In the tradition of gothic genre, I found this novel quite entertaining. Some parts were a bit overly sentimental, frought with musical overtures, and melodramatic, but such things did not completely destroy the entertainment value. Comparative to other novels which I have paid more for, but whose value and quality were non-existent after listening, I would suggest that this is the best $13.00 download I have ever purchased, whose quality far outweights the price of purchase.
I stuck with this book and was pleased with the plot and characters. Very enjoyable story.
Two significant distractions for me: the writer was "over the top" in his descriptions of scenery and characters. For example, I've lost count of the number of characters who smoke cigarettes that emit a "whisp (or shadow, or finger) of blue (or grey or cloudy) smoke" who happen to be standing in the shadow of a doorway. The other distraction was the piano music. Typically played at the beginning (or end) of a chapter, the music made the production of the book seem very corny.
Enjoyable plot. Corny piano music.
The story is both entertaining and dramatic. The narration is superb. The characters are unique and presented in all their complexities.
I took a chance with this one. I bought it because it was a good bargain. I am so glad I did! The story is suspenseful and the reader is entertaining. I love it!
I loved everything about this book. It was intriguing, mysterious, romantic and scary. The author/composer's music was bad and really interfered with the story telling but that is my only complaint!
If Zafron hadn't tried so hard to be clever, he might have written a decent coming of age story. In his effort to make a make an intricate, atmospheric tale, he fell in love with his own words and gave the reader a dull experience that went mostly nowhere, but took a very long time to get there.
The tinkling New Age piano interludes were lame. And the narrator's meticulous R-rolling and affected Castillian lisp that characterizes Barcelona Spanish made his rendering of the names of people and places -- which were all too frequent anyway -- utterly laughable.
The was one of my least enjoyable listening experience, EVER.
I admired what the author seemed to be trying to do...create a highly dramatic, riveting work by
cleverly paralleling two generations plunging toward
the same doom. Unfortunately, the author either did
not have the skill to pull it off or something was
lost in the translation, literally.
The narrator's overly melodramatic presentation didn't help. But I did finish it, which counts
An interesting plot with some unanticipated turns, it sounds when read, florid and pompous. The reading itself is really quite good. The accent is charming, and the diction and pacing make for a very understandable listen. I suspect the words on the page read well too as a beach paperback, but the combination of the accent and the overwrought/overworked descriptions was simply tiresome. I made it through 2/3 of the story before I just had to move on to something else.
A reasonably entertaining mystery story although somewhat predictable. The writing style is literary and colorful, but the characters and the situations they get themselves into are pure soap opera/telenovela (the driving element of the plot is basically infatuated (horny?) teenagers and the bad choices they make, plus some father-son relationship angst). It's set in Spain at the time of Franco, but history and politics are only a colorful backdrop, not an integral element. The reader is very good, but I found it a bit pretentious and distracting that he pronounced "Barcelona" as "Barthelona," "Mercedes" as "Merthedes," etc. (Yes, I know it's historically correct, but it is not customary in English and therefore unnecessarily distracting). I found the intrusive background piano music that popped in from time to time (not just at the ends of chapters) really annoying.
Very, very theatrical. Narrator is so over done it is comical, forcing Harlequnesque prose down your throat until you want to vomit. Piano in between chapters only reminds you this is a soap opera ad nauseum. Plays like poor radio theater from sixty years ago.
Will never understand the high marks this production has gotten. Except to say to each thier own.
To be fair I could only bear it for 3 and a half hours before concluding this was not for me.