An American classic and the inspiration for the motion picture starring Matt Damon and Gwyneth Paltrow.
It’s here, in the first volume of Patricia Highsmith’s five-book Ripley series, that we are introduced to the suave Tom Ripley, a young striver seeking to leave behind his past as an orphan bullied for being a “sissy.” Newly arrived in the heady world of Manhattan, Ripley meets a wealthy industrialist who hires him to bring his playboy son, Dickie Greenleaf, back from gallivanting in Italy. Soon Ripley’s fascination with Dickie’s debonair lifestyle turns obsessive as he finds himself enraged by Dickie’s ambivalent affections for Marge, a charming American dilettante, and Ripley begins a deadly game. “Sinister and strangely alluring” (Mark Harris, Entertainment Weekly) The Talented Mr. Ripley serves as an unforgettable introduction to this smooth confidence man, whose talent for self-invention is as unnerving—and unnervingly revealing of the American psyche—as ever.
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
Whether or not you’ve seen the terrific, star-studded movie adaptation, you’re really missing out if you haven’t read Patricia Highsmith’s novel. No movie could do justice to Highsmith’s insights into issues like human identity, freedom, and guilt (or the lack thereof). And it’s hard to understand how Highsmith pulls off the feat of making us fall in love with her social-climbing con man of a protagonist, Tom Ripley. By the end of the novel—when Ripley begins losing control of his life after assuming a rich friend’s identity—we were almost convinced by Tom’s point of view: Circumstance has simply left him no other choice than murder.
Not even close to the movie...
I usually read the book before seeing the movie adaption. And am usually so disappointed. This time, I have seen the movie several times... Amazing! And decided to read the book. Other than the character names- the book doesn't come close to the excellent movie. I wonder if I had read the book first- would I feel the same way. And have decided that, NO, I would not. I'll give the book 4 stars. But, am wondering why the screenplay was written so different- might as well have just changed the names and called it something else. So, what I am saying is... Enjoy the book, but erase any notion the you are reading about the movie. The movie is excellent!!!
Compared to the movie
Much different than the movie, which I saw first. I recommend reading this, especially if you are a fan of the movie. It paints a different picture, so to speak.
Chilling, exciting, and moving, all at once. Ripley is horrible and winning in equal measure, and you can't help rooting for him, despite the dreadful things he does. Highsmith has created one of the most complex characters in Enhlish literature.