What a huge disappointment! I really missed out. It’s not the book – it’s 100% me.
This is the 3rd Edward Rutherford novel I’ve read and it certainly won’t be the last. He’s a great story teller and I love the concept of his books however PARIS tapped into my biggest book problem: I can’t keep track of that many characters! And unlike the other 2 novels I read: Sarum and New York, because the story is not told in chronological order it just made it impossible for me.
When the time line stayed put I was captivated but after jumping around to different eras, I had already forgotten who was who and what was going on by the time it would come back to the first one. What era was Mary in again? And Max? No clue. Which Monsieur Blanchard was 1600s and which one was 1900s? Search me! I was completely lost and the fact that families keep the same names over the generations was the final nail in coffin.
Reading about The City Of Paris however was terrific. Who doesn’t love Paris? Not only did it bring back lovely vacation memories, but also of other books I’ve read set in Paris:
The story line set in the 1880s regarding the building of the Eiffel Tower and 1889 World Fair reminded me of this book that I highly recommend: Eiffel's Tower: And the World's Fair Where Buffalo Bill Beguiled Paris, the Artists Quarreled, and Thomas Edison Became a Count by Jill Jonnes.
The story line of a young girl working for the Dauphine in Versailles recalled parts of: Madame Tussaud: A Novel of the French Revolution by Michelle Moran and The Sun King: Louis Fourteenth at Versailles by Nancy Mitford
The Paris of Hemmingway in the 20s reminded me of: The Paris Wife by Paula McLain
All very interesting.
I hope his future publications go back to epics told in chronological order!!! If I had known how much this would have ruined it for me, I would have chopped it up myself and reorganized it chronologically!!
The next Rutherford book I plan to read is London – looking forward to it whenever it becomes available in Audible.
I only bought it because it was on sale for 2$ and I got my money’s worth. If you like pop-astronomy you’ll be interested; if you don’t, you won’t.
Over all it was dry, but because it was short it wasn’t so bad. Some boring parts, some interesting factoids….
I don’t have a whole lot to say on this one!
I love this series, obviously since I am up to Book 9!
I understand that a huge part of the subplot in the series is the relationship between Molly and Daniel, and I get that if they got married in Book 2 it would have been too soon, but I am getting tired of the “my wife won’t work” part of Daniel’s character so I am looking forward to getting that all resolved.
Time to move on! Keep working, get hitched and have those babies already!! There’ll be lots of good stories to tell around that and I am looking forward to them all!
I was so bored with the beginning of the book that I almost gave up. I’m glad I didn’t however because it got better and better as it went along; it picked up enough to hold my interest and when it did, I didn’t put it down again until the end. I found it to be a very interesting story and educational too! I like learning about what life was like in other times and that’s what kept me hooked through the book. Great story.
As slow as I found the start, I felt the end just whizzed by. The entire last third of the book felt like an epilogue, as if when the main story was over the author wanted to keep developing the characters but hadn’t really developed a plot – I felt like after the summer of 1922 in New York City, it was the next 50 years of their lives in fast forward point form.
The narration was good, but it took me a while to get used to “Lady Cora Grantham” narrating a story about another Cora! Ha!
These types of books are my favourite; I always gets sucked into WW2 era stories because I find them so compelling and I found this story even more riveting than many others because of the added legal-thriller-courtroom-drama aspect.
Although I found it was an excellent story, some things did bother me a little:
•In the beginning when Ben wanted to tell his tale to Catherine, the whole “lawyer wants to hurry up / Ben wants to slow things down” thing was very tedious. I felt like it was being drilled into me – it was borderline drinking game. “get to the point Ben” “I’m getting there Catherine” enough!
•Too much interjection of the present punctuated into the recollections of the past. I’ve read many books where the main narrative is told as a recollection, but the interjection of only a sentence or two from the current time line (like a question from Catherine) broke the mood. Explaining to me how Catherine was reacting to Ben’s story or going into detail about how she felt about what she was hearing interrupted the flow and rhythm.
•The romance between Catherine and Liam – why bother? Such an unnecessary thread. That entire thing could have been cut out in my opinion along with ALL of Catherine’s personal-life threads. Pointless.
Despite those complaints, I really enjoyed it overall. Good book!
I’m only two thirds of the way done, but my opinion won’t change by the time I reach the end.
There is a fine line between good witty sarcastic humour and just being a wise@$$. I can’t decide on which side of that line John Corey belongs, but he likes to linger on the low-side and I’m fed up.
There is only so much chauvinistic inner dialogue I can take. Perhaps it was intentional, but now it’s just getting on my nerves.
I don’t think I can make it through another adventure, so I think book 1 in this series will be my last.
This book could have been dismissed as a huge joke if it wasn’t so well written. I was hooked almost from the start and by the time I was about a third of the way in, I found it hard to put down.
I loved the story of this impossibly dysfunctional family, and the characters were surprisingly so believable even after one over-the-top-preposterous-plot-twist after another!
I can’t possibly describe this story in any way that does not make it sound crazy and ridiculous so I won’t – just trust me; it was great!
I have not read many Stephen King books, so I can’t compare his “King works” to his “Bachman works” like most other reviewers can!
I read 11/22/63 and LOVED it.
I read Under the Dome and HATED it.
That’s as far as my exposure goes.
I liked the plot of the story up until when Billy tries to track down the gypsies, then lost I interest and tuned out a bit. I felt like the plot just stalled and I was no longer curious to know what would happen next – I was just impatient to get to the end.
I’m not in love with this instalment. The humour is still great, I love the writing, I adore the characters… the plot just felt a little recycled.
Doesn’t matter, I am still a huge Rhys Bowen and Georgie Rannoch fan. This blip in my interest won’t dim my enthusiasm for the series in any way, in fact I am willing to just call it a mood-thing.
This is the kind of Zombie-Book I think I can handle... the kind with no outright mention of Zombies!!
It started out great, a very intriguing futuristic medical mystery; I was sucked in from the beginning! But then about two thirds or three quarts of the way in it took SUCH A TURN that I was derailed. Try as I might, the plot turned into a such preposterous comedy for me (albeit a suspenseful and intriguing one) that I lost interest. I pushed through to get to the end just to wrap it up.
But still, it wasn’t bad and I’ll read book 2 (Symbiont) if it comes on sale.... maybe.... I dunno, the twist is just too twisted.
As you can see, I am conflicted with this one!
This anthology of abridged books contained a good mix of stories, each completely different so you don’t feel like you are reading the same book 3 times.
A Place Called Freedom:
Too bad it was abridged!! I thought it was great and I would have loved the story to be filled out a little more. As it stands I felt like I just skimmed the highlights. It reminded me of how much I enjoy books like Ken Follett’s “Pillars of the Earth” and various other stories written by Jeffrey Archer. I am left wanting more.
The Third Twin:
I am not disappointed it was abridged. Sure, the story was interesting and suspenseful, but at the same time it seemed dated and I feel like I have read/seen this plot before in countless books and movies. Been there, done that. Perhaps this is the book that started the trend? I’m sure when it was first released it was a page turner, but some stories don’t hold up over time. I’m glad it was short.
The Hammer of Eden:
The plot was interesting, but so preposterous that I would not have wanted to read the full length book. In this case, the abridged version is the way to go; get right to the point.
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