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4.4 out of 5 stars
31
4.4 out of 5 stars
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on 14 April 2016
Reasonable quality, exactly as stated
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on 20 November 2014
Book as described. Arrived promptly.
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on 30 January 2016
Brilliant!! In every department!
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on 18 August 2014
Good book. Not memorable though.
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on 30 September 2002
I bought this book on the recommendation of a book review programme on Radio 4 ("A Good Read"), as I have previously found the panel's suggestions spot on. However, having read this novel over the past weekend, I am left feeling somewhat cheated. If this is a psychological thriller, where exactly was the psychology or indeed, the thrills? The plot was anything but thrilling - a reasonably intelligent child could have seen the denouement coming almost from page one - and the clumsy 'psychological' insights into the minds of the major protagonists left much to be desired.
Add to this a series of seemingly pointless appearances of several famous nineteenth century personalities in 'bit parts'. Exactly how was the plot enhanced by the sentence on page 138 which stated that Karl Marx, Oscar Wilde, [George] Bernard Shaw and George Gissing were all to be found in the Reading Room of the British Museum on a particular morning, with no further explanation?
I did enjoy the descriptions of life in the Victorian Music Halls, but I could have got this information from any competent history book covering that era, and many more details besides.
I'm left with the impression that the author had a jolly good time writing this novel and in showing the world what a clever chap he is, bringing together various (unconnected?) strands of nineteenth century London. What a pity I didn't have a jolly good time reading it.
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on 10 September 2014
This was a present for a relative & given the spirit in which it was received & feedbak given, it would seem that the purchase was a successful one.
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on 25 May 2015
Excellent book
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on 6 February 2014
Love this book, I read it some time ago then sent to my son in Au. I want to read again! Very good condition, well packed arrived on time.
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on 20 May 2015
Fabulous read
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on 5 June 2010
Well, I'm sorry to say I've been disappointed by another of Ackroyd's books! I adored Chatterton, and subsequently picked up several more of Ackroyd's nooks, desperate to read more from the mind who created such an amazing book!

However, I did not enjoy this book as much as I had hoped. It was readable enough, but again, lacking in plot (as was the problem with 'The Lambs of London'. The characters, however, were good. They had enough life in them to keep me reading, and some individual personalities that I have missed in some of Ackroyd's other books.

I wish there had been more in this book to keep me reading, because it presented itself as such a good idea. I made it to the end, but only because I felt like I should finish the book, not because I was enjoying it.

Although, I must say, that this book wasn't bad either. It was cleverly written, weaving different methods of storytelling together, and bringing the story to the surface a little at a time.

I think there was a lot in this story that could have been left out, and also I'm not sure that it deserved a whole book of it's own. This reads to me like a short story gone rogue. It should have been a lot shorter than it was, because there wasn't enough in it to tell. You could easily tell this story in a few pages. I also feel that it is the kind of book that you could reccount easily to others, because there was almost no depth to it. It was all very obvious and there was nothing hidden.

So I don't think I'd recommend this book to anyone, unless you are a die-hard fan of Ackroyd's.
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