After searching in the local library for a decent read beyond the pap and pretentious present day so called celeb autobiographies, I came across this gem. I have read Graham Greene on and off for many years, (the last one was Gun For Sale) but I had never heard of this one. It tells the story of Henry Pulling, recently retired as a bank manager who is looking forward to spending the remainder of his days in suburbia tending to his Dahlias that have exotic names right out of sync with his dull, grey and predictable life. Enter his aunt Augustus who has arrived at the funeral for Henry's mother. His father died 40 years before. She has not seen Henry for 25 years and within a short while is informing Henry that it was his stepmother he had just buried. Wanting more information, he listens spellbound to her improbable stories of far flung places, the lovers she has had and the one man she truly loves, wanted by Interpol, not to mention her present paramour, Wordsworth, younger than her, from Freetown, Sierra Leone and completely besotted by the 75 year old lady who lives life to the full. Needless to say Henry is knocked off balance by the tales told and the life lived and wonders about his own humdrum, safe and uneventful life.
He finds out the inevitable and makes the right choice at the end. It was a joy reaching the conclusion with him and a book I will definitely be reading again - soon.