is the only reason for the 4 rating. Otherwise, it would be a resounding 5. I'm going to read The Power of One vs. listen to it.
I am only 1/3 of the way through, and it is pretty interesting, but I am not much of a war story reader, and so far this book is only about a war story. This was not specified in the overview of the book, and I would not have ordered it if it had been.
This book is as other Bryce Courtenay's books - a very good read, with various points of view from his protagists, well researched, and just plain interesting. The narrator is my very favorite. As for the "unchristian" statement in another review, I think the reviewer was pretty off base and perhaps should stick to fairy tales.
Great listen. For the life of me, I cannot believe that the author is anti-christian as one of the reviewers contends. I read "THE SHACK" and loved it, only to find some so called Christians offended with that book also. Bryce has a gift for story telling and he does his homework. North Korea was a hell hole for the GIs and he carried the story line well. I recommend reading "The Power of One" first only because it was his first book and probably has some of his own story buried in the pages. Then this book is an excellent follow-up. You will not be disappointed, even if you are a Christian and love the Lord as I do.