Guildford, Australia | Member Since 2009
I love my Scandinavian crime but had a to drop out of this one before the end.
Great main character, perfectly narrated by the master but too violent, too many extra characters introduced just so they could be tortured or done away with - too much Mr Kepler. It actually reduces the tension and increases the eye rolling. I suppose the title held a clue. Should have paid more attention.
Oh I love this book. I loved it when I first read it many years ago and I love it more now I've listened to Meryl Streep run down the steps so beautifully placed there by the writer, Nora Ephron. Even though it's fictionalised, it's pretty much a memoir from the time she was married to Watergate journalist, Carl Bernstein and even though it's gaspingly hurtful (for her) it's also hilarious (for us). Meryl is of course magnificent. I remember thinking what a wonderful character the mother was before realising - yep, still Meryl. Brilliant narrator, great writer and a very successful book. Do yourself a favour and head to the cart.
An interesting idea for a story but the main character is as dumb as a box of rocks. She's brave, some would say foolhardy and there are a few scattered references to her beauty but you know very early on she's not the brightest bulb in the chandelier...and we're stuck with her. The action is nice but the journey is painful. How many more metaphors can I come up with I hear you wonder? Well, let's put it this way. She's game, but as thick as two short planks.
A beautiful study of the effects of ageing on a powerful mind - quite brilliant from that point of view. However the story is very dull. Drumming fingers on the table dull.
A phenomenal best seller in its day, this book is engaging as a great example of the behaviour of the era. Very well written and retains enough mystery to attach to it but the inability of the women at the centre of the story to cope emotionally with the ongoing dramas was thoroughly annoying. Falling about with the vapours was obviously an accepted reaction in those days, doesn't wash now.
The attention to detail is a feature of this great book. Joseph Kanon is a wonderful writer who's put together a thoughtful thriller set in a fascinating city during a turbulent time. I notice other reviews have quibbled about the narration -they're crackers, it's masterful.
I almost wrote 'life changing' as my title but as not a lot of life has gone by since I've read it perhaps I should wait a while. The audio book grabbed me so much I bought the hard copy to have as a reference to keep dipping into. In a whip smart, easy reading sort of way new theories regarding willpower are explored and explained. And new ideas for finding some are brought forward. It seems there's an 'ahh haa' light bulb moment on every page - certainly in every chapter- and this book feels as if it's been written by a friend, not a stern and 'disappointed in you' parent or teacher. I wonder why it was narrated by a man when it was written by a woman but he does a good job. If you feel a bit stuck in old habits that aren't serving you or you want to find the motivation to do something you've always wanted to....this is a great book to get you going.
Does this book need another rave review? Probably not but I can't help recording my love for this beautifully constructed, touching, funny, clever story. Don't miss it under any circumstances - if only to hear a master narrator in Edoardo Ballerini at work. His Richard Burton is worth the price of the book alone. Very credit worthy. Very highly recommended.
Firstly, when is Sean Barrett going to win the Nobel Prize for Narrators? He is a genius and he superbly creates this book's main character Guido Guerrieri. Guido is interesting - sort of an Italian Rebus in that he loves his music, finds intimacy difficult and prefers taking a stroll on the wild side. However he's a lawyer, not an policeman and in this story, the only lawyer in Italy prepared to take on the rather heartbreaking case. A young woman is being stalked by her well connected and abusive ex lover. She's under the protection of a young nun who also happens to be a martial arts expert. Guido finds the nun compelling even though he has more than enough to contend with at home. Did I mention this is an Italian novel? Anyway, it's well constructed, well written, the main character is terrific and the story only too believable. The narration is masterful. Highly recommended.
I was delighted with Generation Loss and my introduction to Cass Neery and couldn't wait to wrap my ears around this one. I don't know exactly the source of my disappointment in Available Dark, the next novel in the series (the ending prepares the ground for a third). It could be that this character is too difficult to sustain. Her quirks and 'issues' delighted me in the first book but now bore and annoy the hell out of me. Maybe the location (Iceland) was too testing, the other characters too mad and improbable, the subject matter too disturbing. Perhaps all of the above.If you're into death metal you might enjoy it. If not, settle for Generation Loss and then leave Cass alone to carry on (wearing the same leather jacket and cowboy boots) doing her thing. I know that's what I intend to do.
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