The Rocks

  • by Peter Nichols
  • Narrated by Steve West
  • 14 hrs and 54 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

A romantic pause resister propelled by the 60-year secret that has shaped two families, four lovers, and one seaside resort community.
Set against dramatic Mediterranean Sea views and lush olive groves, The Rocks opens with a confrontation and a secret: What was the mysterious, catastrophic event that drove two honeymooners apart so suddenly and absolutely in 1948 that they never spoke again despite living on the same island for 60 more years? And how did their history shape the Romeo and Juliet-like romance of their (unrelated) children decades later? Centered around a popular seaside resort club and its community, The Rocks is a double love story that begins with a mystery, then moves backward in time, era by era, to unravel what really happened decades earlier.
Peter Nichols writes with a pervading, soulful wisdom and self-knowing humor and captures perfectly this world of glamorous, complicated, misbehaving types with all their sophisticated flaws and genuine longing. The result is a bittersweet, intelligent, and romantic novel about how powerful the perceived truth can be - as a bond and as a barrier - even if it's not really the whole story and how one misunderstanding can echo irreparably through decades.

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What the Critics Say

"A wondrous novel. The Rocks is clearly the odyssey Peter Nichols was born to undertake." (Richard Russo)
"A Mediterranean idyll, a family saga, a mystery. A love story that's as weird as real life, as rich and surprising and tender and affecting. The Rocks is all these things. Like Beautiful Ruins, it reminds me of all the reasons I read novels." (Jennifer Haigh, Pen/Hemingway Award-winning author of Faith)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

I didn't believe the reviewers

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

Probably not. I ignored previous reviewers who said that it was hard to tell what timeframe the story was in. I would find myself spending 5 minutes going "what-what just happened?" because it's now 1946 instead of 2005. So I would lose track of some of the happenings.


If you’ve listened to books by Peter Nichols before, how does this one compare?

Haven't read any others.


What does Steve West bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

I think he did a good job.


If this book were a movie would you go see it?

Yes, because I think it would have been easier to follow the time-frames.


Any additional comments?

Now that I'm finished, I think it was a good book. But I really don't know how it could have been presented so that it was easier to know what year the story was covering.

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- Michal

Excellently plotted novel

A wonderful literary summer read! My only complaint is the reader's female voices all sounded the same and were a tad annoying. However don't let that keep you from an otherwise wonderful listen.
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- K. Augustine

Book Details

  • Release Date: 05-26-2015
  • Publisher: Penguin Audio