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Il diamante dell'harem (The Aviary Gate #2)

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3.2  ·  Rating details ·  420 Ratings  ·  91 Reviews
Venezia 1604. Una gondola fende l'acqua nera come il petrolio. La lanterna dell'imbarcazione illumina fiocamente il volto pensieroso di Paul Pindar, mercante dell'onorevole Compagnia del Levante. L'uomo si trova ormai a Venezia da diversi mesi e consuma le sue notti e il suo denaro tra gioco d'azzardo e cortigiane. Ma niente riesce a fargli dimenticare Celia, la sua promes ...more
Hardcover, 338 pages
Published 2010 by Garzanti
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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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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Roman Clodia
After The Aviary Gate I was interested to read this sequel - but generally found it less engaging, though it's difficult to pinpoint exactly why. Hickman writes lush and sensuous prose, and plots well, but somehow never manages to exceed the boundaries of the historical romance genre.

Set in sixteenth century Venice, this does exactly what we would expect: throws in voluptuous courtesans, discontented nuns, traders on the make, separated lovers and legendary jewels. The whole thing is fragranced
...more
Caterina
Apr 26, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Interesting tale set in 1600's Venice.. Fascinating love stories, unrequited love, a perfect diamond,
A ship wreck and a mermaid baby.. Never a dull moment...
Tova
I need this book so badly. This is actually set in Venice, but it has the answers and I must get answers ASAP!
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
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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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
...more
Megan
Oct 26, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
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
Jul 25, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
~ 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
Nov 25, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
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.
Jori Richardson
Dec 01, 2012 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Jori by: Early Reviewers
"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
Kailey
Aug 06, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ebooks
I did not enjoy this book. I wasn't really impressed with the first book, but I hate to leave a series unfinished so I read this reluctantly. It took longer to finish than a book twice it's size would take me. The writing was ok, but the plot didn't hold my attention. Another book I read mearly to finish, not enjoy.
Robbie
Jun 07, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I did not read the first book in the series and, after reading this, I doubt I will ever read the other two. The story was OK but somehow left me cold, not interested in finding out more.
Monica
Continuazione de “Il giardino delle favorite”.
Lo scenario si sposta a Venezia focalizzandosi sul fidanzato di Celia, Paul Pindar.
Non bello come il primo ma in ogni caso una trama avvincente.
Alessandra Anne
Jan 19, 2014 rated it it was ok
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
...more
Wendi
Jul 24, 2010 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: first-reads
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
...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
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
...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
Katharine Grubb
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
Shawn
Nov 13, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own-book
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
Vicky
Jul 24, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
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
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
Kristina
Jul 24, 2010 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: first-reads, 2011
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
...more
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
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
Heather L
Jul 24, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  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
Kiran
Sep 15, 2011 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
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
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
Beiyu
Jul 04, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
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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 (3 books)
  • The Aviary Gate (The Aviary Gate #1)
  • The House at Bishopsgate (The Aviary Gate #3)

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