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3.0 out of 5 stars Deliciously salacious, 9 Oct 2013
This review is from: Come Like Shadows (Alms for Oblivion - 8) (Paperback)
I think it would have been fascinating to meet Simon Raven! Fielding Gray, his fictional alter ego, is a rather unpleasant yet also very engaging character - even when he is behaving in the most abysmally selfish manner the reader remains on his side - so it would be interesting to know to what extent he mirrors his creator.

In this eighth volume of the deliciously salacious roman fleuve "Alms For Oblivion" we come across Fielding working as scriptwriter, on a temporary but an exorbitant weekly salary, for an artistic rendering of The Odyssey being filmed in Corfu. Personal relationships within the cast and film crew are characteristically tense and Fielding rapidly secures the sexual favours of Elena, one of the starlets from the Greek chorus, who mistakenly believes that Fielding will ensure that she gets extra script lines. Predictably enough Fielding soon tires of Elena and moves on, engrossed with the thought of seducing her fellow actor Sasha Grimes, despite being warned off by the film's director. Meanwhile, Fielding is involved in intricate negotiations to ensure that as little of his pay is subject to UK tax as possible.

So, everything seems to be going swimmingly - always a dangerous time for Fielding who seems cursed with an inability to let things lie. On this occasion his greed and his demands for ever higher recompense lead the film's producer to lash out, with startling and unforeseen consequences.

As always with Raven, the plot races along at a breakneck speed in his usual clear prose. Possibly slightly dated now (it was written in 1972 and set in 1970) it still grips the reader and is just great fun.
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Come Like Shadows (Alms for Oblivion - 8)
Come Like Shadows (Alms for Oblivion - 8) by Simon Raven (Paperback - 17 April 1975)
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