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92 of 94 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply Wonderful!
I was initially attracted to this novel as Edward, the narrator, has Aspergers (like my son). Maybe I'm a sucker for punishment but I like to know how ASD (Autistic Spectrum Disorder) is presented in fiction - sometimes authors hit the nail on the head e.g. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time which was equally enjoyed by my son and I, whilst others really...
Published on 8 Aug. 2012 by Lovely Treez

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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars 600 Hours of Edward = 6 Hours of My Life that I won’t get back
Edward Stanton is a 39 year old, unmarried man who lives in a house bought for him by his father, living on a credit card paid off by his father. Edward has Asperger Syndrome. 600 Hours of Edward is a story narrated by Edward, showing the ways in which his life changed over a 25 day (600 hour) period.

Whether or not the reader will “get” the book...
Published 14 months ago by MisterHobgoblin


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92 of 94 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply Wonderful!, 8 Aug. 2012
By 
Lovely Treez (Belfast, N Ireland) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: 600 Hours of Edward (Paperback)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I was initially attracted to this novel as Edward, the narrator, has Aspergers (like my son). Maybe I'm a sucker for punishment but I like to know how ASD (Autistic Spectrum Disorder) is presented in fiction - sometimes authors hit the nail on the head e.g. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time which was equally enjoyed by my son and I, whilst others really miss the mark and one can't help suspecting they're using it in an effort to make their novel quirky, to give it a twist. Edward passed our stringent authenticity test and I think he will endear himself to many, many readers.

Aspergers does not define Edward but it's part of who he is and it explains his love of facts and avoidance of ambiguity. Yes, he can be blunt, lacking diplomacy but it's his OCD which dominates his life. He lives apart from his family and communicates with his father through a solicitor - he'd love to have a better relationship with his father but it takes two to tango. His days are structured around various "data collection" - recording his waking time, the daily weather statistics, compelled to watch old videos of the 50s/60s US police drama, Dragnet, at 10.00pm each evening without fail. He has a vast collection of letters of complaint, letters which he composes to various individuals who have slighted/offended him in some way but which remain unsent, on the advice of his therapist!

However, life is about to change for Edward who, at 39, has led a reclusive existence with very little human contact. His first experience of internet dating is an education. A new neighbour brings new opportunities for interaction. It's not an easy transition but Edward starts to emerge from his cocoon and stamp his personality on the world.

600 Hours of Edward is an excellent debut novel with a narrator whose personality will immediately engage the reader. It made me laugh out loud at times and even sniffle a little but ultimately it left me feeling positive and optimistic. If you enjoyed Heft by Liz Moore I think you will be equally enthralled by 600 Hours of Edward.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 600 Hours of Edward, 16 Sept. 2012
By 
S Riaz "S Riaz" (England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: 600 Hours of Edward (Paperback)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
This is a wonderful, moving, sometimes funny and often sad, novel about Edward Stanton. Edward is a middle aged man who has obsessive-compulsive disorder and Asperger's syndrome. I was drawn to the novel as my nephew is autistic and my godson has Asperger's, but I was also wary that the author might not have presented the conditions correctly. In fact, the author has written a book which is sympathetic without being patronising and absolutely brilliantly written.

Edward lives alone, after a series of complaining letters led to a lawsuit which caused his politician father embarrassment. Now his father pays for his house and expenses, plus visits to the helpful Dr Buckley every week, but deals with him mainly through his lawyer, while his mother delegates all important decisions concerning her son to others. Apart from a difficult monthly dinner with his parents, and the visits to Dr Buckley, Edward lives a solitary life. Then things begin to change when Donna Middleton and her young son Kyle move across the street. It is impossible not to read this novel and remain unmoved - Edward is a delightful character and, as he deals with situations which would cause many of us distress, anger or difficulty, you applaud his coping mechanisms and ability to rationalise the crazy world we live in. I think this is an important book, as well as being interesting and well written. It is a good story, incredibly well told, and I am glad I read it.
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27 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Engaging and touching, 4 Sept. 2012
By 
Benjamin (UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: 600 Hours of Edward (Paperback)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Edward is approaching forty, he is single and lives alone in Billings, Montana, he has Asperger's syndrome and obsessive compulsive disorder. He likes routine and order, he likes facts and not suppositions. He leads a life regulated by his needs for a schedule, by his weekly visits to Dr Buckley and his nightly 10.00pm viewing of a recording of a Dragnet episode, strictly in the correct order. The appearance of Kyle, a nine year old boy who has moved in across the street starts in motion a series of events that could lead to a dramatic change on Edwards life.

Edward would like two things, a girlfriend and the approval of his father. He tries his own way to solve the former, the latter seems out of his hands. His father, a County Commissioner, communicates with Edward by letter through his attorney; he has only a few memories of happy times with his father. As the opportunities for friendship open up, Edward finds that such things are not plain sailing, but he is making progress.

Covering 600 hours, or twenty five days, this is an engaging and touching novel, well and correctly written (just as well, for Edward is a stickler for correct grammar!), one is quickly drawn into Edwards life and routine, and soon hoping that he will break away from the regulating factors in his life achieve his goals. Recommended.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Moving, funny, brilliant, 24 Aug. 2012
By 
Gary Hilton "ursinebrute" (Lancashire) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: 600 Hours of Edward (Paperback)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
600 Hours of Edward is the touching story of 600 hours (or 25 days) in the life of Edward Stanton. The title isn't a co-incidence; Edward likes to count. he likes order, predictability and routine. Edward eats the same thing for breakfast (cornflakes) and dinner (spaghetti), every day. He paints his garage once a year. This nearly-numbing level of structure serves an important purpose in Edward's life. You see Edward is autistic and has OCD, and his rituals and routines, (along with daily medication and weekly visits to a therapist) help him survive the modern world.

When we first meet Edward at the beginning of the novel, we see that these routines have paved the way to a life style that is trouble free and managed, yet dull and isolated. He has no friends and is has a distant relationship with his parents. However, during the titular 600 hours Edward begins interacting with his new neighbors, a single mother and her young son, and slowly, Edward starts to connect with other people. Not everything goes well, but over the course of the 600 hours, we see a transformation in Edward. His relationship with the mother & son shows signs of developing into a meaningful friendship, and all the while, Edward slowly, on his own terms, starts to particpate in a society in which he was merely a spectator.

The story is well written and well paced, but with just the right amount of emotion it's hard not to cheer for Edward and the remarkable 600-hour journey which he makes.
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24 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very Unusual But Very Worthwhile Book, 6 Sept. 2012
By 
Brett H "pentangle" (Brighton) - See all my reviews
(TOP 50 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: 600 Hours of Edward (Paperback)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
When we first meet 39 year old Edward Stanton he is leading a very well ordered existence, with minimal human interaction. His style of life is strongly influenced by his Asperger's Syndrome and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. As a result what he trusts most are facts and data, and he has a very repetitive existence with numerous rather idiosyncratic rituals. These include visits to the supermarket where he buys the same items at the same time each week, recording his wake up time each day (7.38 being by far the most usual time), and watching an episode from Dragnet, at exactly 10pm each evening, but only the colour episodes made between 1967 and 1970 about which he has almost encyclopaedic knowledge having watched them so often.

However, all this changes when a young neighbour, Kyle, approaches and speaks to him. From then on Edward can choose to risk the uncertainty of dealing with other people, with the rewards or heartaches that this may entail, or reject this new avenue and stick to his routines. However it is clear that he feels that he is missing out on something as he has recently been visiting internet dating sites. None of Edward's issues with dealing with people have been helped by the odd, standoff relationship he has with his parents, in particular his father, who he meets with once a month and who regularly communicates with Edward via his lawyers.

This is a fascinating book, heart warming at times, quite funny at others but also very sad in places. It is certainly outside of my usual comfort zone of reading matter. However, one of the pleasures of the Amazon Vine programme is that you are sometimes jolted out of your usual pattern, much like Edward was in this story really, and discover a really worthwhile book which is how I would categorise 600 Hours. Incidentally the title is an allusion to Edward's preference for accurate details and exactitude.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Pure Perfection, 11 Dec. 2014
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This review is from: 600 Hours of Edward (Kindle Edition)
Review of '600 Hours of Edward' by Craig Lancaster

My own personal top three books of all time has been pretty stagnant for many years. Now one has to make way for this absolute masterpiece. My guess is that anyone who has read this has already given it a glowing review and there is probably little I can add.

However, it is an exquisite piece of work. Twenty-five days in the life of Edward, an Asperger's Syndrome sufferer...twenty-five days in which he experiences several new 'intrusions' into his orderly life. Twenty-five beautiful chapters, almost identical in length. Twenty-five episodes of Dragnet (each, of course one of his favourites).

And finally of course, six hundred divine minutes that you will devour in one sitting and never want to end...
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 600 Hours of Edward, 5 Jun. 2015
By 
Keen Reader "lhendry4" (Auckland, New Zealand) - See all my reviews
(TOP 50 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: 600 Hours of Edward (Paperback)
This is the first book by this author that I have read, but I am now looking forward to reading the sequel to this, Edward Adrift.

Edward Stanton is 39 years old. He lives in a house brought for him by his father after the “Garth Brooks Incident”. Edward has Asperger’s syndrome and OCD, and in this story, Edward takes us through 600 hours, or as many of us would think of it, 25 days, of Edward’s life. These 25 days prove most momentous to Edward, and I found the journey with Edward to be most rewarding. The book is divided into the 25 days, from Monday October 13 through to Thursday November 6. Edward starts every day by noting the time he wakes up, and the ratio of his awakening times. He records the temperature, and checks it against the morning paper every day to see if the forecast was accurate. He goes to see a therapist every Tuesday of every month at 10 a.m., and straight after his therapy appointment he does his grocery shopping, buying the same groceries (with some slight variations in the ‘treat’ category) every week. Every food item he buys can be divided neatly into his meals over the course of the following week. Every night Edward watches one episode of Dragnet at 10 p.m.

Things that might alter his routine are very frustrating to Edward, and the 25 days of this story offer a lot of things that throw Edward’s routine right out the window. How he copes with them is a delight to read, and I found myself cheering for every small victory that Edward had, and feeling sorry for every setback. The narrative is that of Edward himself, as he takes us through the 25 days, and the approach Edward has to life, and to his life in particular, while it may be classed as ‘different’ to the way others may choose to live, is, I think, a very honest and real approach to the world around him. I look forward to reading the sequel and finding out more about Edward’s world.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A charming story, 16 Aug. 2013
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This review is from: 600 Hours of Edward (Kindle Edition)
Edward Stanton is 38, has OCD and Asberger's syndrome and he copes with his life by having order and routine. Until, over the 600 hours in the title, his life changes in many ways, not least of which he makes friends with the lady across the street and her son.

This is a charming read, and I found Edward to be an excellent narrator of his story. I thought his conditions were portrayed very well and, with a touch of OCD myself, I could understand and empathise with his character. It was nice to see, throughout the course of the story, how Edward blossomed and developed and was able to make friends, probably for the first time in his life.

A very good read, and a quick and easy one too.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars 600 Hours of Edward = 6 Hours of My Life that I won’t get back, 22 April 2014
By 
MisterHobgoblin (Melbourne) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
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This review is from: 600 Hours of Edward (Kindle Edition)
Edward Stanton is a 39 year old, unmarried man who lives in a house bought for him by his father, living on a credit card paid off by his father. Edward has Asperger Syndrome. 600 Hours of Edward is a story narrated by Edward, showing the ways in which his life changed over a 25 day (600 hour) period.

Whether or not the reader will “get” the book depends to a great extent on the degree to which the reader “gets” Edward. Judging by Amazon reviews, most readers have great sympathy for Edward and find the novel amazing.

I’m afraid I don’t.

My big problem was that I didn’t believe in Edward. For the most part, he displays the obsessie-compulsive behaviour of a man with Asperger Syndrome. He notes his waking times, keeps a list of the high and low temperature each day, and watches an episode of Dragnet every night at 10pm without fail. His life is ordered but empty. He displays little ability to grasp what others might think and learns emotional cues by rote from his doctor. Except, that is, for the times when Edward displays great emotional insight. The problem is that for all the repetitive narrative, Edward does not behave consistently. When the narrative requires it, Edward behaves with generosity; he is truthful to the point of self-harm except when he perceived that a white lie will spare someone’s feelings. His daily letters of complaint betray a level of empathy and understanding that is not borne out in his regular activities.

The plot is quite straightforward and has a habit of unfolding several pages later than the reader expects (i.e. you can see it coming a mile off). The narrative is pretty leaden and emotionless (verisimilitude, I hear you say…) that makes the novel a bit of a slog. Even positive commentators have questioned the need to read the synopses of each episode of Dragnet with care and attention.

It is inevitable that 600 Hours will be compared to The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time (Mark Haddon), given that both purport to portray a central character with Asperger Syndrome. It may also be worth considering The Rosie Project (Graham Simsion) in the mix. Sadly, Edward comes up wanting. Where Rosie and Curious Incident create humour in the gap between an unreliable narrator and what the reader knows to be happening, Edward seems to be a thoroughly truthful narrator. With the exception of a single dating scene that is genuinely comic, there is really no sense of misunderstanding. Sure, there’s the odd occasion where, for example, Edward and his neighbour Donna act at cross purposes because Donna is not aware of factual information, but nothing is ever made of the difference in perceptions.

Overall 600 Hours drags. It is slow to start and slow to end, with just a little bit of implausible and frenetic action in the middle. It feels like a missed opportunity; it could have been funny or it could have been profound but it ended up being neither. 600 Hours of Edward = 6 Hours of My Life that I won’t get back.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Delightful, 20 Oct. 2013
By 
Alexander Bryce (Scotland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: 600 Hours of Edward (Kindle Edition)
Through lack of knowledge , I started with Edward Adrift ( see my 5 star review ) which is the second "Edward" book. It reads well as a stand alone novel, but having now read "600 Hours" a lot of the pieces have fallen into place so if new to Edward I suggest that you start at the beginning with this one.
Craig Lancaster writes of this Aspergers sufferer with a gentle kindness putting the reader into. Edward's shoes and seeing life through Edward's eyes as he copes with functioning with his neighbour Dawn her son Kyle, his parents, his therapist and everyone else he comes into contact with.
This physical giant of a man has a naive almost childlike, literal attitude to life, but there is an underlying high intelligence . His attempt at Internet dating borders on hilarity, but in a nice way. His relationship with his wealthy, high powered father is a definition of sadness.
This is a fine interesting, humorous story which must also help the cause of Aspergers or any other mental illness sufferer. Beneath their outward difficulties they are people like you and I with feelings, ambitions and desire to be part of society.
I would have given 5 stars, but for the explanation of each Dragnet episode. I realise that Edward's addiction to this show is germane to the story, but I think that the detailed retelling of each storyline was unnecessary.
This is however a small criticism of a superpower piece of writing.
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600 Hours of Edward
600 Hours of Edward by Craig Lancaster
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