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The Story of Danny Dunn | [Bryce Courtenay]

The Story of Danny Dunn

At just 16 years Danny Dunn has everything going for him: brains, looks, sporting aptitude - and luck with the ladies. His mother steers him towards a university education, but with just six months of his degree to go, he signs up for the AIF, driven by a desire to serve his country and plain wanderlust. Danny serves in South-east Asia, spends three and a half years as a POW, and returns a broken man, embittered and facially disfigured. He is scared and overwhelmed by the need to sort himself out, to find out who the hell he is....
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Publisher's Summary

Simultaneous release of the latest novel from Australia's best-selling author. Likened by the author to Frank Hardy's Australian classic, Power Without Glory, with pubs, gambling and political corruption taking centre stage.

The Dance of Danny Dunn is an Australian family saga centering on a working-class family of publicans who make their first mark in Balmain in the 1930s. In that decade, two opportunities existed for boys of Balmain, a working-class Sydney suburb: to be selected into Fort Street Boys School or to excel as a sportsman. At just 16 years, Danny Dunn has everything going for him: brains, looks, sporting aptitude - and luck with the ladies. His parents run The Hero of Mafeking ('Maffos'), the favourite local watering hole, and the whole of Balmain is proud of Danny's sporting prowess. His mother, though, steers Danny towards a university education; but with just six months of his degree to go, he signs up for the AIF, driven by a desire to serve his country and plain wanderlust.

Danny serves in South-east Asia, spends three and a half years as a POW, and returns a broken man, embittered and facially disfigured. He has told no one of his return, and as he sails towards the Balmain ferry terminal, he knows his life in beloved Balmain will have nothing to do with the life he led before the war. He is scared and overwhelmed by the need to sort himself out, to find out who the hell he is....

©2009 Bryce Courtenay; (P)2009 Bolinda Publishing Pty Ltd

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.2 (340 )
5 star
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4.3 (255 )
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4.7 (256 )
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3 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Scorch 02-16-12
    Scorch 02-16-12 Listener Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    10
    1
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    Performance
    Story
    "Bland"
    What did you like best about The Story of Danny Dunn? What did you like least?

    Always wonderul to have an Ausie narrator, book was not as entertaining as other novels from Bryce Courtenay.


    What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

    Nothing stands out in this novel, which is definately not one of Bryce Courtenay's best. It was ok to listen to but certainly not rivetting - which is what you would normally expect from this author.


    What about Humphrey Bower’s performance did you like?

    Very good as always


    Did The Story of Danny Dunn inspire you to do anything?

    No


    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    04-11-10
    04-11-10 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    ratings
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    "The story of Danny Dunn"

    I downloaded this particular book after hearing the author Bryce Courtenay interviewed on the radio. It sounded great. I have enjoyed other books that he has written. It was a great story, with a very unexpected ending. The author has a talent for being able to describle something or someone in such a way that it comes alive to the reader. My only criticism is that these descriptions can become a bit long winded and tedious.

    5 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Brodie Mornington, Australia 06-29-10
    Brodie Mornington, Australia 06-29-10 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
    175
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    "Three but should be 4"

    The Characters are terrific and the images are umber like sepia prints. Again, as I have noticed before BC really does tend to invest too much of his time in training us in the art of 'love'. Why he has the predeliction I have no idea so if those moments bore you, like they did me, skip on for the book does meander through the period with a richness that is so Australian. If he were a painter he would be a McCubbin.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lynne Mannering Park, NSW, Australia 03-02-10
    Lynne Mannering Park, NSW, Australia 03-02-10
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    4
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    "Excellent!!"

    I an a great fan of Bryce's work and have been for many years. I loved this book.

    3 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lia Sutton, Australia 07-06-10
    Lia Sutton, Australia 07-06-10 Member Since 2009

    I love all genres of books. However, when I listen to audio books as I clean, garden, drive they are better with a lot of heat!

    HELPFUL VOTES
    2492
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    518
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    24
    Overall
    "OK"

    I have really enjoyed most of the book. It was a great story, with a very unexpected ending. The ending left me flat and I thought soiled the story.

    5 of 9 people found this review helpful
  •  
    MMA 11-07-14
    MMA 11-07-14
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
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    8
    7
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    "Great story, bit of a disappointing end"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes, did like the book.


    What did you like best about this story?

    Great story, but sad ending, which wasn't necessary!


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

    Yes! Quite a few! Humphrey Bower is by far the best narrator around!


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

    No, too long!!


    Any additional comments?

    Ending a bit disappointing - too sad with 2 people commiting suicide - was this necessary? Rest story great!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Anthony Glen Osmond, Australia 12-29-13
    Anthony Glen Osmond, Australia 12-29-13
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    8
    2
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great insight in post war Balmain Sydney"
    If you could sum up The Story of Danny Dunn in three words, what would they be?

    Irrepressible human spirit


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Story of Danny Dunn?

    Your trying to stitch me up so trying stitching your suite yourself.


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

    His Aussie accent and his ability to change voices brings a richness to his reading that not many can do. An absolute fan of Humphrey Bower.


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

    Brenda,s rendition of the family quilt story ,"Danny,s off to be a soldier"


    Any additional comments?

    This book makes me proud to be an Australian!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Georgia kelowna, British Columbia, Canada 04-09-13
    Georgia kelowna, British Columbia, Canada 04-09-13 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
    6
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    "A heart warming story ..."

    Bryce Courtenay can write a story sleeping, a lovely story of love, community.
    This book evoke every human emotion.
    Humphrey Bower is one of the best Narrators .
    This book is a must,,

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Caylene J. Vincent Ballarat, Australia 03-19-13
    Caylene J. Vincent Ballarat, Australia 03-19-13 Member Since 2012

    UQH

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    ratings
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    20
    19
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    1
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    "It's Too long, but not long enough"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Becasue Bryce is never predictable, nor is this story


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Danny's Mum, I am sure you could write a book on Brenda alone


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

    Great, as usual


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

    No, the book was not centred around any "one" moment, the book had a number of these present


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kathleen Cincinnati, OH, United States 02-08-13
    Kathleen Cincinnati, OH, United States 02-08-13 Member Since 2011

    webkat7

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    Overall
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    "Not Up to Par"

    I loved "The Persimmon Tree" and "Jessica," but "The Story of Danny Dunn fell flat for me, despite the great narration. Courtenay's characters are usually very rich and have a lot of depth, but in this book I felt he was just going through the motions. The characters are flat and often more of a caricature than a character. At multiple points through the story I was thinking "Just get ON with it already" and I found the ending predictable. I was especially disappointed in the character of Helen, who seemed even less realistic than the others. All in all, far from his best effort.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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