The Power of One

The Power of One

by Bryce Courtenay
4.5 154

Paperback(Movie Tie-In Edition)

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The Power of One 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 154 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Very disappointed that the nook book was not the complete book...
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I had the same experience trying to purchase for my Nook. the young edition was not what I expected.
Mytimeout93 More than 1 year ago
This is a great book, please read it! But if you have a Nook and are looking forward to the full story....you will be disapointed. I purchased this book for my Nook and it turned out to be the shortened (school book) version. I am very disapointed that this was not better labeled and that the full version is not offered on the nook.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I had a project in my World History class, we were required to read a historical fiction novel. I never really read much historical fiction books. I just so happen to find this book at Barnes & Nobles and read all the great reviews about it. At first glance this looked like the size of my algebra text book. But after the first chapter I was hooked. I had to know more, I had to keep going. I couldn't put the book down! This novel following Peekay to when he is 5, until he is free from the Judge, and all the people he met, the lives he changed, and the lives he would touch. I really don't know what to say about this book, other than it capturing my imagination and almost making me tear up at parts. I'm 15, rather short, and asian. At times I could almost relate to what Peekay felt. This novel is just so powerful, in feelings and emotional. It almost reaches out and pulls you into it. Though whe i reached the last few pages, I got really upset because it was about to end. I didn't want it to end... 'First with the head then with the heart' -Hoppie
NitintheIndian More than 1 year ago
The power of One by Bryce Courtenay is a very deep and thoughtful book with tranquility and culture. It is a very emotional book and been developed into a movie. It shows that even in the depths of hatred, a little boy can become something big. I really liked that the author put lots of history into this book. The locations and racism were all things that really happened. It spans from the end of World War II to a few decades after. This book shows a place that is out of reach of Hitler’s Nazi party, but is still affected by it, and dealing with the aftermath. It has a lot of culture, such as when the author uses practices from different African tribes and where the main character can speak different languages. The main character brings together the different tribes of Africa and unites them. He becomes known as a reborn war chief, set to free the Africans, because he speaks for the people. He suffers many losses, but he rises out of those losses and helps the people. The main character is a boxer, and he fights for the people of Africa. He has never lost a fight, because he is the symbol of freedom, and freedom never loses. It starts with a simple idea that a friend placed in his head, like a revolution, and it grew until he was he was fighting to become a winner, to win the championship, and win the revolution. Something I do not like in this movie is how the child talks in the beginning. It is almost as if he cannot do anything about his situation, like he’s given up. He also puts too much faith in things that are not to be trusted. As a kid, he put all his faith in his pet chicken, which later died. Overall, this was an amazing book, and I think it shows the true spirit of Africa.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The Power of One is one of the greatest books I have ever read. I first read it over a summer vacation and I fell in love with it. Although the story can be graphic at times the story is one that all people should know. It is full of highs and lows that make your heart wrench and soar; Bryce Courtenay is a literary master in this regard. I would have to say that this is a must read for all people over the age of 13 because it is truly shows that nothing can hold you back if you try your best and have the right people to surround you.
WillToeffort More than 1 year ago
A boy born in 1939 South Africa comes of age. I nominate it for best novel of all the ones that I have read. I am actually still reading it, but saw the film version, which is think is the best film that I ever saw. Don't miss it either one. If you are looking for a book gift for a boy or young man, he'll love this. It has Zulu wisdom and wisdom of Peekay's grandfather. Peekay suffers from discrimination - he's British in an Afrikaner boarding school. The stress of it causes bedwetting. On a visit home, his Zula Nanny sends a message to great Zulu medicine man, Inkosi-Inkosikazi about Peekay's night water problem. Two weeks later the Inkosi arrives in his big black Buick. The story of how he cures Peekay's night water and the rest of Peekay's maturing are so wonderful and realistic that I'm sure that you'll love this novel as much as I do.
readerandteacher More than 1 year ago
This is my my favorite book, my husband's favorite book, and everyone we give it to loves it. Even my father, who only reads historical non-fiction, surprised himself by staying up late at night to read it. The little boy is an incredible character - strong, brave, and humorous. The characters are developed so well that I find myself comparing them to friends and family members. This book is great for women and men, teenagers and adults. There is some violence and discussion of apartheid and racism, so while it's an enjoyable read, it's very thought-provoking.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I picked this up on a whim and it is one of the best books that I have read in a long time and one of the most enjoyable ever. It plays off of the history of South Africa very well and includes wonderful characters with passion and depth. Peekay's growth takes us all on a journey of revelation. This can be in everyone's library and should be an important work for all young people.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I absolutely love this book!!! First read it when I was 15 after the movie came out and it has been one of my favorites since then. It's an amazing story and the movie is good but leaves out so much (it is a very long book). If you liked the movie reading the book is a must! I wish that the authors other books were also available in the US especially Tandia which was the sequel for this one (though not as good). I purchased Tandia while living in Thailand and was about 3/4's of the way through it then I lost it in an airport. I really wish I could get a new copy so I could finish it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book should be required reading for all high school students or, at least, college freshman. There has obviously been much tension among the various groups of people in the Union of South Africa, and this was a good location for the story as so many racial, ethic and religious groups live in this country. The book provokes much inward thought about ourselves and how we percieve others. This is an excellent book for a group to read and discuss. Although the story line seemed more masculine, I think women would also gain insight from reading the book.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book was beautifully written and gave a facinating scenic, political, and spiritual look into South Africa around the time of WWII. The first half of the novel was my favorite when Peekay meets his mentors, Hoppie, Doc, and Mrs Boxell all who turn his life around. These central characters question and transend much of the hate and prejudice of the time. Because of this I was very surprised by the ending which to me was a kind of twisted form of justice/revenge. Hate can not be responded to by hate in my opinion...and in the opinion of many characters in the novel, making the ending seem out of place.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book was one of my favorites! I stayed up late every night reading it! I could never put it down.
YoyoMitch More than 1 year ago
If you saw a movie with the same name, IT IS NOT THE SAME STORY! What the movie did to this wonderful story should be grounds for prosecution! There are a few books I have read more than once. There are fewer that I have read repeatedly, those are the books that speak to the parts of me that are most human, those areas that are awakened when the story being told connects with the Myths that help to define me. This is the third time I have read Mr. Courtenay’s first novel. Each time I do, I hear the whisper of his tale connecting with The Story lived daily in me and in my world. This is a chronicle of a young boy, at home in a country that does not want his kind, becoming a man, in a time of war and civil turmoil that will define a nation for the next Fifty years, with only his intelligence, physical prowess and a deep determination to become a person defined only by himself. He is an outcast who becomes a symbol of hope and power for a People displaced within their own land. Peekay, as the hero declares his name, is from a once wealthy British family whose wealth was held in his the only home he has known, South Africa. When he was five, his mother became incapable of caring for him; his care-takers send him to a boarding school of such bleakness that it would have frightened Charles Dickens. Having survived that ordeal, he receives word that he is being called home, except the “home” to which he is called is hundreds of kilometers from the one he left. On the train ride to this new place, he befriends a conductor who is also an aspiring boxer. Peekay has the opportunity to witness his first boxing match on this journey and what he sees awakens one of his life’s’ aims – he will become the Welter-Weight Champion of the World. This is the dream is the engine that will drive him for the rest of our journey with him. Into the strange land he is now required to call “home,” amid strangers to care for him, he befriends an aged German music scholar and amateur botanist, “Doc,” who becomes the sage/saint/teacher/friend Peekay needs to learn how to blossom into the individual who can harness the power of One that is within him. Along with Doc’s tutelage and his determination to become a champion boxer, there is magic that surrounds Peekay, at least in the eyes of the native tribes whose “home” is the land upon which the story unfolds. He is deemed to be Tadpole Angel by “The People,” as the natives understand themselves to be. His works in helping them to read and write, feed their families and, eventually, lay waste to those who seek to oppress them, are proof enough that Peekay is the one who can help The People reclaim what was once their homeland but has been laid claim to by those who wish to own what cannot be bought and belongs to everyone. By the time this reader bid Peekay farewell, he was convinced that the Tadpole Angel did possess “The Power of One.” The timeliness of this book, each time I have read it, is uncanny. At present, our nation is embroiled in a tug-of-war between whom we can (see) ourselves to be and where we actually are. The lack of servant-leadership, lawlessness, selfish consumerism revealed by our apparent distain for each other magnify the need for a clear, moral Voice to call each of us to attention. We are, each of us, connected to the other; the oppressor imprisons him/herself with those they wish to oppress,
ImogenEpping More than 1 year ago
A friend gave me this book in grade 8, when I had no concept of the way things were across history and in other cultures. It made a lasting impact on my life and is still among my all time favourite books. If you like masterful storytelling, intricate details, interwoven storylines, and powerful emotions, you need to read this book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I am really disappointed that B&N would not make it clear that the ebook version of this book is a condensed version for young readers. My book club chose this book so now I have to buy it in paperback. Grrrrr.....very frustrating.
MaggyBerlin More than 1 year ago
Disappointed that I only got one half of the book in the nook version. B&N has made a big mistake here by not letting the purchaser know that. Please, if you want the full story, buy it from some other source so that our voices will be heard, in B&N's bottom line, where it will count. If you read the entire book, you will know that it is an excellent book...I have to blame the author here as well, to allow this is just wrong.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
BobJ More than 1 year ago
This story centered around a boy growing up in South Africa in the 1940's. Gave a good historical and cultural perspective of that time and place. We cared about the characters and the plot was engaging. You really wanted to know what happened next!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I should have read the reviews first; I fell into the trap of buying the condensed junior version.  Barnes and Noble needs to fix their site.  It looks like the Nook version will be 544 pages long since the paperback and Nook versions are on the same page.  Shame on Barnes and Noble!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Subway_Reader More than 1 year ago
All the positive reviews here leave me stunned since I thought this was easily one of the most overrated, simplistic, and offensive novels I've ever read. After a reasonably strong and interesting beginning it got stuck in a one-note rut and was just a chore to finish. The book is billed as a triumph of the human spirit over adversity, but aside from the initial hardship at school when Peekay is a small English student among some cruel Boers what adversity is there? OK, he's poor, has no father and his mother is a Jesus freak. But he's also white in South Africa, a near genius, has no flaws, never loses a single boxing match and is surrounded by loving, supportive people who are willing to spend seemingly endless amounts of time nurturing and educating him for no apparent reason. There is none of the real-life tension that comes from overcoming hardship, or dealing with one's own weaknesses. Courtenay, to his credit, consistently attacks bigotry, from the English, the Boers, or the Nazis, be it against blacks, Indians or Jews (although sexism gets only occasional mention in the book). But aside from some small attention paid to the inmate who teaches Peekay to box and his two housekeepers Courtenay doesn't develop a single non-white character. Most of the blacks in the book are one-dimensional, almost caricatures of the "noble savage", who do not develop their own leadership against apartheid as happened historically. (The book extends into the 1950s when the ANC and organizers like Nelson Mandela became a potent force, but that doesn't get a mention.) Instead the blacks literally worship this white student whose main role in the bitter struggle against apartheid seems to come from providing some kind of inexplicable, mystical inspiration, which not surprisingly never rings remotely true and descends to the truly offensive by the end. The black workers, as portrayed by Courtenay, are incapable of fighting for themselves, but have to rely on the generosity and leadership of whites. Courtenay does give some descriptions of the brutality against blacks in prison and the workplace, which can be gripping, but in fact spends a lot more time on the tension between the English and the Boers, the "white tribes", than he does in exposing the horrors of apartheid. Peekay, pointlessly not given a real name, in the end is a one-dimensional, larger than life character who's not believable, and Courtenay doesn't muddy the waters with anything real such as weaknesses, mistakes, genuine hardship, or even love or sex. And his final symbol of the triumph over racism in a shockingly brutal ending--the English Union Jack superceding the swastika--ignores the struggle of the oppressed black majority (how many of his fellow Australians share his ardent affection for the Union Jack is something he'd probably rather not think about). The book clearly had high aspirations but didn't reach them. I can only give the book one star for the anti-racism and the effort, and that's a stretch. For truly strong fiction about South Africa, pass Courtenay by and get to Athol Fugard, Nadine Gordimer, or Zakes Mda.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
So, why hasn't anyone from Barnes and Noble answered this issue of selling a condensed version without clearly telling the buyers?. And, are these reviews talking about the complete novel or the Nook Book version? Are other Nook Books condensed? How will I be able to tell if I buy it? I prefer to get complete novels but I would like to be able to read them on my Nook.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago