With horrifying speed, Adam's encounter leads to a series of accidents through which he will lose everything.
©2009 William Boyd; (P)2009 WF Howes Ltd
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"A wonderful book, beautifully read."
I love William Boyd's previous work, most notably Any Human Heart, and I eagerly anticipate any new publications. His latest, Ordinary Thunderstorms, did not disappoint. The book tells the story a young scientist whose chance encounter with a stranger leads to his rapid and decline and fall. Indeed, the main plot-line of 'ordinary bloke propelled into a nightmare' had echoes for me of Waugh's Decline & Fall, Buchan's 39 Steps and Hitchcock's North By Northwest. Besides the thriller plot, the book takes us on a socio-economic ride through the social strata of the UK today. Boyd's cast of characters, worthy of Dickens or Waugh, are all made flesh by Boyd's deftly handled pen and the acting talents of narrator, Martyn Ellis. I cannot recommend this highly enough.
"Beginning and ending not as good as the rest"
At first I thought I wasn't going to enjoy this book as the whole roller-coaster of a story depends on an intelligent and well-educated man making a stupid and unrealistic decision. However, once I got into the tale of how he manages to live outside society and evade the powers that be I was hooked and wanted to know more. I had to grit my teeth a bit at some of the "facts" about how new drugs get investigated and approved by regulatory bodies, as I've carried out such trials, but wasn't surprised by the skull-duggery attributed to drug companies. I was surprised by the ending of the book: are we being left hanging for a sequel?
The reader of the book was excellent.
"A good story, not sure about the reader"
This is the first experience of William Boyd. I don't normally read thrillers, but got really drawn into this book, and, once I'd accepted the slightly unlikely course of action the main character takes at the start, I thought the story hung together really nicely, and kept you interested all the way through. The only thing that really spoiled it for me was the reader - he has a rather sad and weedy voice, not suited to this dynamic story, and has a limited range of quite unconvincing character voices; the two female protagonists in particular sounded very similar to me.
Overall though, I would definitely recommend this book.
Outstanding! intrigue, plot, reader... exceptional
"Not vintage Boyd but very good"
William Boyd has written some great books. This is a very good thriller. As an exploration of desparate descent it works, but some of the coincidences are a little too convenient to be convincing. But the overall experience is exciting and the characters are rounded, which just made me wish he'd finished the story more conclusively.
A great story with no real end, it just seemed to finish with no real ending
"Excellent and set in London"
Twists and turns all the way through. Adam's situation could happen to any one of us, a fastinating story. Well recommended.
"Not as good as i thought it would be"
You will either love it or hate it and i didnt enjoy it at all.As a lover of this genre i found this story lacking. I tried to persevere but gave up a couple of hours in as it just didnt hold my attention. Maybe it was because the narrators voice didnt fit the story(or at least not for me). The book might have been good but i certainly didnt like the audiobook..sorry!
"Is there a sequel?"
I enjoyed this book, but not as much as Restless. The start is gripping but like other readers one is left wondering if there is a sequel, as the end tends to drift off.
Loved it - great story, read very well.
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