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Download His Illegal Self Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample His Illegal Self Audiobook, by Peter Carey Click for printable size audiobook cover
2.91 out of 52.91 out of 52.91 out of 52.91 out of 52.91 out of 5 2.91 (35 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Peter Carey Narrator: Stefan Rudnicki Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: February 2008 ISBN: 9781455189151
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Che is a precocious young boy raised in isolated privilege by his New York grandmother. Yearning for his famous outlaw parents—radical 1960s activists who are now among the FBI’s most wanted—he’s denied all access to television and the news. But he takes hope from his long-haired teenage neighbor, who predicts: “They will come for you, man. They’ll break you out of here.”

And one afternoon, the prediction appears to come true. Soon Che, too, is an outlaw, fleeing with the woman into the subway and pitched into a journey that leads them to a hippie commune in the jungles of tropical Australia. Here, Che slowly, bravely confronts his life, learning that nothing is what it seems.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Carey, who has made a career out of boring into the psyches of scoundrels, delivers a cunning fugitive adventure [that]...barrels toward a bang-up conclusion.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “An utterly arousing performance by narrator Stefan Rudnicki…Rudnicki’s straightforward reading of a far from ordinary novel is picture-perfect from start to finish. He dives headfirst into the story and relates it earnestly to his captivated audience.”

    AudioFile

  • “A beautiful and emotionally compelling novel...There is in this book a fascinating and deeply intelligent evocation of late ‘60s, early ‘70s period detail, but at its core His Illegal Self is an ancient and magnificently eerie fairy tale, about a child wise beyond his years, stolen away to the forest, undergoing every kind of mortal trial, and surviving, in a surprising state of luminous grace.”

    O, the Oprah Magazine

  • “Che is as convincing a child as any I have found in the pages of a book: beady as a boy scout; innocent and yet so knowing; brimming with watery nostalgia for states he has never even known.”

    The Observer (UK)

  • His Illegal Self is a wonderful novel, full of hard-won truths, which nevertheless leaves you with a warm and fuzzy feeling of immense satisfaction .”

    The Evening Standard (UK)

  • “Rudnicki’s baritone voice animates painful emotional truths in his depiction of eight-year-old precocious Che…Che’s feelings of fear, betrayal, and rage and his growing bond with Dial are heartbreakingly real as expressed through Rudnicki’s quietly intense reading.”

    Booklist

  • “The latest novel from the Booker Prize–winning author is another rousing tale of discovery that takes the rough landscape of Australia as its primary backdrop…Carey writes with amazing authenticity from the perspective of Che, and the conclusion he has cooked up for this beautifully rendered adventure story is sure to knock readers for a loop.”

    Bookpage

  • One of the 2008 New York Times Book Review 100 Notable Books for Fiction

Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Taz | 2/19/2014

    " Got me back into reading some peter carey when i spied it at the library. But the central premise of the story is a bit fanciful which i found slightly ruined my enjoyment. Again loved the tropical descriptions for a man living in New York he certainly remembers Australia well. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Meg - A Bookish Affair | 2/17/2014

    " I couldn't really get into this book. The author has a very convoluted way of writing. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Bridget | 2/16/2014

    " Took me a little while, but it was impossible not to fall in love. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Mike Kelly | 2/4/2014

    " Great, interesting story but when I read it I assumed at first it must be an early work, before he found his form. The writing style just doesn't seem to hang together properly. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Drew | 1/9/2014

    " This one grew on me, as i was irked at first. Best thing about it is Carey's vicious words for rich spoiled "revolutionaries". The characters got to me by the end though. Not his best, but better than most. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kerrie ONeill | 1/8/2014

    " It's a decent read, the intrigue keeps it flowing nicely making it a page-turner however it's quite forgettable once finished. Someone else might get more out of it than I did. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Sanjay | 12/28/2013

    " Not as thought-provoking as Carey's other work because of some narrative inconsistencies, but worth reading for the alternating-point-ofview chapters and his evocations of the mystifications of childhood. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 martha | 12/25/2013

    " did not finish. no. not even "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 C | 12/1/2013

    " I found this book hard to read and I didn't like the way it was written. However, if the story intrigues you, I guess I'd try it out for yourself. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 hagar | 11/24/2013

    " There is much to like about this book. It is original. The story is intriguing. And the narrative POV and atmosphere are just weird enough to keep you turning page after page, despite the fact that some of the writing is overwrought and there's something cloying about every single character. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Amy | 11/23/2013

    " A birthday present from Mom and Dad. Good book that I couldn't put down for the first half... then it sort-of lost me...but a good book overall. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jane Hammons | 11/22/2013

    " The descriptions of Australian landscape were great--and the best thing about this novel. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kris | 10/20/2013

    " Carey is a master and one of the best living authors. This was typically spellbinding, but... too short! It ended too soon and I wanted there to be much more told about Che and Dial. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Michelle | 9/30/2013

    " interesting story of kidnapping, the 60s, the "system", getting caught up in it, and love... "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Marianna | 8/11/2013

    " So far, I'm not wild about it. Characters seem shallow "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Donald Schopflocher | 7/21/2013

    " Carey at his ironic and imaginative best. Quirky characters, durect language, an ever shifting plot. It has been a long time since I read a book where the conclusion was in doubt until the very last sentence. ( read it just after being in northern Queensland, where it is set). "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Lynn | 2/4/2013

    " Not impressed with this multi-prize winning Australian author. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Monica | 12/28/2012

    " Not my favorite of Peter Carey's works but solid. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Fancyjance | 6/30/2012

    " Loved this book. I think Peter Carey is a genius! The characters and their development, and the context and themes all brought together beautifully. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Aini Atif | 6/14/2012

    " A very arduous read. I agreed with a review commenting on the quotation marks. I couldn't differentiate a dialogue and narrative paragraph. Very arduous. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Neysa | 3/5/2012

    " Different than what I expected, but very entertaining and sad. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Allison | 1/11/2012

    " This book was very dirty. Not in the naughty sense, but in the dirt sense. I can't remember the last time I read something so visceral. The short chapters made this novel compelling. I am looking forward to reading other Carey's other works, which I have heard are different from this novel. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Kees IJzerman | 11/22/2011

    " Boring. I hate this style of writing. I suppose it's meant to come across as 'intelligent' or 'modern'; in fact it's contrived and makes for horrible reading. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kendra | 10/30/2011

    " Peter Carey: one of my favorite authors. Some of his books are difficult and not particularly enjoyable to read, but I enjoyed this one. The plot seems a little far out, but the relationship between the characters is what counts in this book. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Sue Scott | 7/11/2011

    " I was expecting more, I don't know what, just more. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Scott | 5/8/2011

    " super storyteller. love his language. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Ctb | 5/7/2011

    " Starts strong, Peters out. Lacks credibility "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Alison | 4/13/2011

    " Yawn, it was only becasue I had to read this for my studies that I finished it. Not in my interest range at all. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Alison | 1/24/2011

    " His writing propels you along with a sense of urgency. There's a tension in the book that made me both dread what was coming and want desperately to know at the same time. Very intense read and a rewarding one. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Zoe | 12/20/2010

    " So much detail it reads like a memoir of things that really happened. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Ali | 12/3/2010

    " Excellent story going back and forth between the perspectives of a young boy who has been kidnapped due to his parents affiliation with a radical student organization, and the woman who has inadvertently kidnapped him. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Tlnorz | 9/19/2010

    " This was an interesting book. It had a good story line and I enjoyed seeing the book's happenings from different character's perspectives. The end was terrific. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Gabrielle | 8/19/2010

    " I couldn't visualize anything. It was very disappointing. At first I though the language was too hard, then I understood it was not it. I tried. I finished the book and DID NOT understand the end, which i felt very sad and anxious about! It was a terrible read, unfortunately! :( "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Neysa | 8/17/2010

    " Different than what I expected, but very entertaining and sad. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 letterbyletter | 7/11/2010

    " Carey's compelling characters kept me interested, despite the tenuousness of the pivotal plot point. "

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About the Author
Author Peter Carey

Peter Carey is the author of ten previous novels and has twice received the Booker Prize. His other honors include the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize and the Miles Franklin Literary Award. Born in Australia, he has lived in New York City for twenty years.

About the Narrator

Stefan Rudnicki first became involved with audiobooks in 1994. Now a Grammy-winning audiobook producer, he has worked on more than three thousand audiobooks as a narrator, writer, producer, or director. He has narrated more than three hundred audiobooks. A recipient of multiple AudioFile Earphones Awards, he was presented the coveted Audie Award for solo narration in 2005, 2007, and 2014 and was named one of AudioFile’s Golden Voices in 2012.