I just could not get into this book. I tried to read it twice in different years and never got past the first 40 pages. I do remember thinking that th...moreI just could not get into this book. I tried to read it twice in different years and never got past the first 40 pages. I do remember thinking that the opening line was intriguing however.(less)
I have seen many reviews of this book that only give it 3 out of 5 stars so I have to admit going into the novel I did not expect much because usually...moreI have seen many reviews of this book that only give it 3 out of 5 stars so I have to admit going into the novel I did not expect much because usually the majority is right about a novel. In the case of The Rule of Four the majority underestimates the novel. Now admittedly none of the action actually takes place in the novel but outside the novel. We never actually see Paul and Tom find the missing art that the Hypnerotomachia hints at. It is an interesting approach to have the action take place outside the novel and most likely would not work in many stories. But in The Rule of Four it works. The language of the novel is fantastic and approachable for many audiences. Perhaps the best thing about this novel is that it at times reads like a thesis on Hypnerotomachia, even going to the lengths of placing photos from the book into the novel that we are reading. As a lit major I appreciate this aspect of the book and it is the main reason that gave this book a 5 out 5. I prefer a reading of the novel that is at the center of all the scandal as opposed to unbelievable action that the Da Vinci Code and Angels and Demons are notorious for.
Do not get me wrong I am not claiming that there is not an interesting plot or character construction. There is. The plot is just like all the other historical fiction, book adventure novels out there. People study this one book or time period and all of a sudden find themselves in some sort of adventure trying to discover the secrets that the book holds. The characters are just as round as those found in the same novels. Although I have to say that Tom in the end seems to have more of an epiphany in the end than Robert Langdon at the end of both the Da Vinci Code and Angels and Demons.
If you have not read this novel yet, do. It is well worth it if you are like me and appreciate a little story and a little literary exploration. (less)
The narration of this novel was interesting. Gregory took three women and tried to create distinct voices for each woman and use them to relay the act...moreThe narration of this novel was interesting. Gregory took three women and tried to create distinct voices for each woman and use them to relay the action around them to the reader. At times this approach to narration worked and other times it was hard to see the difference between the characters. They all have their quirks which is the defining marker of their voice. Towards the end of the book each time we read Katherine she would begin her chapter by listing the things she had, which would help to identify the character (without the chapter heading of course) but there were times when the voice of Anne and Katherine is not that different (early on when they both found themselves in love). The subject matter of the book is very interesting and what drew me to the book in the first place. Gregory really made me feel for the characters. There were times in the novel when I actually felt bad for Lady Rochford. Although it was not quite as riveting as The “Other Boleyn Girl” it is worth the read. (less)