The story line is excellent and original - but I mostly napped or fast-forwarded through the Part 1, and the action doesn't really start until Part 2. I usually yawn through interludes where old correspondence is read when such letter-reading interludes are employed merely to add texture. In this case, I became tired of listening to Ms. Gardner's shopping escapades and travels with brand name artists and art critics and I didn't think it mattered to hear about the details of Degas life as seen by someone who knew him. Other readers might love this, so it's just one of my proclivities, or negativities, as the case may be.
There are some sexual diversions, which are brief and succinct, thankfully, because this is not chic-fic, but there are also some passages which are outright pollyanna-ish - there could have been a better way to expand on the moments that the protagonist is finally becoming successful, instead of having her sound like Dorothy clicking her heels, "not in Kansas" any more.
I also think that including sex and romance with the "deal with the devil" is predictable and overdone, but perhaps that helps sell books and to fund the ongoing flow of audiobooks for our consumption and enjoyment, who can figure, except editors and marketing gurus.
The writer masters the true-crime parts of the story effectively, mixing the facts of the actual art heist smoothly with fictional inventions and story arc.
I generally like Xe Sands as a narrator - but for this book I thought she sounded too girlish and neither ironic nor "noir" enough for this story. Her voice occasionally gives an innocence, sensuality and enthusiasm which I didn't think worked with the plot line.
I am giving this a 4 instead of a 5 because of the disconnect between story and reader. I wish I could give it a 4.5, because said disconnect is not a huge factor and only occasionally affected my listening groove.
No. The story was OK but the main character was terrible - insecure to a ridiculous degree, self deceiving, with bad judgement (so bad, it was not believable). The narration was much too slow; eventually I borrowed the book from the library in order to skip to the end and find out what happened because I couldn't stand the thought of another two hours of listening. That's a first for me. As for Xe Sands, here voice was fine (occasionally whiney but based on the character, that was appropriate). There was some action to the story but not much, and it got lost between the navel-gazing/angst indulgence of the main character and the slowness of the reading.
No idea. This was my first, and it's going to be my last.
Anyone who could have speeded things up. Xe Sands would have been fine if she doubled her speed.
The main character. She spent so much time agonizing over everything and doing things that were just plain stupid -- helping people who were users, then expecting thanks; not realizing that no one wants to be shown to be wrong, especially "experts", and wondering why people didn't welcome her interference when the outcome made them look bad. Duh. And did I say "agonizing" yet? She did so much of it, over EVERYTHING, that I think it needs repeating.
This is the first audio book for which I am going to request a refund. Don't waste a credit on this.
The narrator was very good and held characters persona well,
I felt the protagonist was naive and only somewhat plausible,
Reviews comparing voice to print is missing the basis for reviews.... Is it a good story? Is it read well consistently with story and characters? Did it hold my attention? Your questions do not lead to accurate reviews.
The story was well written and the characters were well developed.
I would highly recommend this book.
Yes, for anyone who wants a good thriller mystery
In a class by its self.
I truly loved her delivery.
Once i started this book I couldn't stop until it was finished. I went back a forth between Audio and kindle the whole time. I look forward to the next one of her novels that make it to Audible.
The story and characters were compelling. The narration was perfect. I really lost myself listening to this one. I had to stay up late to find out what happened next. I wish I could find more by this author now!
While parts of this book were quite interesting, the narration was not very good. All of Ms. Sands' male characters sounded the same, like they had strep throat as well as a hangover. The big surprise at the end was pretty obvious for the last three hours of the book.
The story of an artist's passion and the history of the art world were entertaining and engaging. Sadly, there really wasn't enough character development for me to care all that much about what happened to the people in the story. The two leads don't seem to have much in common and Claire comes across as emotionally stunted. The slow, breathy, whiney narration does NOT help with this.
The various dimensions of the story and the many pieces of the puzzle from different time periods.
The resolution to the puzzle and the surprise of the relationship twister in the end.
She has a great command of the various languages and characters.
No, but it held my attention and kept me wanting more in the end.
This story wasn't bad but the female character was a pain in the butt. Better as a book than an audiobook because then you could skip her useless whining ways.
The art bits were good, anything where we didn't have to deal with the female character was fine.
I didn't mind the narration, it was what was being narrated that was the issue.
All the hysterics
A good story spoilt by a totally impossible character. I won't be buying another book by this author.