Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Five-Forty-Five to Cannes” as Want to Read:
The Five-Forty-Five to Cannes
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Five-Forty-Five to Cannes

3.32  ·  Rating Details ·  141 Ratings  ·  36 Reviews
The 5: 45 to Cannes. It links northern Italy with the French Riviera while running like a thread through lives that touch one another in unexpected and often secret ways: Chazz, the heir to a great fortune, suffers debilitating mood swings that threaten his once-perfect marriage. GianCarlo, a kindhearted young Italian, looks for a way out of the life of thievery he leads w ...more
Hardcover, 288 pages
Published May 8th 2007 by Crown (first published 2007)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Five-Forty-Five to Cannes, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Five-Forty-Five to Cannes

The Birth of Venus by Sarah DunantA Room with a View by E.M. ForsterThe Name of the Rose by Umberto EcoUnder the Tuscan Sun by Frances MayesThe Enchanted April by Elizabeth von Arnim
Reading Italy
338th out of 386 books — 128 voters
Cloud Atlas by David MitchellOlive Kitteridge by Elizabeth StroutLet the Great World Spin by Colum McCannGod Is Dead by Ron Currie Jr.Winesburg, Ohio by Sherwood Anderson
Inter-Connected Short Stories
87th out of 136 books — 29 voters

More lists with this book...

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 307)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Jun 03, 2010 Ashley rated it did not like it
A disappointing read, for me. It started off well enough, I suppose. The author definitely has a talent for getting the essence of each character across to the reader with a minimum of words. This, unfortunately, was pretty much the book's only redeeming factor, in my opinion.

Each chapter focuses on a different character, with these stories initially seeming unrelated. Eventually, the stories converge later in the book, but honestly, by this point, my patience with the plot and storyline were we
Jun 09, 2011 Jeruen rated it it was amazing
I suppose my opinion towards short stories has changed over time. I used to not like them, because my main reason for that is that I hate the fact that the story ends when I am just about settling into the characters and plot. I finally become accustomed to the characters and then I find the story ending, with a new set of characters on the next story. That's why I preferred short stories that have a common theme to them, and this one is I suppose the best example of a short story collection tha ...more
Sep 25, 2007 Becka rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Carl, Angela
Shelves: europe, lit-fic
It took reading about a quarter of the book to become absorbed in this collection of disparate yet intertwined tales set in the Mediterranean Riviera. Starting off with a story about the accidental death of a mentally ill American millionnaire with a beautiful French wife did not pique my interest. Rather, it was Holthe's sensitive glimpse into the seamy underworld of the Cote d'Azur and the Ligurian coast, and the oftentimes sad circumstances of the more destitute characters that I sought to un ...more
Apr 10, 2010 Robin rated it really liked it
Recommended to Robin by: many Tess fans
This was such a wonderful book with interesting and well thought out characters set in lovely and not so lovely settings in Italy and France. I will think of these characters from these ten stories from time to time and wonder where they are now. I loved how one story ended and the next was woven together in unlikely threads like a beautiful and unique tapestry.

I so loved these simple, yet beautiful few sentences in one of my favorite stories in the book: "The talk and laughter that ensue under
Aug 21, 2013 Anne rated it liked it
Holthe goes one step in this short story collection by trying to link at least one character in each story to a character in another, somewhat link an early Tom Stoppard play, where characters who have never met are brought together. The device works....sort of. In some of the stories you get too much linkage, and in others, not enough. The reader has to jump over a substantial hurdle to begin enjoying the stories. The first story, a sad tale of a mentally ill young American with more money than ...more
May 12, 2010 Sally marked it as to-read
I'm reading this book of connected short stories in anticipation of our online chat with Tess Uriza Holthe (the Q&A is over, but you can follow the discussion at:

Enjoying the book so far. What a contrast to When the Elephants Dance! Chazz, the affluent and troubled character who opens the book, is portrayed in fine detail. The author isn't afraid to give us the harsh realities of drugs and mania. You know Chazz loves his wife, but mental illness, and t
Jan 22, 2015 Donna rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction
I found this book at a local library book sale and had high expectation just from the title. A page turner that did not disappoint.
Aug 21, 2010 Pbwritr rated it liked it
I loved it immediately just because of the title! I was disappointed at first to find out it was a collection of short stories. However, all of the short stories are connected in some way, so that turned out to be quite interesting. In some cases, the connections were more nebulous than others, or I couldn't even figure out the connection. Not comedy, not frilly. More a kind of sad set of stories of people trying to find their way, misunderstood or misunderstanding, the obstacles in their way of ...more
Oct 14, 2008 Alison rated it liked it
Shelves: short-stories
This is a great collection of short stories that share characters -- frequently, you will have met a peripheral character in one story, who shows up as the protagonist in another. I thought that Holthe pulled this off quite well. The collection isn't trite or over thought, and I felt that the stories could stand on their own (though they are certainly enhanced by being written in the way that they are). The tone and the mood stayed the same, which helped as well. Even if you don't normally like ...more
Margie Bruce
Jul 22, 2010 Margie Bruce rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: anyone
The book was very engaging, fast-paced like a train ride, taking the reader to different places, seeing different nationalities and hearing different languages. Tess Uriza Holthe is brilliant. I love how she uses poetic language as if it were ordinary language; how she describes something poetically but without trying to emphasize it too much so that you read it ordinarily but the meaning is deep and the impact, lasting.
Jul 20, 2007 Robert rated it liked it
I enjoyed this book enough to consider skipping class to finish it.

However, the idea wasn't that original: A series of narrations spiral out of a single, tragic incident. But Holthe overcomes banal by crafting amazing characters and letting us in on their insecurities and indecision.

Overall, a good read, but it lacks the magic that was in her other book, When the Elephants Dance.
Apr 09, 2010 korey rated it really liked it
This was a very well crafted book of short stories where the characters are intertwined. Much like Six Degees of Separation. Loved the three widows of Moretti. And I loved that the settings were in France, Italy and SF. The author grew up and lives in Bernal Heights. I could have been her neighbor. I think I'm going to buy this one because I will definitely want to read it again.
Jan 24, 2009 Lisa rated it really liked it
I loved this collection of short stories, which are cleverly intertwined. You learn more about the characters as other people's stories are revealed. Well written with some very likable characters (and some not so likable). A good book club book as there is more here than meets the eye and a lot of different points of view, story lines, and perspectives for discussion.
Feb 15, 2008 Jessica rated it liked it
Very descrpitive and seting in a beautiful place. If you have visted this area, it takes you back to all your favorite memories of the food and landscape. However, overall, I was disapponted with the character resolution in this book and don't think I would recommend it. Your time would be better spent reading another .French Riveria/Ligurian-set novel.
Sep 20, 2008 Paula rated it really liked it
I read this on the way to Paris/Aix en Provences. I finished after returning home.
It was an interesting story that links characters in way that causes you to jump around a bit, but ultimately it was suspenseful. I loved the descriptions of the places that characters find themselves in. I recommend this book!
Mar 02, 2009 Crysta rated it really liked it
This was well crafted, with several intertwined stories in which the characters' lives intersect, quite unbeknownst to them. The setting is beautiful (and warm) and Holthe's great with description. I will definitely pick up her other, more famous book, "When the Elephants Dance."
Jan 12, 2009 Jennifer rated it it was ok
I really enjoyed the method the author used to intertwine these individual short stories. Some proved better than others, but they flowed together evenly without disjointedness. The written dialects were often difficult to read, but overall a sweet, relaxing book.
Jan 20, 2012 Tomio rated it liked it
I wanted to read this book as I loved When the Elephants Dance by the same author. The writing was excellent but I was not interested in the story. It had to push myself to just finish the story. Some of the stories were interesting but overall I was not impressed.
Nov 28, 2010 M rated it liked it
Another well written book by Tess Holthe, but I wish she put more into the story. I guess it is sort of like Hemingway, who often seems to tell a story without a plot.

Definitely readable, but I almost forgot what the book was about already.
Jan 11, 2010 Alicia rated it really liked it
A solid book by Holthe --- I wouldn't say as good as When the Elephants Dance though. Another novel though that radiates the culture of its setting with enough mystery to keep you turning the pages to find out what happens next.
Nov 13, 2012 Zola rated it it was amazing
A friend of mine wrote this book and I must say, it is beautifully written. I love how the stories connect with one another. I highly recommend The Five Forty Five to Cannes if you enjoy beautifully written short stories!
Jan 16, 2010 Alison rated it really liked it
The way this book was written was intriquing. Each chapeter was about another individual somehow involved in the story-but seeimingly unrealated at first. I enjoyed this book a lot as well as the intertwining characters.
Kandice Cole
Jul 14, 2013 Kandice Cole rated it liked it
I like some of the short stories, particularly that of GianCarlo, Claudette, and Chazz. I found myself getting getting a bit bogged down in some of the other stories and it dragged along.
Feb 24, 2011 RUSA CODES rated it it was amazing
This was one of the 2008 RUSA Notable Books winners. For the complete list, go to
Feb 12, 2008 Amber rated it really liked it
This collection of short stories takes place in France, Italy and Spain with characters that are connected even when they do not realize it.
Apr 01, 2008 Iva rated it liked it
Linked short stories that had a familiar feel, but somewhat compelling. The feel of Cannes was real, but the characters didn't quite work.
Dec 27, 2008 Bryan rated it really liked it
Well written, one confusing irish cockney language chapter that should have been thrown out though; otherwise a solid read.
Aug 29, 2008 Christin rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Love, love love this book. Linked short story style with a very intriguing overarching narrative.
Sep 30, 2011 Melanie rated it really liked it
A collection of short stories with common characters. It was a little dark, but I enjoyed it.
Sep 07, 2007 Jimiliz rated it liked it
Recommends it for: all
It starts out slow, but it really gets involving in the very middle. Gems of stories!
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • The Complete Stories
  • A Dangerous Friend
  • The Coast of Good Intentions: Stories
  • Beach Boy
  • Living to Tell
  • In the Driver's Seat
  • Lightning Man: The Accursed Life of Samuel F. B. Morse
  • Alva & Irva: The Twins Who Saved a City
  • Paris Under Water: How the City of Light Survived the Great Flood of 1910
  • Catherine de Medici 1-3: Madame Serpent/The Italian Woman/Queen Jezebel
  • God's Fool
  • Cheating at Canasta
  • The Far Euphrates
  • With Violets
  • Crooked River Burning
  • Last of the Curlews
  • Brownsville: Stories
  • Lovely Green Eyes
TESS URIZA HOLTHE is the author of the critically acclaimed and nationally bestselling When the Elephants Dance. She grew up on a Filipino-American family in San Francisco. When the Elephants Dance is inspired, in part, by the experiences of her father, who was a young boy in the Philippines during World War II.

Tess Uriza's second book, The Five-Forty-Five to Cannes, was a San Francisco Chronicle
More about Tess Uriza Holthe...

Share This Book

“These women were like her sisters. Even if she wanted desperately to be free of them. Sometimes the strongest prisons were the ones created by the people you loved the most.” 5 likes
“Two people can be in the same room and still be gone.” 3 likes
More quotes…