Customer Reviews for

The Name of the Rose

Average Rating 4
( 118 )
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(63)

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2 Star

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(4)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

14 out of 14 people found this review helpful.

Fantastic book, but sloppy nook transfer of map images

This is an excellent book, but I feel it useful to provide editing feedback in this early stage of eBooks. The maps of the abbey and the library are poorly transferred to the eBook format. In both cases, only the upper left corner of each of these maps are visible on ...
This is an excellent book, but I feel it useful to provide editing feedback in this early stage of eBooks. The maps of the abbey and the library are poorly transferred to the eBook format. In both cases, only the upper left corner of each of these maps are visible on the BN nook. This does not seriously detract from this fantastic novel, but I was disappointed by the seeming lack of effort to format these images appropriately for the nook.

posted by DrJimC on January 3, 2011

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Most Helpful Critical Review

7 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

Try to make it past 1st 100 pages!

This book is definitely hard to get into. Even Eco comments in his notes in the back that his friends and editor suggested lightening up the first 100 pages or so. I found myself lost in the different monk factions and their political agendas which, while interesting,...
This book is definitely hard to get into. Even Eco comments in his notes in the back that his friends and editor suggested lightening up the first 100 pages or so. I found myself lost in the different monk factions and their political agendas which, while interesting, were a bit 'thick' to get through. Yes, some of this was critical to understanding the characters' motivations, but it could have been done in such a way as to be less 'plodding'. Once I made it past that, it was an enjoyable read. So,if you undertake this book, don't be discouraged by the beginning!

posted by Anonymous on February 6, 2006

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  • Posted January 3, 2011

    Fantastic book, but sloppy nook transfer of map images

    This is an excellent book, but I feel it useful to provide editing feedback in this early stage of eBooks. The maps of the abbey and the library are poorly transferred to the eBook format. In both cases, only the upper left corner of each of these maps are visible on the BN nook. This does not seriously detract from this fantastic novel, but I was disappointed by the seeming lack of effort to format these images appropriately for the nook.

    14 out of 14 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted March 14, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    A must read!!

    If I were asked which book had greatly impacted my intellectuality, I would say it was "The Name of the Rose" by Umberto Eco. Even though the book was very challenging and complex, the literary elements used (in the novel) made it a very well written book. It entertained me for five complete days in which I was successfully forced to isolate myself from the world, only to live this medieval experience at its best. After reading those exhausting first 100 pages (that were the most challenging from the entire book) in which the abbey was being described with excessive detail, I really got hooked up even more. The plot advanced extremely fast after these first 100 pages, and before I even knew it, I was finishing the novel with tremendous pride. After reading "The Name of the Rose" everything was worth it; all my time, my effort, etc. invested gave their respective "healthy fruits".

    Many appropriate elements in the book, not seen in any other book, successfully made me feel as if I were part of the most intriguing era: the medieval era. The Latin phrases disseminated throughout the text, the magnificent descriptions of the abbey, the historical context in which this book took place in, but especially, the ideas expressed in the book, were the elements that made this book superior from the others to such a level that a movie was made to fulfill the vast excellence of this work (although the movie is not as good as the book). The author also used an opportune book structure throughout the text that was historically used by the medieval intellectuals (the scholars). When they wrote books, the medieval scholars used summaries at the beginning of each chapter, and this made me feel (even more) as if I were part of the medieval era.

    All the ideas, superstitions, beliefs, etc, exposed in the book really made me think seriously. It is extremely interesting how the author combined religion and philosophy in the book. For instance, the blind scholar Jorge of Burgos feverously made a very profound point about religion that came in hand with the philosophy of life (or existentialism). Jorge played a huge roll in the novel using, as a justification for his actions, the seriousness of life (not laughing at anything since it is a great offense to God). This was the main point (with many more) were philosophy and religion of the medieval era fought against each other, and this combination really left me pondering a lot. Besides this, the book carried out the idea of history throughout its plot, which I really liked. This historical consistency seen throughout the novel gave me a very high-quality history lesson about a specific part of the medieval era.

    This is a very well written book that should be read only when you feel intellectually and physically strong enough (since this book is not that simple and requires quite a lot of time). I sincerely recommend, and it's a must read book. Waste no more time, and READ IT NOW!

    13 out of 15 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 4, 2003

    The Best of the Best!

    I had no idea when I picked up this random book hiding on a shelf in a bookstore that I would not be able to put it down for 2 weeks. It blows Tolken's books out of the water. I didn't think I could find a better mystery than A Tale of Two Cities, but did I ever.

    8 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 6, 2006

    Try to make it past 1st 100 pages!

    This book is definitely hard to get into. Even Eco comments in his notes in the back that his friends and editor suggested lightening up the first 100 pages or so. I found myself lost in the different monk factions and their political agendas which, while interesting, were a bit 'thick' to get through. Yes, some of this was critical to understanding the characters' motivations, but it could have been done in such a way as to be less 'plodding'. Once I made it past that, it was an enjoyable read. So,if you undertake this book, don't be discouraged by the beginning!

    7 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 20, 2006

    Awesome book, but now my head hurts!

    Despite the fact that reading an Umberto Eco book can make a reader feel gravely undereducated, The Name of the Rose's core story is truly a masterpiece. A patient, attentive reader will be rewarded with a compelling, suspensful, layered mystery combined with keen insight into the disturbing religious zeal of Europe in the Middle Ages. The only drawback I found was the occasional long-winded digressions into things that didn't seem to contribute much, if anything to the story.

    6 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 25, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    A thriller that will surprise you

    In the year 1327, Brother William of Baskerville is assigned an investigation of a possible heresy in a wealthy Italian Abbey, Abbaye de la Source, somewhere between Pompeii and Passy. The Novel is narrated by a young Benedictine novice and William's assistant, Adso of Melk. The story occurs in seven days of 1327, and the chapters are related to the daily monastic life of a Benedictine convent's canonical hours: Matins, Lauds, Prime, Terce, Sext, Nones, Vespers, and Compline. The book is 503 pages long, so it comes to around 72 pages/day. The religious bacground is ruled by the protagonists Pope John XXII (1249 - December 4, 1334), born Jacques Duèze (or d'Euse), who was pope from 1316 to 1334. He was the second Pope of the Avignon Papacy. (1309-1377), elected by a conclave in Lyon assembled by Philip V of France. Like his predecessor, Clement V, he centralized power and income in the Papacy, living a princely life in Avignon and spending a lot of money for his court and his wars. The Pope opposed Louis IV of Bavaria as emperor, and Louis, in turn invaded Italy, and set up an antipope, Nicholas V. Pope John XXII had set a a constitution concerning the taxae sacrae poenitentiariae in which the pope exploited the sins of the religious in order to squeeze out more money by creating the indulgence. However the Franciscans had a vow of poverty and opposed this doctrine, thus the Pope wanted to declare them heretics because the Franciscan belief was not good for his business. So William of Baskerville arrives to the Abbaye de la Source to see if a mediation is possible between the two factions, since there is a suspicion that some of the members of the abbey are against the indulgences. His mission is overshadowed by a series of bizarre deaths and accusations of homosexuality between certain monks-so Brother William, aided by Adso, turn detectives. Their mission now is to find the killer before the two factions: the Italians who believe in the vow of poverty, and the French who want to continue the practice of indulgence arrive for a meeting to consider a compromise. William's tools are the logic of Aristotle, the theology of Aquinas, the empirical insights of Roger Bacon-all sharpened to a glistened edge by wry humor and a ferocious curiosity. William collects evidence, deciphers secret symbols and coded manuscripts, and digs into the eerie labyrinth of the abbey, where the most interesting things happen at night. His foes are secrecy, religious rules and a secret desire to guard the library-for only the librarian can control the knowledge that leaves the convent. It is no accident that the book starts out as a mystery and continues to deceive the reader until the climactic end-until the reader realizes that this is a mystery in which very little is discovered and the good detective is defeated. It is no accident, either, that the book should have been edited-it contains long didactic passages that even the book editors requested be edited out. The author's explanation for boring you too death with them is that if somebody wanted to enter the abbey and live there for seven days-he had to accept the abbey's slow pace. Therefore there are several hundred pages that are purposely left as a penance or an initiation. Unfortunately for us, the readers, the penance is almost all the way to the end-until we discover that the historical premise and the crimes had nothing to do with the book. But rather it was a theologic

    5 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 27, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    A Complex Historical Mystery

    Umberto Eco's novel takes place in the Middle Ages- the investigator is Brother William of Baskerville (a nod to another famous sleuth) who, assisted by his apprentice Adso, uncovers a series of murders during a thelogical summit at a wealthy monastery.

    Mystery and history-buffs will enjoy this novel, although the plot can be difficult to follow due to Eco's tendency to digress into complicated theological arguments and vague historical references.

    'The Name of the Rose' is a hefty read that can be dull in some parts, but overall it is an enjoyable story.

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 21, 2004

    a Challenging Read

    This book was tough for me to get through, but I kept at it because I was certain it had good qualities. And it did! There were parts that were very wordy and rather dull, but the good parts were great. In retrospect, I'm very glad I stuck with it... the historical aspects were very thought provoking, and it was a darn good mystery. Would recommend it to an adventurous, serious reader, but not for a lightweight.

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 22, 2011

    The epitome of what historical fiction should be!

    Eco's "The Name of the Rose" epitomizes everything that historical fiction should be. Fictional events set in true cultural history. Eco's mastery of medieval history and philosophy is indicated in every aspect of the story. His depictions of medieval monastic society are fantastic. His grasp of the philosophical struggles going on between the different Mendicant orders, the Mendicant orders and the greater Catholic Church, and different factions inside the Church. The murder mystery he tells is intricately tied to the philosophical and cultural struggles of the time. The slowly shifting paradigms are exquisitely integrated into the plot.

    Unless you have a good grasp of Latin, French and German I highly recommend purchasing the companion book for The Name of the Rose. It provides translations for all of the passages not already translated into English.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 21, 2004

    Intriguing

    This is definitely a difficult read (I had to have a dictionary close by) but it was also a wonderful, suspenseful, absolutely engrossing book. I thoroughly enjoyed it.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 5, 2002

    Anyone for History?

    Quite simply the finest historical novel ever written. Eco raised the bar both in historical fiction and whodunnits. One of the most literary works of modern times, an absolute must.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 30, 2013

    I strongly recommend this italian novel written by Umberto Eco!

    I strongly recommend this italian novel written by Umberto Eco! It is set in North of Italy in the middle ages and the main characters are 2 franciscan monks, who investigate some murders which happen in a monastery. The book is a historical novel and it has been considered an authentic masterpiece.
    What pushed me to read the book is the fact that the film based on this book has always been my favourite. So I decided to read it and, surprisingly enough, I found it even more memorable than the film. It really immerses you in the atmosphere of the time, and the plot, so full of suspanse, makes the book unputdownable.
    What struck me has been the possibility to find in the book a mixture of different elements, such as the romanticism of a love story, the suspense of a detective book and, above all, a deep reflection and criticism on the society of the time, considered by the writter as the childhood of our modern Europe.
    In this novel you will flind everything you could look for in a book. I can assure that reading it will be an unforgettable experience.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 10, 2009

    I must Say I really enjoy reading this book. I am finding out so many of my friends have also have read this book as well. This book makes a well conversation readed.

    A very enjoyable book, and have told all my friends about this great book.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 28, 2005

    Genius? A hundred miles behind Eco.

    To say that Umberto Eco is a literary phenomenon would not be going too far. 'The Name of the Rose' is a wonderfully written novel that intertwines mystery and philosophy in the captivating late Middle Ages. It is a book that can be enjoyed by both the thinker and the sleuth, although I think that one who is both will get even more out of it. I read 'Angels and Demons' as well as 'The Da Vinci Code,' and 'The Name of the Rose' is still the uncontested heavyweight champ. Also, the movie does little to reveal Signore Eco's literary skill, so stick with the book.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 3, 2005

    interesting from begining to end

    I read the spanish version of this book back in 1987 while in school, i loved it, if you watch the movie with sean connery you will understand it better. The book gives you more details and scenarios which makes the book a little tedious but i totally recommend it.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 1, 2003

    A Great Read

    The Name of the Rose is a masterful blending of fiction, history, and a whole lot of murders. It seemed to run similar to an Agatha Christie novel with the historical aspects of the book shining through to add to the feeling that the book expresses. The book is a historical fiction and a murder mystery too which makes for a fast paced plot that keeps you riveted till the shocking conclusion. A must for anyone who loves mysteries, historical fiction or just a good book to read!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 6, 2002

    Thorougly satisfied

    A friend of mine recommended this book, but ruined the ending before I read it. I was still intrigued by the concept behind the book, so I decided to buy it. I wasn't disappointed either. I can't say I understood all of the historical references, but aside from that the intricate plot development was amazing. I never would have suspected the ending. A wonderful labyrinth of surprises.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 2, 2009

    Lots Of Filler

    When it comes right down to it, I was disappointed with this book. There is a murder mystery in there, and that part of the book is decent overall. It features mysterious circumstances and involves well developed characters. It kept me guessing as to who the murderer was. However, there is so much else in this book that one can easily forget there's a murder mystery taking place. I'd say the book is half and half: half a murder mystery, half other story. Many reviewers seemed to really like that. However, I found it distracting. I wanted a murdery mystery. What I found in this book was a murder mystery buried in another story.

    1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 1, 2005

    Good book; took too long to get there

    I would only recommend this book for true bibliophiles. However, even for us, I would say that this book could have been much better if it were about a hundred pages lighter. Thematically it is brilliant. One HUGE drawback, though: way too much Italian.

    1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 16, 1999

    Astonishing!

    Umberto Eco knows how to creat great atmospheres, how to thrill the reader, and most of all, how to write. The most amazing is how easily he pulls a fiction story out of History. Simply amazing.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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