This was my first audio book, and I wasn't entirely sure what to expect, and to be honest had quite low expectations as I love holding a book and sitting on the sofa. I was absolutely speechless after the first chapter. The story is just wonderful, with the past and present woven together so beautifully. The characters are all so interesting and different, and I love how they all have their time in the book, so you really get to know them and all their flaws. The narration by Edoardo was spot on, he really brought all the characters to life, and made the whole experience unforgettable. I read most of it on my long drives to work, and for the first time, I actually didn't want to get out of the car as I wanted to keep on listening. Well done Jess on an amazing book, and Edoardo for narrating.
The truly expert craftsmanship of this writer, and the effortless ease the narrator narrates all the voices, accents, and languages.
Pasquale because he is fearless. He is the voice of purity and integrity.
No, but I will now.
The best love stories sometimes come from under the ruins.
The story didn't go where I initially wanted it to go, but Jess Walter is such an expert storyteller, that I loved it anyway. It's such poetry.
The book began nicely, the story was a good concept, but the ending just came very abruptly with no real meat in the middle. Each character had a beginning and an end with very little in between.
Romantic, fanciful and fun
Well drawn characters, many unique.
The reaction of the assistant producer as she listened to wanna-be story lines pitched.
The almost lost connection between the would be actress, aging and dying, and her profligate son.
The story loses credibility with the introduction of real life characters such as Richard Burton. It could have been just as strong a tale without him.
I enjoyed listening to Beautiful Ruins -- a nice story for audiobook where you could usually tell what time and place you were in, despite the movement of the narrative across continents and years. I didn't consider it a "masterpiece" and would not listen to it a second time, but I was definitely glad to listen to it.
I found it well-performed and paced, and at no point did I consider "putting it down," one of my personal barometers of how good an audiobook is.
This is a good book to "read" as an audiobook -- you can enjoy the story, and you don't need to see it in print to understand, or go back to refresh your memory of a complicated plot.
Yes, have already recommended it. It's an fun take on the movie world, interesting and fast paced with great characters.
Not normally my style of book, but I found this fascinating - the way the author developed the story - interspersed the various perspectives. Loved it. Highly recommended. Great narration as well - thought it really enhanced the whole experience.
The juxtaposition of Liz Taylor/Richard Burton in fabulous Rome with sad little Porto Vergona.
Pasquale for trying to bridge his family's traditions and his own yearnings
His Italian is gorgeous to listen to, and amazingly, his Richard Burton is also terrific.
Pasquale's wife. I would want to know more of her story.
Yes...the narrator brought more life to the characters than if I had just read the book.
I loved Pasquale. He had such heart.
He brings the characters to life...most especially with the Italian accents.
Yes...but obviously it was too long to do so. I was sad when it ended.
This is one very enjoyable story! The range of characters from the starlet to Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton; the dutiful son, trying to make a go of his father's dream, to the son who doesn't know who his father is and the ageing producer who turns himself into a freak as he searches for youth to the handsome aspiring writer trying to make a go of his life. Jess Walter's ability for counterbalance and contrasting is wonderful. Constant surprise as the background and full story of the portraits in the cave are finally revealed! Just delightful. I recommend this book it really is great!