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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars It's OK - really - try it !
I thought this book was really quite good.
I didn't find the characters 'wooden' - I would just call them 'understated'. It was a hard, fast murder mystery in the usual mould, it was a gentle, ambling murder mystery that although it did have it's dark sides, it was also quite a relaxing read.
The descriptions of Florence were very evocative and I felt like I...
Published on 26 July 2005

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7 of 11 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars too much plot ?
I bought this book because of the Italian aspect, and there is some local colour to enjoy. The plot is too ambitious though, and the dialogue is wooden ... everyone seems to speak in the same register! I'm not sure where the 'dark side' of the storyline evolved, but it sits awkwardly with the party side, and it does detract, not least because the 'dark' characters are so...
Published on 2 Jan 2004


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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars It's OK - really - try it !, 26 July 2005
By A Customer
This review is from: A Party in San Niccolo (Paperback)
I thought this book was really quite good.
I didn't find the characters 'wooden' - I would just call them 'understated'. It was a hard, fast murder mystery in the usual mould, it was a gentle, ambling murder mystery that although it did have it's dark sides, it was also quite a relaxing read.
The descriptions of Florence were very evocative and I felt like I would miss most of the characters when I finished the book.
I'm certainly about to buy her other two !
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars ROMANCE, INTRIGUE, MURDER, SET IN BEAUTIFUL FLORENCE., 15 Aug 2005
By 
A. Bowhill (Chester, England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: A Party in San Niccolo (Paperback)
Evelina had been caught between two rocks off the beaten track. The body had been there for several hours as rigor mortis had already started to set in. Evelina was just fourteen years old.
In a dark Florentine back street another girl's dead body lays in a shower of broken glass. Her navel stud torn out and bleeding- there had been a violent struggle. The girl's name was Natasha Julius, also of very young age.
Gina Donovan felt like her life in London had been sinking for quite some time. With three children to look after and no time left to herself she was recently prone to have an outburst of tears and bordering a case of depression. Gina's husband calls their old college friend Jane Manzini who now lived in Florence. Could a week away make all the difference?
Lady Frances Richardson was about to throw one of her grandest celebration parties for her birthday. The party in San Niccolo was going to be her best remembered.
Between Gina's arrival and Frances' Party, fear and suspicion cast a shadow over the happy event. Gina question herself, was her life really upside-down or was it just a case of everybody else's lives looking a lot more complicated.
Wonderful, once again Christobel Kent has come through with her intelligent, well-paced descriptive writing, which I always love to read. Kent's observation of people and places for her characterisation are well told from elegant Italian ladies to the seedier and sinister side of life. Kent's describes the English residents, who try to remain in their class system when greeting each other on the street, with the rules of exclusion and involvement always feeling uncomfortable at being caught off guard. However an Italian would enjoy a leisurely conversation even with a perfect stranger. I found this quite amusing as you see things like this happen before your eyes when in Italy. Kent's geographic knowledge of Florence shines through. There's a lot of action going on in the story line, some of the other reviewers were put off by this, however I felt it added to the tension and the excitement, it was extremely well woven together. Congratulations to Kent, another thrilling read.
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12 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Atmospheric Thriller, 5 July 2003
By A Customer
This review is from: A Party in San Niccolo (Paperback)
I'm not the best reviewer in the world but wanted to let people know what a terrific first novel this is.
It's all set in one week with the party of the title being the denouement. Gina's week's holiday away from her slightly distracted husband and three demanding children turns out to be quite different from the one she expected.
The author conjures up such images of Florence both good and bad you can almost smell and taste it.
Please read this book - you won't be disappointed.
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars It's OK - really - try it !, 26 July 2005
By A Customer
This review is from: A Party in San Niccolo (Paperback)
I thought this book was really quite good.
I didn't find the characters 'wooden' - I would just call them 'understated'. It was a not a hard, fast murder mystery in the usual mould, it was a gentle, ambling murder mystery that although it did have it's dark sides, it was also quite a relaxing read.
The descriptions of Florence were very evocative and I felt like I would miss most of the characters when I finished the book.
I'm certainly about to buy her other two !
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a party in san niccolo, 1 July 2003
This review is from: A Party in San Niccolo (Paperback)
This is a treasure. Let her keep writing; one hopes she will.
It is a beauitifully choreographyed book,the characters are drawn simply with beauty and human understanding,the sense of place is illustrated with such dexterity of a writer far beyond her years,it has a freshness that is invigorating.
Slow and choopy to start, she does not dissapoint however.
It is a convoulted circumcumnavigation of time,place people and incendents and ultimitly works wonderfully.
One hopes that this imagination and this wonderful immpressionistic style will continue and florish
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10 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Two books, one great, 17 Sep 2003
By 
Page V. Tolbert (New York, NY USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: A Party in San Niccolo (Paperback)
I really enjoyed this book -- or at least, half of it. The author draws Florence beautifully, and her characters too, live. But the subplot involving the prostitution and murder is a less convincing depiction of the town's "dark side." I kept wishing the author had trusted her great ability to describe people and places, and had kept the story a bit 'smaller' and more personal.
All this said, it is well worth reading, and I would read anythign else she writes.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars extremely enjoyable, 19 July 2007
This review is from: A Party in San Niccolo (Paperback)
This is not the usual 'sort' of literature that I read, but when it was recommended to me I bought it and have now ordered two more of the author's works. I really enjoyed it and the descriptions of Italy are wonderful. It is a real page turner and some of the human insights are really wonderful. Some of the characters perfectly conjured up real people that I have known in my own life, so the people and places are extremely believable. The plot is also very exciting and kept me guessing.
I highly recommend this novel!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Murder, and diverse lives in Florence, 13 April 2014
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Anyone who has been lucky enough to travel to Florence, or anyone contemplating a visit will enjoy this book. It is a well written storey linking the privileged and unprivileged communities within this historic city. The characters come to life and each has a storey to tell and reasons to be in the city at a point in time where they are cleverly drawn together over just a few days. The storey takes you on a journey that twists and turns with a surprising climax. Once started, you can't put this book down until you know the answer to the mystery and the outcome for the characters.
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4.0 out of 5 stars An enjoyable read, 27 Mar 2014
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Much more enjoyable than I expected, Kent really captured the atmosphere of Florence. Well I think she did since I've only ever made a short visit but reading this made me long to return. More than a travelogue though, this is a well told tale with likeable central characters.
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5.0 out of 5 stars florence in a book, 30 Jan 2014
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i love this book, i had it in paperback and had to have it in kindle form so i can keep it to reread, i have been to Florence and i felt like i was back there it is descriptive of the city, the story has lots of interesting characters, it is down to earth and moves along at a nice pace , it kept my attention from start to finish, i would recommend this.
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A Party in San Niccolo
A Party in San Niccolo by Christobel Kent (Paperback - 1 May 2003)
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