- Narrated by: Humphrey Bower
- Length: 23 hrs and 33 mins
- Unabridged Audiobook
- Release date: 04-08-09
- Language: English
- Publisher: Bolinda Publishing Pty Ltd
In 1904 the brothers Oscar and Mark Shillingsworthâ¿¿ clad in serge suits and bowler hatsâ¿¿ arrive in Port Zodiac on the coast of Capricornia. They are clerks who have come from the South to join the Capricornian Government Service. Oscar prospers and takes to his new life as a gentleman. Markâ¿¿ howeverâ¿¿ is restlessâ¿¿ and takes up with old Ned Kraterâ¿¿ a trepang fishermanâ¿¿ who tells him tales of the sea and the islandsâ¿¿ introduces him to drinkâ¿¿ and boasts of his conquests of Aboriginal women - or "black velvet" as they are called. But it is Mark's sonâ¿¿ Normanâ¿¿ whose struggles to find a place in the world embody the complexities of Capricornia itself.
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Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Grace on 02-10-10
I tried really hard with this audiobook - sticking it out for over 8 hours. Such a waste of credit and not even the wonderful Humphrey Bower narrating could save this dire tale of undending misery. The writing is simply awful, with virtually no characterisation and the 'poetic' descriptions are trite to the point of laughability. If you want excellent audiobooks about Australia, go for the brilliant and highly recommended Bryce Courtenay and give this a miss.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
By Kate on 11-12-09
If the reference to Baz Luhrmann's Australia doesn't fill you with glee, ignore it. This book is far, far better than the film, and bears practically no relation to it. It's fascinating historical information delivered by riveting story-telling. Xavier Herbert worked as a protector of Aborigines in Northern Australia, and his experience illuminates the narrative. I was kept awake long into the small hours by the emotional power of the writing. Very,very hard to press pause...
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Harper on 17-09-11
One of Australia's Top Reads Made Easy.
This is a truly terrific book read by an excellent narrator. We listened to it travelling across the Australian Northern Territory, enthralled for the entire 22 hour performance. Humphrey Bower is a narrator at the top of his craft. I also loved 'Hand-me-down World' read by him.
Set in Australia's 'other country' of the Northern Territory, 'Capricornia' follows the story of a pair of brothers and their decendants as they learn to survive in this frontier society. Herbert's work is one of the greats of Australian 20 C. fiction and you don't have to carry the big bugger around! ( it's long) It is also a must-read for those interested in the history of black-white relations in Australia in the early 20th Century. Herbert writes with great understanding of the plight of the Aborigines and so-called 'half castes' in this violent post-colonial society.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful
By Vivian on 29-10-09
This book was too long. It dragged out and was quite boring. I love Humphrey Bower, who makes listening to just about anything worthwhile.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful