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The Philanthropist's Danse

The Philanthropist's Danse [Kindle Edition]

Paul Wornham
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (62 customer reviews)

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Product Description

Product Description

Twelve people. Five days. One fortune.

Johnston Thurwell, one of the world’s richest men, dies unexpectedly. His family expects to inherit his wealth, but instead discover the dying philanthropist has spent his last days planning something called The Danse. The twelve most important people in his life are brought together to decide the most important question at the end of it. Who will inherit his fortune?

The family is sequestered in the philanthropists’ remote country mansion with a group that includes his best friend, his most loyal servants, and his greatest rival. They must agree who among them will share the fortune, but they must do it against the clock. Every twenty-four hours, the fortune is reduced. In just five days, it will all be gone.

The thin veneer of civility among the twelve is ripped away by naked greed as their lust for money drives them into betrayal, blackmail and violence.

The desperate family will do anything to save their inheritance. Except share it.

About the Author

Paul was born in England and raised in the picturesque city of Bath. He lived and worked across the South of England and in London. He moved to Canada in 1996 and lives in Ontario with his wife Lesley. The Philanthropist’s Danse is Paul’s first novel.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 582 KB
  • Print Length: 410 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0987717618
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0057J4ZMI
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (62 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #141,069 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Paul Wornham is the author of mystery novels The Philanthropist's Danse and The Mercy Contracts.

Paul was born in England and grew up in the picturesque city of Bath. He now lives and writes in Ontario, Canada.

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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
23 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Definately A Must Read. 24 Aug 2011
Format:Kindle Edition
I figured that this was going to be a "Cluedo" type murder mystery when I read the synopsis of this story, I couldn't have been more wrong.

Paul has taken 12 beautifully written characters (15 if you count those involved in the story but not the invitees) and placed them into a fantastically woven plot that kept me captivated to the point where i'd be very annoyed when I had to put the book down due to work commitments etc etc.

12 people, family, associates, enemies & employees are invited up to a billionaire's mansion in the middle of nowhere to find out that they have to agree on how to share their late benefactor's inheritance.
It's not until the rules of the danse start coming into effect that things start to turn nasty for the majority of the 12.

This story has it all, murder, mystery, suspense, prostitution, blackmail and a small mixture of romance intrically woven together, masterfully.

You get an in depth knowledge of the characters through a mixture of storytelling and flashbacks and you are in a constant turmoil of emotion as to who is good and who is rotten. Then just when you have them figured out you are thrown back into turmoil and start doubting your judgements.

The story is very fast paced with plenty of little twists to keep you enthralled right up until the very last page.

This is Pauls first book and i'm looking forward to reading his next one.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant ideas, but careless in places 5 Mar 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I came across this in the download chart when it was free a few days ago, and was immediately intrigued by the storyline. In essence, the concept of a remote country house whose inhabitants are stuck there whether they like it or not while a mystery plays out, has been done before (in a lot of ways this book reminded me of an Agatha Christie novel brought into the present day, albeit set in the States rather than the UK).

Although the scenario is of course deliberately far-fetched - and the dubious legality of the proceedings is ignored - none of that really matters since you get swept up in the story and the characters so quickly. For a first novel, the sheer number of characters, all of whom have individual personalities and subplots, is really impressive. In a book of this sort where it is very much an ensemble cast sometimes characters can seem hastily sketched, but in this case I felt as though I had a really strong sense of each person's character. This also grows and changes as the book progresses and we discover more layers to many of the characters.

The way that the eponymous philanthropist's invitees fight for their potential inheritances feels very real, and the portrayal of human greed throughout the book is entirely believable. The various twists, turns and pitfalls along the way keeps you guessing as to exactly what the outcome is going to be, and who will walk away with a share of the money.

Where I thought the book was weakest - and perhaps to some extent this is a symptom of it being a first novel - was the writing style. The content was excellent, but every now and then a clumsy sentence or an omitted word would jolt me out of the story.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Missed my station stop.. 22 July 2011
Format:Kindle Edition
..and ended up in Cheltenham instead; and all because I couldn't put this book down.

A gripping and compelling read, I would recommend to anyone who enjoys a jolly good, well written finger flipping (not really page turning as I read it on an iphone) story.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Philanthropist's Danse 18 July 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
A rich man calls together 12 members of family and friends for a week in his house. They find out he is dead and they must decide amongst themselves how to split his massive fortune. If they don't sort it out within a day, they lose 20% of it. And 20% more the next day, etc

This looked a good blurb and the first chapter got me intrigued. Yes, splitting it 12 ways would be sensible, but the family think they deserve more than the friends and the friends say if the father wanted you to have it, wouldn't he have given it to you. And so starts the infighting and recriminations and secrets.

I really enjoyed this book. It perhaps could have done with losing a little in the middle, but in the main, this was gripping and made me want to find out more. As more is revealed about the characters, your views were changed as to who was nice and who wasn't. I do recommend this one.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting comment on human nature 18 Mar 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I think I must revise my definition of the word 'philanthropist' - I had taken it to mean a generous, giving person while Johnston Thurwell, the 'philanthropist' in the story, did not seem to want to give anything away, even in his will, without extracting a terrible price. I will not repeat other reviewers' good descriptions of how he did that.
The concept was a good one for a story, however, and made the most of its inbuilt capacity to twist and turn, depending on the contents of hitherto unopened yellow envelopes. The characters were well developed, indeed this was absolutely central to the whole story.
Generally, it was a good page turner and enjoyable read, although slightly too long.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars You never know whats going to happen next 7 Mar 2012
By Alice
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Johnston Thurwell has died. After his death 12 people including his children, employees and even his enemy are told to come to his house. They have a week to split his fortune between them, however it will be reduced by 20% at midnight each day, so the clock is ticking. There also has to be a majority consensus on how the money is divided. It soon becomes clear people are prepared to double cross each other and go to extreme measurers to insure they get what they feel they deserve.

I really enjoyed this book from the start. I thought it was great the way different groups and people tried to manipulate each other, in order to get what they feel they deserve and then how their allegiances would change in order to secure themselves a better deal.

Throughout the book I kept changing my mind about who I felt should get the money and why as we got to know each of the characters better. All the different twists and turns were great and I think this book could easily be adapted into a great TV drama.

I felt that the characters were all really well developed and, especially as the book goes on, you feel you have a really insight into who these characters are and what makes them tick. The only negative comment I have is I think there could have been more description of the characters physical appearance. At the start we are very quickly introduced to twelve people and I think it would have been easier to remember who they were had more time been spent describing how they look.

Other than that I thought it was a brilliant book with a great concept and loads of twists and turns. I highly recommend it.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent
A very interesting book, I found the characters intriguing and the story line original and well set out in the book. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Ms. K. Cowburn
5.0 out of 5 stars nephew the philanthopist,s dance
this book kept me gripped right to the end excelent for a first book looking forward too the next one ,also hes a family member,but that didnt influance my comments. Read more
Published 3 months ago by shirley wornham
4.0 out of 5 stars very gripping read
Very interesting read. Unusual concept and what a variety of characters, I just had to keep reading. Really wanted to know how it ended.
Published 5 months ago by Joy B
5.0 out of 5 stars Philanthropist's Danse
I'm not a big book reader, usually on holidays only, i was recommended this book by a friend and started reading and couldn't put it down. Read more
Published 7 months ago by colinfroberts630
5.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable Read
A nicely written piece of fiction with a novel approach to tackling people's best and worse attributes; mainly worst. An absorbing read that flowed well and started rapidly.
Published 7 months ago by Adam
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent first novel
Again I am amazed at such a great book was free ! This was a most enjoyable first novel which kept me hooked to find out what would happen next. Read more
Published 9 months ago by Heather H 77
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars - A Very Good Read
I thought this was a good read. From the beginning I thought I'd like it, but then It took me a bit of time to get into it (reasons to follow), but by the time I got to 30% I was... Read more
Published 9 months ago by PollyM
5.0 out of 5 stars Couldn't put it down
I loved this book. I thought the idea was great and all the twists and turns kept me enthralled. I would highly recommend it.
Published 9 months ago by Macca666
5.0 out of 5 stars page turner
I don't normally leave reviews but this is one of those books that you just can't put down. Have recommended to friends.
Published 9 months ago by D Conway
3.0 out of 5 stars Good fun
In this novel are numerous grammatical/punctuation errors, especially involving apostrophes; repetition of words and information; clumsy, cliché-ridden sentences;... Read more
Published 9 months ago by Ethereal
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Popular Highlights

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the philanthropist’s youngest son’s arrival. Philip Thurwell burst in to the conference room as he entered every room, with too much noise and motion. He was a good-looking man in his late twenties with long hair worn in a surfer style. &quote;
Highlighted by 3 Kindle users
thirties dressed in an elegantly tailored suit and tie. Johnston Thurwell III, or Junior as he was more commonly known, &quote;
Highlighted by 3 Kindle users
Bethany Thurwell, the philanthropist’s daughter, approached the lawyer with a soft smile. Her deep brown &quote;
Highlighted by 3 Kindle users

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