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The Potato Factory Audiobook

The Potato Factory: The Australian Trilogy, Book 1

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Publisher's Summary

Always leave a little salt on the bread...

Ikey Solomon's favorite saying is also his way of doing business, and in the business of thieving he's very successful indeed. Ikey's partner in crime is his mistress, the forthright Mary Abacus, until misfortune befalls them. They are parted and each must make the harsh journey from thriving nineteenth century London to the convict settlement of Van Diemen's Land.

In the backstreets and dives of Hobart Town, Mary learns the art of brewing and builds The Potato Factory, where she plans a new future. But her ambitions are threatened by Ikey's wife, Hannah, her old enemy. The two women raise their separate families, one legitimate and the other bastard. As each woman sets out to destroy the other, the families are brought to the edge of disaster.

©1995 Bryce Courtenay; (P)2000 Bolinda Publishing Pyt Ltd by arrangement with Penguin Group (Australia)

What the Critics Say

"In the tradition of Charles Dickens, Courtenay creates a unique cast of characters from the outset of this epic novel....Humphrey Bower's performance is a marvel...making this one of those rare books with a sweep of characters the readers come to care about deeply." (AudioFile)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.4 (4339 )
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4.6 (3275 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Scott Boerne, TX, United States 03-12-13
    Scott Boerne, TX, United States 03-12-13 Member Since 2016
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    "loved this book"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    yes


    What did you like best about this story?

    all the characters


    What about Humphrey Bower’s performance did you like?

    his different voices for the characters made them recognizable and ability to speak as in the time of the story, excellent job


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    twincity 03-11-13
    twincity 03-11-13
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    "A great listen!"
    What made the experience of listening to The Potato Factory the most enjoyable?

    Narration was perfect, nothing boring hearing the great vocabulary.


    What did you like best about this story?

    It has been a while since I have listened to such a great story that also educated me about the era and the process of the English getting deported to Australia and the struggles once there. It is such a well written book, so different from the authors pushing out a new one each year.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    I cannot think of many scenes that were not my favorite -the lives of Ike, Bob Marley, the two Marys and even Ann Gower. There is so much woven into it.

    The formation of the characters has been done superbly.


    Any additional comments?

    This is my favorite listen since Cutting for Stone.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Barbara Prince Albert, South Africa 03-11-13
    Barbara Prince Albert, South Africa 03-11-13
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    82
    2
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    "A well written and performed informative book"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes, well written, informative with colourful characters and brilliantly read.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Mary Abacus, I felt sorry for her but admired her determination


    What about Humphrey Bower’s performance did you like?

    Hoe he changed with every character,


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

    When Mary tried to find employment as a clark.


    Any additional comments?

    I am now reading Tommo and Hawk

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    John Hinchinbrook, Australia 03-11-13
    John Hinchinbrook, Australia 03-11-13 Member Since 2013

    Avid reader and audio book listener

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    "Great story of Australian History"

    Well worth the listen, provides a live history by way of interesting characters. I will certainly look for more of Bryce Courtney's work.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    julie perth, Australia 03-09-13
    julie perth, Australia 03-09-13
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    10
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    "BE WARNED CONTAINS OBSCENE LANGUAGE"
    Where does The Potato Factory rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    This is a great story, its adventurous and riveting but contains some very graphic violent portrayals of life as it was. Set in the late 1800's it starts in England when some of the most brutal behaviour against women and the poor was committed. I listened to this one day and couldn't eat my lunch as a result! I was shocked and appalled at the reality of it.None the less I have continued with the series and am now onto Tommo and Hawk. if you can handle the obscenities and the graphic violence, the story is fantastic. Well done by the reader and overall well worth the Listen.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The Characters are unforgettable and I wonder if it will ever be made into a movie series?
    It would be a visual feast with the locations involved... that said, the film maker would have to go carefully with some of the worst violent parts.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    oscar de vries 03-04-13
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    19
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    "Supperbly written. I hated to see it end."
    What did you love best about The Potato Factory?

    While the story line and presenter were great I also loved the history lesson I got. I have a greater knowledge now of life during that time period as well as the history of the Australian penal colonies.Oscar DeVries


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    The main player of the story.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mary 03-04-13
    Mary 03-04-13
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    2
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    "caught my imagination"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I would recommend this book. It really caught my imagination and I got to know the characters very well. Thought it ended quite suddenly, though.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    no, it's too long for that


    Any additional comments?

    it's a time and place that I didn't know much about. Well written

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Eddie38 02-27-13
    Eddie38 02-27-13

    Eddie is an avid listener of all sorts of audio books. He is a voracious reader AND listener. Not just best sellers, he likes to experiment.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "TERRIFIC NARRATION"
    What did you love best about The Potato Factory?

    The narration was top shelf.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Ike Solomon --- the narration captured such a distinct character that I was compelled to care about this person who was so flawed. But I really feel as if I know him.


    What about Humphrey Bower’s performance did you like?

    His ability to capture the author's language and to distinctly provide EACH character with his or her own persona (and never faltering from it) made his reading absolutely wonderful. I had never listened to a Humphrey Bower read before but I have got to say --- he is a storyteller with immense talent.


    If you could take any character from The Potato Factory out to dinner, who would it be and why?

    Mary. I just want her to have one perfect day in her life.


    Any additional comments?

    I am looking forward to the next two books in the trilogy.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    NIcole 02-26-13
    NIcole 02-26-13
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    "Clear a whole weekend and bring tissues..."
    What made the experience of listening to The Potato Factory the most enjoyable?

    Humphrey Bower brought the massive range of characters to life, so you laugh and cry and suffer with them.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Potato Factory?

    Ike's lessons to his boys (I am trying not to remember the many harrowing moments - I pray they fade with time!!)


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

    As good as and better because there were more characters. Each was so uniquely spoken that a film could not have made clearer who was who.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    It is too long for that - but oh my did I get quite fit - it is one of the only times I was happy to stay on the treadmill as I listened.


    Any additional comments?

    Can't wait for next book..

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    sherry United States 02-25-13
    sherry United States 02-25-13 Member Since 2013
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    3
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    "A fabuous story!"
    What made the experience of listening to The Potato Factory the most enjoyable?

    The characters are beautifully written and the plot carries one along.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Potato Factory?

    The harshness of the characters' lives combined with riveting dialogue.


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

    Marvelous voices and accents.


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

    A saga of the old and new world, with characters and plot twists to love and hate.


    Any additional comments?

    This is one of the best "reads" I've enjoyed in many years. Totally satisfying.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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