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Matthew Flinder's Cat Audiobook
Matthew Flinder's Cat
Written by: 
Bryce Courtenay
Narrated by: 
Humphrey Bower
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Matthew Flinder's Cat Audiobook

Matthew Flinder's Cat

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Publisher's Summary

The story of a drunk, a boy, and a cat. Billy O'Shannessy, once a prominent barrister, is now on the street where he sleeps on a bench outside the State Library. Above him on the window sill rests a bronze statue of Matthew Flinders' cat, Trim. Ryan is a 10-year-old, a near-street kid heading for the usual trouble. The two form an unlikely bond. Through telling Ryan the story of Flinders' circumnavigation of Australia as seen through Trim's eyes, Billy is drawn deeply into Ryan's life and into the Sydney underworld.

©2002 Bryce Courtenay; (P)2002 Bolinda Publishing Pty. Ltd.

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.2 (690 )
5 star
 (325)
4 star
 (231)
3 star
 (100)
2 star
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1 star
 (11)
Overall
4.2 (421 )
5 star
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4 star
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3 star
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2 star
 (7)
1 star
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Story
4.7 (421 )
5 star
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4 star
 (84)
3 star
 (19)
2 star
 (2)
1 star
 (2)
Performance
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  •  
    J. Czap Maryland 05-21-16
    J. Czap Maryland 05-21-16 Member Since 2013

    Czap

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    "Compelling story with some heavy topics"

    The narrator was awesome and made the characters come to life. The book was a bit of a rollercoaster ride, took me from laughter to tears. I wasn't expecting the story to be so detailed and the reader should be aware there are mature topics contained including drugs and sex not intended for the naive reader who would like to stay that way. I am undecided if I will try another book by this author, I think I would like to have a better understanding of the content first. But this was a good book and performance overall.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Claudine ESCONDIDO, CA, United States 04-19-16
    Claudine ESCONDIDO, CA, United States 04-19-16
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    "The Battle of Two Tales"

    There was a story within a story in this book. The main story about a derelict and a wayward boy is quite good. I liked the way the author develops the characters and allows them to move and grow as we read. The smaller story about Trim the cat was also interesting but at times I felt it really slowed down the main story. I think the story of Trim was important but the author spent way to much time on the minutia of the tale. I got very bored during some of the ocean voyage because it went on and on about things that didn't matter. There was so much of that detail that was not necessary for the main story to move forward. So although I liked the story about Billy, it was at times hard to get through.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Susan Acree 03-12-16
    Susan Acree 03-12-16 Member Since 2016
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    "Amazing narrator, great story!"

    Very good story, and the writing was superb, the description was great and the reader was perfect!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Nancy Gorham, ME, United States 12-11-15
    Nancy Gorham, ME, United States 12-11-15 Member Since 2013
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    "Great character study."
    Any additional comments?

    Bryce Courtenay is one of my new favorite writers. This is the fifth of his books I have read and thoroughly enjoyed. It provides an in-depth look at the life of Billie, an educated man turned homeless alcoholic. Instead of trying to avoid this character as I would on the street, I was drawn into his life and felt myself wanting to spend more time with him, to understand his addiction and wish him into recovery. His relationship with the young boy, Ryan, is at first a little hard to believe, but as the reader learns more about Billie's past, it becomes more understandable. The third main character in the book is Trim, Matthew's Flinder's cat (an historical figure), and Courtenay takes us on many adventures with Trim, as Billie shares these stories with Ryan. I found myself very interested in Trim's adventures in the beginning, but found them to be rather tedious as the story of Billie and Ryan grew and I was more interested in continuing with their story and not being interrupted with tales of Trim. Humphrey Bower is one of my all-time favorite narrators. I sometimes think he could read a shopping list and make it come alive!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Boysmom Alberta, Canada 10-07-15
    Boysmom Alberta, Canada 10-07-15 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Not Courtenay's best"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Matthew Flinder's Cat to be better than the print version?

    Don't know. Never read the print version.


    How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?

    Reduced the amounts of time spent on the story of Matthew Flanders and Trim.


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

    Humphrey Bower brings every book he narrates to life. I've listened to him lots and have never been disappointed.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

    A story af alcoholism and child sexual exploitation in Aussyland.


    Any additional comments?

    The story tells the tale of a very special friendship between an alcoholic and a child. I really think it was more about what BC wanted to say about alcoholism/addiction, it's recovery process, and make some points about child sexual exploitation. I really feel like he used this story to get his views across, while not wrong in any way, but took away from the story really just being about the characters. I connected with Billie, but would have more if he hadn't been so into project Mina bird!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Monica Oceanside, CA, United States 07-21-15
    Monica Oceanside, CA, United States 07-21-15 Member Since 2006
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    "Great performance lifts a good story even higher"
    What made the experience of listening to Matthew Flinder's Cat the most enjoyable?

    The remarkable performance of Humphrey Bower zoomed this book into vibrant life. It is, quite simply, the best audiobook performance I've ever heard. There is not a false note in it. Mr Bower makes every voice unique and keeps the narrative constantly interesting. What a wonderful actor!


    What did you like best about this story?

    Again, the performance. I would normally not have been attracted to this story, and bought the book because it seemed to be about a cat (as it is, in large parts) and was on sale. Very happy I did! It was quite compelling. The characters were completely realistic and the story became truly interesting. It's an extremely good portrayal of one man's battle against severe alcoholism.


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

    No, but I most certainly will!


    If you could take any character from Matthew Flinder's Cat out to dinner, who would it be and why?

    Trim, the cat, of course. He is an intrepid hero!


    Any additional comments?

    This was really a fortunate purchase for me. Thoroughly enjoyed it, especially because of the brilliant performance, but also because the book is darned good too!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Joyce Munden Youngsville, NC, US 06-25-15
    Joyce Munden Youngsville, NC, US 06-25-15 Member Since 2013

    Tell us about yourself!

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "ANOTHER GREAT BOOK BY BRYCE COURTNEY"

    Another great book by Bryce Courtney.
    He never disappoints me. I have listened to all of his books. Sometimes more than once.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jane Devereux 03-17-15 Member Since 2013
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    "Excellent"

    Another Brilliant story from Bryce Courtney. An amazing relationship formed on the streets of Sydney between a derelict drunk and a street wise boy. It all started with a tale about a cat! A must read/download. Beautifully narrated by Humphrey Bower.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Judy 03-03-15
    Judy 03-03-15 Member Since 2010
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    "Wonderful story!"

    This is my 6th book by this author and I will listen to more. Humphrey is an excellent voice telling the story
    Bryce consistently educates and entertains to the highest standard .

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    mary j aboughadareh 07-29-08
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Still another 5 stars for a Courtnay book"

    I can't seem to tear myself aways from Courtnay. Even so, I didn't think I'd be keen on the subject matter but it was a great story, even the bits about the cat. Bower is the best reader ever!

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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