Jeffrey Archer is at his captivating best in this, his first novel, an intricate tale of deceit, dishonor, and sweet revenge. What can an Oxford don, a respected society physician, a chic French art dealer, and a charming English lord have in common? Very little, except they've all been swindled out of every cent they had by Harvey Metcalfe, the man who wrote the book on international stock fraud. They haven't a prayer of ever seeing their money again. Or have they?
©1976 Jeffrey Archer (P)2014 Macmillan Audio
Writing reviews is work. Therefore, I need to be really happy or really unhappy with a book to write one.
I like revenge stories and had particularly enjoyed Archer's A Prisoner of Birth, but this was very disappointing. So much of it was just name brand dropping in a way that had little or nothing to do with the plot. Some of the Amazon reviews said that the plot was "unbelievable" or "too coincidental" but I expected that, since typically a revenge novel is meant to be a bit over the top. However, nobody hit on the right description: "unnecessarily convoluted;" full of complicated schemes that would make sense in a caper movie but not when you are listening to them, particularly because of the great deal of padding. Not completely awful, some fun parts, but you might want a hard copy for a skim- through beach read instead of an audible version.
liked the plot and it kept my interest. I would like to see this story as a movie
Avid reader (listener). I work in dog rescue in Arkansas, am married and am 62 years old.
I rate my audiobooks by placing them into two categories, Read Again or Don't Read Again. While this was a good book it would not fall into the Read Again list.
The story was about 4 men who were working to get even with someone who had taken advantage of them in the past. Each had to come up with a plan for revenge so money could be taken from him and the methods and plans they came up with were very entertaining.
John Lee is in my top 3 narrators ... possibly number 1! He is AMAZING! I have listed to him on MANY books and he never disappoints. He is absolutely brilliant.
I like books that are longer, 15 - 40 hours. So listening to this all in one sitting is just not doable ... but when I go to my car for lunch each day just so I can listen to my book in peace and quiet, it's a good book. I did this with this book!
I believe anyone would enjoy this novel. Revenge can be sweet!
I've enjoyed so many of J.A. Books. One might say I've nearly overdosed on them. This particular read has a slightly different twist. I enjoyed the read thoroughly. It was great fun!!
John Lee turns an average story into an enjoyable listen.
With touches of a Count of Monte Christo type revenge plot, the story is enjoyable but just not as gripping as some of Archer's other efforts. The let down comes with the way the story winds down and concludes.
Overall it's a decent story with a great narrator so I'd recommend it.
For the second time, after over 35 years it held me to the very last syllable and left me wishing I were only halfway through. This story encircles you with it's masterful use of language, perfect plot and brilliant cast of characters.
It's no wonder Jeffrey Archer is commonly referred to as one of if not the finest fictional novelists.
Edge of your seat at every turn.
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This was quite an entertaining caper.
Archer’s writing style is very distinctive:
• Very little dialogue.
• A lot of “showing” - No need to exercise your imagination.
• A propensity to explain plans in minute detail. Sometimes I swear he was reading off a spread sheet! I am paraphrasing here, but not exaggerating : “He owes fifty eight thousand four hundred and nine dollars and fifty two cents, and paid twenty seven thousand six hundred and seventy eight dollars and ninety seven cents, so his remaining balance is thirty thousand seven hundred and thirty dollars and fifty five cents”
• Books that feel like a collection of short stories.
• Any excuse to show off his research.
If you like his style then you’ll enjoy this adventure; it felt nostalgic to me somehow, like an 80s miniseries.
Not a terrible book. It's main problem is that it is dated. The revenge plots could have only worked in the 1970s and in today's information age, it is no wonder that readers not familiar with the 70s find them convoluted and improbable. Poor narration doesn't help the story either. Finally, there is a great plot twist at the end of the book but the author chooses to do absolutely nothing with it. On the plus side, the book did fill some time but that is about as enthusiastic as I can get.
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