The performance of the reader is amazing. He did a great job with all of the accents and even the voices, and made it very easy to listen to. I also love all the descriptive details about the Italian coast. It sounds gorgeous and made me want to go and visit!
I loved it flipping back and forth in time, place, and between people. It kept me in absolute suspense just waiting for the moment when they would all come together and to see how everything and everyone fit together! It was a major page-turner! I also loved that it centered a little on true events - Richard Burton and Liz Taylor filming Cleopatra in Rome. It made it that much more real.
When Pascuale confronts Michael Deen at the hollywood studio office...that seems to be when a lot of questions are answered and kept me absolutely on the edge of my seat.
I love Pascuale. He is so tender-hearted, loves his family, wants to do the right thing always, and to me, he was the glue that held everything together throughout the whole story.
You will not regret downloading this title. It is a beautiful story.
The many-layered story - so many stories at once. I absolutely LOVED this story. The characters were all lovable (Pat at the end of the book only - didn't like him much at the beginning of his entrance to the story.)
The ending - I had to make sure my tears didn't interfere with my driving!
I haven't, but I would love too. Mr. Ballerini was fantastic. I'll definitely look into other books he's narrated.
smoothly and subtly draws the listener to the story and before you know it you are half way through the book. one could almost imagine this was written to be developed into a movie.
This is the best of the 25+ audiobook book I have listened to this year. I occasionally read silly romances, I call them bubble gum for my brain. I need light fluff after some heavy reading. I thought this would be just one more forgetable book. It was not.
I liked the intricate plot that just kept drawing me further into the novel. I did not know where it was going, but I wanted to find out.
I liked the scenes describing the Hollywood sleazy producer. The scenes involving cluture classes. The scenes describing Italy.
The title is perfect.
I recommedned this book to my book club.
I lead a busy lifestyle and audio books allow me to listen and complete other tasks at the same time.
The last 30 minutes were unnecessary details about minor characters and events. They just didn't fit in with the main story. The real ending happens before that...so why the blah, blah, blah at the end?
These unconnected 'details' were like trying to understand the thought process of an ADD child...Can I have a cookie?...look butterfly!...Why is the sky blue?...There's a squirrel...I hate Social studies....Is it time for dinner?...
This garbage at the end takes away from the story.
When Pasquali ends up being herding into the lines for 'extras' in the movie.
Some humorous lines interspersed within the story.
Seemed slow to start.
Pasquale brought honesty and purpose to the ruthless Film industry.
No...it finished with a definitive beauty and needed no follow-up although the option is there.
With Richard Burton Diaries out for the Christmas season, Beautiful Ruins as fiction could be an adjunct.
A great narrator is only as good as the words he has to read and frankly this is not interesting. The story jumps around so much that you have to go back after not listening for a few days to remind yourself what was happening. I am forcing myself to finish it hoping for a change of heart. If I had it to do again, I would NOT waste my credit.
Most probably not
Ha Ha Ha.....what character would I not.
I wanted a good story. I don't mind heartbreak or egotistical one dimensional characters but they have to be a part of a good story. This one is not.
educator and technologist
I loved all the diverse characters and how each life somehow was entangled with others. The narrator did a great job especially with Pascal. I loved being transported to Italy and all the complexity. At first, I wasn't sure I'd selected well but as the story weaves through time and place I could not push stop.
I might if other titles have such good character building.
I was very disappointed in the ending. Did they make it to the bunker? Were the paintings still there? Did Pat stay in Idaho? Much was answered but too many things remain.
I was not so sure about this one, but decided to follow the recommendations and go ahead and use up a credit. I'm so glad I did, mostly because Eduardo Ballerini did such a great job as reader. He brought this world to life in such a vivid way and made the characters have such depth. I might have struggled to get into this book if I read it myself, but with Ballerini leading the way I loved the story and was sorry when it ended. Now I'm on a mission to listen to more books he reads.
A Book and a Cat: Nothing more
Yes, this was a beautifully written novel. I did find myself enjoying some of the characters deeply. On the other hand, Richard Burton and the Hollywood hangers-on left me completely flat. Edoardo Ballerini as narrator was the highlight.
Author Jess Walter has a gift for intertwining disparate characters in different decades and different continents, but unless the next novel is free of household names (behaving badly), I won't be back.