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Download His Illegal Self Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample His Illegal Self, by Peter Carey Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (1,354 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Peter Carey Narrator: Stefan Rudnicki Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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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.”


  • “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.”


  • “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.”


  • 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 by 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 by 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 by 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 by 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. "

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