©2002 Bryce Courtenay; (P)2002 Bolinda Publishing Pty. Ltd.
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 .
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!
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.
Well that's the lot unless BC left one behind to publish from the grave but I am so glad I left this one to last. I enjoyed all his books to varying degrees but this one hit home and took me to places I had not thought of. Provocative, read brilliantly as you might expect by HB and poignant to say the least. Yes, I would have liked a bigger ending, yes it might be a little predictable but worth every invested second of your listening time.
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.
Not for the faint of heart! Bryce was able to weave together 2 of societies ills, the child pornography trade and alcoholism into a story that made me wince and cry and smile.
This story really helped me understand the program that AA offers and how it helps those that are addicted.
Humphrey Bower is my favorite narrator. His voice and characterizations are spot on! No one else can evoke such laughter and tears from me.
A tough subject to read about, as was his book, Jessica, but well worth your time.
Bryce Courtenay should have been an Irishman... he can certainly tell a good yarn. I cared for his characters, but found the devise of the cat a bit unnecessary. It intruded, in my opinion, into the real story of an alcoholic and a sad, unsupported child.
The narrator is just fine but the book is horrible. A thinly veiled commercial for alcohol rehab and a tiny bit of a kids book. An odd combo that absolutely did not work for me. Oh, and there is the fact that despite all of the "taking responsibility" the authors blames everyone else, particularly the women in his life, for his problems.
Love books of all kind, especially well developed characters.
Bryce Courtenay writes beautiful words to describe the most deplorable situations. This book is about an alcoholic, a boy and a cat which connects them. Bryce takes you into the world of alcoholism and drugs and poverty like no other author. But Bryce always writes to uplift the hearts and souls. This book is no different . As much as the subject matter is unpleasant it is also uplifting. Thank you Bryce and Humphrey for your narration.
No. I have been a big fan of Courtney & Bower since listening to The Power of One which is one of the best books I‘ve listened to and definitely the best from Courtney. Matthew Flinder‘s Cat was not up to par with other books by Courtney and even Bower‘s reading couldn‘t save it. The first two thirds of the book dragged on and half way through I was looking at my ipod to see how far I‘d gotten and if I wanted to invest any more time into it. The entire storyline with the cat left much to be desired and the boy acted much too mature for his age. In general I applaud Courtney for trying to address such important topics as alcoholism and child prostitution, but it still didn‘t save this story.
Perfect for Courtney.
If you can get through it, the last third of the story is potentially worth listening too but only if you are a hardcore Courtney fan with lots of time on your hands and got the book on sale. If you are limited on time, and who isn‘t, then you are much better off putting your credit to use on one of Courtney‘s many other excellent books like Power of One, Tandia or Brother Fish.
Although it took a few chapters before I felt the flow I was thoroughly intrigued and entertained by the characters and their extreme honesty. This book tackles two very important subjects. 1. alcoholism and addiction and 2. pedophilia. I am actually amazed that a book based on these two huge, touchy, frightening, politically awkward issues would be so engrossing, educational and compelling.
Well done Bryce. You rock! :-)
Also China Miéville, Peter Hamilton, good space-opera, No Zombies, Apocalypses, Women who sigh and go weak at the knees when seeing a man!
At first I thought this would be a "Billy Budd" story. Then I thought it would be a "light-hearted" tale of an alcoholic who makes friends with this 10 yr. old boy and tells him the story of Matthew Flinder's cat, , then I hadn't a clue where this suddenly serious book was headed.
My only regret is that it ended too abruptly, and left me with too many dangling threads. Also:
Spoiler: although you know from the beginning that the cat did at some point die,
When then scene of Tinder's death comes nearly at the end of the book, it is truly heart wrenching and grisly. I was horrified and had a hard time believing that the scene was real. I have no idea if it's a true story or not- but it's a tearjerker and I for one would have preferred to have been lied to if it is real.
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