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No Night is Too Long Paperback – 6 Jul 1995


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Product details

  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd; New edition edition (6 July 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0140250409
  • ISBN-13: 978-0140250404
  • Product Dimensions: 11.3 x 2.4 x 18.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 93,398 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Ruth Rendell was an exceptional crime writer, and will be remembered as a legend in her own lifetime. Her groundbreaking debut novel, From Doon With Death, was first published in 1964 and introduced the reader to her enduring and popular detective, Inspector Reginald Wexford, who went on to feature in twenty-four of her subsequent novels.

With worldwide sales of approximately 20 million copies, Rendell was a regular Sunday Times bestseller. Her sixty bestselling novels include police procedurals, some of which have been successfully adapted for TV, stand-alone psychological mysteries, and a third strand of crime novels under the pseudonym Barbara Vine. Very much abreast of her times, the Wexford books in particular often engaged with social or political issues close to her heart.

Rendell won numerous awards, including the Crime Writers' Association Gold Dagger for 1976's best crime novel with A Demon in My View, a Gold Dagger award for Live Flesh in 1986, and the Sunday Times Literary Award in 1990. In 2013 she was awarded the Crime Writers' Association Cartier Diamond Dagger for sustained excellence in crime writing. In 1996 she was awarded the CBE and in 1997 became a Life Peer.

Ruth Rendell died in May 2015. Her final novel, Dark Corners, is scheduled for publication in October 2015.

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Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

26 of 28 people found the following review helpful By -sweetmolly-(barbaracoe@mediaone.net) on 17 Sept. 2001
Format: Paperback
To those who need an adrenaline rush before page 10, this is not the book for you. My first assessment of "No Night Is Too Long" was that it was monstrously slow starting. Upon reflection, I don't think it could be structured any other way. The story's effect hangs on our thorough understanding of Timothy's point of view contrasted with how others see him. Tim is atrociously self-absorbed yet almost without personal vanity. He is a recreational liar, but never to himself. It takes a good and sufficient time to develop this young man, and if he were not developed, the story would have no meaning. The reader must see beyond Tim's startling beauty. Given the visuality of Ms. Rendell/Vine's prose, it takes a long lead-in for readers to see Tim plain and unadorned. Think of young Tom Cruise or Brad Pitt. I have always been convinced those two would stop traffic whether famous or not, and not one person would be aware (or care) if they were sensitive, caring, or struggling. They would be thinking: "Wow!" This is Tim Cornish.
When Tim meets Dr. Ivo Steadman, (who else but Rupert Everett?) he is certain he must be in love because he has never felt this way before. He has had a few dilatory girl friends that didn't stir him, only occasionally "scratched an itch." So what was this? The shortness of breath? The obsessing for Ivo's presence? This was something startlingly new and different, and it must be love! Tim found it also had a very short duration. As soon as Ivo dropped his Rochester/Heathcliff airs of arrogance and disdain, Tim was quickly out of love and into contempt. Alas, poor Ivo who made more and more frantic and futile efforts to entice and ensnare the errant Tim. I couldn't help but sympathize with Tim at this point.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 7 Feb. 2003
Format: Paperback
I usually stick to one particular genre but after last years new years resolution to read a wider range I encountered this brilliant book, and what a great thing too.
The book honestly is the best book I've ever read. It is fantastically written and is a credit to Ruth Rendell (Barbara Vine).
The story is about Tim and his love life as he ventures from his love for a university student to a professor and finds his sexuality. However, the true love is across the Atlantic living in canada.
The story is gripping and I didn't want to put it down. I can not describe how fantastic this book was. I'd recommend it to anyone. The only bad point to the book is that I knew I'd reach the end.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Eileen Shaw TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 21 Aug. 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This novel has a twist in the tale that is well worth the wait - true the wait is nearly book-length before we get to the point of revelation. "Vine is the mistress of that contradiction in terms" one reviewer writes on the back cover, "the slow-moving thriller." Is it self-indulgent? Not really, because she rlentlessly builds up tension, even while she seems to be avoiding the action. And there is lots of residual action in a series of stepped climaxes that were meaty enough for me.

Our protagonist, Tim, is writing this story from hindsight and much of it is painful for him. Very cleverly Vine racks up the suspense in this story of a mixed up young lad who wants to be a writer and who is not sure about his sexuality. He falls for Ivo, an older man, an academic, who takes Tim on his annual lecture-trail on a cruise ship to Alaska, though when Ivo makes a mistake with the dates Tim has to spend two weeks alone in a luxury hotel, waiting for the cruise to begin. While there he falls in love with a woman on her own, and his subsequent problems arise out of the need to keep Ivo and the beautiful Isabel apart. A violent act and a moment of forgetfulness leaves Ivo stranded. But the real truth is yet to be revealed.

The complexity of the story strains the marvellously evocative atmosphere of this novel a little, but it has an entirely satisfying ending, although I do agree with one reviewer here about the gratuitous death of one of the characters, I can't see Vine's supposed 'anti-gay prejudice'. Too much like special pleading.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 30 Jan. 2003
Format: Paperback
As a previous reviewer pointed out, this is a novel of obsessive love rather than an out-and-out thriller. The mood of the story, however, draws the reader in until the claustrophobia is almost real. The fear of knowing that someone is dead and yet seeing them everywhere, the sinister letters that keep arriving day by day - is Tim going insane or is it merely the past catching up with him?
This is a truly compelling novel that hooks the reader, making it impossible to put the book down.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Merryn Williams on 19 July 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I was captivated from the very first by the cold, doom-laden atmosphere surrounding Tim, the 'hero'. The writing is wonderful (by the way, has anyone ever noticed the vast differences between the best and the worst of Rendell/Vine?) But the ending seemed wrong to me. If you haven't yet read the book, don't read on because my next paragraph contains SPOILERS.
I always thought it possible that Ivo hadn't died. At the same time, Tim knows that he has committed murder in his heart and cannot recover from the guilt. But once the author has brought him back to life, it is disappointing to have him killed all over again. I know there has to be a murder somewhere in a Vine/Rendell novel. But to my mind it would work better if it was Tim who was killed, having first met Ivo and achieved some sort of reconciliation. The vision on the last page of him and Isabel embracing is quite distasteful. Too much has gone wrong and Ivo's body would always lie between them. I think it would have been better if Tim was destroyed through his taste for living dangerously and the brother and sister repaired their relationship.
Unfortunately, once a writer is very successful, he or she can publish what they like and no editor will dare to point out how it could have been made even better. But if I had been Ruth Rendell's publisher, the above is what I would have said.
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