Rated of 5
by Susan P. (Boston, MA) You Don't Want to Read On But You Can't Stop
Carolyn Parkhurst has done it again: She's written a very disconcerting book (Dogs of Babel was very upsetting) that bothers me but I couldn't stop reading. I had to finish it! The central character, a novelist, has just finished her last book -- a book with the endings to all her previous novels changed. As a lover of fiction, I found this unacceptable. Yet I wanted to see what she would write and then I found myself trying to decide which ending I liked better. All this is scattered through the story of her son, a rock musician, accused of murder. The mysteries of who did the murder, why mother and son were estranged, and why she wanted to change endings makes you realize that Ms. Parkhurst is very talented. This book is for mystery lovers, and also perfect for those who cares about fiction and what it says about the writer.
Rated of 5
by Kimberly L. (Chula Vista, CA) The Nobodies Album
Carolyn Parkhurst’s 'The Nobodies Album' is a distinctive and instantly engaging novel. Parkhurst deftly weaves a tale of delicate relationships forged during a time of murder, uncertainty, and blame. Throughout the story, Octavia Frost, author and main character, intersperses vignettes from her work, mirroring and giving further perspective to the twists of plot throughout 'The Nobodies Album'.
I read 'The Nobodies Album' quickly and hungrily. I strongly recommend Carolyn Parkhurst’s novel to readers who enjoy three-dimensional characters. While not a true edge-of-the-seat murder mystery, the author’s writing carries the reader from one page to the next until finally reaching the (not entirely) unforeseen conclusion.
Rated of 5
by Elizabeth D. (Maple Grove, MN) E
I loved this book. The idea of an author going back and rewriting the final chapters of her books is intriguing and was handled well in this novel. The "final chapter" excepts are like short stories scattered throughout a novel, and I wished more than one of these fictional books actually existed. I was very moved by a number of them. I liked the exploration of the writing process, and the reminder that when an author is making even the smallest of decisions, she or he is foreclosing a multitude of other options (much like life). While that's not a new idea, I thought it was interesting that the fictional author, Olivia, says early on in the book that when a reader is finished with a book, the reader should feel like the conclusion was inevitable, that it couldn't have been wrapped up any other way. I know what she meant, having read a few books where the ending was so wrong. And yet... the options are endless. This is a book I want to read again (uncommon for me), since I believe it's one in which I'll discover something new. There was one piece of recurring symbolism that I'm not sure I understood - I may want to contact Carolyn Parkhurst to see if my interpretation is correct!
Rated of 5
by Linda S. (Tucker, GA) 4.5 Stars!!
I really loved The Nobodies Album. A murder mystery provides the plot framework for the novel, but it is the element that tells the story of a dysfunctional family that is most compelling. The author is very adept at the emotions and nuances that resonate in relationships. Indeed, some of the characters’ reactions to a plot twist were so real that you identify with them and thus, think about the book for some time after you’ve read the last page. I also found the technique, seemingly a version of the epistolary novel but using the endings of short stories rather than letters to tell a larger story, that the Parkhurst uses to examine the question of “What-if we could rewrite the past?” to be very effective. A really good read that I definitely recommend to those interested in family/emotional stories.
Rated of 5
by Karen B. (Pittsburgh, PA) Outstanding Literary Mystery
Carolyn Parkhurst has once again succeeded in surprising her readers. In the "Nobodies Album", Octavia Frost, an enigmatic author whose latest work focuses on rewriting the endings of her previous novels, manages to rewrite her relationship with her estranged son while helping him cope with both a current and past tragedy. Once begun, the reader feels compelled to continue; what happened to Octavia's husband and daughter, what caused Octavia's and Milo's estrangement, who murdered Bettina? The "excerpt" chapters from Octavia's new manuscript help to increase the reader's curiosity and provide for the novel's excellent pacing. I thoroughly enjoyed this novel and will wholeheartedly recommend it. Now that I've finished "The Nobodies Album" I'd love to be able to move onto every one of Octavia Frost's novels! Alas, they don't exist; just like the songs on Milo's Nobodies Album.
Rated of 5
by Jan M. (Jenks, OK) Interesting concept but difficult read
Carolyn Parkhurst had a wonderful story to tell, but in my opinion an awkward approach to it's telling. I loved the analogy between life's consequences and book endings, However, the randomly placed variations of other books into the central story about Milo were distracting. I felt she could have fleshed out Milo's life and the loss of her husband and child rather than muddy up the story with other novel endings. That said, she did write a great story that captivated this reader to the end. I found myself hurrying through the alternate endings to get back to Milo's story so I could find out "who done it"!.
News Corp will officially split into two companies June 28(May 24 2013) As expected, News Corp has announced it will officially split its publishing and entertainment businesses on 28 June.
Its board approved the...