Boy Swallows Universe: A Novel

Written by:
Trent Dalton
Narrated by:
Stig Wemyss

Unabridged Audiobook

Release Date
April 2019
16 hours 44 minutes
Now a Netflix original series starring Simon Baker, Travis Fimmel, and Phoebe Tonkin!

“Hypnotizes you with wonder, and then hammers you with heartbreak. . . . Eli’s remarkably poetic voice and his astonishingly open heart take the day. They enable him to carve out the best of what’s possible from the worst of what is, which is the miracle that makes this novel marvelous.” —Washington Post

''The best book I read this decade.'' —Sharon Van Etten in Rolling Stone

A story of brotherhood, true love, family, and the most unlikely of friendships, Boy Swallows Universe is the tale of an adolescent boy on the cusp of discovering the man he will be.

Eli Bell’s life is complicated. His father is lost, his mother is in jail, and his stepdad is a heroin dealer. The most steadfast adult in Eli’s life is Slim—a notorious felon and national record-holder for successful prison escapes—who watches over Eli and August, his silent genius of an older brother.

Exiled far from the rest of the world in Darra, a neglected suburb populated by Polish and Vietnamese refugees, this twelve-year-old boy with an old soul and an adult mind is just trying to follow his heart, learn what it takes to be a good man, and train for a glamorous career in journalism. Life, however, insists on throwing obstacles in Eli’s path—most notably Tytus Broz, Brisbane’s legendary drug dealer.

But the real trouble lies ahead. Eli is about to fall in love, face off against truly bad guys, and fight to save his mother from a certain doom—all before starting high school.

Powerful and kinetic, Trent Dalton’s debut is sure to be one of the most heartbreaking, joyous and exhilarating novels you will experience.
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Leanne C.

I literally could not stop listening to this audiobook. From heart wrenching pain and anguish, to fear, to laughter and everything in between the author takes the reader on an epic journey into the suburban underworld with startling reality. At times I was giggling at something Eli was relating and then with a short sharp twist in the story was in absolute anguish saying out loud no, no, no don’t do away..... The web of events to get to the final destination of this story keeps you stuck on every word. the narration was perfect! Loved this book

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Helen M.

A stunning novel. Fabulous writing; skilled and brilliant narration.

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Janette W.

The narrator is absolutely awesome. He brought the characters to life for me so much that I will miss them when it’s finished. A wonderful story. Highly recommended.

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Donna F.

Fantastic, quirky, hilarious and devastating. Captures an Aussie childhood in the 70s to a T. Can’t imagine ‘reading’ this book - the narrator is brilliant also.

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Andrea C

Brilliantly narrated- loved it

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Hayden S.

Absolutely edge of your seat listening. What a book, what a listen.

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Crista N.

I thought the book got off to a bit of a slow start but I was hooked after a few chapters. Once the story starts moving, it’s riveting.

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Nicole R.

At the start I couldn’t get over the voices but in the end I couldn’t imagine them with out them loved this book

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Anna S.

The book will leave you speechless for some moments but it also speaks in the language of love and as such it fills you with light and love.

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Sue S.

For the first 80% of the book I wanted to give up and stop reading. I’m sure glad I didn’t! Wow.

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Sue B.

Good read. Lots of twists

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Marilyn V.

I loved this book. The story & how it is crafted is so compelling. I couldn’t wait to get out on my walks just so I could listen. The narrator has really brought a great story to life with his talent. Than you.

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Kelly G.

Very good audiobook!

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Kenneth S.

I loved this audiobook. The story is very imaginative and interesting. The narrator did a fabulous job. My one complaint has to do with the ending. Without spoiling much, I just felt the author tried too hard to make everything come together nicely in the final chapters. I highly recommend this book to others. It was well liked by most everyone in our book group.

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I couldn’t stop listening, honestly I couldn’t What an amazing book. I wanted it to go on n on. The narrative was captivating. The characters were brought to life. I was left wanting more.

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Andrew J.

Absolutely brilliant! Fresh innovative and loved the flash back to 80’s And 90’s Queensland

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Rachel O.

Loved ever second of this book up until the last hour

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Maree G.

Beautifully articulate book but I was waiting for ‘more’. You need to really appreciate a ‘Winton style’ novel to appreciate this book. I found myself waiting for something significant to happen but it never did.

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