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Closed Circle [Paperback]

Robert Goddard
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
RRP: 7.99
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Book Description

13 Oct 2011

1931. The new, luxurious transatlantic liner Empress of Britain is on her eastward passage. Among the first-class passengers on board are two English confidence tricksters, making a discreet exit from a scam they have left behind them in the United States. A chance meting on deck brings them a tempting new target in the shape of the beautiful and wealthy heiress, Diana Charnwood.

It's a trick they've pulled before, with some success. Charm the daughter into an engagement to marry, then get the father to buy you off. So confident are they of success, in fact, that they make a pact: whichever of them wins Diana Charnwood's love will share his fortune with the other.

But a violent death is to interrupt their neat little scheme. And they find themselves stumbling into something much darker than either had suspected...


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Product details

  • Paperback: 432 pages
  • Publisher: Corgi (13 Oct 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0552164917
  • ISBN-13: 978-0552164917
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 33,400 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Robert Goddard was born in Hampshire. He read History at Cambridge and worked as an educational administrator in Devon before becoming a full-time novelist. He is the author of many bestselling novels, including Into the Blue which won the first WH Smith Thumping Good Read Award and was dramatized for TV in 1997, starring John Thaw.

Product Description

Review

"Goddard unwinds his plots like a conjurer" (Guardian)

"A spendidly old-fashioned affair, full of thuggery and skulduggery, cross and doublecross, plot and counter-plot" (Independent)

"A masterful performance from one of Britain's finest thriller writers" (Time Out)

Book Description

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Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
4.3 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars From America with counterfeit love 4 Mar 2009
Format:Paperback
A pair of confidence tricksters flee an embarrassing financial collapse in the USA - as if an American financial institution could be guilty of fraudulent dealings or would be so mismanaged as to plunge itself into insolvency! It's surely the sort of thing that could only happen in a novel? Our two English adventurers while away their sea voyage pursuing an heiress, a young woman whose beauty matches her riches. Their schemes come apart at the seams - can love really get in the way of business (or crime)? Having become used to manipulating others and stage-managing situations, our two anti-heroes suddenly become pawns in someone else's game and find themselves caught up in a web of murder and betrayal.

Goddard again weaves together a compelling narrative - he handles historical adventures with convincing skill ... you are absorbed into the period, into its values and sensibilities, you become absorbed by the lives and emotions of the characters. It's a process of osmosis - the plot, the dynamic invades your imagination. Goddard doesn't go in for startling special effects or loud bangs, though this novel does have its slightly visceral moments. His tales are quite gentle, quite cosy ... but with dark and disturbing undercurrents.

This is a highly entertaining novel by one of the finest story-tellers in the business. He's very English, he probably doesn't translate to an American audience as well as some writers, but for anyone interested in writing, Goddard offers master classes in plot construction and characterisation, and nobody handles fictional history quite so well.

Excellent piece of writing, red herrings a plenty, and perhaps more of a conventional murder mystery than most of Goddard's novels. A very good read.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Spellbound! 29 Aug 2006
By Didier TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback
That's what I was and hope you'll be too from the very first page. The language is extremely fluent (as always with Goddard, so much so that it looks deceivingly easy to write as he does, whereas it's most probably the result of sheer hard work), the dialogues flawless (again: as always), and the plot draws you in immediately.

This is the fourth book by Goddard I've read and I haven't been disappointed yet so on to number five!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback
Guy Horton and Max Wingate are con men returning across the Atlantic ocean from America after several years of lucrative and deceptive scams.
On board the ship they plan a scam that has worked before to mutual financial gain. One of them will 'fall'in love with a rich young woman only to be 'bought off' by the irate father some time later and hopefully before the wedding, and Max and Guy will share the payout.It has worked before, so why not now?
But what happens when genuine love develops and causes a rift between the two?

First published in 1993 this is one of Robert Goddard's most intriguing novels because it turns into a far more complex and detailed story than the first fifty pages would have you believe. It becomes a political conspiracy novel with a destructive secret at its centre that the late great Robert Ludlum would have been proud to invent!
The story is narrated by Guy, the twists and turns are plentyful, but what really works is the 1931 setting during a financial crisis and the forming of the National government.
Goddard takes the reader to some interesting places like Venice and Dublin (cities he would return to in later books).
Although not as long as many of his other novels, this is a fine story that keeps the reader engaged throughout and turns out to be a very different sort of book from the one you initially expect.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Intriguing 10 Feb 2013
By Al
Format:Paperback
This is a fascinating story, and very well written.

The plot is very clever with enough twists and turn to keep the reader's interest throughout and the characters are extremely well developed.

The story centres on a couple of con-men, but other characters have their own secrets. This is a tale of deception and involves a secret society with a dreadful secret to protect. I was trying to work out who was lying and who was being honest, who were the 'good guys' and who we the 'bad guys until the end of the book.

This is the second book by this author that I have read, having previously read Pale Battalions. The author's style seems to be to build up intrigue in a story with several twists, rather than being packed with lots of actions scenes. I am looking forward to reading my next Robert Goddard book and I would highly recommend both of the books by this author that I have already read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars another classic 6 July 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Once you start a Goddard book you can't put it down.
Another classic from an author with insight.
Every one as good as the last.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Great Read 3 April 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Another very compelling read with many unexpected twists and turns. Very difficult to put down.
Robert Goddard at his very best.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good, but not very good 6 Nov 2010
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I have read around 10 Robert Goddard novels and although this is a reasonably good read it's far from being one of his best. Like some of the poorer novels it's a little slow at times, but entertaining nevertheless.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars From America with counterfeit love 4 Mar 2009
Format:Paperback
A pair of confidence tricksters flee an embarrassing financial collapse in the USA - as if an American financial institution could be guilty of fraudulent dealings or would be so mismanaged as to plunge itself into insolvency! It's surely the sort of thing that could only happen in a novel? Our two English adventurers while away their sea voyage pursuing an heiress, a young woman whose beauty matches her riches. Their schemes come apart at the seams - can love really get in the way of business (or crime)? Having become used to manipulating others and stage-managing situations, our two anti-heroes suddenly become pawns in someone else's game and find themselves caught up in a web of murder and betrayal.

Goddard again weaves together a compelling narrative - he handles historical adventures with convincing skill ... you are absorbed into the period, into its values and sensibilities, you become absorbed by the lives and emotions of the characters. It's a process of osmosis - the plot, the dynamic invades your imagination. Goddard doesn't go in for startling special effects or loud bangs, though this novel does have its slightly visceral moments. His tales are quite gentle, quite cosy ... but with dark and disturbing undercurrents.

This is a highly entertaining novel by one of the finest story-tellers in the business. He's very English, he probably doesn't translate to an American audience as well as some writers, but for anyone interested in writing, Goddard offers master classes in plot construction and characterisation, and nobody handles fictional history quite so well.

Excellent piece of writing, red herrings a plenty, and perhaps more of a conventional murder mystery than most of Goddard's novels. A very good read.
Comment | 
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Book arrived 8/8/14 by courier in exellent condition, what more could you ask for.
Published 12 days ago by Mr. David Howarth
5.0 out of 5 stars A story about Absolute Bounders!
The Story starts off with a vision in my mind of a Terry Thomas character in the 1930s on a cruise ship with a friend playing the cad to boost his income. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Tony Bendall
5.0 out of 5 stars Bruno
Delivered on time in good condition. I like reading Robert Goddard books and haven't been disappointed with any of his books
Published 5 months ago by Bruno
5.0 out of 5 stars Master Storyteller
Robert Goddard is the master of mystery, another compelling storyline with a plot that draws you in from the first page and again keeps you guessing taking you on a journey of... Read more
Published 6 months ago by LindaKimber61
5.0 out of 5 stars Another ripping yarn!
Again Robert Goddard has written a novel to surprise and delight. The plot has so many twists and turns that you begin to wonder how it will all turn out! Read more
Published 8 months ago by Sue Fraser
5.0 out of 5 stars Closed Circle
very good reading I enjoy reading Robert Goddard Books as they are always very good Stories, so if you like Crime Stories, good one to try.
Published 10 months ago by Mrs CA.Thomas
4.0 out of 5 stars Robert Goodard books
Closed Circle is Another good yarn well written held my attention. I have started to add these books to my Kindle
even though I have the hard back versions. Read more
Published 13 months ago by Barbara Lloyd
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent
I've enjoyed previous books by the author but this for me has been the best. Good unfolding story with many twists and turns.
Published 17 months ago by Mike
4.0 out of 5 stars Closed Circle
Typical Goddard/ good read gripping/thought provoking/ stimulating/ not put down easily as you would expect from Goddard if you have read any of his other books/ I would recommend... Read more
Published 21 months ago by john tilley
4.0 out of 5 stars Clever twisted plot as usual
The book was a typical Robert Goddard offering, historical fact interwoven with a clever plot containing a few twists, a very enjoyable read
Published on 2 Mar 2011 by G. Forbes
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