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Mutiny on the Bounty  By  cover art

Mutiny on the Bounty

By: Peter FitzSimons
Narrated by: Michael Carman
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Publisher's Summary

The mutiny on HMS Bounty, in the South Pacific on 28 April 1789, is one of history's truly great stories - a tale of human drama, intrigue and adventure of the highest order - and in the hands of Peter FitzSimons it comes to life as never before.  

Commissioned by the Royal Navy to collect breadfruit plants from Tahiti and take them to the West Indies, the Bounty's crew found themselves in a tropical paradise. Five months later, they did not want to leave. Under the leadership of Fletcher Christian, most of the crew mutinied soon after sailing from Tahiti, setting Captain William Bligh and 18 loyal crewmen adrift in a small open boat. In one of history's great feats of seamanship, Bligh navigated this tiny vessel for 3,618 nautical miles to Timor.  

Fletcher Christian and the mutineers sailed back to Tahiti, where most remained and were later tried for mutiny. But Christian, along with eight fellow mutineers and some Tahitian men and women, sailed off into the unknown, eventually discovering the isolated Pitcairn Island - at the time not even marked on British maps - and settling there.  

This astonishing story is historical adventure at its very best, encompassing the mutiny, Bligh's monumental achievement in navigating to safety, and Fletcher Christian and the mutineers' own epic journey from the sensual paradise of Tahiti to the outpost of Pitcairn Island. The mutineers' descendants live on Pitcairn to this day, amid swirling stories and rumours of past sexual transgressions and present-day repercussions. Mutiny on the Bounty is a sprawling, dramatic tale of intrigue, bravery and sheer boldness, told with the accuracy of historical detail and total command of story that are Peter FitzSimons' trademarks.

©2018 Peter FitzSimons (P)2018 Hachette Australia Audio
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Categories: History

What listeners say about Mutiny on the Bounty

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You don't know the whole story.

I was familiar with the story of the mutiny on the Bounty primarily from the film version with Mel Gibson and Anthony Hopkins, which is a favorite of mine. I had no idea just how much of the story was left out. The depth and breadth of the research FitzSimons has done, and the extent to which he makes the story come to life, is truly breathtaking. Michael Carman's performance of the audiobook is superb, in fact one of the best I've ever heard. He absolutely CRUSHES it. I'm truly sad to have reached the end of this book, but fortunately this author and narrator have joined forces on several other books, which I look forward to listening to soon. This audiobook gets my highest possible recommendation.

18 people found this helpful

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Another Great Peter Fitzsimons Book

To be honest, Mutiny on the Bounty is one of those stories that has been done to death by so many people. However, no one does the story better justice in my opinion as Peter FitzSimons. His story telling is just so much better.

Great work Peter.

Michael Carman's narration is excellent, pleasing to listen too and enjoyable.

Thank you

8 people found this helpful

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i cannot give higher marks to any book

My words can't do this book justice. So many life lessons for humanity. So well researched, so well narrated, so well organized. Thorough. should be required reading in every school. Great job to all involved.....and Thank you.

5 people found this helpful

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Outstanding

I don’t usually write reviews but I felt compelled after listening to this book.
A remarkable story that has everything, and is exhaustively researched and beautifully written. The narrator was brilliant and was by far the best performance I have heard on audible. He absolutely nails it !!!!!
One of the best books I have listened to on Audible. Has my highest recommendation!

4 people found this helpful

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5 Star Performance

This is one of the best Audible books available. The narrator is excellent, and the story is fascinating. Even if you think you know the story-- this version is the best.

3 people found this helpful

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bookgirl

I always thought Mutiny on The Bounty was pure fiction. Not so. Wonderfully written and beautifully narrated. The Epilogue provided interesting "what ifs" as to Fletcher Christian's possible end. I would love to know if he actually made it back to England.

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Row Me Boys Row! (for your lives)

I've read a couple versions of the infamous "Mutiny on the Bounty." This audio-book is absolutely superb in every respect. The author and narrator have conspired to absolutely make it come alive! I could hardly quit listening to it, and was sad to reach the end.

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Great Even If You Already Know the Story

There's a lot of good stuff in this book I had never heard before. Some parts I knew vaguely were greatly elaborated on like What happened on Pitcairn afterward?, what happened after the discovery of Pitcairn? Why did the islanders of Tofua attack the launchboat crew? And so forth.
Highly recommend.

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Simply incredible!

This is one of the most amazing stories I’ve ever read, the facts and details are mind boggling. This book is brilliantly written, and the story never sags, I simply could not stop listening. I live in a Central American country and will never look at a bread fruit tree in the same light again!
I highly recommend this book. The narrator is also exceptional!

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The best Audible history you'll ever listen to

I listen almost exclusively to nonfiction—mostly history—on Audible. This is hands-down the best one I've ever bought! I say "best" because, in addition to 23 hours of incredible story, the likes of which couldn't possibly be true (and yet it somehow is), the narrator's storytelling skill is virtually untouchable in the world of audiobooks. I typically listen to Audible for an hour or two at bedtime, and maybe an hour or two while doing a jigsaw puzzle.

I listened to the first 21 hours of this Audible in a 24-hour period forgoing sleep. Yeah.

The story begins with an hour of backstory about Captain Cook, which is relevant in several ways to the ensuing story. Fitzsimons then unfolds one unbelievable event after another:

—The voyage and subsequent mutiny of the HMS Bounty
—The unprecedented survival story of 19 men cast adrift in a 23-foot boat
—The mutineers' quest to set up a new society on Pitcairn Island
—The court marshals of the guilty (and the innocent) who made it back to England

Woven throughout is the story of a man who, while a gifted navigator and brilliant leader in times of crisis, is mentally and emotionally unbalanced when seas are calm. His abuse of his men, pilfering of Naval resources, prosecution of the most trivial crimes —both real and imagined—make him a despised captain and colleague. Bligh's narcissism knows no bounds, even leading him to loudly criticize the Dutch who give him shelter once he makes it back to civilization and sail him back to England. His self-perception when happy is that of a benefactor who deigns to lift up those beneath him through his own genius and patriarchal benevolence. But when angry—and Bligh is indeed often angry—he becomes deranged to the point of near insanity. From the mischief he causes on Cook's final expedition, to how he finally breaks Fletcher Christian's spirit over a (possibly imaginary) stolen pumpkin, to the unflagging vitriol with which he skewers much of his crew in British society for years afterward—including many who had not taken part in the mutiny—Fitzsimons brings this angry, petty man to life in a way few authors have done with as much success.

If possible, "Mutiny" is just as gripping and educational as Candice Millard's many engaging histories—high praise indeed from a self-described Millard fangirl. I recommend her Audible/Kindle books as well—particularly "River of Doubt" about Teddy Roosevelt's expedition and her new "River of the Gods" about Burton and Speak's Nile expedition. Few authors write a captivating yet straightforward exploration narrative as well as she does.

Because I rate Millard's Audibles and Kindles so highly, and because I'd love to convince you to purchase at least one of these two authors (though you really, really should get both), I'll compare them here. I'd say "Mutiny" differs from Millard's works in three ways:

1: Millard's treatment of her subjects is much more even-handed, letting you draw your own conclusions and declining to vilify anyone. Fitzsimons is full of snark and sneer from the first page regarding Bligh and others he presents as villains. I was at times reminded of The Grinch's song: "You're a mean one, Mr. Grinch / You really are a heel..." There is never a doubt as to what Fitzsimons thinks or what he wants his readers to think about these individuals.

2: Millard declines to artificially create high tension or drama herself, allowing the true telling of events to carry themselves. Fitzsimons takes a more creative-writing approach, using colorful prose, and occasionally playful writing to create tension and elicit emotion in the reader. (I'll say this though: Fitzsimons never conceived an alliteration, rhyme, or pithy saying he didn't proceed to beat the crap out of. While a tiny thing amongst 23 hours of near-impeccable storytelling, Millard would never indulge in such silliness.)

3: Millard's narrator (the MOST EXCELLENT Paul Michael) keeps to the methods of a typical audiobook nonfiction narrator—he just happens to do it better than most. He also takes a nonintrusive light hand with accents and feminine voices. I could listen to him all day and night—and I have! Michael Carman, on the other hand, is nothing short of a full-fledged dramatic actor in his reading of "Mutiny." His gravelly register and dramatic take suck you in and make you forget this isn't a Robert Louis Stevenson novel. He goes all-out with accents and voices (though never to a disrespectful degree with female characters). I enjoyed both narrators' approaches because they're both so skilled at what they do and were both given such quality material to work with.

For heaven's sake, stop reading reviews already. Go get this Audible. Now. Yes, I know you're stingy with your Audlble credits, and this is a big decision. But every minute you spend making up your mind is a minute wasted. Get started with this story right now!

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  • Anna
  • 08-25-19

great read. couldn't stop listening to this book

loved it and found the characters came alive plus the Pitcairn history was extremely interesting.

4 people found this helpful

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  • John Kay
  • 08-14-19

Timeless classic..!

Loved this book and the whole story behind it. Well written and narrated and explains in great detail the true story.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Steve Ace Rothstein
  • 11-16-18

Just brilliant!! - a masterpiece of narration

If you have watched the classic Mel Gibson / Anthony Hopkins film then you will not be disappointed with this!, I nearly didn't buy it as assumed the film covered the whole story but there is so much more to it and its all featured in this absolute masterpiece of a book. The narration is second to none with the angry Cornish accent of captain bligh bringing the whole thing to life. Highly recommend!

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  • terence q.
  • 05-22-19

a pleasure for all ex seamen and women

loved this book seen the film over and over again in all the eras it has been made still love the Antony Hopkins/Mel Gibson the best though this is a cracking book what makes it better is i actually went to the Pitcairn island on the way to New Zealand in the 70s when i was in the Merchant Navy the locals actually came out on launches we were delivering supplies to them they were selling local carvings that had been made i had many of them unfortunately they were lost in a house move while i was away at sea

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  • referee806
  • 06-20-22

Gripping tale of Mutiny,Betrayal and Murder!

Really enjoyed, fantastic story which was well narrated and written. I recommend to anyone who is remotely interested in history and learning the truth.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 06-15-22

Histocally interesting,...

Thoroughly enjoyed this reading....... A reminder of forgotten detail of this story. Britain' s interesting history.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Ruby G
  • 07-19-19

Brilliant!

A brilliant book, very well written and researched, my congratulations to both the author and narrator.

1 person found this helpful

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  • David
  • 06-09-19

Superb

Superb narration . You couldn’t make a storey up to compare to this epic adventure and
almost unbelievable

1 person found this helpful

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  • Damian
  • 05-20-19

Absolutely stunning!

Loved listening to every moment of this book.
At first, I was rather hesitant as a couple reviews mentioned that the audio was poor. I had no experience so perhaps the issue has been addressed.
The narrator is easy to follow, engaging and a master with the accents.
I highly recommend this audiobook, I have maybe 80 on audible and this is by far the best!
Now, I only wonder what really happened to Fletcher Christian...

1 person found this helpful

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  • Sarah
  • 05-15-19

fascinating

brilliantly narrated, full of detail without becoming boring, I was completely hooked. I highly recommend this audio book and will be listening to other books by the author and narrator.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Tim
  • 11-16-18

A ripping yarn.

A great piece of history excellently narrated. It is up there with Fitzsimons other masterpiece "Batavia"

4 people found this helpful

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  • luke.oconnor
  • 02-05-20

Just as yesterday

I have much interest in the stories of heroes and villians that shaped the course of history and well known events. This read captivated me in that interest. Not too often do you have the priviledge of reading these stories in the present tense. Though this is not a direct account of what happened on the Bounty and there after, I was intrigued at being placed on the very decks of the ships that mutiny unfolded and now after reading the final pages I feel as though I was somehow present there amongst the crew and wondering, as the faithful did, what actually happened to F C. Well done P F, and thank you.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 11-07-19

great story well narrated

awsome couldnt stop listning . great story and great narrator. learnt a lot about the bounty i didnt know

3 people found this helpful

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  • TruckieShane
  • 11-05-18

Brilliant!

Mister Fitzsmons style is gripping. He breeds fresh life into dusty pages from history. Educational and entertaining and read exceptionally well. Bravo

2 people found this helpful

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  • Suzie
  • 03-19-21

No literary masterpiece but riveting

A great story filled with intrigue and history. I think Peter FitzSimons’ writing would benefit from avoiding cliches and dad jokes.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Kain Jarvis
  • 08-11-22

Amazing book

Loved everything about this book and such an intriguing story. I had often heard about the bounty I certainly know the full story and more after finishing this book.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 06-21-22

Pitcairn Island was rough... whoa, Nelly.

Crazy story. Very well researched and thoroughly enjoyable. Pitcairn Island is basically one big Battle Royale.

Would recommend the book. Would not recommend mutiny.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 05-16-22

What a story!

Superbly written and narrated. Very accurate retelling of a historical story. I work with one of the Pitcairn mutineers descendants and his story handed down over the generations supported the story line in this book.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 04-23-22

Great story

Brilliantly addictive. An amazing true story that fascinated me from beginning to the end. Highly recommended.

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  • Ken M
  • 01-20-22

Great telling of actual events.

I enjoyed this book from Peter FitzSimons as I have with several others by him. It is a great story all the better because it's a true story. Well researched and well read. Time to start Captain Cook.