Pat Conroy is without doubt America's favorite storyteller, a writer who portrays the anguished truth of the human heart and the painful secrets of families in richly lyrical prose and unforgettable narratives.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.More
"Astonishing...stunning...the range of passions and subjects that brings life to every page is almost endless." (The Washington Post Book World)
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Read it instead: Great book, terrible narrator
Someone with a convincing SC accent, or no accent at all.
I adore this novel. I've read it several times, and since I enjoy long audio books, and this one had such a high rating, I thought I'd give it a try. I gave up after the first hour of listening. I don't know where the narrator is originally from or where he learned his accent from, but it was unlike any South Carolinian accent I've ever heard. It sounded more like a Bostonian attempting a Texan accent. It was jarring, clipped, entirely too fast, and inconsistent. Moreover, his reading of the story was flat and uninspiring. I felt like I was listening to a news report from someone who didn't much care for what he was reporting on.
I adore Pat Conroy, and Beach Music holds a special spot in my heart as the first novel of his I ever read, but this rendition does it absolutely no justice. I've never given up on an audio book before because of a narrator, but I just couldn't stand to keep going with this one.