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Bel Canto (2001)

by Ann Patchett

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
12,445429416 (3.95)1 / 913
Somewhere in South America, at the home of the country's vice president, a lavish birthday party is being held in honor of Mr. Hosokawa, a powerful Japanese businessman. Roxanne Coss, opera's most revered soprano, has mesmerized the international guests with her singing. It is a perfect evening -- until a band of gun-wielding terrorists breaks in through the air-conditioning vents and takes the entire party hostage. But what begins as a panicked, life-threatening scenario slowly evolves into something quite different, as terrorists and hostages forge unexpected bonds and people from different countries and continents become compatriots.Friendship, compassion, and the chance for great love lead the characters to forget the real danger that has been set in motion and cannot be stopped.… (more)
  1. 80
    The Cellist of Sarajevo by Steven Galloway (atimco)
    atimco: In both books, music is a character in its own right, set against a backdrop of human violence and tragedy.
  2. 71
    Parable of the Sower by Octavia E. Butler (the_awesome_opossum)
    the_awesome_opossum: Both novels are about human connections formed in the face of unusual crises. Very competent and well-written, both books had much the same vibe about them
  3. 20
    One Amazing Thing by Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni (SilentInAWay)
  4. 53
    Reading Lolita in Tehran: A Memoir in Books by Azar Nafisi (readerbabe1984)
  5. 00
    Blood of the Dawn by Claudia Salazar Jimenez (susanbooks)
    susanbooks: Another novel about the Shining Path.
  6. 22
    Room by Emma Donoghue (BookshelfMonstrosity)
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» See also 913 mentions

English (420)  German (3)  Dutch (2)  French (2)  Korean (1)  All languages (428)
Showing 1-5 of 420 (next | show all)
I loved this book until the end. I knew it would go that way, but I still wasn't prepared. All of the characters even some of the not-so-major ones were fleshed out. I had to stop the audio so I wouldn't cry at work. ( )
  christyco125 | Jul 4, 2022 |
Did Not Finish
  beckykb6 | Apr 13, 2022 |
I know a lot of people who say this is their favorite Patchett book but it is not mine. It was good, all of her books are good, but I just didn't connect with it like I think other people did. Maybe because I don't have an intimate relationship with music, which is central to a lot of the relationships and character dynamics. I also wasn't thrilled with the epilogue. I think if you really *love* music, you'd connect a lot more to this story than I did. This was a reader problem mostly, not a writer problem! ( )
  KimZoot | Jan 2, 2022 |
To be honest, it took me a while to get into this book. I didn't love the way it was written. It was a sort of odd, third person. And switched from character to character in a matter of a few paragraphs at some points. The chapters were also very long. I didn't hate it, but it took me a while (almost the first 100 pages or so) to get used to it.

That being said, the story is very interesting. The characters are well done and their journey is an interesting one.

I hated the epilogue. It came out of nowhere, made no sense with what happened to the characters and made me angry.

All in all, this was a good book, but it is not going on my favorites list. ( )
  banrions | Dec 7, 2021 |
This is one of my all-time favorite books because of the plot, the setting, the struggle, the writing. It's intriguing and it moves along. My favorite Ann Patchett book. I don't like all of hers, but this one is a WINNER. ( )
  JanEPat | Dec 7, 2021 |
Showing 1-5 of 420 (next | show all)
''Bel Canto'' often shows Patchett doing what she does best -- offering fine insights into the various ways in which human connections can be forged, whatever pressures the world may place upon them.
 
Although this novel is entirely housebound, at the vice presidential mansion, Ms. Patchett works wonders to avoid any sense of claustrophobia and keeps the place fresh at every turn.
 

» Add other authors (16 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Patchett, Annprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Bonis, OristelleTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
de Vicq de Comptich, RobertCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Euthymiou, MaraTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Fields, AnnaNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Figueira, Maria do CarmoTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hrubý, JiříTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kaluđerović, MajaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lauer, KarenTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Løken, Silje BeiteTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Leistra, AukeTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Mastrangello, StellaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Nielsen, Kirsten A.Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Preminger, SharonTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Pugliese, LucianaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Schapel, EvelinTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Sporrong, DorotheeTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Stabej, JožeTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wanatphong, Čhittrāphō̜nTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wolnicka, AleksandraTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Xie, YaolingTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Yamamoto, YayoiTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
Fonti e colline chiesi agli Dei;
m 'udiro alfine,
pago io vovro,
ne mai quel fonte co 'desir miei,
ne mai quel monte trapassero


"I asked the Gods for hills and springs;
They listened to me at last.
I shall live contented.
And I shall never desire to go beyond that spring,
nor shall I desire to cross that mountain."

-- Sei Ariette I: Malinconia, ninfa gentil,
Vincenzo Bellini
Sprecher: Ihr Fremdlinge! was sucht oder fordert ihn von uns?
Tamino: Freundschaft und Liebe.
Sprecher: Bist du bereit, es mit deinem Leben zu erkämpfen?
Tamino: Ja.


Speaker: Stranger, what do you seek or ask from us?
Tamino: Friendship and love.
Speaker: And are you prepared even if it costs you your life?
Tamino: I am.

-- The Magic Flute by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Dedication
For Karl VanDevender
First words
When the lights went off the accompanist kissed her.
Quotations
Vissi d'arte, vissi d'amore, non feci mai male ad anima viva!
Americans have a bad habit of thinking like Americans.
It's easier to love a woman when you can't understand a word she’s saying.
Gen saw there could be as much virtue in letting go of what you knew as there had ever been in gathering new information.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
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Canonical DDC/MDS
Canonical LCC

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English (3)

Somewhere in South America, at the home of the country's vice president, a lavish birthday party is being held in honor of Mr. Hosokawa, a powerful Japanese businessman. Roxanne Coss, opera's most revered soprano, has mesmerized the international guests with her singing. It is a perfect evening -- until a band of gun-wielding terrorists breaks in through the air-conditioning vents and takes the entire party hostage. But what begins as a panicked, life-threatening scenario slowly evolves into something quite different, as terrorists and hostages forge unexpected bonds and people from different countries and continents become compatriots.Friendship, compassion, and the chance for great love lead the characters to forget the real danger that has been set in motion and cannot be stopped.

No library descriptions found.

Book description
Haiku summary
Translator, a star
In hostage situation
Love and friendships thrive
(julienne_preacher)

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