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The Talented Mr. Ripley by Patricia…

The Talented Mr. Ripley (original 1955; edition 2008)

by Patricia Highsmith

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
4,4811331,588 (3.92)368
Title:The Talented Mr. Ripley
Authors:Patricia Highsmith
Info:W. W. Norton & Company (2008), Edition: Reprint, Paperback, 288 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:Fiction, read, eBook

Work details

The Talented Mr. Ripley by Patricia Highsmith (1955)

  1. 00
    As Meat Loves Salt by Maria McCann (1Owlette)
    1Owlette: Similarities in the unreliable perspective and opacity of the main characters, who also share common ground in their sexual and violent tendencies. In other ways, these are very different reads, with Highsmith adopting a very detached, effectively estranging tone for Ripley. As Meat Loves Salt, moreover, covers a much broader canvas.… (more)
  2. 11
    The Man Who Watched the Trains Go By by Georges Simenon (thatguyzero)
  3. 00
    The Lying Tongue by Andrew Wilson (jonathankws)
  4. 03
    The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt (JuliaMaria)
  5. 05
    Oscar and Lucinda by Peter Carey (wonderlake)
    wonderlake: Both Oscar and Ripley are afraid of water
  6. 29
    The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larson (Wova4)
    Wova4: The GwtDT reminded me of the character Ripley, who is very much a morally ambiguous protagonist with a complicated psychology.
1950s (91)

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» See also 368 mentions

English (121)  Spanish (6)  Dutch (3)  French (1)  Italian (1)  Swedish (1)  All languages (133)
Showing 1-5 of 121 (next | show all)
The Talented Mr. Ripley by Patricia Highsmith; (3 1/2*)

The Talented Mr Ripley is about a man who attempts to take over the identity of one of his friends. The whole thing goes squirrelly on him and he ends up murdering his friend. In attempting to get out of that, he must commit another one. So he portrays himself and his friend to different people at different times and puts a lot of stress upon himself. The book was very interesting as there were a great deal of tangles and twists that Mr. Ripley must get himself out of or explain away. The whole thing was rather incredulous but very intriguing.
The story takes place in Europe and I found the descriptions of the locales and the lifestyles rather interesting.
It was a very quick page turner of a read and I liked it well enough that I will read the others in the Ripley series. I don't think it is for everyone but it was a very pleasant change for me. The book was much easier to read than the movie was to watch. ( )
2 vote rainpebble | Jan 24, 2019 |
It isn't bad, but the plot follows the movie almost exactly. And honestly I think the movie does a better job with the Ripley character (surprisingly) and a much better job with the atmosphere. In no way can I recommend the book over the movie. ( )
  breic | Jan 20, 2019 |
Very good read. Interesting. ( )
  Vulco1 | Oct 12, 2018 |
Ooof, this one was a nail-biter! It took me a little while to get into it, but then I was very much sucked in to the story of Tom and his relationship-turned obsession with Dickie Greenleaf, and then the murders and the staying one step ahead of the authorities and the traipsing through Europe and, well, just, wow. It takes a great writer to get me to be both repulsed by a character's actions and also intensely rooting for him to get away with it all. Spectacularly well done. ( )
  electrascaife | Oct 12, 2018 |
This has to be one of the most overpraised novels of all time. The very beginning is moderately engaging, but the book then becomes dull beyond endurance. Seriously, there's zero suspense of any kind--not even the low level of suspense generated by "what will happen next?" As for the so-called psychological insights, you'll find more of them in a random strip of Beetle Bailey. This book is, to paraphrase Johnson, dull in itself and the cause of dullness in others. ( )
  Stubb | Aug 28, 2018 |
Showing 1-5 of 121 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (50 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Highsmith, Patriciaprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Banville, JohnIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Burns, TomIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Prestini, Maria GraziaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Walz, MelanieTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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First words
Tom glanced behind him and saw the man coming out of the Green Cage, heading his way.
Tom writhed in his deck chair as he thought of it, but he writhed elegantly, adjusting the crease of his trousers.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Wikipedia in English


Book description
Plein Soleil is the French name for The Talented Mr. Ripley. A film version of the same name made in 1960 starred Alain Delon.
Haiku summary
Tom's deadly passage
He wants to help Dickie now
Into the next life


Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0679742298, Paperback)

One of the great crime novels of the 20th century, Patricia Highsmith's The Talented Mr. Ripley is a blend of the narrative subtlety of Henry James and the self-reflexive irony of Vladimir Nabokov. Like the best modernist fiction, Ripley works on two levels. First, it is the story of a young man, Tom Ripley, whose nihilistic tendencies lead him on a deadly passage across Europe. On another level, the novel is a commentary on fictionmaking and techniques of narrative persuasion. Like Humbert Humbert, Tom Ripley seduces readers into empathizing with him even as his actions defy all moral standards.

The novel begins with a play on James's The Ambassadors. Tom Ripley is chosen by the wealthy Herbert Greenleaf to retrieve Greenleaf's son, Dickie, from his overlong sojourn in Italy. Dickie, it seems, is held captive both by the Mediterranean climate and the attractions of his female companion, but Mr. Greenleaf needs him back in New York to help with the family business. With an allowance and a new purpose, Tom leaves behind his dismal city apartment to begin his career as a return escort. But Tom, too, is captivated by Italy. He is also taken with the life and looks of Dickie Greenleaf. He insinuates himself into Dickie's world and soon finds that his passion for a lifestyle of wealth and sophistication transcends moral compunction. Tom will become Dickie Greenleaf--at all costs.

Unlike many modernist experiments, The Talented Mr. Ripley is eminently readable and is driven by a gripping chase narrative that chronicles each of Tom's calculated maneuvers of self-preservation. Highsmith was in peak form with this novel, and her ability to enter the mind of a sociopath and view the world through his disturbingly amoral eyes is a model that has spawned such latter-day serial killers as Hannibal Lecter. --Patrick O'Kelley

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:00:57 -0400)

(see all 7 descriptions)

The cunning schemes of a young American ne'er-do-well, who travels to Italy on an unusual assignment.

(summary from another edition)

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