The City of Falling Angels

The City of Falling Angels

Book - 2005
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Traces the aftermath of the 1996 Venice opera house fire, an event that devastated Venetian society and was investigated by the author, who through interviews with such locals as a suicidal poet, a surrealist painter, and a master glassblower learned about the region's rich cultural history.
Publisher: New York :, Penguin Press,, [2005]
©2005
Copyright Date: ©2005
ISBN: 9781594200588
1594200580
9780739466919
0739466917
Characteristics: 414 pages ; 25 cm
Summary: Traces the aftermath of the 1996 Venice opera house fire, an event that devastated Venetian society and was investigated by the author, who through interviews with such locals as a suicidal poet, a surrealist painter, and a master glassblower learned about the region's rich cultural history.

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CMLibrary_gjd_0 Dec 28, 2015

If you think the people of Savannah are strange; wait until you read about Venice. Enjoyable read, just like his debut.

w
wmstrach
Jul 14, 2014

I loved reading about Venice through Berendt's eyes and his amazing contacts - I am a big fan of Donna Leon and her Venice though was a bit disturbed to learn that in fact murder is uncommon in Venice - but Leon manages to make all her accounts convincing and her world is enhanced by what Berendt reveals in this beautifully written and quite gripping narrative of his experiences there.

d
DorisWaggoner
May 25, 2014

Berendt says the timing of this visit to Venice was coincidental--he'd wanted to spend a few weeks there in the off-season getting to know the city, and its residents, without "the crush of other tourists." But he arrives 3 days after the disastrous fire that destroys the Fenice Opera House. This last opera house in the city, a showplace of interest to Venetians who inherit their season tickets, not tourists, sets off a drama that claims Berendt. I'm not an opera buff, and have never been to Venice, but he had me hooked. Somehow he got entree into the highest levels of Venetian society, officaldom, and the investigation. Corruption was everywhere, including the American volunteer groups working on Venetian restoration. Not all mysteries get solved, including why some interesting side topics are included in the book. I was left admiring Donna Leon's Venice mysteries even more, as Berendt's view of the city dovetails with hers. Oh--spoiler, but it took eight years and three contractors before the gala reopening of the Fenice.

austinmurphy Feb 01, 2012

To me, Venetians seem incredibly insular and self-obsessed. Spending an article with people like that would be fine, but a whole book was a bit much. This is no knock on Berendt's writing, just the subject itself.

r
readmore2
Jan 09, 2011

Excellent read especially if you love Venice and architecture! By the author of Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil

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