Dorian Mode’s incisive and devastatingly funny coming-of-age story is brought vividly to life by the talented David Tredinnick, whose sharp, sardonic delivery navigates the listener through endearingly neurotic protagonist Gordon B. Shoesmith’s wild and unpredictable journey from inner-city starving artist to chum of a Palestinian Elvis impersonator in Venice, Australia.
Part biting satire of the music industry, part sobering look at the treatment of Aboriginal Australians, the ambitious A Cafe in Venice hits many notes, and is held together by Mode’s wry prose and Tredinnick’s superb performance.
Quirky and neurotic, Gordon B. Shoesmith is a 30-something jazz musician seeing his twelfth psychiatrist in as many years. He increasingly discovers that there is a conflict between his artist's idealism and the hard reality of life, fuelled by his ambitious journalist girlfriend, Jenny, and her disapproving parents.
Gordon finds himself on an improvised, medicated roller-coaster ride of self-discovery that drags him from cockroach-infested, inner-city anonymity to mercurial artistic success, to the cynical world of advertising. He's finally tossed onto a road that leads to a café, run by Joe, a middle-aged, Palestinian Elvis impersonator, in the desert town of Venice, South Australia.
©2001 Dorian Mode (P)2002 Bolinda Publishing Pty Ltd
This is one of the best narrations I have had the pleasure of listening to. It's a very funny book to begin with and the cast of characters, so quintessentially Australian in their multicultural flavours, is rendered with great skill and comic genius by David Tredinnick. I laughed out loud.
Australian listeners will love this audiobook.
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