I got through this book by sheer determination. It took me at least a month. I have a once-a-week drive of 35 minutes each way, and I made myself listen to it during this time. I also had to concede to myself that it wasn't worth trying to follow all the intricacies of the various conspiracies.
If you need a likeable character to enjoy a book, this isn't for you. Simonini, the narrator, is a man who forges documents for the purpose of engendering hate and fear. He feels no regret about the consequences of his actions. He's just using his abilities to make a living. Oh, and he's a murderer too. No one he associates with is very appealing either.
Fans of novels with unreliable narrators might interested to know that the forger has an alternate personality that takes over some of the story. For me, that was not enough to make it worthwhile.
Well read. The characters can be a bit hard to follow. There a flash back that if you miss the transition it be hard to follow. The historic note would be better in the front.
I don't think this story could have been redeemed
In order to get the most from this story I would have needed a translator to help me understand the multitude of foreign phases, a dictionary to help me understand the overuse of pedantic words and somebody throwing ice water in my face to keep me awake.
George Guidall is one of my favorite readers but even he could not make this story interesting.
I did not listen long enough (2 hours to get my attention didn't suffice) so the question should be what scenes needed to be kept in order to make the story entertaining.
It is not communicating if it is not understood.
Yes, I had a hard time slogging through the print version but the reader brought the book to life and highlighted the humor and sarcasm that is difficult to imagine in print.
A more cohesive plot and more sympathetic characters.
Yes. I enjoyed The Name of the Rose and Foucault's Pendulum.
He was fine. Yes.
The premise of a character who isn't sure, but might be another character, too, was interesting. But the Anti-everything attitude (including but not limited to Semitism, women, intellectuals, ambitious people, some of the clergy) was a downer. Cutting the character wouldn't have fixed the problem.
Could not follow the plot or the characters
Such a mismash of characters, could not tell from the different voices in the performance.
Good history, but given by the history teacher that makes you fall asleep.
I have read Eco before and because of all the hype, I tried again. I used to think I wasn't smart enough to understand it, however, with this book I realize I'm smart enough to recognize hateful, arrogant, crap masquerading as literature when I see (hear) it. If you are interested in what Alexander Dumas wore to dinner in 1835 and you don't mind all kinds of constant racial slurs and extended exposure to disturbing scenes, you're going to love this book. If you like history and are a happy person, skip it.
Couldn't get through it. Like walking in mud. I hope it ended well but I did not have the patience. Love George Guidall but even he couldn't make this sing.
get to the point and have story line that could be followed
Guidall is awesome as always
could not get through the entire book, very disapointing considering the high ratings
drink a lot of coffee when listening to keep awake