"Tom Ripley is one of the most interesting characters in world literature." —Anthony Minghella, director of the 1999 film The Talented Mr. Ripley
Since his debut in 1955, Tom Ripley has evolved into the ultimate bad boy sociopath. Here, in the first Ripley novel, we are introduced to suave Tom Ripley, a young striver, newly arrived in the heady world of Manhattan. A product of a broken home, branded a "sissy" by his dismissive Aunt Dottie, 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. A dark reworking of Henry James's The Ambassadors, The Talented Mr. Ripley serves as an unforgettable introduction to this smooth confidence man, whose talent for murder and self-invention is chronicled in four subsequent Ripley novels.
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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.