Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Strange Journey of Alice Pendelbury” as Want to Read:
The Strange Journey of Alice Pendelbury
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Strange Journey of Alice Pendelbury

3.96  ·  Rating details ·  8,306 ratings  ·  693 reviews
From international bestselling author Marc Levy comes a witty and beguiling novel of one woman’s unexpected journey to follow her destiny.

Alice Pendelbury believes everything in her life is pretty much in order—from her good friends to her burgeoning career. But even Alice has to admit it’s been an odd week. Not only has her belligerent neighbor, Mr. Daldry, suddenly
Kindle Edition, 278 pages
Published February 5th 2019 by AmazonCrossing (first published 2011)
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.
This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.96  · 
Rating details
 ·  8,306 ratings  ·  693 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of The Strange Journey of Alice Pendelbury
Linh Bún
A scented journey with all of Marc Levy's trademarks, from the plot to the poetic details, and characters. What I like about this book is the way he filled every pages with scents, I can see drops of them in the air, or feel them in my nose, all are very enjoyable imaginations. I even kinda fell in love with Istanbul, a place I've never known before. Humid London or colorful Istanbul, both were shown at an impressive level of vividness and beauty.

However I would not consider this as my favourite
This novel had a VERY promising beginning. However, it got bogged down in the middle, and then offered up one of the most unsatisfying endings I have ever read.
Uncommitted at first but then fully invested!!!

The beginning wasn't sticky at all, and then it became pretty clear what the core story was. . .and even correct guesses didn't turn me away from staying engaged to the very last word.
Feb 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Have you ever gasped out loud from a book? Has a revelation in the story ever shook you to your core with a flood of emotions? Saying this book took me by surprise is a severe understatement.

Let me start by saying I’m Armenian. This should be irrelevant for a book about a British woman in London. But it’s not. When in the book they describe a magical, beautiful land of the protagonist‘s ancestors, and say it’s “between the Caspian and the Black seas” you know it literally has to be Armenia.
Mar 17, 2019 rated it liked it
This book was originally published as The Strange Journey of Mr. Daldry.

The story started off strong, but the second half took a turn and meandered around for a while before wandering toward the finish line.
Nhi Nguyễn
They said this book is one of the best by Marc Levy. Sadly, to me, it's not.

The idea of this book is great, and the premise is kinda appealing. But as the story went on, I just felt like something had been missing, and not quite sure what it is, but the story just couldn't be emotional, heartrendingly beautiful as other genius, golden novel by this author that I really really adore, like "Où-es tu?", "La prochaine fois", "Si c'était vrai"... Maybe I love it more when his novels are set in
Premise: Woman visits a fortune teller and what she is told sets her on a journey from London to Turkey. Along the way, she discovers things about her family and her past and makes new friends and connections.

This is my first book by this author; I had heard good things about the writer and decided to try him out. Although the story was enjoyable and listening to the audiobook made chores much more entertaining, I wasn’t gripped by the story. I could have honestly stopped listening and been
Jan 18, 2012 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I was really excited for this one. I've read all of this new books since 'Toutes ces choses qu'on ne s'est pas dites'. In my opinion, that book was far better than this one. Usually I find with Marc Levy's novels is that they take time to pick up. This one I found it was exciting from the start. As I kept reading I started getting bored, I felt it was too predictable. I figured out the ending very quickly. I didn't enjoy the rest of the book. I was actually disappointed. I think this book would ...more
Jun 21, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was a little leery of this book in the beginning. Took me awhile to get invested, but by the end I completely loved it. Loved the characters, the journey, the descriptions of people, sights, smells...all of it!
Dawn Michelle
Book. Hang. Over.
That is what I have right now. Massive. Book. Hang. Over.

Marc Levy is fast becoming one of my new favorite authors and I am so glad that I got to read this book!!

It is difficult to review this book without giving anything away and trust me, you DO NOT want to have any kind of spoiler with this book - this book is best read knowing nothing going in but the title and just diving in and savoring it and falling in love with it and with the characters. Alice and Ethan are just
Melissa Dee
Jan 31, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I’d like to thank Mark Levy for the delightful (and unexpected) trip to Istanbul with Alice!
“The Strange Journey” takes us on a search for the man of Alice’s dreams (in both a literal and figurative sense.) By a strange twist, the very British Alice ends up in Istanbul, and discovers far more than she expected about her history.
This novel was just plain fun, with an endearing cast of characters, and an exotic setting.
I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts
Mar 19, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A lovely tale about love, friendship, self discovery and a mystery to be solved.
Alice Pendelbury has her fortune told by a gypsy on a trip to the seaside. What she is told makes her question who she is. As a result she travels to Turkey with her friend and Neighbour Mr Daldry to find out if the fortune teller was right and that she’ll meet the most important person of her life there.
A great read.
Mar 28, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A delightful frolic. Enough depth that it towers above your typical beach vacation read. But not a heavy lift.
Jack Brown
This book didn't touch me as I expected it to do.
Unfortunately, even though I read it to the end, I was left with no definite impression of pleasure.
Lisa Schneider
Marc Levy is a brilliant writer, but I feel that this book missed the mark. The beginning of the book started out fantastic and I was like "More, more, more!" But as it went on it just got predictable and, honestly, boring.

2 stars for the writing, because Marc Levy can make any scene come to life.

*I received a copy of this book by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.*
3.5 stars
What I liked:
Alice is a Nose - a person who creates perfumes. The descriptions of scents and how powerfully tied they are to memory was interesting.
I tend to like novels written in the WWII or post WWII era. This one took place post-war and captured the feel of that time well.
All the information about Turkey, especially the descriptions of Istanbul and surrounding areas. The history of Armenians persecution in Turkey and how it tied to Alice's origins.
The revealed love interest was
Nov 05, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
the beginning is little bit slow, but when the story starts , it is beautifull, and you follow those 3 characteres.
The description of the landscape is incredible.

For the end, so, I am not going to make any comments,you have to read it
Susan Springer
Not Levy's best, although I enjoyed the way he tied it together at the end. I wonder
why he chose Istanbul as a setting?
C.A. Gray
Mar 01, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is the second book I've read by Marc Levy (the first was PS From Paris), and it probably won't be the last! I guess I'd call the genre romance, but that's only for lack of a better category. Maybe literary fiction is closer, because romance is certainly not the main focus throughout.

The story follows Alice, a 39-year old British woman from the 1950s just after the Blitz and the end of the war. She makes perfumes by trade, and lives next door to Doldry, a cantankerous painter who covets her
Feb 18, 2019 rated it really liked it
I was given an ARC of this book. I try my best to speak in generalities, but a minor plot point may slip in on occasion, so be aware. However, there are no major spoilers!

The Basics:
Written by Marc Levy
Published on 2/19/19
Set in the early 1950s

After getting a strange reading from a fortune teller, Alice Pendlebury inadvertently teams up with her seemingly grumpy neighbor, Ethan Daldry, on a journey to discover the truth.

The Positives:
I love the locations! Not only are they described well, but
Jun 23, 2019 rated it liked it
I feel like the author missed a cultural opportunity. Alice and Daldry are in Istanbul, Turkey half the time but don’t immerse themselves in the culture. I do love how much she was exposed to new scents, which gave her a lot of ideas. I’m not good at predicting endings but it was obvious from the start that she had parents in Turkey. Also, cringingly obvious she and Daldry would get together. I found him high maintenance, an irritating teaser, misleading, and an old grouch who drinks too much. ...more
Feb 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
I always enjoy Marc Levy’s novels, and find his whimsical and charming style…well, charming! They’re gentle reads, usually with a happy ending, and if lightweight then also heart-warming and amusing. In this one he wades in much deeper waters than usual and although his trademark whimsicality is still in evidence there’s a darker aspect to the writing that shows another aspect of his literary ability and insight. Alice Pendelbury visits a seaside fortune-teller – on a whim – and is told that she ...more
Sara Stetz
Sep 19, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I loved this story. I enjoyed the characters. Especially the two main characters' (Alice and Daldry) whose reserved and independent nature; as well the similar background of single, struggling, artists in their 30s had them on a different path in life from many of their peers. The post WWII setting in London was perfect for that. The travels to Istanbul and Can, 'the best guide in the city', were charming and comical. I loved the underlying mysteries- who was Alice's family? What was Daldry up ...more
Apr 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction
This was an unexpectedly charming read. I listened to it and enjoyed all of it. The story centers on a young woman in post-war London. She is Alice. She is a perfumer. With some friends she goes to see a fortune teller who tells her that her background is not what she thinks it is. The rest of the story is her journey, both physical and spiritual, to find out who she really is and who she is meant to be with. It's light but serious and beautifully written. I totally recommend it.
Mar 17, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I listened to this as an audio book. I think the best thing about this novel were the descriptions of Turkey. I've never been there but have always wanted to go. The story didn't really do much for me. Large parts of it were boring and slow, the characters were boring and flat, quite predictable really. Nothing about this book drew me in and held my attention. I just wanted to get through it as quick as I could. Not enjoyable at all.
Andrea Ahn
Mar 08, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: march-madness
This was a cute story about Alice who starts to uncover the truth about her past. Along the way Alice meets so many people from friend, to acquaintances, and even family. It goes through countries that are different from each other and how each has their own beauty in them. The very ending was predictable, but it was great to read from beginning to end.
Jan 28, 2019 rated it really liked it
It is the first time that i have read a book by Marc Levy. It is totally different to what i would usually read, but i do enjoy reading something different now and again. It was good, but that is far as it goes.

My thanks to Netgalley and the Publishers for my copy. This is my honest review, in which opinions are my own.
Larry  Loveday
Apr 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing

This was my first book written my Marc Levy and I can honestly say that it won't be my last. While I was reading the novel it felt a lot like I was reading a Hollywood screenplay, and I saw when I read about the author that his very first book was turned into a movie. I could see this one turned into a movie as well. Quick, fun read.
Sue King
Mar 03, 2019 rated it really liked it
Cute and satisfying read!

This is the second book I've read by Marc Levy and he continues to delight. The story is of a woman who follows a fortune teller's advice to Istanbul. Good character development and a good story.
Denise Hale
Feb 20, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: read-2019
This is not the first Marc Levy book I've read, if it was I probably wouldn't have read any more. I know that Marc writes in French and the novel is translated by someone else but it honestly reads as if it has two different writers.
I was a bit confused as to when the story was actually set (sometime in the 1950s) and imagined Alice as being in her late 20s/early 30s. Late into the book, the year is given as 1951 and Alice is 39 (less than a year has passed since the beginning of the book).
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Readers also enjoyed

  • The Beantown Girls
  • The Overdue Life of Amy Byler
  • I'm Fine and Neither Are You
  • Where The Story Starts
  • Valencia and Valentine
  • Trophy Life
  • Where the Forest Meets the Stars
  • The Upside of Falling Down
  • Dein perfektes Jahr
  • When We Believed in Mermaids
  • Only One Life
  • Winter Cottage
  • Inheriting Edith
  • The Snow Gypsy
  • Have You Seen Luis Velez?
  • What the Wind Knows
  • The Parisians
  • The Victory Garden
See similar books…
Marc Levy was born in France. When he turned eighteen, he joined the Red Cross, where he spent the next six years. In 1983, he created a computer graphics company based in France and the United States. Six years later, he co-founded an interior design and planning company with two friends; the company soon became one of the leading architecture firms in France.

At thirty-seven, Marc Levy wrote a
“Si j’aimais une femme, la plus belle preuve d’amour que je puisse lui faire, c’est de ne jamais le lui dire, pour qu’elle ne prenne pas le risque de vivre avec un type comme moi” 10 likes
“Como dice una canción, me ha rozado el alma y me la ha cambiado, ¿cómo perdonarle el haber hecho nacer en mí las ganas de querer y de que me quieran?” 2 likes
More quotes…