Skip to main content
PBS logo

Book Reviews of Corelli's Mandolin

Corelli's Mandolin
Corelli's Mandolin
Author: Louis De Bernieres
ISBN-13: 9780679763970
ISBN-10: 067976397X
Publication Date: 8/29/1995
Pages: 448
  • Currently 3.7/5 Stars.

3.7 stars, based on 174 ratings
Publisher: Vintage
Book Type: Paperback
Reviews: Amazon | Write a Review

31 Book Reviews submitted by our Members...sorted by voted most helpful

reviewed Corelli's Mandolin on + 117 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 5
One of the best books I've ever read (I've read it twice). The movie was terrible; don't use that as a guide!
reviewed Corelli's Mandolin on
Helpful Score: 4
Skip the movie and just read the book. Beautiful setting. Very emotional.
savannahblue avatar reviewed Corelli's Mandolin on + 9 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
A beautiful, lyrical book about the occupation of a small Greek island during WW II. Romantic, funny, frighteningly graphic in its depiction of the horrors of war - truly a piece of literature. (And no, I haven't seen the movie - I like Nicolas Cage, but he wouldn't have been my pick. It might ruin the book for me. . .)
reviewed Corelli's Mandolin on + 16 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
A heart breaking and beautiful love story!!
reviewed Corelli's Mandolin on + 4 more book reviews
This is the unabridged version, 11 cassettes, 18 1/2 hours.
reviewed Corelli's Mandolin on + 76 more book reviews
loved this book about Greece
reviewed Corelli's Mandolin on + 13 more book reviews
I read this book years ago and loved it. It's a great love story and a wonderful rendering of the Greeks during WWII. It is also very funny in parts. I almost hate to give it up. My book club read it years ago, and it was very well loved.
reviewed Corelli's Mandolin on + 224 more book reviews
This was quite a story. It was at times a little heavy for bedtime reading, but very well written, interesting, engaging.
reviewed Corelli's Mandolin on + 13 more book reviews
Excellent book! This is a story of a girl who lives on a Greek island during the Nazi invasion. Good story, great setting.
reviewed Corelli's Mandolin on + 5 more book reviews
I couldn't finish it, which is very rare for me, but others love it.
reviewed Corelli's Mandolin on + 275 more book reviews
I had trouble finishing this book, but my curiosity about what happened in Pelagia's life spurred me on. This part of this book was funny, clever and interesting to me. The author, however, goes on and on in other parts about what is happening in the war. Some of this information is relevant to the story but much of it is boring, confusing and frankly gory and disgusting. At the end, I was left with an overall sense of the futility and destruction that is part of war. Not a very happy book!
phillyartlovesbooks avatar reviewed Corelli's Mandolin on + 59 more book reviews
Very romantic but different from the film. Interesting story.
reviewed Corelli's Mandolin on
I loved this book! It's a terrific love story. The movie doesn't do it justice.
reviewed Corelli's Mandolin on
I think this book is more about the history of the war between the Italians and the Greeks during WWII ... than the romance between Pelagia and Corelli.
reviewed Corelli's Mandolin on + 18 more book reviews
A very compelling love story which takes place on a Greek island, occupied by the Italian army during World War II. Well-written with wonderful attention to both historical and emotional detail. Much, much better than the movie!
reviewed Corelli's Mandolin on + 628 more book reviews
Well, I read over half and decided to give it up. Maybe it was over my head. There was a lot of political storyline, which though educational, kind of bored me. I found it to be more confusing than amusing.
reviewed Corelli's Mandolin on + 15 more book reviews
Highly recommended book and author. Don't let the movie ruin the book for you - I couldn't watch it either. Lyrical, romantic, heavily reliant on scenery and environment, one of my favorite books for years.
YahtzeeQueen avatar reviewed Corelli's Mandolin on + 54 more book reviews
If you enjoyed the movie , you will love the book.
reviewed Corelli's Mandolin on + 216 more book reviews
I was pleasantly surprised with this novel. Highly recommended (and I don't read romances)
reviewed Corelli's Mandolin on + 40 more book reviews
An intelligent romantic novel with the historical background of Greece in WWII.
reviewed Corelli's Mandolin on + 20 more book reviews
"A good old fashioned novel" takes place on the Greek island of Cephallonia
reviewed Corelli's Mandolin on + 26 more book reviews
Historical Romance...The story takes place on the Greek Island of Cephallonia, where gods once dabbled in the affairs of men. During the WW II, two suitors are vying for the love of a beautiful young women from the village. The story is full of love, betrayals,and loyalties.
reviewed Corelli's Mandolin on + 29 more book reviews
A good read, compelling, starting with the life of one teenage girl and progressing through her life, but not entirely through her eyes.
eadieburke avatar reviewed Corelli's Mandolin on + 1606 more book reviews
Book Description
Extravagant, inventive, emotionally sweeping, Corelli's Mandolin is the story of a timeless place that one day wakes up to find itself in the jaws of history. The place is the Greek island of Cephallonia, where gods once dabbled in the affairs of men and the local saint periodically rises from his sarcophagus to cure the mad. Then the tide of World War II rolls onto the island's shores in the form of the conquering Italian army.

Caught in the occupation are Pelagia, a willful, beautiful young woman, and the two suitors vying for her love: Mandras, a gentle fisherman turned ruthless guerilla, and the charming, mandolin-playing Captain Corelli, a reluctant officer of the Italian garrison on the island. Rich with loyalties and betrayals, and set against a landscape where the factual blends seamlessly with the fantastic, Corelli's Mandolin is a passionate novel as rich in ideas as it is genuinely moving.

My Review
This was a very touching story that was a mixture of romance and history and I enjoyed it very much. The characters are the type that will stay with you for a long time. I thought it was very well written and I learned a lot of Mussolini and World War II. It's a type of book that you hate for it to end. I would recommend to anyone who enjoys love stories and history.
reviewed Corelli's Mandolin on + 911 more book reviews
Brims with all the grand topics of literature-love and death, heroism and skulduggery, humor and pathos, not to mention art and religion...A good old-fashioned novel. - Washington Post Book World
reviewed Corelli's Mandolin on + 9 more book reviews
Could not get into this one.
reviewed Corelli's Mandolin on + 12 more book reviews
Better than the movie
reviewed Corelli's Mandolin on + 109 more book reviews
An interesting but long book.
buzzby avatar reviewed Corelli's Mandolin on + 6062 more book reviews
Essentially a light-hearted book, despite the subject(the major events are historically accurate). I didn't see the movie, but I can see how it lends itself to being cinematized. Most of the people are somewhat characatured. My friend called it slow-moving, but I managed to make it through most of it.
reviewed Corelli's Mandolin on
Wonderful of my favorites. Historical fiction, fascinating characters, and an unusual romance.
reviewed Corelli's Mandolin on + 27 more book reviews
Cassical tale