Since his debut in 1955, Tom Ripley has evolved into the ultimate bad boy sociopath, influencing countless novelists and filmmakers.
In this first novel, we are introduced to suave, handsome Tom Ripley: a young striver, newly arrived in the heady world of Manhattan in the 1950s. A product of a broken home, branded a "sissy" by his dismissive Aunt Dottie, Ripley becomes enamored of the moneyed world of his new friend, Dickie Greenleaf. This fondness turns obsessive when Ripley is sent to Italy to bring back his libertine pal, but he grows enraged by Dickie's ambivalent feelings for Marge, a charming American dilettante.
A dark reworking of Henry James's The Ambassadors, The Talented Mr. Ripley—immortalized in the 1998 film starring Matt Damon, Jude Law, and Gywneth Paltrow—is an unforgettable introduction to this debonair confidence man, whose talent for self-invention and calculated murder is chronicled in four subsequent novels.
©1955 Patricia Highsmith. Copyright renewed 1983 by Patricia Highsmith. (P)2012 Audible, Inc.
"One of the great crime novels of the 20th century, Patricia Highsmith's The Talented Mr. Ripley is a blend of the narrative subtlety of Henry James and the self-reflexive irony of Vladimir Nabokov. Like the best modernist fiction, Ripley works on two levels. First, it is the story of a young man, Tom Ripley, whose nihilistic tendencies lead him on a deadly passage across Europe. On another level, the novel is a commentary on fictionmaking and techniques of narrative persuasion. Like Humbert Humbert, Tom Ripley seduces readers into empathizing with him even as his actions defy all moral standards." (Amazon.com review)
"[Highsmith] has created a world of her own - a world claustrophobic and irrational which we enter each time with a sense of personal danger." (Graham Greene)
"One of our greatest modernist writers." (Gore Vidal)
I love a great story.
I love hating myself for loving a book about a sociopath and murderer. Thank you, Patricia Highsmith for writing a thoroughly entertaining and original book!
Live on edge of National Forest with lake, birds & wild animals. No more perfect place to indulge life-long love of reading.
Having a sociopath as the main character of a book is a new experience for me. However the idea really did grow on me -- in very large part due to the wonderful narration of Kevin Kenerly. This book has a definite plot, but it is there mostly as a supporting structure to enable the complex character development of Tom Ripley. There is a rather dark fascination in getting to know this disturbing character.
Kenerly provides an excellent portrayal of a psychopathic psyche through his pacing and tone. The combination of Highsmith's prose and this excellent narration is almost musical.
My 4 stars for the story is strictly based on the fact that in real life I would not want to live next door to the main character -- and my suspicion that if I did, he would probably be able to fool me. That's a little chilling.
Aspiring author, classic literature scholar, fantasy and horror junkie, all wrapped up in a cute little package.
This is a tale way before its time, and speaks volumes about the life of someone who is a little insecure about their identity, and how to forge who they are. I always think of this as a a LGBT piece, myself, not just because of the author, but because of Ripley, himself. The narrator explores the character with a great complexity that I can truly appreciate.
Loved this book and the pace of the story! What a great writer. The narrator's voice is perfect!
The plot develops in a slow and reptitive way. The characters could be elaborate but are simple.
The narrator talks like wining and ends each sentence in a ugly way. He lacks emotion in the little crucial moments of the tale.
This is a great listen. I don't know where to rank it among all my listens, however, because pretty much everything I've listened to on audible has been relatively great on the same level.
It definitely did. Towards the end the book became so riveting that I almost wanted to quit listening or pause it because I was legitimately frightened at what would happen next!
He was great with accents and bringing the foreign characters to life. If I had read it by myself I most likely would've forgotten to give them accents. Also, his narration of Tom Ripley was very fantastic. He was good at Tom's change in dialect when he would go between being himself and being Dickie Greenleaf. If I'd been reading I would've forgotten ton change his voice/dialect in my mind.
Definitely, and toward the end I stayed up at night to finish it because it was so exciting.
The writing is stunning. I couldn't stop listening as both author and narrated walked me through the streets of Italy while inside the twisted mind of Tom Ripley.
The book is outstanding - the film doesn't even come close, good as it is - but it's the narrator that lifts it to the next level. The nuanced interpretation is perfect; the cadence smooth - perfectly pitched to the various scenes and situations.
Highly recommend. Great book read by outstanding narrator. Win/win.
Kept my interest, but this is one of the most unrealistic books I've ever heard. Mr. Ripley would not be talented if anyone he encountered was average. Pretty silly, but I wanted to know how it played out. I have to give it a fair rating for entertainment value, but for reality it would get zero stars.
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