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The Pindar Diamond (The Aviary Gate #2)

3.19 of 5 stars 3.19  ·  rating details  ·  310 ratings  ·  75 reviews
In a small town on the Italian coast, a mysterious woman washes ashore. She is crippled, mute, and clutches a bundle to her chest-a baby the townspeople insist is a real-life mermaid. It can only bring bad luck; they pay a troupe of acrobats to carry mother and child away. In the bustling trade center of Venice, merchant Paul Pindar is the subject of his colleagues' concer ...more
ebook, 0 pages
Published August 1st 2010 by Bloomsbury Publishing PLC (first published January 1st 2010)
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(showing 1-30 of 806)
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Adrienne
Oh I'm sad that this has finished but also happy because one part of the story has been resolved and all the questions that first started The Avairy Gate answered.

As with the Avairy Gate, The Pinder Diamond is full of mystery, intrigue and plain raw emotion. I loved both the emotional and actual journey that Ms Hickman takes the reader on, and the wonderful charcters we meet along the way, from the ladies of the tumbling troupe, to beautiful, sad Constanza with own intriguing story to tell.
Ven
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Tara Chevrestt
First of all, I never read the Aviary Gate. As a matter of fact, until a friend of mine read and reviewed this, I had no idea it was a sequel. The summary and the back of the book doesn't say it is a sequel. So... maybe part of the reason I disliked this so much was I didn't really know what the heck was going on..?

Besides that, I loathed the characters. Paul is a jerk. Annetta.. I just don't understand her. Carew is disgusting and I don't see what Annetta sees in him. I could go on...

I thought
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Sara
Probably 2.5 stars. I won this book from a First Reads giveaway and was excited to dive into the world of 17th century Italy. This book features a number of characters and their various lives - nuns at a convent (some more willing than others to forego all material items), a gambler longing for his lost love, the gambler's friends and enemies, an aging prostitute, and a troupe of women performers who, at the beginning of the novel, are paid to take a woman and her mermaid-baby away from the coas ...more
Allie
Thanks Goodreads for the FirstReads win!

This is quite a story in a small book. A story of passion, love, loss, betrayal, mermaids, giants, magic, gambling and a priceless diamond. It all seemed a little far fetched at times, like a fable or tall tale.

Hickman kept me reading though, quite a mystery. I think if I had read The Aviary Gate first then perhaps I would have been more attached to the characters? I did want to yell at them sometimes for acting quite silly.

I enoyed this book, but everyth
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Sarah Iozzio
Wish I had known this was a sequel before I bought it. Doesn't say that anywhere on the cover.

Problematic description of a throwaway Jewish character: "Paul smiled at the tiny man, who with his long beard and beady eyes seemed like some creature from the underworld." pg 75. Not saying this is the author's bias, but the dehumanising description, if it's Paul's impression of the man, doesn't really do anything to tell us about his character, since he doesn't act biased against the man (or any oth
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Megan
Too overstuffed. This historical fiction set in 17th century Venice had some nice moments, but there was just too much: harems and convents and underground gambling dens and plague and traveling female tumblers (!), not to mention mermaids (!!) and priceless gems that are lost. and then found. and lost. and found.
Molly
~ Won on First-Reads!

I absolutely loved this book! Once I started I simply couldn't put it down. I look forward to reading The Aviary Gate and reimmersing myself in the evocative and haunting world Katie Hickman has created.
Jae
A rich tapestry of a novel, with interesting characters and many twists and turns of the plot. Pure escapism, but nonetheless I found it a pleasure to read.
Alessandra Anne
Mi rattrista dare a questo romanzo solo 2 stelline, ma purtroppo non mi è sembrato all'altezza del precedente, il giardino delle favorite, romanzo che ho amato moltissimo.

Mi aspettavo davvero molto e personalmente sono rimasta piuttosto delusa dalla continuazione della storia sia dal punto di vista della narrazione che per quanto riguarda lo stile narrativo.

Mi è mancata la magia del primo romanzo, e ho avuto l'impressione di troppi colpi di scena e coincidenze che stonavano nell'intreccio narrat
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Vicky
The Pindar Diamond is an interesting take on six degrees of separation and star crossed lovers. Life for Paul Pindar seems to stop when his betrothed was taken from him and sold into the Sultan's harem. As Paul looks for a way to rescue his lost love the story is moved along by his assistant, a nun, a prostitute/friend and a set of female acrobats. With all those that seek, unknowingly, to help Paul and his love reunite there are equal forces that will try and keep them apart.

This book is essen
...more
Wendi
The Pindar Diamond is a tragedy set in early seventeenth century Europe. The novel consists of three plotlines which eventually merge at its climax. There is a traveling troupe of acrobats lead by a giantess, a convent housing a young nun previously of the Ottoman Sultan’s harem, and a swarming Venice teeming with trade, gambling and debauchery.

Maryam, the leader of the acrobatic troupe is a giant even among men. Sold by her parents into bondage, and several times after that as a freak of nature
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Lady
I received an Advanced Reading Copy so some of these notes may very from the published book.

I was excited to read The Pindar Diamond; a story of mermaids and diamonds and old world superstitions. It was very authentic, drawing the reader into an Italian summer heavy with heat and decadence. It's a story full of intrigue, conflicting loyatlies, betrayal and love.

After an engaging opening sequence the narrative is a little slow getting started, vague nouns that make it difficult to find your plac
...more
Nikki
It was all right. Entertaining while I was reading it. There were a lot of story lines going in the book and after looking back at it, some of them seemed a bit neglected or incomplete at times. I suppose that is just what happens when you try and put such a wide spread story into a small little book.
The part about the 'mermaid' was actually very minuscule and not actually very relevant to the plot at all. Which I found surprising seeing as how the back of the book made it sound like it was a b
...more
Shawn
A strange woman appears on the shore in Italy, almost dead and clutching to her chest a small newborn baby with the look of a mermaid. The woman is a cripple and can't speak or respond to any inquiries on how she got in her state. This is how this book starts and I was immediately intrigued.

Well, the story shifts, bringing in another life----a young man who is ruining his life through drink and gambling. How do these stories connect? What the heck does one have to do with the other?

This book me
...more
Evelina A.
The Pindar Diamond picks up four years after the events of Katie Hickman's previous work, The Aviary Gate, which had been set in Constantinople and centered on the thwarted love of Paul Pindar and Celia Lamprey. In the Pindar Diamond, several of the principle characters are back in Venice haunted by past events. As pieces of the mystery of a nearly-drowned woman, her unusual “mermaid” baby, and a stolen diamond called The Sultan's Blue, gradually unfold, it is the fabled city of Venice with its ...more
Jori Richardson
"The Pindar Diamond" was a book that I was greatly looking forward to reading. It just sounds so exciting! A mysterious woman washes up out of the sea, a supposedly cursed diamond is being tracked down, with which some nuns may be involved, and it's set in Venice. What could go wrong?

The opening lines, in which the mystery woman describes drowning, really caught my attention. I got the impression that the author carefully thought about what such an awful thing must be like, and the short section
...more
Katharine Grubb Hawkinson
I won this book on the Goodreads Firstreads giveaway! So fun to win books.

About three quarters into this book, I realized that it was the second book you read after Hickman's Aviary Gate. When I finally got that, a lightbulb went on. I don't think this book does well as a stand alone book, but then I have not read Aviary Gate, I am just guessing.

I was very confused at the beginning of the book. There were many many characters introduced, I had a hard time sorting through everyone, and figuring
...more
Lisette
This was a First Reads Giveaway. When I started the book the writing and story line drew me in. Unfortunately I started losing interest the more the story focused on Annetta. While the writing itself was pretty evocative, I consistently felt as if I were watching the events unfold before me behind a veil. I just couldn't connect with the characters and, as a result, I didn't care about them. Perhaps I needed to read the prequel in this series? Based on my lack of caring about the characters, I h ...more
Kristina
I won this on First Reads. My review is based on an advance copy.

Like many other reviewers, I had no idea this book was a sequel so the first few chapters I had no idea what was going on. Actually, I was so bored after the first few chapters I had to set this aside for a few months before returning to it.

I was not at all impressed with this book. I did not like the characters and I hated jumping back and forth between storylines. Just when I was starting to get interested, the author would swit
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Shannon
A mysterious woman is found with a mermaid baby. A gambling addict lusts after a one-of-a-kind diamond. He likes to visit a high-end courtesan. One man pays others to collect strange items for his cabinet of curiosities. A woman returns from a harem to become a nun. A man is after both the mermaid baby and the diamond. Somehow it all comes together through an all-female traveling acrobats. Oh yes, and there is the plague and a love story too.

The first half of the book was very, very slow and I
...more
Barbara Moller
I received The Pindar Diamond after signing on here for free books to read and review. I did not realize when it came in the mail that it was the second of a series and I wish I had read the first one previous to beginning The Pindar Diamond. That was not really a handicap though as the earlier story was referred to frequently enough to avoid confusion. It is an engaging story and the period in which it takes place is vividly described; it doesn't take long before the reader is caught up in the ...more
Heather L
Aug 27, 2010 Heather L rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Those who like historical fiction.
Recommended to Heather L by: Won from GoodReads.
Though this book is the sequel to The Aviary Gate: A Novel, which I have not read, I think it stands well enough on its own. While I would have liked to know more of Pindar's backstory, I did not feel I was missing important details overall. It was a good story, despite the sometimes slow pacing during the first half of the book, but it did pick up once the three different story threads started to come together. I even had to pause a few times near the end as I was overcome with emotion. Can't h ...more
Alexandra Taylor
I don't know if it was because I was listening to it but I had a lot of trouble following the storyline until well into part two. I do have auditory processing problems which doesn't help especially with books I haven't physically read/listened too before but I don't know if that was part of the problem too. It was an interesting idea but at the same time the ending was a let down to me. It just felt like it didn't resolve a lot of the things. I might give it a shot at another point and read the ...more
Kiran
I had been wanting to read The Aviary Gate for a long time, but instead ended up reading The Pindar Diamond first as I picked it up at a book swap shelf. Not sure if it really is meant to be a sequel. Either way, it's put me right off reading The Aviary Gate now or any other novel by Katie Hickman. I really didn't enjoy the writing style at all, right from the start. But I thought I'd continue and see if the story had potential. But I had no idea what was happening in this book for most of it; a ...more
Jill
I didn't know that there was a prequel to this book before I read it, and reading that might have helped me to enjoy the book more. There were a handful of seperate, central characters whose lives ended up connecting, so it took some time to introduce and establish each one, leading to a slow start. The plot was interesting, but there were too many near misses between people for my liking. I found myself growing impatient. I recieved this book from Good Reads, through their book giveaway and am ...more
Liesl Bebb
I absolutely loved the Aviary gate so i was thrilled to discover that the story hadn't ended!! This book had me up late and early and then, on completing it, i find myself missing the characters and wanting more again. A wonderful journey into Venice of the 1600's
Sandra
I love a good mystery and the idea of Italy and Istanbul was just irresistable. The plot seemed interesting and the cover it must be said is utterly beautiful. Yet I can not in all honesty give it more then 3 stars. I must confess that after a time Pindar and his obsession got on my nerves, sadly he was not the only one. The where is Celia question, the gambling and the greed, it was like they were all going in circles. There was partly happy ending though, just for Paul Pindar though. Carew and ...more
Annika Paxman
I won this book off Goodreads First-reads and I was unaware it is the sequel to a book, however, I think it helped provide a bit more punch for the mystery since I had no background information. Placed at the beginning of the 15th Century, the book begins immediately with a mysterious woman and her baby found half drowned in some obscure Italian Village. I was immediately engrossed, and as more characters were introduced, so was the intrigue. This book was well written, with a undeniably inventi ...more
Cathleen
The Pindar Diamond was a challenging, yet satisfying read. I won it as part of a Goodreads prerelease giveaway.

The beginning of the book felt somewhat disjointed, switching between various characters in different places. I found out after I finished the book that it was part of a larger series by Katie Hickman and that feeling of confusion would be avoided by readers already familiar with the characters and their backgrounds. The early chapters made the story more challenging, but did not prohib
...more
Nancy Black
The first chapter of The Pindar Diamond grabs the reader and never lets go!! A troop of women are told to go to this village. Once there it is deserted until they met a man. Inside a building is what the villagers believe is a mermaid. The woman was caught in a fishing net , they leave her alone(frightened of the woman). She has a baby who dies.

Sultans, murder, Nun's, Sex and concubines..bring a hugely satisfying novel. One of the most enjoyable books to lose yourself in.

The descriptions of the
...more
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Katie Hickman was born into a diplomatic family in 1960 and has spent more than twenty-five years living abroad in Europe, the Far East and Latin America. She is featured in the Oxford University Press guide to women travellers, Wayward Women.
More about Katie Hickman...

Other Books in the Series

The Aviary Gate (2 books)
  • The Aviary Gate
The Aviary Gate Courtesans: Money, Sex and Fame in the Nineteenth Century Daughters of Britannia: The Lives and Times of Diplomatic Wives Dreams of the Peaceful Dragon: A Journey Through Bhutan A Trip to the Light Fantastic: Travels with a Mexican Circus

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