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Publisher's Summary

In Nocturnes, a sublime story cycle, Kazuo Ishiguro explores ideas of love, music and the passing of time. From the piazzas of Italy to the Malvern Hills, a London flat to the "hush-hush floor" of an exclusive Hollywood hotel, the characters we encounter range from young dreamers to cafe musicians to faded stars, all of them at some moment of reckoning. Gentle, intimate and witty, this quintet is marked by a haunting theme: the struggle to keep alive a sense of life's romance, even as one gets older, relationships founder and youthful hopes recede. 

Read by Adam Kotz, Neil Pearson, Julian Rhind-Tutt, Ian Porter, and Trevor White.

©2009 Kazuo Ishiguro (P)2009 Faber Audio

What listeners say about Nocturnes

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Profile Image for Rochelle
  • Rochelle
  • 30-04-2013

Beautiful stories

A series of 5 vignettes on the themes on music & relationships.

Ishiguro's writing is stunning & the narration in the audiobook is top notch. Each of the 5 stories was wonderful, I usually prefer books to short stories as I like to get involved with the characters, but there was none of that limitation with these stories.

Each story outlines a relationship which provokes a different reaction: I found the first romantic & sad, the extremely funny. There are characters to love, hate & to feel ambivalent towards.

I wish Audible stocked more of Ishiguro's books. Anyone who is familiar with "Remains of the day" (either the book or movie) knows what a fine story teller he is.

This is for anyone who enjoys fine fiction.

1 person found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Tracey
  • 24-01-2013

Gentle listening

A lovely collection of gentle stories, revolving around music. They tie together wonderfully, and I'll no doubt be giving this collection another listen in future.

5 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Adrienne
  • 23-12-2012

Musical off notes

I love Ishiguro's work- particularly his novels and I was disappointed by these short stories the characters and central themes of which failed to really engage me. Ishiguro uses music as a foundation to the collection and perhaps not having any knowledge or ability in the musical world was a disadvatage for this listener.

5 people found this helpful

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  • Busy of Devon
  • 23-06-2020

Master of mirth and poignancy

What a joy to read shorts from this master of emotion. Ishiguro creates such bizarre scenes in such a believably visual way one can almost believe they are true stories which actually occurred. I was laughing out loud at several points, at other times feeling for the characters and identifying with them. The musical themes throughout add an extra dimension to each setting. I thoroughly enjoyed these and think the author has once again excelled. Enjoy!

1 person found this helpful

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  • Jane S.
  • 24-01-2021

Ishiguro at his best

I loved how we dipped in and out of peoples lives in these short stories and whilst they were separate they were also connected. The narrators were so good; between them and the writing, I could see where they were and who they were so clearly. An unmissable audible.

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  • Simon
  • 23-01-2021

charming stories, a bit short

i liked these stories, contains more humor than i expected from Ishiguro. But nice light hearted insight of the many faces of love.

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  • K. J. Bute
  • 02-11-2020

Strange collection

I was not quit sure why these were put together and had not noticed the link between two of the stories until I read about it in one of the reviews. I found the stories quite sad in some ways but were enjoyable.

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  • hfffoman
  • 31-10-2020

First rate writing, brilliant narration

I don't normally like short stories as they don't engage the reader with their events and characters as deeply as novels do. But these are captivating from beginning to end, touching the heart without the remotest touch of sentimentality. They maintain a fine balance between the serious and subtly funny, each story in its own way flirting with the implausible without ever turning into comedy.

Overall, this title deserves the highest recommendation in my view. My favourite Ishiguro remains Never Let me Go (although that is an unusual story told in an unusual way and won't appeal to everyone). Yet I didn't like the Buried Giant at all. Maybe it was the narrator, or maybe I missed something.

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  • S. Jones
  • 29-09-2020

Lovely ensemble piece

This collection deserves 3.5 stars rather than 3, I loved the narration and the stories were gentle and pleasant to listen to

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  • Culwen
  • 03-09-2020

Passes the time

A loosely linked set of stories which isn't engaging but easy to listen to. It's original and while it's not bad, it's not something I would shout from the rooftops about.

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  • ferelferencz
  • 25-03-2020

Inside the musicians world

This was my very first foray into Ishiguro's work. I was not disappointed. The story telling is evocative yet directly conveyed with straightforward dialogue and the characters came to life amidst colourful backdrops both physical and psychological. A melancholy air permeates each of the 5 stories but a sense of the ridiculous is never far away. These were a joy to listen to.

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