I'm giving this four stars, but would probably like to give three and a half, if that were possible. If I had read this book I think I would have enjoyed it that little bit more than in audio format. It's a kind of gothic / semi-romantic / mystery / bit of historical background all thrown together into an interesting narrative.
As audio books go however, I tend to like the story to move just at a slightly faster clip than this one did. I was also a little irked by the music that was sometimes played over the narration. It was naff music and it seemed to sentimentalize the narrative (which maybe had it's moments where it tended a little to the slushy anyway) and I just found that kind of irritating.
Overall I got an evocative portrait of post-war Barcelona and there were moments where I found it hard to switch off.
A long, and multi-dimensional story - but the author did a wonderful job relaying the base of the story from different perspectives and character memories. I thought the readers were very good and was interested until the end. Great finale.
Finally.... This was such a struggle to get through (the narrator was FINE) and it seemed never ending. The melodramatic music was a bit too much for me at times. If I had been reading this, I would have skimmed through just to get to the end. The best part was the historical manuscript left to Daniel, but getting to that wonderful story was just agony.
I wanted to like this book but it never captured my interest,although I stuck it out to the end. I kept listening hoping I would want to know what happens next but it didn't happened.
This book is one of the best I have ever read. You immediately care about the characters, you get a real sense of place and you can never guess what will happen next.
Absolutely worthwhile. The story unfolds through the eyes of the main character, beginning as a boy and as he grows into young manhood. The author so richly gives the sense of time and place - Barcelona, Civil War. History and place give the context for a magical coming of age story, interweaving in mystery. Lovely language, highly suitable for listening.
I can't think of when a story touched me so deeply, as this story did. The reading was done to perfection. A definite must for summer beach listening.
"A secret's worth depends on the people from whom it must be kept." How can you go wrong with an opening like that?! I first read the paper version of this book, then bought the Audible copy. Loved them both, but the narrator brought the audio version to life with exceptional pronounciation and pacing. It is a bit complex, but worth the investment of time and energy. More than anything, I wish Barcelona truly had a cemetery of forgotten books to visit -- what a wonderful fantasy!