Most helpful positive review
23 of 25 people found the following review helpful
A Potpourri of deceit, humor, romance, and revenge...
on 1 November 2005
If you want a story of pure revenge, of people who get back at their deceiver, no matter what it takes, then this novel is for you. There are other novels in the same genre, but when the master story teller sets forth on the same theme, you get a novel like this. It stands apart from the rest in terms of the scenes, pace (or its variation), balance etc. There is no doubt about it.
Harvey Metcalfe, whose business acumen (irrespective of the moral connotations) had been sharpened on the streets, cons four unsuspecting investors (who are strangers to each other, but who had been baited by Harvey for carrying out his plans), with prospects of huge oil money. And they are not common folk - each of them is a notable person in his right - Stephen is an Oxford professor, Robin is a high profile physician, Jean-Pierre, a famous art dealer, and James Brigsley, an heir to earldom. They have one aspect in common - they have all been ripped off by Harvey - for a huge sum of money (million dollars).
How they join hands and get back at Harvey forms the rest of the story, in this thriller saga of revenge, with cunning and deceit. The pace never wanes any time, and I never wanted to keep the book down. If you liked the Payback movie, you are going to love this novel more, since it has 4 people wanting revenge - not a penny more, not a penny less... that is their motto, and they stand by it.
I expected a page-turner, and got one in this. It has the intelligence, pace, language, plot, characters - all that makes this a great novel, which is expected from a novelist of such acclaim as Archer. I read this after finishing Kane and Abel and The Prodigal Daughter, and should say that this novel is devoid of any unnecessary digressions, in spite of handling at least four players.
Do they finally succeed in their enterprise? The way Archer has written the ending of the novel is worth noticing. You have to read it till the end to get the thrill (and the fun)
Must buy for long weekends, long journeys, or simply anytime you want to spend your time with a good novel. I would recommend this book to all my friends.