Yes, it is beautifully written!
A dark version of an Alice Hoffman book that is full of descriptions that pull you into the scene. More like literature than Ellory's usual crime novels.
His voice could not be more perfect for this novel. I could visualize the characters exactly like he describes them.
The entire book was very moving. From the tragedy of the murderers, to the fire, to the lifes that we're forever changed. The teacher who recognized unusual talent and encouraged and supported the shy boy. It is a very dark story and sad yet so beautifully written I am glad I listened to it.
I am an avid recorded book listener. I work at at elementary school, have 2 high schoolers and have very little time to sit and read. This is a great book fix for the perpetual motion in our lives we live these days.
Ellory nailed the story, text and diction of this book. The narrator (who was wonderful) had his work handed to him on a silver platter. I have not enjoyed the cadence of a book more. I only wish I spoke in such perfect english.
What an ordeal! I got through the first 1/3 of this, which is little more than another Southern hardscrabble yarn - the father has croaked, the mother has to find how to make ends meet (she beds the neighbor while accepting soup and sausage from his wife), the boy goes to a one-room school where his teacher encourages him to write (then later sleeps with him), and there's usual redneck stereotypes we've all seen a hundred times before. Along the way, several little girls are killed - but the story generally plods along at the speed of pluff mud. By 1/3 in I had solved the "mystery" of who is the killer, and decided I should start fast-forwarding and sampling, because this was one sloooww freight. In so doing, the kid gets wrongly convicted of murder and sent to the slammer for a long time, but he's very philosophical about it. Don't ya just luv those Southern accents? Unable to take the pain anymore, I skipped to the last few chapters where the now young man gets out of prison and the killer of the little girls comes to town. By the way, did I tell you I was right about who the killer was? Just so you know, I recently listened to an earlier detective thriller by this author and it was GREAT! Titled "A Simple Act of Violence". Really! Forget this turkey and go use your precious credit on the better book.
Ellory's prose is rhythmic and moving, descriptive and direct. The plot is thrilling and unpredictable. The characters are dynamic and have great depth. This story combines the entertaining capacity of a thriller-novel and the elegant writing of a classic, and still manages to have soul and personality. This is one of the greatest books I have ever read/listened-to. Tremendous writing, great storyline, well narrated. I can't recommend it highly enough.
A QUIET BELIEF IN ANGELS by R J Ellory
The town of Augusta Falls is in pain. It must come to terms with the rise of Hitler's power and the dawning of WWII. To the town's inhabitants, this is mostly a psychological war. If they don't feel directly the affects of mass murderer, Adolf Hitler, they have their very own serial killer in their midst. They are plunged into depression and a dark fugue as young girls are brutally slain. The main protagonist, Joseph Vaughn, seems doomed.
It's hard to write a review worthy of A QUIET BELIEF IN ANGELS. The novel seems created by some mythical hybrid, Truman Capote and John Steinbeck. An unthinkable crime befalls a bucolic town, sprawling landscapes, schoolhouses, and murdered girls abound. I'm not sure this book is for everyone. It's very intense and introspective. For example there is a lot of repetition, but Ellory digs a deep well of emotion. Also, it's not just sad, it's morose. Given the quality of the novel, I'm willing to make allowances for aspects some people might consider flaws. R. J. Ellory is not only a master of language, but also an excellent researcher. His first person narrative feels truly authentic. The book seems as though it was indeed written by someone from the era where the book takes place. My personal feeling is that this is one of the best books I've come across in a long time.
P.S. The narrator is amazing!
The book was very well done. Kept me listening throughout the whole book. The narrator did a superb job as well.
this is a great book. the subject matter is a bit intense. the writer and the reader do an awesome job of keeping your attention and moving the story along. I have just finished reading Ellory lastest book - The Anniversary Man-- I am so glad I found him.