Whether it’s a critically acclaimed novel or provocative collection of essays, every work from best-selling author Umberto Eco is a highly anticipated publishing event. The Prague Cemetery is set amid conspiracy-rich 19th century Europe, where intrigue abounds—and where a lone, evil genius may be pulling all the strings.
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“This work of teasing historical pseudo-reconstruction combines an intriguing philosophy of history with an elaborate set of reflections on narrative and the nature of fiction." (Times Literary Supplement)
"A whirlwind tour of conspiracy and political intrigue...this dark tale is delightfully embellished with sophisticated and playful commentary on, among other things, Freud, metafiction, and the challenges of historiography." (Booklist)
"He's got a humdinger in this new high-level whodunit...a perplexing, multilayered, attention-holding mystery." (Kirkus Review, starred)
Well read. The characters can be a bit hard to follow. There a flash back that if you miss the transition it be hard to follow. The historic note would be better in the front.
I don't think this story could have been redeemed
In order to get the most from this story I would have needed a translator to help me understand the multitude of foreign phases, a dictionary to help me understand the overuse of pedantic words and somebody throwing ice water in my face to keep me awake.
George Guidall is one of my favorite readers but even he could not make this story interesting.
I did not listen long enough (2 hours to get my attention didn't suffice) so the question should be what scenes needed to be kept in order to make the story entertaining.
It is not communicating if it is not understood.
yes much easier to follow spoken, but I also have the paper version that referred to a few times.
Very hard to read the bitter ugly hatred of the Jews was almost unbearable. If the story is almost as true as it claims to be in the amalgamation of real events, then even more horrible but justified. It is important to understand the underpinnings of world wide anti-semitism.
José M. Batista
No, I want to keep my friends.
Something by someone not trying so hard to come across as clever and erudite.
No, and it is difficult to follow a whispering old dude
Only the parts I slept on.
Generally describes the antipathy between Catholics, Freemasonry, Jews, and various intelligence services at the end of the 18th century, culminating in the Dreyfus Affair, from the point of view of a forgerer with split personality disorder. The plot is largely silly, the conflicts poorly resolved, and the most interesting ideas left to languor. Go listen to Baudolino instead, if you haven't already. Same great performance, much better plot, same general themes.
Yes, I had a hard time slogging through the print version but the reader brought the book to life and highlighted the humor and sarcasm that is difficult to imagine in print.
A more cohesive plot and more sympathetic characters.
Yes. I enjoyed The Name of the Rose and Foucault's Pendulum.
He was fine. Yes.
The premise of a character who isn't sure, but might be another character, too, was interesting. But the Anti-everything attitude (including but not limited to Semitism, women, intellectuals, ambitious people, some of the clergy) was a downer. Cutting the character wouldn't have fixed the problem.
Could not follow the plot or the characters
Such a mismash of characters, could not tell from the different voices in the performance.
Good history, but given by the history teacher that makes you fall asleep.
I got through this book by sheer determination. It took me at least a month. I have a once-a-week drive of 35 minutes each way, and I made myself listen to it during this time. I also had to concede to myself that it wasn't worth trying to follow all the intricacies of the various conspiracies.
If you need a likeable character to enjoy a book, this isn't for you. Simonini, the narrator, is a man who forges documents for the purpose of engendering hate and fear. He feels no regret about the consequences of his actions. He's just using his abilities to make a living. Oh, and he's a murderer too. No one he associates with is very appealing either.
Fans of novels with unreliable narrators might interested to know that the forger has an alternate personality that takes over some of the story. For me, that was not enough to make it worthwhile.
I have read Eco before and because of all the hype, I tried again. I used to think I wasn't smart enough to understand it, however, with this book I realize I'm smart enough to recognize hateful, arrogant, crap masquerading as literature when I see (hear) it. If you are interested in what Alexander Dumas wore to dinner in 1835 and you don't mind all kinds of constant racial slurs and extended exposure to disturbing scenes, you're going to love this book. If you like history and are a happy person, skip it.
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