One of the finest books I have listened to as a devoted audiobook listener. ````
the lure of modern history intertwined with a family's poignant story
The entire book, from start to finish, commanded my attention. But the clarity given to the disintegration of cultured, empowered Jewish life in Vienna was heartrending. I realize now I did not comprehend the rapid descent into chaos. And this book speaks to the time with utter clarity and calm.
This book is the only audio book that has moved me to tears. The author has given me a window into my mother and grandmother's lives who, although not Viennese, survived Cristalnacht to escape Germany into Italy shortly thereafter. And maybe to empathize with my angry, unknowable mother.
Some depth of character or plot
Lots of names and dates and places, with no connection
As a maker myself, interested in materiality, touch, family history and place, Edmund de Waal's book was right up my alley when I first read it some years ago. Having some long studio days ahead, I decided to treat myself to the audiobook version, good narrative company while stitching. The story stood up to this second visit, in fact, since I was listening rather than (perhaps) scanning ahead, I think I got more out of the book this time around, and am more in awe than ever of de Waal's research and storytelling capacity. Michael Maloney reads the tale perfectly, with deft touches for the foreign accents (Japanese, French, German, Dutch) and a lovely natural engagement with the unfolding tale. I will definitely look for more books narrated by him. A real pleasure -- completed too soon!
This is wonderful narrative of the history of a collection of objects in the context of a dramatic family history. It's a great account of how we cherish objects and how historical events play a part to the memories we attach to them; a very different retelling of what perished and what survived WWII. While most books focus on the physical tortures the Jews went through during the war, this book focuses on the humanity, the dignity that was stripped of them: their prized art collections, their libraries, the so-called intellectual pursuits, and of course, the wealth that the Nazis believed should not belong to the Jews.
Well written. Vey interesting novel about art, generations of families and how the events of WWII effected the Jewish people of Europe. It is a story of how people accumulate wealth and hold their possessions so dear. But ultimately it's the ties of family that are most important.
It's also a novel about thenRt of Japan and Europe and how the lives of people were connected with the immortal objects.
I recommend this book highly.
So sad that the story has come to an end. The narration was excellent and the story fascinating and utterly extraordinary. How I wish my own family history was traceable. Most Armenians lost everything including their history. That in itself is the most painful part. I enjoyed this book so much I think I'll listen again right away. Thank you for the richness and beauty of it.
I love to read. In high school I read a book a night; I was too exhausted to write the book reports!
This book was recommended by a Uniworld guide in Salzburg when I asked him about Jews in Salzburg and Austria. What a sad, but uplifting story. I learned so much and know that those who read this book will as well.
I am an ecletic reader. I love fiction, history, business and biographies. It just has to have a good story and a solid plot.
This is a new look at the was and it's aftermath. It shows the rise and fall of a family all connected with small little Japanese objects of art.
The Lady in Gold. It is also based in Austria and shows a part of the Austrian history that we mostly only recognize as German.
He grows on you and finally just becomes the author. After I looked up the author and his family he looked just as I had pictured him!
I loved the audible version of this but I found myself Googling all the family members to read more about them and their buildings. I think the pictures would add a lot to the book. Maybe this is a book where you need to buy both the audible and the book.
I am not sure. I thought the story was incredibly compelling because of the subject matter and the close personal access the author had with historic figures
I really didn't like the way the narrator talks. There were many times that I wanted to stop because of the way the narrator.
The book was recommended to me thus: "It has everything you like! Art, literature, Proust, Paris, Vienna, fin de siecle, WWI, Japan, etc" I could not agree more, yet that barely does it justice...it ponders huge questions so nimbly and entertainingly that you might be excused to call it memoire or history, but it is more like a run on essay...and I would not have minded it running on and on.
The reader is one of the best I have ever heard...perfectly credible moving among languages and a variety of nationalities of names. Truly great