Late on a hot summer night in the tail end of 1965, Charlie Bucktin, a precocious and bookish boy of 13, is startled by an urgent knock on the window of his sleep-out. His visitor is Jasper Jones, an outcast in the regional mining town of Corrigan. Rebellious, mixed-race, and solitary, Jasper is a distant figure of danger and intrigue for Charlie. So when Jasper begs for his help, Charlie eagerly steals into the night by his side, terribly afraid but desperate to impress. Jasper takes him through town and to his secret glade in the bush, and it's here that Charlie bears witness to Jasper's horrible discovery.
With his secret like a brick in his belly, Charlie is pushed and pulled by a town closing in on itself in fear and suspicion as he locks horns with his tempestuous mother; falls nervously in love, and battles to keep a lid on his zealous best friend, Jeffrey Lu.
And in vainly attempting to restore the parts that have been shaken loose, Charlie learns to discern the truth from the myth, and why white lies creep like a curse. In the simmering summer where everything changes, Charlie learns why the truth of things is so hard to know, and even harder to hold in his heart.
©2009 Craig Silvey (P)2012 Bolinda Publishing Pty Ltd
This powerful book, set in Western Australia is very intelligent and multi-layered. It tells the story of a young lad who is coerced to act in a manner that puts him at risk. The characters in the story are highly believable and not stereotyped. I enjoyed the unfolding of the book, the richness and depth of the text and the surprising conclusion. It really exposed some of the deep concerns of youth and their exploitations by dysfunctional families.
If you are interested in understanding some of the real concerns of Australian life in a small outback town - this tale will resonate.
This book was selected by our book club and I think it will generate a lot of discussion at our next meeting. I highly recommend it.
I really liked it, it was believable
Geoffrey, I really liked the belief he had in himself and the comedy he added to the story
When Charlie realises that Jasper really loved Laura
Just a real pleasure to listen to.
This is a powerful Australian story
When our young central character realised that he is the only one controlling his choices.
Humphrey Bower brings a great sense of fun particularly in the dialoge between Charlie and his best mate. He also delivers the pains of loss and confusion to great effect.
I really enjoyed listening to this story in installments creating a wonderful sense of anticipation.
One of the top books out of the 90 or so I have so far listened to.
I stumbled across this book, and bought by mistake.. How lucky was I.. its a great story and narrated by the wonderful Humphrey Bower.. A truly great listen you will not be disappointed..
The narration was extremely good, particularly the voice of Jeffrey. One of those rare audio books where the voice of the narrator perfectly suits the story.
The banter between the main character and his mate, Jeffrey.
See above. What was not to like.
The treatment of Jeffrey's mother and father.
This is a great but very Australian novel. I only hope it will be as enjoyable to listeners from other countries as it was to me.
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