This is a fabulous book. Beautifully written with perfect timing in all areas: comedy, tragedy, suspense, pathos. I listen to books as I walk to work and I found myself laughing out loud at some of the dialogue. The story is unforgettable and deeply moving. Laura Hillenbrand should be justly proud of an amazing achievement. This is truly a must read for everyone.
I gave this book four stars out of five because its ambitions--covering so many lives through so much time--sometimes gets in its own way. But don't let that stop you from listening--a truly charming love story that has an upbeat, everyone wins trajectory with enough introspection and perspective to keep eyes from cynically rolling. Very well done indeed...
It didn't take all that long to figure out the most likely scenario behind the 'credibility/probability' conflicts between the two (excellent) narrators. But that does not detract from this gripping read. Several of the plot twists were predictable,but again, only because you've gotten to know the well-drawn characters. I couldn't imagine how the narrative could possibly be resolved, and I wonder if the author had the same dilemma. While I found the ending compelling and thought provoking and, on some levels, psychologically believable, in other respects it strained credulity. There are too many loose ends for "it" (lest I spoil the plot) to work out as it did. But still highly recommended.
With all the great reviews, I put aside my usual hesitation about books that seem to promise quaint wisdom. There were times I almost quit listening, but stuck with it. It's a bit overdone, a bit trite. There are some pretty entertaining bits, but 'life is like a car race' got old very very fast. And I would have liked a bit more flesh on Denny's character beyond his affection for organic groceries and complete guilelessness. The whole thing was predictable and contrived. it is, however, not without its charms.
This is one of those books that I usually find myself rationing, making myself turn it off to last longer. But this time--well, I got a lot "done" that needed hands and feet but not a lot of attention. Not too far into it I thought it sounded familiar and realized it was the book on which the PBS mini-series was based--somehow that added to, rather than distracted from, the pleasure of the whole thing. Atkinson is great at drawing characters. This is a terrific book, beautifully narrated.
Had I been reading a print version, there are several places I would have gone back to clarify characters, etc, but even with the "wait, who was that again?" thought, this is a superb listen. The internal dialogue of both main characters--Tracy and Jackson--is very funny, but even better, funny in different ways. That has to be hard to do--varying the wit to reflect their different personalities. It's a great story with a great plot. If you pick up the literary references, great, but it doesn't matter if you don't (my favorite was Cicero's O tempora O mores coming from the mouth of a retired criminal). The narration is excellent. I hated to have it end.
This was a great listen. The author has a marvelously dry sense of humor, and the reader's timing was impeccable. It was a bit odd having British idiom in an Italian story, but tha's just my American bias. The protagonist is both gloomily fatalistic and very funny at the same time.
Within the first fifteen minutes, I had figured out the vehicle for the plot. From there it was annoying and sometimes agonizing to watch the protagonist's risk-taking (even though his behavior was pretty well-motivated, one of Connelly's strengths). It was too easy to figure out the culprits. Narration also not to my taste--technically fine, but seemed a bit expressionless (maybe fitting for a plot about a workaholic chemist?)
I'm a big Michael Connelly fan: good plots and well crafted, fast paced stories. Lost Light is a particularly good one. It has great characters and the story is a good balance of plot and personality. Highly recommended.
What part of the story should I rate? The fascinating narrative of American jazz by one of its masters? That aspect of the book is amazing. The way Davis talks about music is spell-binding. The complicated narrative of a complicated man? That one is harder. The best thing about the portrait of Miles Davis in his autobiography is a window onto how neither black nor white--in the ethical, not racial sense--each of us is. Davis talks lovingly and with tremendous generosity of spirit about other musicians and indeed about lots of people in his life; the same man seems blind to his own stunning shortcomings (or is revising them for his audience). Some parts are really hard to listen to: here is a man who abuses women, is a drug addict and alcoholic AND is complaining that his sons are a disappointment. In print. He calls them failures. It is just stunning in the raw shock of his self-blindness. I do think, however, this is a really worthwhile listen (with a fabulous narrator). I'm glad I've listened to it but I must say there is more about Miles Davis here than I really wanted to know. He was a musical genius and a very very flawed man.
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