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Fortune Cookie | [Bryce Courtenay]

Fortune Cookie

It's the 1960s and the world of advertising is coming alive - and it's an exciting world to be part of. Simon Wong, a Chinese-Australian and promising young advertising executive, is sent to Singapore to establish an office. He finds himself thrust into an environment that is at once strangely familiar and profoundly different; one where the rules that govern behaviour - both in business and in personal life - differ wildly from what he is used to. And where all is not what it appears to be.
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Publisher's Summary

It's the 1960s and the world of advertising is coming alive - and it's an exciting world to be part of. Simon Wong, a Chinese-Australian and a promising young advertising executive, is sent to Singapore to establish an office. He finds himself thrust into an environment that is at once strangely familiar and profoundly different, one where the rules that govern behaviour - both in business and in personal life - differ wildly from what he is used to. And where all is not what it appears to be.

Under the veneer of the commercial world lie some shocking truths - of people smuggling, drug trafficking, and murder. And Mercy B. Lord, the woman Simon falls for, is caught up in it. From wartime Asian comfort houses to CIA spy rings, Bryce Courtenay takes us on a thrilling journey with a great love story at its heart.

©2010 Bryce Courtenay (P)2011 Bolinda Publishing Pty Ltd

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.2 (286 )
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4.5 (226 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Corinne Washington, DC, United States 12-04-13
    Corinne Washington, DC, United States 12-04-13 Member Since 2004
    HELPFUL VOTES
    343
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    89
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    "If your a Courtenay Bower fan"

    Buy it and read. There are no more left. It's by far NOT the best, but it's got Courtenay's mind for detail and knowledge of parts of Asia and his skill in building the plot. I'll miss him and Humphrey Bower, although the latter still lives.. I've now read everything by Courtenay (there was one I didn't as I didn't like the narrator, or I might have but given up).

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Anne Dee Why, Australia 09-03-11
    Anne Dee Why, Australia 09-03-11 Member Since 2007

    I have worked in information Technology for 25 years and have run my own small business for 23 years. I love books!

    HELPFUL VOTES
    27
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    66
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    "Brilliant!!"

    Another wonderful book by Bryce Courtenay and what can I say about Humphrey Bower - the man is a master at bringing the characters to life. My husband and I lived in Singapore for 2 years and it was great that the story was set there. Thanks for another very enjoyable listen!!

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jacki Farrar 08-12-11 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
    6
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    "Brillant"

    My first Bryce Coutenay book and if it is anything to go by I want to read more. Great story and held me all the way through. Well read by Humphrey Bower.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Greg minnetonka, MN, United States 09-03-12
    Greg minnetonka, MN, United States 09-03-12 Member Since 2006
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    81
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    "Good Story Teller"

    I truly enjoy Courtney's story telling. Some of his books really hit the mark. Some falter. None fail. This one faltered. Humphrey Bower's narration is worth the price of admission.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Hugh Shenton Park, Australia 08-25-11
    Hugh Shenton Park, Australia 08-25-11 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    Overall
    "Too long."

    This book was just too long. There are some interesting bits in it about the culture of Singapore at the time, and about Australia in the gold rush, but not enough to sustain the length of this book.
    I also had some trouble with the romantic aspects of the plot, which did not do it for me.
    The narrator was good, but could not bring this book above average for me.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Paula Overland Park, KS USA 07-03-14
    Paula Overland Park, KS USA 07-03-14 Member Since 2012

    Enjoying one good listen after the next!

    HELPFUL VOTES
    388
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    "Grand, Delightful, Wonderful Story!"

    I have read other Courtenay books, but in my view, this is one of his best. Perhaps that stems from the story being set in the 1960's Singapore when so much was happening in every corner of the world. Courtenay combines world history in a manner that is educational, engaging and well plotted. It was a wonderful listen.

    This story is exceptionally well told by Humphrey Bower. Lots of good voices to represent the many characters and just the right pace. I enjoyed the entire plot as well as the family history that was revealing itself in the then present-day characters' lives.

    If any fault is to be found, it is in the final minutes when finally the truths are revealed. I didn't want the story to end and it seemed too abrupt. However, when the pieces of the puzzle came together, they did so very fast, so perhaps it was in keeping with the plot.

    If you like historical fiction and want to learn more about the coming of age of Singapore, China and other parts of the east, you will enjoy this one.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mike Harrison, TN, United States 05-21-13
    Mike Harrison, TN, United States 05-21-13 Member Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "As consistent as sunup."
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I'd recommend anything he's ever penned because he never fails to capture my attention for every detail of the main characters life and life story.


    What other book might you compare Fortune Cookie to and why?

    Many of his other works are similar, but consistently great.


    Have you listened to any of Humphrey Bower’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    Bower is without a doubt the best reader that I've enjoyed. The second place goes to Jim Dale (Harry Potter) and that's a tough second place.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    At the party when she appeared without Coo knowing that she'd be there.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sue PADBURY, Australia 08-27-12
    Sue PADBURY, Australia 08-27-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Delightful character development and narration"

    Courtenay presents a unique examination of a Eurasian character. I love the happy endings that Courtenay provides in his story - the guy gets the girl. The narrator is very skilled and provides a delightful telling of the story. Enjoyable and absorbing. This story did take a little longer to get into than previous stories (an hour or two) but was well worth it.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Susan Redwood City, CA, United States 07-30-12
    Susan Redwood City, CA, United States 07-30-12 Listener Since 2008

    I'm a landscape architect by profession and an avid listener of audio books ! I particularly love the historical based fiction series, like Courteney, McCammon, and Gabaldon,. I listen in the car, while designing in my studio and most evenings.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "My favorite Author/ Reader!"
    If you could sum up Fortune Cookie in three words, what would they be?

    Exciting storyline, well read


    What other book might you compare Fortune Cookie to and why?

    You can pick up any of Courtney's book series, like Persimmon Tree or Potato factory and you will be enthralled. He is my favorite story teller taking me to Australia, China or Japan, with vivid characters.


    What does Humphrey Bower bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Humphry reads all of Courtney's books, he has the perfect ability to produce the accents for each character...you won't believe how great he is!


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    Bought and read the second book in this series right away!


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Brodie Mornington, Australia 10-25-11
    Brodie Mornington, Australia 10-25-11 Member Since 2009

    An unashamed Audiophile who has his own studio and business called iZENEARS which brings Australian travel and history to life for locals and visitor's alike.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Humphrey Bower made it for me"

    Great read for a book that somehow seemed to slip into historical space while being a story of fiction. Humphrey brought the book to life and the tale was fun but when life is stitched into fantasy it slows the tale down a little. Still, if you like Courtenay’s work I don’t think this will disappoint.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 1-10 of 21 results PREVIOUS123NEXT
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  • Paula
    Nottingham, United Kingdom
    7/24/11
    Overall
    "Fascinating and well read"

    As usual at the end of one of Courtenay's books I've finished learning something about a culture and history I had little knowledge of previously but I've been so engrossed in the story during the telling that I didn't realise it was happening at the time. The narrator's accent sometimes seemed a little off but that's understandable given the storyline. On the other hand it was very acceptable and the characterisation in the reading was superb!

    Having the usual problem now remembering which ones I've read and which ones I've only read the synopsis of as I really want to make sure I read/hear them all!

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Ronan
    United Kingdom
    6/6/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Too Long"
    Would you try another book written by Bryce Courtenay or narrated by Humphrey Bower?

    Yes, as both have an abundance of book credits


    What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

    I wish we got to it faster but at least it was a bit of action


    If this book were a film would you go see it?

    Possibly, as it would be abridged


    Any additional comments?

    I have listened to 6 of Bryce's books so far but this one just was too long. The early part based in Australia was ok but the Singapore section is in slow motion and therefore I found it a frustrating listen. There was also repetition of comments where it felt as if Bryce had forgotten that he already used certain phrases.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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