©2005 Bryce Courtenay; (P)2005 Bolinda Publishing Pty. Ltd.
At the beginning of this book I nearly stoped listening because of the harsh circumstances, but just in time things looked brighter. From then on the book becomes a wonderful experience and the whole plot is fascinating right to the end.
The reader is absolutely ingenious and makes the whole book so much more enjoyable to listen to than you could ever imagine if you were merely reading it.
Though a great book, this is not my favorite Bryce Courtenay book. If you haven't read/listened to The Power of One (my personal favorite), The Potato Factory, Tandia and others, you should treat yourself. As with all his books, you will laugh, cry and experience many emotions. His stories are influenced by his personal experiences growing up during difficult times in South Africa and his life in Australia. I was sad to hear of his death November 22. He will be greatly missed!
Humphrey Bower is by far my favorite narrator. He has an uncanny ability to change his voice and make the characters come alive! Such a talent is rare, you will not be disappointed. It's easy to understand why Bryce Courtenay chose him to read his books...what a great duo! Another book that he narrated beautifully (not Bryce Courtenay's) is Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts, if you like Bryce Courtenay, you should like this one, too.
I've enjoyed several of Courtenay's books with Humphrey Bower narrating. While Bryce Courtenay is a great story teller, Humphrey Bower's talent puts the story over the top.
If you've read 'Power of One' this is almost an exact recycle of that story. Stick with 'Power of One' and you won't be disappointed.
Having listened to all available books by Bryce, this is the first time I have had a slight issue. Before that the good stuff....As usual Mr Bower is superb in the delivery of this novel and the novel itself is another masterpiece.
I did find however that there was a little to much of Peekay in this book, and in fact great tracts of it could have been in Power of One.
This still will not stop me from checking every month for the next BC/HB journey to download.
How could it have taken me so long to find other Bryce Courtenay books besides The Power of One? Whitethorn was a huge pleasure, made more so by the skill and talent of Humphrey Bower, who adds so much to this book with his reading. Do yourself a huge favor and listen to this book.
From the moment I started listening I could not stop. The story and plot were very engrossing and Humphrey Bower did a fantastic job of bringing all the characters to life. As previous reviewers have said there is a section of the story right at the beginning of the novel which is quite graphic but once past that point the story is delightful. Very similar to "The Power of One" in many ways so if you enjoyed that, then this is a must read.
On a Sunday, I ride my motorcycle to Maracas Bay Beach while listen. When I get there up goes the hammock, and I then listen to my audiobook
I only do AudioBooks these days.
They have all been good, but Whitethorn hold a special place in my heart
This has to be one of my most favourite books... Possibly #1
As someone who was bullied at boarding school, I identified with the main character.
Loners often only find love and feel comfortable with animals or other outcast human beings.
I will listen to this again soon.
If this book does not make you cry, you don't have a soul....
Thank You Bryce Courtney for this wonderful gift
Tangential, eclectic, avid listener... favorite book is the one currently in ear.
I came very close to completely quiting this book early on, as I have had to do with several other of Bryce's books. There is an act of older male child on younger male child sexual abuse as seen though the younger child's uncomprehending eyes. This is the only act that you "see" but a 2 minute fast forward would remove the worst of it. The incident is essential to plot, but knowing it happened is enough. The book is definately adult themed even without the above episode, but language is remarkably clean. The message is positive and hopeful, the history of South Africa and its challenges are beutifully covered. Tom, the orphan, you follow from 7 - 30 or so, is a delightful innocent soul, and the friends he makes along the way become your friends too. You will meet people from all walks of life, of all levels of morality, but right and goodness are the hero's here. If you liked Power of One, you will like this... as they are very similar.
Every time I begin to read a Bryce Courtenay story, I am thinking to myself, "How can this one be as good as the last one I read?", and every time I am quite surprised to find that the one I'm reading is just as fantastic as all the others! His stories are all different, but engaging and interesting all the same.
In this story, which is, incidentally read by the INCOMPARABLE Humphrey Bower (so wonderful and easy to listen to and whose voice is perfect for Bryce's stories) there are characters who fall on hard times and through his/her life experiences, find a way to conquer his/her demons. Going along for the ride, learning for ourselves along the way, make this book, as all the others, great listens.
Firstly let me just say I did not listen to this audio in it's entirety and this is more just a brief caution than a review. I was thoroughly engrossed in this audio up until I was taken by complete surprise at the graphic description of a lewd act in the early parts of story. From the sounds of it if you can get over that as the reviewer above said it really is a excellent story
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