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Publisher's Summary

Paganini – showman, womaniser, dazzling virtuoso – is one of the most fascinating characters in the history of classical music. His violin is now kept in Genoa, where it is played once every two years by the winner of an international competition. This year, an unsavoury art dealer is found dead in his hotel room the day after the concert. Clutched in his fist is a scrap of sheet music torn off a page that belongs to the competition winner. But how did the dead man get hold of it? And why? The police ask for violinmaker Castiglione to help them unravel a mystery that has gone unanswered for over a century.
©2009 Paul Adam (P)2012 Isis Publishing Ltd
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By Earnest on 11-10-13

Amusing little listen

Is there anything you would change about this book?

How tempting it would be to say, " please start again, this time with more andante." Yes, the reader happily gets to know the names of a lot more pieces of music. Yes, the reader can applaud the evidence of some no doubt satisfying research by the author. But the story remains limpid. It is a pale promise of what might have happened on the next page of some missing sheet of music. Cajoled into believing that the quest these two blokes are on might be worth joining, the reader plods along from researched find to researched find. Links are made, predictably, right in front of our..ears." Yes, yes, yes ..but I guessed this," escaped from my lips far too often not to take notice and sigh.This listener would have liked a bit more andante mobile in fact..less tired, world weariness and more athletic story development.And again, we have a story where the landscape may be dotted with the wonders of the Italian countryside but it would seem all the women have gone shopping? Or perhaps they have all died or left? Or they are too old even to stay in the story to cook?

What do you think your next listen will be?

I am off to find some un cult-like, un- religious Zen. "Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance," an old favourite, as I remember it way back in the 70's. The women are absent of course..there is little room in your average Existentialist's life for any women of value. This should be bearable because I remember the notions being sufficiently lightweight, as represented in the novel, but interesting. We shall see.

Which scene was your favorite?

Perhaps the scene at The Funeral where Zen and il Principe are written at their finest. Plus it felt like Mr Kitchen was a bit tired that day and his " loud, banging style," momentarily wavered.

Was Paganini's Ghost worth the listening time?

Interestingly I will say yes. Why? Because I love research, music, wit, the Italian countryside and people. I remain loyal to all the above and I sensed that Mr Dibdin was on the wane. My sympathies..somewhat belatedly.

Any additional comments?

Quality. In this particular instance, the listener gets a nice proximation.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By Linda on 03-18-13

Good plot - well read - and music link fascinating

I listen to a lot of audible books (whilst dog walking, ironing, driving to meetings etc) and I think this is probably the best I have listened to thus far. I came to this via Sean Barrett who I find an excellent reader but this particular download is a 100% on every score. The plot is good, the characters wonderfully drawn and the reading - very slow - is absolutely spot on. I cannot recommend it highly enough and I am now at this moment going to look at other titles from the author who I have not come across before.

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21 of 21 people found this review helpful


By Maureen on 01-12-13

Different but brilliant!

This is one of the most unusual modern murder detective stories I've listened to in many years of being an audiobook fan. The story was so interesting I found myself Googling Paganini and his Guarneri violin, "Il Cannone". The cast is full of famous characters and anyone interested in history and classical music will love it, as well as any detective story afficianados.

The main protagonist Gianni, is a violin maker, repairer and amateur sleuth, who with his police friend, Antonio, sets out to solve a mystery and a murder committed in Cremona, Italy, after a shy young prize winning violinist plays "Il Cannone" at a concert in the cathedral,

The narrator is the inestimable Sean Barrett, who is terrific as usual. (He'd even be brilliant reading the phone directory!)

Can't think why there aren't more ratings and reviews for this book. Please try it, you'll love it.

I'm hoping to hear more from Paul Adam, his writing is terrific.

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14 of 14 people found this review helpful

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