This is a book about Catherine Hooper (the girlfriend of Bernard Madoff's son Andrew), her incredible brilliance, resourcefulness, and all around "fabulousness". The narrator reads the story with the breathiness appropriate for a romance novel when talking anything Catherine. Her tone changes to one of utter disgust whenever discussing Mark (Bernard Madoff's other son who committed suicide) or Mark's widow Stephanie. I guess the narrator was directed to do so because Catherine's doesn't like them (?) but it is very disconcerting. Do not buy this book if you are looking for insight into the Madoff scandal or the Madoff family (as I was). I stuck with the book to the end hoping to find a bit, but it provides none whatsoever. On the other hand if you are interested in learning about how wonderful Catherine Hooper is, this is the book for you.
This is a book for readers interested in a recitation of the number of buildings destroyed in a given locality in Europe, the number of people displaced, and general acknowledgements that the war really disrupted people's lives. While the book sprinkles in quotes from people saying that the destruction was terrible, they weren't given enough context to care about them at all.
No. I prefer books that tell a story through the eyes of its participants.
I have listened to the Ken Follett books narrated by John Lee and enjoyed his narration but this book was a terrible fit for him. The book is simply boring and having a very dramatic narrator like Mr. Lee is absolutely jarring.
Disappointment and frustration.
I have read many books about the civil war and it becomes harder and harder to find books that address the period from a new prospective. This book, written from the southern point of view felt wholly new and fresh, and did a excellent job of describing the complex and varying viewpoints of its different constituencies. The narrator did a wonderful job of conveying these voices.
I've read a lot of history books and memoirs about the holocaust, and this memoir written and narrated by the son of survivors saved by their musical talent is a beautiful, very loving and respectful tribute to the author's parents. At the same time, the author conveys a very honest human story of their lives that does not gloss over questionable decisions and complicated motivations.
The author's narration was fine, but because of his distinctive voice and long service as the host of Performance Today, National Public Radio's daily classical music program, I kept expecting him to break from the story and introduce us to a Beethoven symphony. But that is a very small price to pay for such a beautiful story.
This unusual novel is DEFINITELY not for everyone. It is a story, written in first person, of the son of wannabe holocaust survivor who (the son, not his mother) discovers Anne Frank (now an old lady) living in his attic. It is written as a bit of a "shticky" monologue that is hilarious at times, but often over the top as in: was it over the top? Why did I say it was over the top? I don't really know. Sometimes I think I liked it but other times I was't so sure. And how could I be expected to know..... and so on.
Great story which more than stands on its own. No need for the annoyingly exaggerated rendition of the character's voices.
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