Cancel anytime. The four fires in this story are passion, religion, warfare, and fire itself. While there are many more fires that drive the human spirit, love being perhaps the brightest flame of all, it is these four that have moulded us most as Australian people. The four fires give us our sense of place and, for better or for worse, shape our national character. At just 16 years Danny Dunn has everything going for him: brains, looks, sporting aptitude - and luck with the ladies.
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Refresh and try again. Open Preview See a Problem? Details if other :. Thanks for telling us about the problem. Return to Book Page. Preview — Fortune Cookie by Bryce Courtenay. Fortune Cookie by Bryce Courtenay ,. Humphrey Bower Narrator. It's the s and the world of advertising is coming alive and it's an exciting world to be part of.
Simon Wong, a Chinese-Australian and promising young advertising executive, is sent to Singapore to establish an office. Get A Copy. Audio CD , 0 pages. Published February 1st by Bolinda Publishing first published May 14th More Details Other Editions Friend Reviews. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. To ask other readers questions about Fortune Cookie , please sign up.
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Courtenay does it again! In this excellent historical novel, we enter the life of an Aussie with strong Chinese family ties, as he moves from his home in Oz to work in an advertising firm being created in Singapore. Courtenay draws on his years of experience in advertising and peppers it with his excellent desire to teach the reader about the history of the region.
What seems like a book that takes you down one path leads you to many other outcomes as the forks in the road take you to another di Courtenay does it again!
What seems like a book that takes you down one path leads you to many other outcomes as the forks in the road take you to another dimension entirely. Courtenay paints some of his usual romantic enticement with the main character and has us begging for the two of them to end up together. While spice up the story with the locals and the struggles of linguistic discrepancies and some of the historical goings-on during the time, Courtenay pushes the story forward and leaves the reader in the dust, unless they pick up their jaw and forge ahead.
Just when you think you know how it will all end, BAM, the major change leaves you tying up all the loose ends and shaking your head. I had to admit, Courtenay drew me in and left me laughing. Well done Mr. I have yet to find a book of yours I did not adore! Jan 03, Julie rated it it was ok. I'm intrigued enough to keep going, but I do find the main character - the narrator - annoying. Courtenay requires that the reader maintains the image of an extremely stocky chinese man, which is fine, but then he has to also continually ram in the fact of his Simon's Australian-ness.
Fourth Generation. Yup I got it, thanks Simon's as Aussie as they come, he just doesn't look like it and he just can't help but use every corny Aussie expression that ever was even though he just has to keep e I'm intrigued enough to keep going, but I do find the main character - the narrator - annoying. Simon's as Aussie as they come, he just doesn't look like it and he just can't help but use every corny Aussie expression that ever was even though he just has to keep explaining them to everyone he speaks to.
Again and again and again. Contrived, cliched, corny and condescending. Completely lacking any wit whatsoever. Tediously repetitive running unfunny "jokes" throughout referring jockstraps and bad breath to cite just two. The history lessons which I actually enjoyed very much and, I think, are pretty much the only time the author spent some actual effort with the writing contained within the book notwithstanding, it's been written for readers who really hate to think.
He also spends so much time and energy repeating in various ways the notion that he Respects Women Enormously. To such a degree that I actually don't think he does and, having now Googled the question, I find that I may just be correct. I've read 2 of Courtenays previous novels and April Fools Day which had me blubbering in all the right places even though the novels were almost as contrived, cliched etc.
But it's the first time I find myself actively disliking the author. Am I older and wiser or simply old and bitter? Jan 23, Sam Still Reading rated it it was amazing Recommends it for: people looking for a good read. Recommended to Sam Still Reading by: read other books by the same author. For starters, this book is set in the s and very little of the action takes place in Australia.
He speaks little Cantonese and although he harbours dreams of becoming an artist, he works in advertising. Sent to Singapore as creative director of a new multinational advertising company, Simon finds his path is fraught with obstacles.
Fortunately, Simon has a friend and eventually lover in Mercy B. Lord but there are problems in that area too. Where does Mercy B. Lord disappear to on Thursdays? Why is she so secretive? As a Singapore lover, I enjoyed the references to the hotels, humidity and food. View 2 comments. This is a tricky one to review.
On one side this was a great story with great characters. On the other hand the Courtenay clearly isn't a fan of brevity. In fact in this book he gave brevity a running kick to the nuts.
This book could should have been a third shorter. Some of the descriptions were agonising, and yet I finished it in just over a week, so really I must have enjoyed it :. View 1 comment. This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Spoilt, sheltered and bored advertising honcho with artistic pretensions goes to s Singapore to take on an executive role for a company run by three evil Chinese brothers. Despite their evilness our hero is of course a stellar business success, and one who enjoys the most shallow and primitive aspects of Expat debauchery, including regular sex with prostitutes and a culture of constant heavy drinking, without qualms or signs of redemption.
He falls in lust with his relocation counsellor, a m Spoilt, sheltered and bored advertising honcho with artistic pretensions goes to s Singapore to take on an executive role for a company run by three evil Chinese brothers.
He falls in lust with his relocation counsellor, a mysterious oriental beauty with a dark secret and an orphan background. In lifting this secret, the unlikable hero gets his girl, wraps up a sinister drug smuggling plot, wins international art prizes - and helps clean up Singapore.
All of this in fulfillment of a prophetic dream one of his own Chinese migrant forebears had in the nineteenth century. Ok, so I read this adventure-cum-romance novel recuperating from an illness. My attention span was more suited to inflight reading than anything else. If you are in a similar position, you could do worse than this one, especially if you are interested in Australian-Chinese-Singaporean topics and related themes of face, money, drugs and Anglo-Chinese history.
Unfortunately, the book firstly has pretensions of being a Bildungsroman, which it is not by any stretch. It is in fact surprisingly immoral but too shallow and trite to be an "Anti-Bildungsroman". Secondly, the unwieldy story seems to have not been edited at all, except for the opening chapters.
It is extremely long in parts, with redundant and in many instances: verbatim repeated passages swamping the story from about the halfway-mark, in addition to extremely boring, long-winded and utterly useless reiterations of descriptions that add nothing to the story and frankly read like the droning monologue of a terminally uninteresting and unlikable relative at an endless family gathering.
Dec 18, Debby rated it really liked it Shelves: historical-fiction , fiction. I am audible book addict, and this is why listening to a good narrator is vital to me. I think the main reason that I listen to Bryce Courtenay's books is that Humphrey Bower remains one of my favorite narrators.
He makes the story interesting, just by all his different voices and accents. I wasn't sure if I was going to like this book, but I did.
Set against the wretched trade in drugs and human misery operating during the Vietnam War, Bryce Courtenay's Fortune Cookie is a spellbinding thriller, with a story of love against impossible odds at its heart. Simon Koo is an ambitious Australian-born Chinese young man who goes to Singapore in the mid-sixties to work for Samuel Oswald Wing, an advertising agency. But the Wing brothers, who run the agency, are not what they seem. There is soon trouble when Simon falls in love with the forbidden Mercy B. Lord, the illegitimate daughter of a Japanese officer and a Chinese mother who abandoned her on the doorstep of a Catholic orphanage. With no family or connections, this beautiful young woman is powerless to resist the evil influence of Beatrice Fong, a manipulative businesswoman, who, in league with the Wing brothers, lures her into the dark and dangerous international trade in sex workers and heroin trafficking involving the American CIA. Simon, an unlikely hero, must save her at any cost.
Fortune Cookie sat on my bookshelf, patiently waiting its turn to be read for nearly twelve months. I just wish I had picked it up at an earlier time as it is one of those books that keeps the This is the twentieth book written by Bryce Courtney. It is set in Singapore and follows an Australian trying to make a life for himself.
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