Top positive review
5 people found this helpful
Consistent, though not spectacular
on 4 August 2011
I've read and enjoyed most of Goddard's novels, and 'Borrowed Time' is no exception. The writing is rich and literary, the characters well drawn, the dialogue flowing, and the plot intricately planned.
Goddard offers up his stock-in-trade male, early middle-aged protagonist, this time Eurocrat Robin Timariot, who is sucked into a set of mysterious circumstances after, by chance, meeting a woman on a lonely hillside in the Welsh Marches who is soon after murdered. As always, Goddard imbues his hero with the requisite will of iron to stumble through a trail of lies and blind turns that will, eventually, lead to a buried truth.
At times, the book is hard to read. Several pages go by with little going on and the plot never really fires up till after the halfway point. Having said that, there's enough meat on the bones to keep you reading and the finale is satisfying in an understated kind of way. The hero himself, who narrates the tale, is a listless sort, plain and unassuming but with quiet conviction not to drop his quest for answers. Add into the mix Timariot's dealings with his siblings-cum-business partners and what you have is a readable, thoughtful tale that, while not really a thriller, is still an agreeable mystery that will kill a few idle hours.
For Goddard at his very best, try 'Play to the End', 'Long Time Coming', and 'Caught in the Light'.