Now, in Beach Music, he tells of the dark memories that haunt generations, in a story that spans South Carolina and Rome and reaches back into the unutterable terrors of the Holocaust.
Beach Music is about Jack McCall, an American living in Rome with his young daughter, trying to find peace after the recent trauma of his wife's suicide. But his solitude is disturbed by the appearance of his sister-in-law, who begs him to return home, and of two school friends asking for his help in tracking down another classmate who went underground as a Vietnam protester and never resurfaced. These requests launch Jack on a journey that encompasses the past and the present in both Europe and the American South, and that leads him to shocking--and ultimately liberating--truths.
Told with deep feeling and trademark Conroy humor, Beach Music is powerful and compulsively readable. It is another masterpiece in the legendary list of classics that his body of work has already become.
©2009 Pat Conroy; (P)2009 Random House
"Astonishing...stunning...the range of passions and subjects that brings life to every page is almost endless." (The Washington Post Book World)
very dramatic and heart felt! I read it because it relates to my favorite vacation spot but I have been looking for additional titles from the same author..I highly recommend it!
Vintage Conroy...read Conroy to taste grits and shrimp, smell salt water, hear the drawl of Charleston. I love the southern flavor, but always lament Conroy's minimum requirements for enlistment as a Southern Belle... mysterious females born with Barbie doll figures, Mensa level IQ's, flawless skin, adorned by family diamonds (gifts from Sherman to grandmothers who saved homes...no towns... from being burned), mistress of all domestic arts, fluent in 6 languages (learned Italian and German while singing with the Met) ....and have at least one secret, illegitimate child by a brutal politician. I fall so short...but inspired to keep trying.
I don't quite know what to make of this book. I thought the first part was interesting, but then the author tried to write too long a book, in my opinion. The characterization of the protagonist and his life is quite good, but the other persons become mere sketches, which is probably OK in a book that deals a lot with the protagonist. It always irritates me when authors set their rather ordinary (invented) people up against real events, and Pat Conroy cannot resist that either in this book. I felt that the story was in essence told after the first part, and then you have three more parts, where very little development occurs. I actually thought the book ended after three parts, and to my astonishment discovered there was a fourth part. It could well have ended after the third part, because the fourth brings about a "Hollywood-type Happy End". I think the author and the readers would have benefitted from the author exerting more self discipline in embroidering the story, and Pat Conroy should have restrained herself more in outflow of mere words. Pat Conroy should have listened to the old rule: If you are unsure about what to write - don't!
I love Pat Conroy and this book is no exception. It took me a good long time to not be distracted by the narrators flat unemotional reading - however, he got much better as the book went on and I ended up thinking he had done a really good job. The main story has many shorter stories within as it goes back to look at the lives of many of the more minor characters. The book is full of Conroy's usual beautiful women and wisecracking characters.
I absolutely loved this book. The author had me from the first chapter and the relationships in the book were at times so touching and others completely hilirous. I had never read any of Pat Conroy's books. I am now a huge fanl.
As a voracious reader, it seems I have a new life best choice! This story was so beautifully articulated, I was a voyeur in a world I haven't lived but so much more hopefully wise.
Marosz does the book and its author an incredible injustice. The constant mispronunciation of Italian and even English words is insulting, and his interpretation of a Southern accent is as grating as described by other reviewers.
In spite of that, the book is wonderful, the characters rich, and the writing is vivid and often laugh-out-loud funny.
I love everything Pat Conroy and try to read all his books, so I will not give a poor rating on the content. But this unbearable fake Southern accent makes me want to throw something at my iPhone. I grew up in South Carolina and have NEVER heard an accent like this EXCEPT by actors (including Kevin Spacey) who do absolutely no research and fall back on this horrible sound for movies, plays and audiobooks. Not only is this NOT A SOUTHERN ACCENT, it's not even pretty. Would love to review this book but will have to get the Kindle edition because this is absolutely unbearable to hear.
Epic story, felt there were too many incredible different story lines. Learned so much about wars of so many types, that was good insight got me.
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