’François, how many men up at the face?' 'Cave-in.' François's voice was now hysterically shrill. 'Cave-in.' He broke Sean's grip and raced away towards the lift station, the mud flying from his gumboots. His terror infected Sean and he ran a dozen paces after François before he stopped himself. For precious seconds he wavered with fear slithering round like a reptile in his stomach; go back to call the others and perhaps die with them or follow François and live.
Into the wilds of Natal in the 1870s are born Sean and Garrick Courtney, the twin brothers who could not be more different. Fate, war and the jealous schemes of a woman are to drive them even further apart. But as history unfolds a continent is awakening. And on its horizon is the promise of fortune, adventure, destiny and love.
©1964 Wilbur Smith (P)2013 Pan Macmillan Publishers Ltd
“Wilbur Smith is one of those benchmarks against whom others are compared” (The Times)
I enjoy reading fantasy, crime and mystery thrillers, as well as historical novels.
When the Lion Feeds is a definite classic. Wilbur Smith's first published novel and still one of his best. It tells the story of Sean Courtenay from late childhood with his twin brother Garry, to his making it rich on the Witwatersrand and then losing it all, to his hunting elephants for ivory and getting rich again, to his marriage and birth of his son Dirk and his return to Witwatersrand and the tragic conclusion to a great novel. John Lee delivers a brilliant performance which enhances the already brilliant story. A great read and listen for Wilbur Smith fans. I hope more of Wilbur Smith's novels become available on Audible in the near future.
Amazing, Gripping, emotional
Sean: You see him develop from a mischievious boy into a noble man. You get pulled into his hardship and really drawn into his character.
I thought his accents were great. He really portraid the characters Sean and Duff
I had a very emotional attachment to the book an characters. Growing up in South Africa and visiting my Grandad's farm, this book really hit home.
Sean and Duff make a great pair and was good to listen about their solid friendship. The banter between them made me laugh on a few occasions. However, Sean's life is not an easy one and the book gets extremely sad at times.
I started with 'Those in Peril' by Wilbur Smith and enjoyed it so much I searched for other Wilbur Smith unabridged titles to try. When Lions Feed and Sound of Thunder are a joined story about Sean Courtney. These were every bit as good - akin to the detailed and eventful stories of Ken Follet. It does help if you have visited or lived in South Africa, but I was very impressed!
"Gutted when the book ended"
Fantastic story, with a tremendous performance by John Lee.
Definitely getting the next book in the series!
"Exciting, funny, sad - great read"
The storyline is excellent as you'd expect from Wilbur Smith, and John Lee reads well as usual. His range of accents are great as always, if you'll forgive him the odd trip-up on the Afrikaans accent. A thrilling, exciting, funny and at times sad story. Well worth a listen.
"Great listen, brilliant narration."
Got this book on a recommendation from a friend and I wasn't disappointed.
The reading by John Lee was superb. His command of the characters accents really brought them to life.
"never fails to impress"
had to keep listening, never fails to impress, love listening to Wilbur Smith books. Outstanding!!
"The greatest story ever told"
I read this series of books thirty years ago
Listening to the lion feeds in this unabridged version still brings tears to my eyes and reaching for the bookshelf as I've kept all the Courtney books
Wilbur Smith at his best back in historical Africa. This is one not to miss !
"Best book of all time"
The book keeps you guessing of what is going to happen next the whole way through. A truthful portrayal of strained family relationships with a wild element through the environment . The mixture of war, business and the occasional 'relationship' have kept me coming back to this book time after time. My father gave me his book when I turned 13 and to protect it had to buy a new one as read this repeatedly and now the unabridged audio book (did buy the abridged however bought this as well) which is superb. great performance and accents by the narrator that pulls you in to the world of Sean Courtney.
The loss of his brother, his wealth then finding both again and losing both again only to regain. Its an up and down story that never gets old and has a real air of truth about the whole thing.
If you enjoyed this book I recommend all of the other Courtney books written by Wilbur Smith as well as the Egyptian series. Wilbur makes you fall in love with these families as you follow the story from one generation of the Courtney's to the next to the next feeling like part of the family. In particular Blue Horizon after this book is my favorite but I would never read it without reading the preceding books. ALL A MUST READ OR LISTEN!!!!!
Note the other books are read by Tim Piggot Smith who also did a sterling job in narrating.
"captivating and full of pace when required."
at first I thought I was listening to a re-wright of ZULU. Then Duff came along and all changed. The story line gained pace and between the 2 main characters there was some exciting story lines. Then there was the Zulu slave of Sean. its amazing how not only the story line or the way John Lee delivered the story there was such emotion in the unsaid words that came over. I have now downloaded the second book ready for my next car trip.
I don't often find a book that I listen too where I have sat on the drive of my home just to get to the end of a chapter. the story line and narrator just hold you right until the end of the book. I look forward to listening to A Sparrow Falls.
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