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Perfume: The Story of a Murderer

Perfume: The Story of a Murderer

Escrito por Patrick Süskind

Narrado por Nigel Patterson


Perfume: The Story of a Murderer

Escrito por Patrick Süskind

Narrado por Nigel Patterson

valoraciones:
4/5 (155 valoraciones)
Longitud:
9 horas
Publicado:
Oct 30, 2018
ISBN:
9781684412433
Formato:
Audiolibro

Descripción

In the slums of eighteenth-century France, the infant Jean-Baptiste Grenouille is born with one sublime gift—an absolute sense of smell. As a boy, he lives to decipher the odors of Paris, and apprentices himself to a prominent perfumer who teaches him the ancient art of mixing precious oils and herbs. But Grenouille's genius is such that he is not satisfied to stop there, and he becomes obsessed with capturing the smells of objects such as brass doorknobs and fresh-cut wood. Then one day he catches a hint of a scent that will drive him on an ever-more-terrifying quest to create the "ultimate perfume"—the scent of a beautiful young virgin. Told with dazzling narrative brilliance, Perfume is a hauntingly powerful tale of murder and sensual depravity.

Publicado:
Oct 30, 2018
ISBN:
9781684412433
Formato:
Audiolibro


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3.9
155 valoraciones / 148 Reseñas
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Reseñas de lectores

  • (4/5)
    This novel has a very clever and interesting premise--a baby is born who has no smell. As he grows, we learn that he does not smell himself, but he has a masterful nose (perfect smell, like perfect pitch?). He can pick out smells from behind walls, blowing on the wind--and not just strong smells. He can smell money, etc. He manages to apprentice himself to an aging master perfumer, and makes the man's business thrive again. But Grenouille, now a young man, does not care about that. He wants to learnt he art of the perfume business so he can capture the smell that captivates him--that of the beautiful girl coming into womanhood. In the meantime, he also learns how to manipulate people with scents he creates for himself--because with no scent, he is virtually invisible to people and dogs.I really enjoyed this, but found the ending to be disappointing and a bit odd. Or did he cause this end himself, using the scents he had made? Or are the thieves, cutthroats, etc, of Paris really that different from the regular folk of the countryside? SPOILER BELOW------That while the people of Grasse wanted to save him and help him when they smelled his scent, those in the Paris graveyard at night want to kill him because his scent makes them want?
  • (2/5)
    This was a choice of my local book club; otherwise, I probably would not have chosen to read it. Nevertheless, it made a good book for discussion. The book was originally published in German in 1985. Set in France in the 1700s, it’s the story of a man born without any odor himself but with an incredible sense of smell.He becomes an apprentice and eventually a journeyman perfumer, and the best part of the book are the descriptions of techniques of fragrance extractionn of that era, such as distillation, maceration, and enfluerage.His quest to create the perfect scent (one that can influence human emotion) leads to murders and peculiar adventures (seven years spent alone in a cave, time as the subject of an odd scientist with strange theories). The ending of the book is very bizarre and rather gross.I can’t really recommend this one, except possibly as a choice for a book club looking for unusual titles to discuss.
  • (5/5)
    Strange, brilliant bastard of Stoker, Shelley, Dickens, and Eco.
  • (4/5)
    I enjoyed this book a lot.
  • (1/5)
    I tried really hard to read this and got about halfway through and just couldn't carry on. I really enjoyed the beginning of the book and was quite getting into it and then it just wasn't holding my attention any more. I think that started when Grenouille left Paris and lived in the mountain - that's when the book lost me.Back Cover Blurb:Grenouille has 'the finest nose in Paris and no personal odour'. He uses this talent to become a master perfumier and a sadistic murderer, disgusted by the stench of the human race.
  • (4/5)
    I finished "Perfume" this morning: a book my boss handed to me once upon a time and said "read this." Well, I bought it....but it has taken thus far to actually read it. A boy born and ditched in a pile of garbage with no scent of own....who by hardship (and a question oif nature vs nurture) turns into a murderer. For what reason? Tis the meat of the story...and a question of what makes us truly what we are, how others perceive us, and how we perceive ourselves.
  • (2/5)
    Clever premise which unfolds with an infusion of magic and a noxious splash of grandiloquence.
  • (3/5)
    Sometimes the convoluted sentences threw me for a loop. Nothing interrupts beautiful prose like a "wait...what?" Likeable book but I sort of expected more from it somehow. I also really didn't like the end, it seemed both too convenient and like a cop-out.
  • (5/5)
    What would it take to discover the perfect scent, in this case murder. Yet you can't help but feel sorry for the protagonist. Trying to fight for advancement in this world Grenouille does what he can to figure out what it truly means to be human.
  • (4/5)
    Inhaltsangabe:Jean-Baptiste Grenouille wird im stinkenden Paris im 18.ten Jahrhundert geboren. Seine Mutter glaubt ihn tot und kümmert sich daher nicht um ihn. Da sie wegen versuchter Kindstötung gehängt wird, kommt Jean-Baptiste in ein Heim.Was die Ammen gleich erkennen, ist sonderbar: Dieses Kind hat keinen eigenen Geruch. Aber Jean-Baptiste selbst kann riechen, besser als jeder anderer in Paris. Was andere mit ihren Augen oder mit ihren Ohren wahrnehmen, so erriecht er seine Welt und kann jedem Gegenstand einen Geruch zuordnen. Selbst dem Stein!Er wird herumgeschubst und landet letztendlich bei dem Gerber-Meister, wo er sich mit harter Arbeit und Widerstandsfähigkeit eine gewisse Freiheit geschaffen hat. Er darf durch die Stadt spazieren und die Welt erriechen! Dabei fiel ihm der Duft eines jungen Mädchens auf, das besonders reizend auf ihn wirkt. In seiner Gier nach diesem Mädchen tötet er es.Durch Zufall kann er bei dem Parfumeur Guiseppe Baldini in die Lehre gehen, denn Baldini sieht in Jean-Baptiste ist die letzte Chance, noch einmal von vorn anzufangen. Baldini bringt ihm alles bei, was man über Düfte, Destillerie, Alkohol und Fette wissen muss. Wie ein Schwamm saugt der junge Mann diese Informationen auf und kreiert immer neue Düfte, die Baldini widerum großen Reichtum schenken.Aber Jean-Baptiste will mehr. Viel mehr. Er will viel mehr. Was, das weiß er jedoch noch nicht. Er geht freiwillig ins Exil, um zu sich selbst zu finden. Doch da erst bemerkt er mit Entsetzen, das er sich selbst gar nicht riechen kann.Wie wird der perfekte Duft sein? Und was wird in Grasse noch geschehen?Mein Fazit:Wir lasen das Buch in der gmeinsamen Leserunde. Es gab sehr viele Passagen darin, die mich von der schriftstellerischen Art begeisterten. Wie z. B. die Beschreibung des mürrischen, aber geldgierigen Parfumeurs Baldini. Ein herrlich, wie scheinheilig, aber dennoch köstlich und amüsant.Das Ende ist dafür um so grauenvoller und drastischer. Mir irgendwie unverständlich, aber die Persönlichkeit um Grenouille ist sehr mysteriös wie auch sehr negativ. Eine Person, die auf der Suche nach Liebe und Anerkennung ist, sich aber nur im Hass und der Abweisung wohl fühlt. Ist schwierig, sich eine solche Person vorzustellen. Noch schwieriger, sie als Schriftsteller zu erschaffen.Sicherlich bin ich nicht 100%ig begeistert von diesem Werk, denn stellenweise war es mir auch etwas langatmig. Aber wer dieses Buch liest, der hält ein Werk der Weltliteratur in der Hand. Manchmal malerisch, manchmal auch plump hat der Autor die Szenerie um den Jungen beschrieben, aber stets angemesssen.Vergessen werde ich es nicht, zu empfehlen ist es alle Mal!Anmerkung: Die Rezension stammt aus Dezember 2006.Veröffentlicht am 18.08.15!
  • (4/5)
    Well written, gross. Not completely believable.
  • (4/5)
    There are some books which can be called unique. They may be good, bad or indifferent: but their authors strike out from the trodden paths of narrative themes and structure to explore totally new vistas, so that the product becomes unique. Perfume by Patrick Suskind is such a book.

    Jean Baptiste Grenouille is "an abominable and gifted personage, in an era which was not lacking in abominable and gifted personages". Born a bastard in the stinking heart of the city of Paris in the eighteenth century under a gutting table, the first cry he utters sends his mother to the scaffold for abandoning an infant. Grenouille grows up by sucking many wet nurses dry, survives the horrendous childhood of an orphan in an age without mercy, and grows up to become a successful perfumer. For this is his unique gift: the child who does not emit any smell himself is blessed with extraordinary olfactory capabilities, which allows him to recognise, separate and catalogue in his mind all the different odours he comes into contact with.

    But simple identification is not enough for Jean. He is driven by the insatiable urge to possess any smell he likes for himself; he will move heaven and earth to extract it from its origin, make a perfume out of it and keep it with him. He is not bothered that the object which originates the smell will be destroyed in the process of extraction: he is a "smell-vampire". And like a vampire, it is the smell of virgins which drives him wild. Ultimately, Grenouille's gift and single-minded obsession proves to be the cause of both his uplift and undoing...

    Suskind has written a gripping novel which will hook and pull the reader in from the first sentence onwards. However, this is not a simple horror story or thriller: it has got layers of meaning hidden beneath one another which will come out on careful reading.

    Jean Baptiste Grenouille is a masterly creation. His insatiable thirst for smells makes him a truly terrifying "collector": one who cannot enjoy his passion the normal way, but must possess the object of his desire (I was reminded of Frederick Clegg in John Fowles' "The Collector") completely. The fact that he lacks a characteristic odour himself enhances his vampiric nature. Also, all the people who profit from him come to a grisly end, like the poor misguided souls who make a pact with the devil.

    Joseph Campbell has made the slogan "Follow your bliss" very popular - but how to know whether your bliss is good or bad? I have always wondered about the concept of "negative bliss". Both Gandhi and Hitler could have been said to be following their bliss in different ways. While reading this novel, I was struck by the realisation that the difference is in one's attitude. If one is doing it because one cannot be doing anything else - following one's karma, if you want to put it that way - then it is bliss. But if one is driven by an insatiable need which feeds on itself, one ends up being a vampire. Ultimately, it consumes oneself.

    Highly recommended.
  • (4/5)
    I loved the movie and decided that I wanted to try out the book. When my reading group selected this one, I was excited to open it up. Suffice to say, I was satisfied with the book. The main character, Jean-Baptiste Grenouille, was definitely… a bad person. I spent so much of the book wondering what was going on in his head, trying to diagnose just what mental illness he suffered from to be so without emotion. Cruel, perhaps not, but definitely without moral judgment or really any sense of attachment to the people around him. I found myself disgusted, asking myself, “what is wrong with this guy?!” more times that I could possibly count. Ultimately, I found all of the characters repulsive in their own way, full of their own evil and vice. I think this was intended. Chilling of all is the plot, the decision of scentless Jean-Baptiste Grenouille to possess the sweetest smell of them all: the smell of beautiful young women. He is truly a man filled only with his own strange desires and hatred. His power to map any scent, to smell everything around him, is used to this end. It’s a book about obsession, murder, mystery, mental illness, beauty… so many categories. It’s definitely a good read, too, for anyone who likes historical fiction.
  • (3/5)
    This was an interesting, intriguing, and disgusting story all in one. I thought all the descriptions regarding the sense of smell relating to flowers and herbs was very interesting. I had never thought of the way things smelled so much and after reading this book I have become more aware of the scent of things. The character in the book was creepy as was the storyline. But, the ending will give you the biggest shock in this story. I was not expecting it and it definately threw me for a loop! If you like murder/mystery this would be a book for you.
  • (5/5)
    A story of a murderer. Perfume is gruesome story about a boy who has an incredible sense of smell. He would kill to have the perfect perfume. I liked this book because it was very different than most murder stories.
  • (5/5)
    Read decades ago as a teen (in German.) It's still with me today!
  • (4/5)
    Not like anything else I've read. Felt like a modern day Grimm's fairy tale told from the perspective of the villain.
  • (3/5)
    The psychology of Perfume snagged me as I read. I think that's what really hooks one in to this rather short read; it plays on sense of self while carrying its readers off into the darkened chill of absence, lack, mania.

    All in all, it was very interesting and disturbing. Which is probably what every other review of this book says.

    I haven't watched the movie and I'm sure if I ever get around to it I'll end up comparing it back to the book as readers are wont to do. There certainly might be something interesting there, experiencing a book about a pariah who is driven to murder because of a sense he lacks in two different senses by reading the book (sight) and watching a movie (sight hearing).

    Suskind definitely abounds in his ability to layer scent within his character and his writing.
  • (1/5)
    I've had this book for two years and haven't been able to get past the first chapter. The descriptions therein are brutal, offensive and disturbing.
  • (4/5)
    Perfume🍒🍒🍒🍒
    By Patrick Suskind
    1986

    "Odors have a power of persuasion stronger than that of words appearances, emotions or will."

    In 1738 Jean Baptiste Grenouille is born in Paris to impossible circumstances and a grim future. He eventually is sold as a laborer to the owner of a perfumery, Monsieur Grimal. Grenouille obsession with scents and smells starts him on an uncontrollable obsession with owning these scents. He becomes monstrous and cruel in his murderous calculations.
    There are a lot of lengthy descriptions that slow the story down, but it is a really good story.
  • (4/5)
    This is the life story of Jean-Baptiste Grenouille, a man with superhuman olfactory senses but no body odor of his own. The whole tale is abundantly strange, from Grenouille's unusual birth to the string of bodies he leaves in his wake, whether he knows it or not. He reminds me somewhat of Buffalo Bill from The Silence of the Lambs. I would advise against reading while eating, as many of the scent descriptions are vivid and unpleasant. Grenouille experiences the world through his nose, and the world of 18th-century France was quite odoriferous. The weirdness of the story escalates at the end, until I started having trouble swallowing it. It was like the whole theme of the narrative shifted for the last few chapters. And if you look at it from that angle, the ending is (mostly) logical and satisfying, but most of the story leading up to it didn't quite fit. That said, I flew through this book and was fascinated by the idea of telling a story chiefly through scent. And it is indeed told well. I'm just not sure to whom I'd recommend it. Perhaps people who like dark and weird fiction.
  • (4/5)
    Having not seen the film of this book, I picked it up on a whim (and the appealing design of the Bloomsbury classics cover). I'm very glad I did. The descriptive prose flows wonderfully from page to page, with the murders themselves being almost a side note to the beauty and grotesque of the aromas. A comparison could be drawn to American Psycho, especially in terms of entering the main characters head, but without so many shock tactics.If you read it as a standard crime novel, you'll be disappointed. However, the unusual manner in which the times are described, together with the variety of details that are touched upon provide an engaging read more akin to the classical fairy tales. The end of the book is not as tight as the beginning, but this does not particularily detract.Certainly twisted, but overlaid with beauty and and the twists and turns of perspective.
  • (2/5)
    I know everyone seems to love this book but I really didn't enjoy it at all. The author did manage to convey the sense of smell in a remarkable way and it was interesting to get into the mind of a mad man. However, I found it way to 'wordy' with hardly any dialogue and the most lengthy sentences and paragraphs ever. I found myself wanting to skip great chunks of it. The ending was very dramatic and unexpected and completely gross - I had no desire to see the film at all.
  • (4/5)
    This one really splits the readership up. Many adore it, some loathe it. I have to wonder if those who say they loathe it mean they find the story horrifying and the central character loathsome?Süskind creates a credible, coherent world, tells a fascinating, if appalling, story in artfully constructed prose. What more do you want, Pollyanna?If you don't enjoy this as a work of literature/fiction, don't try Dostoevsky or Edgar Allan Poe.
  • (4/5)
    Jean-Baptiste Grenouille was born unwanted, non-smelling, and with the sense of smell a perfumer would die for. Bouncing from orphanage to tannery, Grenouille learns how to use his acute sense of smell to make perfume at a young age. He becomes the apprentice of Baldini, a hack of a perfumer, and learns the procedures to mix scents. After almost dying, he comes out alive and moves forward – living in a cave for seven years. When he re-emerges, he is taken in by a mad scientist then works at another perfume shop where he creates scents for himself and creates the best scent in the world – to be loved – which proves to be too much at the end.Haunting and also makes the reader aware of his/her sense of smell. Good read!
  • (2/5)

    7/10.

    An extremely original story of a man and his life of smells and hunt for the perfect scent - one that would control mankind. Very interesting.

  • (4/5)
    'His discerning nose unravelled the knot of vapour and stench into single strands of unitary odors', 16 Jun 2014This review is from: Perfume: The Story of a Murderer (Paperback)Very horrible but totally compelling, this story seemed to start out like a fairy tale, as Jean-Baptiste Grenouille, a man with no smell - and yet who has a magical 'nose' for smell - goes to live with a failing parfumier. As he saves his employer's business, it all seemed like 'The Elves and the Shoemaker'.At this point I happened to read a review of the book online which said that Grenouille was an allegory for Hitler, and as the book progressed, this becomes more apparent.(spoiler alert) Firstly in some of the images of his time in the perfume factory in Grasse, where descriptions of the processing techniques of the flowers remind the reader of the Holocaust. But also in terms of Hitler's inexplicable charisma that enslaved a nation. For when Grenouille manages to distil a perfume that gives him an attractive odour, he is no longer an insignificant little man, to be reviled...An impressive read.
  • (4/5)
    This is a highly stylised but well written, passionate and evocative tale that is shot through with a wry, dark humour, cleverly ducks readers' expectations and contains much fun and imaginative use of smells. From stenches to simulate humanities stink to the overwrought sublime smell of the innocent, it's all here in glorious detail and makes you wish they would hurry up and invent smellovision (even if it would make you retch).But (there was always going to be a but wasn't there?) I just didn't like it, which surprised me greatly as this book should of been a perfect. Unfortunately its high artifice did not suit. Like its perfumes the story is too obviously pruned and tweaked to fit the authors poetic desires, so all Grenouille's masters meet their amusing random deaths on cue, as if God were in on the joke and the suddenly humour becomes just too all knowing from a winking author. Add to this Grenouille was kind of boring, having only one vice and I just found it all rather irksome. After all there is no suspense in something so obviously following whims of the author, all you can do is relax and enjoy the ride. In the end I was left feeling bemused and unsure if it was worth reading.. I however now I have a desire to see film, just so I can answer the question why anyone would want to film it.
  • (4/5)
    Wonderful book. Wish I read the book before I saw the movie.
  • (5/5)
    Of course I need to read this as a grown-up and a Muslim, but I loved this book. Probably the murders would disturb me now. Otherwise I love the olfactory descriptions/appreciations...