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Publisher's Summary

James A. Michener's masterly chronicle of South Africa is an epic tale of adventurers, scoundrels, and ministers, the best and worst of two continents, who carve an empire out of a vast wilderness.
From the Java-born Van Doorn family tree springs two great branches: one nurtures lush vineyards, the other settles the interior to become the first Trekboers and Afrikaners. The Nxumalos, inhabitants of a peaceful village unchanged for centuries, unite warrior tribes into the powerful Zulu nation. And the wealthy Saltwoods are missionaries and settlers who join the masses to influence the wars and politics that ravage a nation.
Rivalries and passions spill across the land of The Covenant, a story of courage and heroism, love and loyalty, and cruelty and betrayal, as generations fight to forge a new world.
©1980 James A. Michener (P)2015 Random House Audio
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Critic Reviews

"A prodigious endeavor.... Nowhere else could an American reader unfamiliar with South Africa get so full an understanding of its problems in so engaging a form." ( The New York Times Book Review)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By william smith on 06-07-17

Defense of the narrator

Any additional comments?

I felt I had to do this review after reading so many negative comments about the narrator. I read this and most of Michener's works years ago and was thrilled that they were now available on Audible. I nearly didn't get this book because of the reviews of the narrator, but because I liked the book so much I decided to take the plunge.
Indeed, at first I wasn't impressed by the narration and I even tried increasing the speed to 1.25 as someone suggested but that just sounded silly. However I stayed with it and found that after awhile I really started to get into the narrator's voice. It was kind of like having your father or an old uncle reading a book to you. He has a rich baritone and his enunciation is perfect. I know that in these days of more highly theatrical performances in audiobooks some might find this one lacking. But the vocal inflections of the different characters are there, they're just more nuanced than some other performers. The more I listened, the more I came to appreciate this narrator's excellent job in reading this book. I will not hesitate to buy other Michener books read by this narrator.

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13 of 13 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Ralph B. on 11-06-15

Amazing story, narrator is horrible

I am a huge fan of Michener. I read all his books as a young person and love his writing style and the historical sweep of his novels. For years I searched on Audible hopeful that the books would appear in an audio version. I could hardly contain my excitement when they began to appear. However, I think this will be the last book I download. The narrators reading style sounds like he is reading a book aloud at the library to a group on a Saturday afternoon. His voice is flat and unimaginative. The worst part is that he did absolutely no research on the correct pronunciation of common South African words. His butchering of the Afrikaans language is grating on the ears and completely destroys the narrative for me. I am so sad that this authors amazing work was put in the hands of this narrator.

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10 of 10 people found this review helpful

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