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Girt

The Unauthorised History of Australia
Narrated by: David Hunt
Length: 6 hrs and 43 mins
Categories: History, World
4 out of 5 stars (1,876 ratings)

Non-member price: $29.95

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Publisher's Summary

Girt. No word could better capture the essence of Australia....

In this hilarious history, David Hunt reveals the truth of Australia's past, from megafauna to Macquarie - the cock-ups and curiosities, the forgotten eccentrics and Eureka moments that have made us who we are.

Girt introduces forgotten heroes like Mary McLoghlin, transported for the crime of "felony of sock", and Trim the cat, who beat a French monkey to become the first animal to circumnavigate Australia.

It recounts the misfortunes of the escaped Irish convicts who set out to walk from Sydney to China, guided only by a hand-drawn paper compass, and explains the role of the coconut in Australia's only military coup.

Our nation's beginnings are steeped in the strange, the ridiculous, and the frankly bizarre. Girt proudly reclaims these stories for all of us.

Not to listen to it would be un-Australian.

©2013 David Hunt (P)2015 Audible, Ltd

Critic Reviews

"A sneaky, sometimes shocking peek under the dirty rug of Australian history." (John Birmingham)
"Hilarious and insightful - Hunt has found the deep wells of humour in Australia's history." (Chris Taylor, The Chaser)

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True Blue History of Australia - Addicted

This is the greatest history of Australia I've ever read. I used to think Australian history was bland and uneventful, but I was dead wrong - little did I know that I was soon to come into contact with this TRULY GREAT HISTORY. It has piqued my interest in the history of my forefathers. Although this book is selective in its content, it is thought provoking, hilarious, irreverent and is uniquely Australian in its storytelling. It also highlights parallels between Australia's European founding & contemporary issues. I have enjoyed every minute of this audiobook, I don't think I have ever found a book as truly funny as this one.

David Hunt's narrating only further adds to the quality of the story. He does humorous accents, has a conversational manner and brings extra life to this already lively book.

I will definitely listen to this again and again! I am watching and waiting for his coming sequel to this book - and will snap it up as soon as it is made into an audiobook!.


15/15 !!!

19 people found this helpful

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  • Jen
  • 30-11-2016

A terrible performance and annoying content

What disappointed you about Girt?

I'm Australian so I am fine with listening to Australian accents, but the reader (and author) is just horrible to listen to.

It's like listening to the token "Aussie Larakin" character from a dodgy 80's movie. Choice of language and stupid impersonations are just charmless and really unpleasant to listen to.

The book promises a quirky and well thought out approach to Australian history and delivers a barrage of crappy impersonations, blatant racism and dick jokes.

Has Girt put you off other books in this genre?

Yep. I'm going to give a wide berth to any history work that claims to be "irreverent", "hilarious" or "unauthorised"

How did the narrator detract from the book?

A narrator without charm or warmth. Like drunk uncle Trev who thinks he's a bit of a card cornering you with a crap story at Christmas.

If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Girt?

I'd remove the flat jokes, racism, and general smart-arsed commentary. Give me quality history writing not a stand up routine!

Any additional comments?

I SOOOO wanted to like this but I just can't.

5 people found this helpful

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who knew?

Australian history could actually be interesting? After the years of torment at school learning the boring stuff, oh god please not more tedious explorers, nobody bothered to tell us that the personalities behind this were actually interesting, mostly scandalous, strong willed individuals. Pirates, traitors, self serving corrupt public servants. I was hooked from the start. I am always dubious about the author reading, but either exception of a few dodgy accents, I enjoyed David Hunt's reading. highly recommended.

5 people found this helpful

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cut to the chase

having had a long and dull exposure to australian history as a child and student, this fresh take on history draws a full canvas of the absurd and follisome antics of early european "discovery" and settlement of terra australis, a true antipodean view. great fun.

4 people found this helpful

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Thanks for the birthday treat

What made the experience of listening to Girt the most enjoyable?

Audible sent me this book to celebrate their birthday. How good is that? What a great choice. There is something in this irreverant historical narrative for everyone. I have been listening whilst pulling weeds in my garden. It has certainly put a smile on my face. I love the humour and the author/narrator's voice is just right.

What did you like best about this story?

The humour. The lightheartedness. Ability to laugh or gently poke fun at all sorts of Australia "icons" and long held and long believed historical un-truths whilst setting the record straight. The author has done a lot of research.This is dry self-depracating Aussie humour at its best with a sense of purpose behind it.

Have you listened to any of David Hunt’s other performances? How does this one compare?

no

If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

The history they never taught you at school.

Any additional comments?

Will certainly buy the sequel True Girt also by David Hunt

3 people found this helpful

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Entertaining and informative

It is not a hard hitting analysis. Rather, it's chronology of light fluff. It's an enjoyable frolic through Australian colonial history.

I did find that in listening too long at one time, the sarcasm and dry ironic wit became a little tiresome. However, dipping in and out was good fun and offered a few lol moments.

3 people found this helpful

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Fantastically presented "boring aussie history"

Wow we were never taught any of the gritty and often hilarious side of our history. Well worth a listen!

3 people found this helpful

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Witty!

A thoroughly enjoyable account of Australia's early history that had me chuckling all the way through.

3 people found this helpful

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Too many dad jokes!

Great informative content but unfortunately not narrated well and peppered with unnecessary (an unfortunately not funny) jokes after almost every sentence!! Why?! This could have been so good but instead my wife and I got 2 hours in and couldn't listen any longer

9 people found this helpful

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It's funny cos it's true.

An hilarious account of Australia's early European history, makes you wonder how anyone survived to make Australia what it is today. The narrator's funny attempts at foreign accents helps identify the different protagonists in the story but generally, with all the names involved, it does get a little confusing. Apart from that, it's a great listen. Listened to it twice.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Jodelle
  • 31-07-2016

Seriously irritating voice. Can I get a refund?

For the first time ever I just couldn't listen. Regular narration voice is OK but the awful voices used for quotes drove me over the edge. Traveling to AU soon so will try the book in print. Love love audio books. Just not this one.

1 person found this helpful

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  • patricia heffernan
  • 27-12-2015

Typically irreverent.

What did you love best about Girt?

The tongue in cheek approach to re acquainting me with the iconic historical figures and happenings.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Girt?

The Rum Rebellion

What do you think the narrator could have done better?

I was hooked from the start, so, nothing else.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

Lots of laughs.

Any additional comments?

I felt the narration was similar to Bill Bryson

1 person found this helpful

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  • Bjoern Amherd
  • 10-07-2015

Good first half

After the first 3hrs, the novelty starts to wear off a bit. Lots of names and locations

1 person found this helpful

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  • Earnest
  • 16-01-2020

Spirited,swashbuckling antidote to Australian History 10

How stultifying our Australian history lessons were made by a succession of lack luster teachers leading to Australian kids being bored to death.
Yet here it is. Another way.
I vacillated between hysterical outbursts of laughter and nearly weeping at how entertaining cleverness can be.
Tormented for at least 4+ years in succession by the same story of Blaxland , Wentworth and Lawson-yet I learnt NOTHING about the Western State I lived in- I gave in. Mediaeval, Renaissance and South East Asian history became my relief..
What a terrific, if not altogether sedate, insight into maybe stories. Can hardly wait to listen to the next installment.
And I still won’t sing that dumb, song wading around the word “girt.”

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  • David Roses
  • 04-01-2020

Pretty funny but a bit over-acted.

Four stars. Pretty funny but a bit over-acted. It's the satirical version of David Hill's books, which I enjoyed much more than this one.

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  • Johnno
  • 18-09-2019

Awful narration

The author should have allowed a professional to narrate his work ..this is one of only a few books over the years I have not completed because of the 'read'. Really irritating and at times arrogant and smug.

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  • Vernon
  • 02-07-2019

A really fun listen

The authors fun style made this a really enjoyable listen. One of the most enjoyable audio books I've ever listened to.

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  • Cathy Smyth
  • 29-03-2019

Too fast!

I feel like the narrator was rushing through, sometimes it was difficult to follow! I’ll be reading the next part.

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  • Mrs
  • 29-01-2019

Could have been so much better...

This would have been a great bok if the author had not been the narrator. His mispronunciations I found iritating. The sound of a cracking whip to denote a footnote was another grating noise. I did not finish the book as all of this became too much of a distraction.

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  • Marion R Cruz
  • 21-01-2019

Great book, cringeworthy accents

A funny and entertaining romp through Australia's early colonial history, hampered by the reader/author attempting accents despite not being very good at them.

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  • Wickerman49
  • 24-05-2015

must have book of the year !!

this is the one book youMUST have in your library this year. Funny, sarcastic history of thr ' land down under ' performed by the author with much humour and wit. This will have you laughing out loud when you least expect it. Cannot wait for the sequel.

2 people found this helpful

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  • timmots
  • 26-07-2015

A breeze through Aussie history

I have an Aussie girlfriend and am about to move there so I thought I'd better learn something. This was entertaining and informative. If Bill Bryson did a book on Australia, it probably wouldn't be as good as this one!

1 person found this helpful

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  • David
  • 05-11-2017

Unreliable history

A jokey canter through what is presented as Australia's early colonial history replete with racial stereotyping and delivered in a jokey manner which makes you doubt the reliability of the stories being related. The Scots are miserly, the Irish are stupid and untrustworthy, the English are all upper class bigots. The racial stereotyping is compounded by the awful attempts at Scottish Irish and English accents which are mostly well wide of the mark.

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  • Ali
  • 06-12-2015

Silly history

Would you listen to Girt again? Why?

Absolutely , the book was short and I gave me a great insight into very early Australian history. I wasn't expecting it to only be about this early period and that later periods would e in subsequent books so that I will listen again when the promised Girt II: True Girt comes out.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Not appropriate to this book but I would have to say the Bastard himself William Bligh every time it came to one of his interludes.

What about David Hunt’s performance did you like?

Yes but I found the accent very thick, I don't mean his natural Australian accent but whenever he tried British accents the book became more than a little incomprehensible

If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

About as Australian as History can get!

Any additional comments?

Don't take it all to seriously, there are things wrong here that I know of British history so I am sure there is some wrong for Australia's history to but the whole thing taught me much I never knew about Australia and the book presented it all in a very fun way that made it all the more memorable