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Lo Que No Nos Contaron (ebook)

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«Magistral, trepidante y conmovedora». «Mi vida cambió una mañana cuando abrí el correo. Una carta anónima me informó de que mi madre había cometido un crimen treinta y cinco años antes. El autor de la misiva me citaba en un bar de pescadores del puerto de Baltimore, ordenándome que no le hablara a nadie de esa historia. Había enterrado a mi madre en Londres al «Magistral, trepidante y conmovedora». «Mi vida cambió una mañana cuando abrí el correo. Una carta anónima me informó de que mi madre había cometido un crimen treinta y cinco años antes. El autor de la misiva me citaba en un bar de pescadores del puerto de Baltimore, ordenándome que no le hablara a nadie de esa historia. Había enterrado a mi madre en Londres al principio de la primavera; el verano llegaba a su fin, y yo estaba lejos de haber concluido el duelo. ¿Qué habríais hecho en mi lugar? Probablemente habríais cometido el mismo error que yo». Eleanor Rigby es periodista de la revista National Geographic y vive en Londres. Una mañana, al volver de un viaje, recibe una carta anónima que le informa de que su madre tuvo un pasado criminal. George Harrison es ebanista y vive en Quebec. Una mañana recibe una carta anónima que le informa de esos mismos hechos. Eleanor Rigby y George Harrison no se conocen. El autor de las cartas los cita a ambos en un bar de pescadores del puerto de Baltimore. ¿Qué vínculo los une? ¿Qué crimen cometieron sus madres? ¿Quién escribe esas cartas y cuáles son sus intenciones? En Lo que no nos contaron, Marc Levy nos sumerge en un misterio que planea sobre tres generaciones y abarca varios escenarios y épocas como la Francia ocupada en el verano de 1944, Baltimore en los años 90, y Londres y Montreal en la actualidad.


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«Magistral, trepidante y conmovedora». «Mi vida cambió una mañana cuando abrí el correo. Una carta anónima me informó de que mi madre había cometido un crimen treinta y cinco años antes. El autor de la misiva me citaba en un bar de pescadores del puerto de Baltimore, ordenándome que no le hablara a nadie de esa historia. Había enterrado a mi madre en Londres al «Magistral, trepidante y conmovedora». «Mi vida cambió una mañana cuando abrí el correo. Una carta anónima me informó de que mi madre había cometido un crimen treinta y cinco años antes. El autor de la misiva me citaba en un bar de pescadores del puerto de Baltimore, ordenándome que no le hablara a nadie de esa historia. Había enterrado a mi madre en Londres al principio de la primavera; el verano llegaba a su fin, y yo estaba lejos de haber concluido el duelo. ¿Qué habríais hecho en mi lugar? Probablemente habríais cometido el mismo error que yo». Eleanor Rigby es periodista de la revista National Geographic y vive en Londres. Una mañana, al volver de un viaje, recibe una carta anónima que le informa de que su madre tuvo un pasado criminal. George Harrison es ebanista y vive en Quebec. Una mañana recibe una carta anónima que le informa de esos mismos hechos. Eleanor Rigby y George Harrison no se conocen. El autor de las cartas los cita a ambos en un bar de pescadores del puerto de Baltimore. ¿Qué vínculo los une? ¿Qué crimen cometieron sus madres? ¿Quién escribe esas cartas y cuáles son sus intenciones? En Lo que no nos contaron, Marc Levy nos sumerge en un misterio que planea sobre tres generaciones y abarca varios escenarios y épocas como la Francia ocupada en el verano de 1944, Baltimore en los años 90, y Londres y Montreal en la actualidad.

30 review for Lo Que No Nos Contaron (ebook)

  1. 4 out of 5

    Katie B

    This book had a good mix of mystery and family drama. The story involves family secrets that have been held for decades and span multiple countries. I really enjoyed Eleanor-Rigby slowly uncovering the truth about her mother and her past. Definitely satisfied with my Amazon Kindle First free selection this month. Journalist Eleanor-Rigby Donovan receives a letter in the mail hinting that her mother committed a crime. Given that her mother is dead, she can't ask her if there is any tru This book had a good mix of mystery and family drama. The story involves family secrets that have been held for decades and span multiple countries. I really enjoyed Eleanor-Rigby slowly uncovering the truth about her mother and her past. Definitely satisfied with my Amazon Kindle First free selection this month. Journalist Eleanor-Rigby Donovan receives a letter in the mail hinting that her mother committed a crime. Given that her mother is dead, she can't ask her if there is any truth to the letter and her father isn't really much help either. Eleanor eventually finds herself in Baltimore in search of the truth and soon meets George-Harrison Collins, a man who received a similar letter in the mail hinting his mother also committed a crime. This is a story of how sometimes the people you know aren't quite who you thought they were. I liked the family dynamics in this one particularly with Eleanor-Rigby and her father and siblings. Finding out more about her mother and her life before she had children was definitely something that held my interest as well. My only small complaint about the book was I felt too many characters were used to tell the story and some of them weren't really necessary in my opinion. It's not that the story was hard to follow, it's more I'm just not a fan of seeing the story unfold through just about every single character that is introduced. Overall though this was an interesting story and I would love to check out other books by the author.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Melki

    All we can ever see of our parents is what they wish to show us . . . Mysterious letters to characters on two continents send a young couple on a quest to discover not only the writer of the letters, but a long buried secret that both their mothers shared. I assume that was the author's intention, but it didn't work for me. I didn't find the "big mystery" believable, OR interesting, and the cutesy names of the players - Eleanor Rigby and George Harrison - only served to aggravate me further. All we can ever see of our parents is what they wish to show us . . . Mysterious letters to characters on two continents send a young couple on a quest to discover not only the writer of the letters, but a long buried secret that both their mothers shared. I assume that was the author's intention, but it didn't work for me. I didn't find the "big mystery" believable, OR interesting, and the cutesy names of the players - Eleanor Rigby and George Harrison - only served to aggravate me further. I did enjoy meeting Eleanor's family, particularly her perpetually bewildered dad, and would have been happier if the writer had dropped the whole suspense-thing, and just written about these characters. Levy's writing is serviceable, and this is not a terrible book. I don't feel that I wasted my time, but I would never read it again. My love for Eleanor's family is the only reason I gave this three stars instead of two.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Lynda Kelly

    I will most definitely be reading more by this author. This is probably one the best books I've read this year, I just loved it. It was my Kindle First free one for December.....I wasn't really blown away by any of the titles offered, to be honest, and just picked this as the best of a mediocre bunch......boy, was I wrong !! For me it has everything; murder and intrigue and really heartfelt moments that had me sobbing.....it's pretty nigh on perfect. Even better since my hopes really weren't tha I will most definitely be reading more by this author. This is probably one the best books I've read this year, I just loved it. It was my Kindle First free one for December.....I wasn't really blown away by any of the titles offered, to be honest, and just picked this as the best of a mediocre bunch......boy, was I wrong !! For me it has everything; murder and intrigue and really heartfelt moments that had me sobbing.....it's pretty nigh on perfect. Even better since my hopes really weren't that high. Much of it is set in the 1980s although I "felt" more like it was the 1920s we were living through-it just had that flavour to me. I lived through the 1980s and yet that terrific decade really didn't feature heavily at all..... I've read a book about a true-life family, the Garmans (The Rare and the Beautiful) and it brought them to mind for me a great deal as I read it. I loved his characters, well, I loved everything about it....that's it. All the way through I made little notes about what I thought was happening but as usual I was wonderfully wrong ! My favourite moment in the whole story was in Madrid........it was superbly described, even though I sat here bawling ! The story kicks off in London and I was initially irritated that the spellings are American ones but then it moved across the water and I learned at the end that the translator is American so I let that go. I thought weapons cache needed an apostrophe and I think the time differences got messed up as we're ahead of the USA, editor in chief needed hyphenating and one time soldier was written as solider but that was my lot for errors..... I do hope my little review encourages people to maybe give this a go as it really is terrific, trust me.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Barbara

    This was my choice for this month's Amazon Prime 'first reads' freebie. It was a month heavily skewed towards crime / mystery / thriller titles and I just wasn't in the mood. Having read another or Marc Levy's books - the one in which a bereaved daughter gets to spend a week with a lifelike automaton of her dead father - I knew he'd have something interesting to say. That said, I was firmly in the 3 stars camp right up to the final pages when the 'reveal' bought this an extra star and This was my choice for this month's Amazon Prime 'first reads' freebie. It was a month heavily skewed towards crime / mystery / thriller titles and I just wasn't in the mood. Having read another or Marc Levy's books - the one in which a bereaved daughter gets to spend a week with a lifelike automaton of her dead father - I knew he'd have something interesting to say. That said, I was firmly in the 3 stars camp right up to the final pages when the 'reveal' bought this an extra star and a glow of "Damn it, I didn't see THAT coming" and a big daft smile on my face. Eleanor-Rigby Donovan and George-Harrison Collins (honestly, I didn't like their hyphens) both receive mysterious letters telling them about their mothers and a terrible past crime. Both are told not to tell others and of course ignore that instruction. Both are then summoned to Baltimore to solve past mysteries about those mothers. The book starts rather slowly. I don't think we even hear from George-Harrison until the book is about a quarter done. Instead we bop around the world and through the past 70+ years meeting Eleanor-Rigby in contemporary London, Sally-Anne in the USA in the 1980s, and Robert in war-torn France back in 1944. Of course we make assumptions and start to piece together how the three are connected and then how George-Harrison also fits into the picture. The first half was firmly in the realm of me tapping my fingers on the Kindle and thinking 'Come on Levy, pick up the pace man'. It's worth it though. There's the typical Levy 'not quite real but not quite fantasy' feel about the book. The reader has to be willing to suspend a bit of disbelief to get through this. The unpeeling of the onion layers of the story seems to be pretty logical right up to that amazing final reveal that makes you question everything you thought you knew. Levy's sentence structure is very straight-forward, simplistic, direct. Not at all what I'd normally associate with the elegance of a lot of French writers. I don't know if that's him or his translator and I also don't really know how I feel about it. But I got to the end and thought 'Aha!' and that's good enough for me. Levy makes you care about people who are superficially rather hard to love. And that's got to be worth something.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Amanda Powers

    Weak Plot, Flat Characters I'm not sure if it's the translation, but this really was a waste of time for me to read. The main characters are absolutely terribly written. They are complete strangers, and yet both want to jump each other. And it's bizzarely written. One moment, there's chemistry. The next moment, one is snapping at the other. The dad is put in as some sort of plot device, but really it's just pages of backfill. The book itself is over 300 pages not because the story is that complex, Weak Plot, Flat Characters I'm not sure if it's the translation, but this really was a waste of time for me to read. The main characters are absolutely terribly written. They are complete strangers, and yet both want to jump each other. And it's bizzarely written. One moment, there's chemistry. The next moment, one is snapping at the other. The dad is put in as some sort of plot device, but really it's just pages of backfill. The book itself is over 300 pages not because the story is that complex, but because there's weird back and forth in time plots, not to mention multiple POVs in one chapter. At one point, you have both 1st and 3rd in the span of a few paragraphs. I'm glad this was free, because I'd ask for my money back had I paid anything for it.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Melissa Storm

    Good writing and great characterization, but... I gave up when the 8th narrator and 3rd timeline was introduced. It made the plot incredibly hard to follow, especially since the scenes did not stay in only the viewpoint character's head.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Dusty Drosche

    This was a fun read and a great way to start 2019. A light mystery with many aspects the reader is able to figure out by the end but just enough twists and questions to keep you entertained. It’s also a super fast read despite the fact that there is not a ton of action. Love, family drama, mystery,secrets. WWII, this book has a lot going on but remarkably Levy is able to throw it all at you without much confusion. I did feel that the last 25% of the book seemed to stretch on a bit, the overall b This was a fun read and a great way to start 2019. A light mystery with many aspects the reader is able to figure out by the end but just enough twists and questions to keep you entertained. It’s also a super fast read despite the fact that there is not a ton of action. Love, family drama, mystery,secrets. WWII, this book has a lot going on but remarkably Levy is able to throw it all at you without much confusion. I did feel that the last 25% of the book seemed to stretch on a bit, the overall book being a bit too long, maybe 30-50 pages. But by then I was fully invested in the plot that it didn’t matter too much. The characters are likable, the reading is fun, and the light suspense just right to keep you intrigued. Very enjoyable.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Paul Swithers

    I found the whole "mysterious letters that push you to investigate your family's mysterious past" a bit too worn of a trope to be satisfying. The passion and tumult that were hinted at never really surfaced in a convincing way and I never felt like I connected with the characters' true voices. The author's use of one character or another for a detailed explanation of the next plot twist felt more appropriate to a Nancy Drew mystery, than an adult literary work. That said the mystery was interest I found the whole "mysterious letters that push you to investigate your family's mysterious past" a bit too worn of a trope to be satisfying. The passion and tumult that were hinted at never really surfaced in a convincing way and I never felt like I connected with the characters' true voices. The author's use of one character or another for a detailed explanation of the next plot twist felt more appropriate to a Nancy Drew mystery, than an adult literary work. That said the mystery was interesting enough to keep me reading. Perhaps, the characters and the writing overall are more compelling in the author's native language (French), or, perhaps, this is meant to be a "good enough" outline for a Hollywood movie that, given enough star power, rakes in the big bucks with a safe formula. I have no problem with that. I'd just rather read something with a bit more depth.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Emily Burke

    Total shit. Promising start even though the names and other details (pretty sure Michel’s dialogue is based on Data’s speech patterns from Star Trek) are corny. But, oy!! Took forever to finish because it was just soooooooo hacky & juvenile. When will I ever learn? Goodreads reviews suck. (And, yes, I’m writing one. I recognize the irony. But I am not lying to you like all the idiots who think a free book is good simply because it’s free.)

  10. 4 out of 5

    Dawn Michelle

    This was a marvelous book. I had no expectations going in; I barely even knew what it was about, just had glanced at the blurb on NetGalley and decided that I really wanted to read it. I got SO lucky with this one [not all blind faith reads turn out like this one did]. This is the story of Eleanor-Rigby - a girl with serious wanderlust, who lives her life as a journalist that travels the world. She loves her family, but after the loss of her mother, she just cannot seem to stay at home or near h This was a marvelous book. I had no expectations going in; I barely even knew what it was about, just had glanced at the blurb on NetGalley and decided that I really wanted to read it. I got SO lucky with this one [not all blind faith reads turn out like this one did]. This is the story of Eleanor-Rigby - a girl with serious wanderlust, who lives her life as a journalist that travels the world. She loves her family, but after the loss of her mother, she just cannot seem to stay at home or near home much anymore, much to the dismay of her twin, Michel, younger sister Maggie-Mae and their beloved Dad. She was fairly content with her life until the day she received a letter that changes everything she ever knew and believed about herself and her mother and takes her from London to Baltimore, Maryland, where she meets a man named George-Harrison who also received a letter [about the search for his father] and the game is on and the search for the truth begins and they continue on, no matter the cost. And the cost could be very steep. Filled with twist and turns and LOTS of sadness, this was an amazing story told from several points of view [which is needed to get the whole story] - from a safe house in the wilderness of France during WW2, to NYC, to Baltimore, England and Canada. And it is a story that is amazing, crazy and sad. Lies and secrecy will never get you anywhere but mired in sadness and bitterness and this book showcases that fact very well. These are fantastic and believable characters that you have empathy and liking for right from the beginning. And the end is really quite perfect. I am so glad I took a chance on this book - it was such a great read for me! Thank you to NetGalley and AmazonCrossings for providing this ARC in exchange for an honest review.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Britta

    The story here was good, but the telling left a bit to be desired. The dialogue, especially in the beginning, felt quite awkward at times. I don't know if I got used to it, or it actually improved. But even late in the book there were some bits that jolted me right out of the story. The narration varied: 1st person present, 3rd person past. And it resulted in a sense that we were being told things (feelings, events) that the narrator had no right to know. Which also pulled me out of the story. T The story here was good, but the telling left a bit to be desired. The dialogue, especially in the beginning, felt quite awkward at times. I don't know if I got used to it, or it actually improved. But even late in the book there were some bits that jolted me right out of the story. The narration varied: 1st person present, 3rd person past. And it resulted in a sense that we were being told things (feelings, events) that the narrator had no right to know. Which also pulled me out of the story. The chapters also alternated in time frame (1944, 1980, 2016) and while the background was needed, the organization of seemed a bit random. Finally, it was a bit convoluted - so many events and characters to keeps straight - and there were times that something from many chapters ago would be referenced without any reminders. Again, good story. But the writing felt forced. (Oh, when the historian quoted a lengthy letter from years ago, then made sure to tell the listener that, as a historian, he was used to memorizing such things. Oy. Just awkward.)

  12. 5 out of 5

    Misty

    The Last of the Stanfields just wasn’t, for me, an enjoyable read. In fact, I usually inhale a book like I’m gasping for breath (quickly and with great fervor), but this took me two full days of starting and stopping. I even contemplating shelving it before I’d hit the 50% mark. In the end, I slogged through and was left tired and honestly glad to have finished. The premise is that of two strangers, Eleanor-Rigby Donovan and George-Harrison Collins, receiving nearly identical letters, the conte The Last of the Stanfields just wasn’t, for me, an enjoyable read. In fact, I usually inhale a book like I’m gasping for breath (quickly and with great fervor), but this took me two full days of starting and stopping. I even contemplating shelving it before I’d hit the 50% mark. In the end, I slogged through and was left tired and honestly glad to have finished. The premise is that of two strangers, Eleanor-Rigby Donovan and George-Harrison Collins, receiving nearly identical letters, the contents of which call into question everything they think they know about their mothers. The anonymous writer of these letters orchestrates a blind meeting for the two in Baltimore, as Eleanor-Rigby travels from England and George-Harrison from Canada. Together they embark upon a mission to uncover the truth behind a specific accusation leveled in the strange letters—that both of their mothers were involved in a significant crime. The book is structured primarily as a first person narrative from Eleanor-Rigby’s POV. With that said, alternating chapters are told in third person. The reader travels from Baltimore, Maryland in the 1980s to war-torn France in the 40s, then to England, Canada and the US in 2016. It’s a dizzying journey that made me want to grab the author by the shoulders and scream “FOR GOD’S SAKE STOP!” It was just overwhelming, disjointed and frenetic. Add to the structural chaos the fact that there were just too many extraneous and unnecessary plot threads, characters and details. The reader learns about Eleanor-Rigby’s family through painful specifics that lent nothing to the story. Her father loves his car, her brother is on the spectrum and works in a library, her sister has a boyfriend who owns a pub, and on, and on, and on. The author’s attention to the trivial carries through each chapter. It’s as if he is trying too hard to infuse an air of authenticity to the work, when instead the overwhelming minutiae serves only to suffocate the story. Mark Twain once said, “When you catch an adjective, kill it. No, I don't mean utterly, but kill most of them--then the rest will be valuable. They weaken when they are close together. They give strength when they are far apart.” I believe the same holds true for intricacies offered in isolation. Twain would have hated this piece. In the end, I wasn’t sure exactly who the target audience was here. History buffs are plied with chapters that skip through France on the heels of an American who joins forces with the French Resistance circa 1944. Romance readers are served a secondary love story. Those who enjoy the mystery genre are presented with a puzzle that is challenging. For me, this scatter-shot approach was simply disconcerting. Sometimes there is wisdom in choosing depth over breadth. If you love history and don’t mind tangential forays and painfully detailed accounts of events, you may enjoy this. Three stars for the primary plot and the addition of an interesting twist. Just not my cup of tea.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Jypsy

    I wasn't sure what to expect from this book. The Last of the Stanfields turned out to be kind of weird. The story line was choppy and strange. The characters were hard to identify with. The entire thing is so all over the place. It's entertaining and engaging in a ridiculous way. Overall, it's actually not bad, just different. Thanks to NetGalley for an arc in exchange for an honest review.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Nina

    A summary of the plot doesn't convey how entertaining the book was, but it starts with a woman receiving an anonymous letter after her mother's death, suggesting that her mother had secrets and had committed a crime. The woman and her sister decide to unravel the mystery, while her charming father and Asperger-ish brother are privately sitting on a few clues themselves. A delightful story, well-written. I'll look for more of this author's books.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Lesley Potts

    Those Amazon Prime free Kindle books that appear on the first of every month can be hit or miss. I usually download one anyway, because you never know when you might need a book to read at short notice. The Last of the Stanfields was this month’s pick. To be honest, I accidentally opened it while fat fingering around my Kindle screen. I’m glad I did. The strands of the Stanfield family history gradually come together through four interwoven storylines set in four countries. And there’s an Art el Those Amazon Prime free Kindle books that appear on the first of every month can be hit or miss. I usually download one anyway, because you never know when you might need a book to read at short notice. The Last of the Stanfields was this month’s pick. To be honest, I accidentally opened it while fat fingering around my Kindle screen. I’m glad I did. The strands of the Stanfield family history gradually come together through four interwoven storylines set in four countries. And there’s an Art element too, which was an unexpected bonus. The biggest mystery for me was why the author, who is French but lives in New York, needed a translator.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Elly

    I found it slow to start - it was difficult to get into with so many different characters and timelines and back and forthing. Blah. It got better when you got a handle on what was going on. Story was vaguely interesting, but the writing style basically dragged you through to the end, not in a twisty hold your hand as you run through a warren of alleyways, but in the chained to a wrecking ball that’s going through brick walls kind of way. It was painful, not suspenseful. I was also re I found it slow to start - it was difficult to get into with so many different characters and timelines and back and forthing. Blah. It got better when you got a handle on what was going on. Story was vaguely interesting, but the writing style basically dragged you through to the end, not in a twisty hold your hand as you run through a warren of alleyways, but in the chained to a wrecking ball that’s going through brick walls kind of way. It was painful, not suspenseful. I was also really confused with some of the reveals - the perspective flipped frequently, but some of the first person views shared emotions/thoughts of other characters in scenes the narrator wasn’t even in? And it wasn’t like the second character was telling the narrator either. It felt like we were being told, not shown, not along for the ride. As if we were being set up for the next reveal but the author couldn’t figure out how share the information within the context of the story. Also, it’s full of awkwardness, the GH and ER attraction being the worst of it. That coupling was weird (and too forced at the beginning, like she’s attracted but he’s boorish and she can’t stand how he xyz, shut up). Also, family is family. The technical not related thing was crossing a line for me. The poison pen reveal was ridiculous, and the whole letter farce runs completely against the persona we’re presented with. I felt the only really interesting storyline was the passion with which M and SA perused the independent. That bit I loved. The weird love triangles at that time was a bit much. Three stars. Probably won’t read again.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Anya

    I read my first Marc Levy's novel (which was also the first one he wrote!) some twenty years ago.. It was sweet, but very short and simple. Reading "The Last of the Stanfield" I could clearly see how the author has improved his skills over time, that book is much longer and profound, with good characterization, a well crafted mystery and deep research (some of the story took place during WW II). Maybe this time I felt there were even too many words, the first half was a really slow burner, I read my first Marc Levy's novel (which was also the first one he wrote!) some twenty years ago.. It was sweet, but very short and simple. Reading "The Last of the Stanfield" I could clearly see how the author has improved his skills over time, that book is much longer and profound, with good characterization, a well crafted mystery and deep research (some of the story took place during WW II). Maybe this time I felt there were even too many words, the first half was a really slow burner, which I usually do not mind, but in that case the author's writing was too straightforward and the characterization was ok but not so subtle to keep the reader's attention and interest for such a long time.. That's probably mainly my problem with french books. I can read them in the original language or translated but I never like the writing style as much as I do with English or even American books. But maybe that's just me! Anyway the second half was really good, a page turner, and as I mostly listened to the audio version even the first slower part was ok with me, and the experience was overall an enjoyable one. I'll be reading something more from the author in the future, not waiting another twenty years!

  18. 4 out of 5

    Sandybfl

    Excellent! Great story! I assume nothing was lost in the translation. I've read Marc Levy before, and he doesn't disappoint. Definitely recommend.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Kim

    Fiction allows the reader to escape reality and time becomes irrelevant. This novel is an interesting read. Depending on your perspective, this novel can end happily or sadly. Two people, living in 2 different countries oceans apart, met and fell in love, and married each other. Not all real-life encounters have the same happy ending. On the contrary, 2 different people who love each other dearly but due to circumstances, decided to live separate lives. Their love for each Fiction allows the reader to escape reality and time becomes irrelevant. This novel is an interesting read. Depending on your perspective, this novel can end happily or sadly. Two people, living in 2 different countries oceans apart, met and fell in love, and married each other. Not all real-life encounters have the same happy ending. On the contrary, 2 different people who love each other dearly but due to circumstances, decided to live separate lives. Their love for each other remained untarnished to the day they died. Reality reflects more of this scenario.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Stephanie

    A great read --- and a surprising, unforeseen ending!

  21. 5 out of 5

    Angie Boyter

    Incredibly implausible premise, but the author is supposedly the most popular author in France, and it was free, so I picked it up and persisted through 50 pages because the writing style is so engaging. Just too much suspension of disbelief to swallow. For example, in 1980 the book claims women in Baltimore were not allowed to be writers on papers, just researchers. I am sure that was not true. I knew the woman who was the Sunpaper restaurant critic in 1975. And one night a bunch of friends get Incredibly implausible premise, but the author is supposedly the most popular author in France, and it was free, so I picked it up and persisted through 50 pages because the writing style is so engaging. Just too much suspension of disbelief to swallow. For example, in 1980 the book claims women in Baltimore were not allowed to be writers on papers, just researchers. I am sure that was not true. I knew the woman who was the Sunpaper restaurant critic in 1975. And one night a bunch of friends get together and decide to start their own paper, and one of them, who is an accountant for Procter and Gamble and not even in the industry, sits down and works up their business plan including staffing and pay that evening! See why it strains my little critical senses? So far the Maryland setting does not seem too true-to-life either, and I have lived here all my life. Butlers in Baltimore in 1980? Not even in horse country! I find the author's bio also rather implausible. Why would an author who lives in New York need a translator? And doesn't he sound like a bit too much of a polymath? I am prepared to find out the bio is also fiction!

  22. 4 out of 5

    Nicole McIntyre

    An author is supposed to show, not tell, and this book suffered by not following that advice. For a book that jumps time, space, and narrator routinely, it would have been much more intriguing to have the scenes play out with first person perspective as opppsed to a third hand account blantantly laid out for the audience. This is particularly true, I think, for the heist and aftermath. How much more suspenseful, exciting, and tragic would it have been to read it in "real time" as opposed to a re An author is supposed to show, not tell, and this book suffered by not following that advice. For a book that jumps time, space, and narrator routinely, it would have been much more intriguing to have the scenes play out with first person perspective as opppsed to a third hand account blantantly laid out for the audience. This is particularly true, I think, for the heist and aftermath. How much more suspenseful, exciting, and tragic would it have been to read it in "real time" as opposed to a reminiscence? I also found the dialogue really forced and unbelievable in some places, so much so that I kept thinking it sounded like a teenage girl wrote the lines. And speaking of forced, could we please discuss the lengths the author goes to in order to create some romance? Totally unnecessary (and given what we find out, a bit weird to me) and basically unbelievable. I felt similarly about the relationship with the sister. Every interaction with her felt contrived and over the top, pulling you out of the story itself.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Katy

    The book jumps between times and narrators a bit too much for me. I had difficulty following the story line and feeling engaged with the characters.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Joyce

    Reading this was like working on a mosaic puzzle... I think it’s a stretch to call it a love story. The book starts exactly as the blurb describes and it sucks you in. The writing’s voice seems to speak to you rather than just be words on the paper. But each chapter changes perspective - switching between telling other characters’ stories. Each chapter draws you in but you do need to refocus, reset and reinvest at each change. Quickly you realize that somehow the author is dropping clues and hin Reading this was like working on a mosaic puzzle... I think it’s a stretch to call it a love story. The book starts exactly as the blurb describes and it sucks you in. The writing’s voice seems to speak to you rather than just be words on the paper. But each chapter changes perspective - switching between telling other characters’ stories. Each chapter draws you in but you do need to refocus, reset and reinvest at each change. Quickly you realize that somehow the author is dropping clues and hints and that everyone is interconnected... therein lies the mystery. The author’s writing is quite impressive. I can’t imagine how he outlined this story. The plot is seemingly complex yet the he breaks it down and tells it effortlessly. While the story enfolded, the secrets and the pasts of the characters were revealed. I found myself contemplating my own legacy. Everyone has a story they can decide to tell or not. Once we are gone, our own stories can extinguish unless we reveal them beforehand. What do we want to reveal to our children? What should we reveal? And sometimes, the story is in the how and the whys more than the story itself. With that said - Everything wraps up rather neatly at the end, for the most part. However, when the final “who” question I had was answered, the “how” wasn’t answered as specifically as I would have liked. I give four stars to this because despite the chapter transitions, the writing was so great. He just has a way with words that seems like you are listening to a long story with a friend over coffee or something rather than simply reading words. The story itself is deserving of four stars as well. It draws you in and it feels like an experience.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Ceecee

    This book seems to have got mixed reviews but as should be patently obvious from my rating, I really enjoyed it!! This is the first book I have read by Marc Levy but it certainly won’t be my last. The book had me hooked from the start as I thought the characters seemed to come alive in the page, the quality of the writing was really good and I loved the touches of ironic humour which occasionally appeared. Ray Donovan (not the TV fixer obviously 😀) seemed immensely likeable and I loved that all This book seems to have got mixed reviews but as should be patently obvious from my rating, I really enjoyed it!! This is the first book I have read by Marc Levy but it certainly won’t be my last. The book had me hooked from the start as I thought the characters seemed to come alive in the page, the quality of the writing was really good and I loved the touches of ironic humour which occasionally appeared. Ray Donovan (not the TV fixer obviously 😀) seemed immensely likeable and I loved that all his children had such affection and loyalty for their father and recognised that he was a fantastic dad. All his children were interesting too -the twins Eleanor-Rigby and Michel (from the Beatles phase) and Maggie, from a Rod Stewart phase. Their mother Sally-Anne died suddenly and following receipt of some mysterious letters E-R set off to learn more about her mother’s past. This quest took her to Baltimore where she met George-Harrison Collins who had also received a similar letter and also to Canada. The story is told from several perspectives from the Second World War through to 2016. I didn’t find it difficult to follow, in fact the total opposite. It was interesting to see how these apparently disconnected stories connected so well in 2016. Eleanor-Rigby and George-Harrison made some dramatic and surprising discoveries about their respective mothers and their ancestry. I really liked the ending which to me was a neat ending to a fascinating story. The story also involved art, an element I particularly enjoyed and I liked the insight into the art world. Finally, I thought the translation from the original French was very good and the translator was able to ensure the story flowed well.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Bin

    Thank you NetGalley for the ARC in return for an honest review. The premise of this book was quite intriguing, so I had high hopes when I started reading it. Two strangers from across the world received a strange letter telling them to investigate the mysterious pasts of their own mothers. It got very confusing with the POV's and with the jumping back and forth between the present and the past. The bantering between the two main characters was very childish, defensive, and at times, rude. I Thank you NetGalley for the ARC in return for an honest review. The premise of this book was quite intriguing, so I had high hopes when I started reading it. Two strangers from across the world received a strange letter telling them to investigate the mysterious pasts of their own mothers. It got very confusing with the POV's and with the jumping back and forth between the present and the past. The bantering between the two main characters was very childish, defensive, and at times, rude. I am not sure how that turn into a love story... The big mystery that they try to solve was not very believable and well, doesn't really make sense. The extend that their mothers were willing to go to achieve their goal was beyond me.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Pamela

    I enjoyed this story. It was interesting and kept me engaged. BUT I did endure weak character development, implausible plot lines, awkward & childish dialogue, predictable outcomes, and extra characters just tossed in for what purpose Who knows? Also there were too many convenient clues & findings for a mystery. I’m hoping something was lost in translation.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Joan Bannan

    This author is a master of dialog and subtext. No wonder so many copies of his books have been sold world-wide. There were a several places in the story where one character would launch into a lengthy dialog and it seemed unrealistic that that character would have the depth of detail they related. And though done more adroitly than most, this author jumped the point to view between characters, often in the same paragraph. And towards the end, I was left with a few questions. But this story was e This author is a master of dialog and subtext. No wonder so many copies of his books have been sold world-wide. There were a several places in the story where one character would launch into a lengthy dialog and it seemed unrealistic that that character would have the depth of detail they related. And though done more adroitly than most, this author jumped the point to view between characters, often in the same paragraph. And towards the end, I was left with a few questions. But this story was excellent and so well-crafted, those little things are entirely forgivable. I need also to mention also (because I appreciate it when others do!) that there were a couple of sexy scenes and use of profanity that I would have preferred to skip and wish I could "unsee." I give this a strong five stars and will definitely seek out other Marc Levy works.

  29. 4 out of 5

    PeppyKC

    What a fun book! Personal biased opinion, of course, because I admit l was hooked from the beginning when I heard the clever Beatles references in the names of the characters. But the story was fun and it even had a heist incorporated in it! It was a really unique in my opinion book. Not some sort of classic but definitely fun and fresh.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Laurie Buchanan

    Marc Levy is an excellent storyteller. His most recent book, THE LAST OF THE STANFIELDS, is no exception. I love the way he braided three distinctly different strands of time together to create one captivating story. And it has a twist at the end. Trust me, you won't see it coming!

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