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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Enthralling, grown-up love story.
In limpid, beautiful English Faulks describes the sights and events in a number of cities (New York, Washington, London, Moscow, Saigon) through the eyes of, and as a mirror for, the feelings of his protagonists, principally his heroine Mary van der Linden. The theme of the atmosphere of a place reflecting the passions of the observer has not been done as well since...
Published on 8 Jan 2002

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Very disappointing
Like many other reviewers on here, I thought 'Birdsong' had some merit with its brilliantly researched and vividly painted WW1 setting, though I was left with the impression that he's probably a better journalist (his original trade) than he is a novelist.

I found this one a trial though. I have a personal policy of never allowing myself to leave a book...
Published on 9 Oct 2007 by Steven Forster


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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A changing world believably and beautifully observered, 16 Jun 2001
By 
ROBERT PATRICK BALL (LEEDS, W YORKS United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
Sebastian Faulks together with Kazuo Ishiguro are two of the most moving and enjoyable writers in Britain today. They both have such sympathy and love for their characters and write with great observation and authentic believable detail.I have enjoyed this book just as much as Birdsong. As a student in the 60's I remember many discussions with fellow American friends about the differences between our countries. The character of Mary van der Linden forms a convincing and moving bridge between these two different cultures and two very different worlds.His descriptions of New York I thought were wonderfully written and counterpointed well against a slow sad death in a suburban England.
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1 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb fiction. One of Faulks's best, 21 July 2002
By A Customer
This review is from: On Green Dolphin Street (Paperback)
A cannot understand some of the negative reviews for this book. For me, it's every bit as good as "Birdsong". OK, it's quite slow moving, but the characterisation is superb, particularly that of Frank, a sympathetically portrayed American journalist. The backdrop to the novel - geographically, New York, London & Moscow, politically Nixon vs Kennedy and the era, early 60's - are superbly evoked. I expect to see a film of it being made soon, but fear a tacked-on "happy ending"!
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1 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Kennedy Era Classic - don't miss!!, 9 July 2002
By A Customer
This review is from: On Green Dolphin Street (Paperback)
A classy, romantic novel set in the high stress era of the Cold War. I was surprised at how the author combined the political intrigue of the sub plot with an almost Casablanca style love triangle romance. The evocative and memorable descriptions of New York, Moscow, Washington and London were particularly atmospheric. The fictional characters are interlaced with real movers and shakers of the Kennedy era, and the political intrigues of cold war America.
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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A holiday read only, 20 Aug 2009
By 
Belinda L (London, England) - See all my reviews
This review is from: On Green Dolphin Street (Paperback)
If you can get past the first 80 pages, which are really quite boring, it improves a bit. USA election time for kennedy/Nixon reflected in the lives of 3 characters, which are unrealistic, but I suppose symbolic of a time that was.

The style of writing is however excellent and the language rests easily in the brain. It was only after I has finished it that my opinion of it improved as the dream like quality remained with me for some time.
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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars An unsatisfying read., 20 Nov 2010
This review is from: On Green Dolphin Street (Paperback)
Having read and thoroughly enjoyed Birdsong and Charlotte Gray, I was looking forward to another Faulks epic. Unfortunately what I have just finished is an unengaging, inconsequential exercise in self-flagellation and self-pity. Faulks' style of writing, usually so good at instilling a sense of empathy for his characters, this time seemed to flit from florid prose to the very matter-of-fact. This further detracted from an already fractured plotline. Charlie was the most agreeable character for me but I wanted to find out more about him, instead I found over long passages about the unlikeable Mary and her selfish quest for love. I thought the setting in Moscow was a missed opportunity to add an external dimension in the form of the Communist threat to the van der Linden's, all I really discovered here was that the Communists didn't do much for Russian supermarkets! The ending left me unfulfilled and, to be honest, slightly angry that it arrived so abruptly - almost as if Mr Faulks had gotten fed up with his own characters. To conclude, I found the book a chore to read and, if I hadn't paid for it, doubt I would have finished it.
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0 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Mary's agony, 19 Aug 2002
This review is from: On Green Dolphin Street (Paperback)
As a Faulks fan, this latest effort did not dissappoint. I am always fascinated by his in-depth and realistic female characterisations. In this case Mary's agony; watching her husband succumb to alcoholism and subquently quite obvious mental ill-health; her natural devotion to her children; the loss of her mother and her consuming love for Renzo, is superbly thrown into relief by the backdrop of international political tension. The moral dilemma faced by Frank and Mary is the weak link and the ending redolent of a Catherine Cookson novel. I wonder if it was a difficult decision for Faulks to send Mary back to Charlie? I suspect, however, if she had remained with Frank, all the emotion associated with her feelings for Charlie and the children would have been somewhat negated, leaving her integrity irreparably damaged.
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On Green Dolphin Street
On Green Dolphin Street by Sebastian Faulks (Paperback - 27 May 2002)
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