Most helpful critical review
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Sorry, but no.
on 26 February 2014
I would like to like this book, and I would have liked to give it a good review. It's definitely an interesting subject matter and in the hands of a more competent and knowledgable historian could actually be a fascinating story. Alas, it was not to be. It's a confused and confusing yarn which may have made sense to the writer but definitely not to the reader. Personae are introduced without reference and referred to like old acquaintances. Irrelevant characters are treated as if of major importance.The story lacks an angle and is all over the place. A real problem is the writing style which at best can be called grating. The author is excessively fond of the expression "A humdinger, in fact", and uses it as an "ironic" authorial comment on almost every page. A confused stance over whether the book is a novel (speech between characters given verbatim, but of course made up) or based on actual research does not help. I really wonder what the publishers (Simon&Schuster!) were thinking when they released this totally confused book. Sorry, no - not good enough. Not by a long stretch.