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The Power of One Audiobook

The Power of One

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Audible Editor Reviews

Why You Should Download This Audiobook: Good character dramas are best shared with others, like good wine on special occasions. Bryce Courtenay's wonderful story of a child coming of age in a country ripped apart by racism is such a vintage—rich and complex, an experience you'll want to talk about long after the last words are spoken.

Publisher's Summary

"First with your head and then with your heart." So says Hoppie Groenewald, boxing champion, to a seven-year-old boy who dreams of being the welterweight champion of the world. For the young Peekay, it is a piece of advice he will carry with him throughout his life.

Born in a South Africa divided by racism and hatred, this one small boy will come to lead all the tribes of Africa. Through enduring friendships with Hymie and Gideon, Peekay gains the strength he needs to win out. And in a final conflict with his childhood enemy, the Judge, Peekay will fight to the death for justice.

©1989 Bryce Courtenay; (P)2000 Bolinda Publishing Pty Ltd.

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.6 (4113 )
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4.6 (2818 )
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4.7 (2805 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Noel 07-16-14
    Noel 07-16-14
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A Good Story, But"
    Any additional comments?

    The Power of One is a good, solid story that keeps the reader involved. The reader is excellent. I will note a couple of caveats, depending on your viewpoint: there is lots of vulgarity, especially in the early going, and the Christian faith is presented in a blatantly mocking and demeaning light. There is a lot to like here, but these were definitely negatives for me.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ruth Sonoma, CA, United States 07-06-14
    Ruth Sonoma, CA, United States 07-06-14 Member Since 2013

    R. A. Rogers

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "What an education in the form of a great story!"
    Would you consider the audio edition of The Power of One to be better than the print version?

    I have never read the print version but if i did, my mind would read it with this voice. A great match.


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

    Listening to the book helps me jump into the story and watch rather than imagine the story.


    Who was the most memorable character of The Power of One and why?

    Doc was most memorable because he moved right along with the story whether he was present or not. He stabilized Pekay's life from the moment he came into the story.


    Any additional comments?

    It was a little hard to believe Pekay was as astute as claimed at 9 years old, but after all, it is a story. I loved every bit of it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Della Lee Americas 07-03-14
    Della Lee Americas 07-03-14 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Well Done"
    What made the experience of listening to The Power of One the most enjoyable?

    The reader, H. Bower, has a perfect voice for this book.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Can't answer this question.


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

    My first.


    If you could take any character from The Power of One out to dinner, who would it be and why?

    The Zulu "brother" and chief who appeared near the end. He is so sincere and lives for his people. Also, it would be a pleasure to eat with someone who has such beautiful, white teeth and such classy manners.


    Any additional comments?

    This book teaches the reader about boxing and this I had not expected. I first saw the movie, which I count among my top 10 favorites. The story is excellent, a piece of history. As an audiobook it is among my top 5 favorites.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Raymond America, TX, United States 06-25-14
    Raymond America, TX, United States 06-25-14 Member Since 2016
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    "Best of the best"
    Where does The Power of One rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    I have listened to a number of books by this author and this one is one of the very best as many a skinny young fellow that has faced bullies when young can relate to his story, in my opinion this book can be enjoyed by young and old alike, I cannot speak for what ladies might enjoy, but it has so much realism and strife that I could personally feel and did experience similar and you cannot ask for more than that from any author, I have not been disappointed it any of Bryce Courtenay's books, all top notch.


    Which character – as performed by Humphrey Bower – was your favorite?

    PK and Doc, both equal, many times the old can learn from the young and vise versa that is what makes life great, always “Fair Exchange”.


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

    Yes, there are bullies in every part of the world and I learned young to hit the biggest, the hardest first, draw blood from the nose and the others left you alone till the following years, than the cycle begin again, sometimes I lost, but rarely did they come back for seconds.
    Sad today that much that changed us from boys to men and built our character is now considered either barbaric or politically incorrect.


    Any additional comments?

    The art of writing seems to have change to the point that I cannot related to many of the newer books and many of the truly great writers are now old, retiring and the young are sharing the great authors names, but not delivering.
    I am very careful when an old author appears with a new book as many times there are two or three riding his coat tails, but seem to fail in the good story telling department. I cannot wait to read Bryce’s next door stop novel.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mrs.Morgan 06-23-14
    Mrs.Morgan 06-23-14

    geemo49

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Read It"
    Where does The Power of One rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    The Power of One is right up there standing strong with all my favorite books. The narration was perfect. The story was so good, I had a hard time putting it down to sleep. I loved how Mr. Courtenay took us through the life of a child and the life of a nation.
    This was a Daily Deal purchase. The best five bucks I ever spent.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    BookReader Chicago, IL, United States 06-22-14
    BookReader Chicago, IL, United States 06-22-14 Member Since 2001
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    345
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    "The Power of One"
    Any additional comments?

    The Power of One was originally published in the early nineties and released as an audiobook recently, read by Humphrey Bower. Just over twenty-one hours of listening, the story is a first person accounting of a white South African, beginning with his brutal childhood. The main character has the desire to pursue a career in boxing, which in itself holds little interest unless you enjoy the sport.

    The tale describes the years of WWII in South Africa, through the eyes of an independent, albeit vulnerable boy. In this coming of age story, quirky characters, violence, sadness, and great happiness traverse the pages and Peekay’s life. The writing, in addition to the wonderful narration by Bower, is pleasant. I’ve a wee bit of trouble with all the laudatory praise. From personal perspective, it is a good book, but not great. The story itself is simply that of a child, from age five, through early adulthood, and subsequent adventures and tribulations. Frankly, in some areas, I glazed over and didn’t bother to rewind. Okay, if you like the genre of memoirs.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Elizabeth Portsmouth, RI, United States 04-10-14
    Elizabeth Portsmouth, RI, United States 04-10-14 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "One of my Top Three EVER!"
    If you could sum up The Power of One in three words, what would they be?

    Inspiring, compelling, riveting


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Peekay, because it is his journey, and he pulled us along for the ride. Truly larger-than-life, yet layered and real nevertheless. Lots of other characters to love, particularly Doc.


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

    First Humphrey Bower's book and it's a home run. In the same class as Simon Vance, one of the great voices in audio.


    If you could rename The Power of One, what would you call it?

    Perfect title, actually. But if I had to rename it, maybe .... Echoes of Africa


    Any additional comments?

    I'm 90% through and am dawdling, since I don't want it to end. Full of memorable characters, each of them layered and real. One of the most heartwarming and inspirational books I have ever read.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Elise SOMERVILLE, MA, United States 03-20-14
    Elise SOMERVILLE, MA, United States 03-20-14
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A modern Charles Dickens"

    The Power of One is the story of a strong willed orphan with everything going against her in Dickensian England except her cunning and amazing ability with an abacus. But behind her rise to success is the equally cunning, but also unscrupulous and miserly Jewish fencer of stolen goods and leader of the underworld, the only one willing to give her a chance. And thus Mary, while pure of heart, must compromise herself to get ahead.

    The intricate story line and depth of characters made for a great read, and Bower's reading captured the author's voice and those of the characters.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kirsteen Subang Jaya, Malaysia 03-01-14
    Kirsteen Subang Jaya, Malaysia 03-01-14 Member Since 2011
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    "The characters never leave you!"

    This novel is so entertaining and captivating, I feel as though I have met and had fun with many of the characters! They live on in my head and I hope to meet some again or their relatives in a third book!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Peter E. Hart 01-14-14
    ratings
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    "Narrator is faithful to the voices of South Africa"

    The story and the vivid characters are so compelling that I found myself thinking about them all during my day. But the virtuoso performance by Humphrey Bower makes the book truly spring to life. I returned from a month in southern Africa having just finished listening to The Power of One and I was amazed at how accurately Bower reproduces the many different voices I heard there.

    I doubt I would have enjoyed reading this as much as I enjoyed listening to it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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