Customer Review

7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Frothy fun, 25 Nov 2011
This review is from: A Good Man in Africa (Paperback)
I feel a bit guilty only giving this three stars. I think the problem is that the first William Boyd book I read was Any Human Heart which ranks among the most powerful, moving and well-constructed books I have ever come across. Consequently I guess, his other works are always going to struggle by comparison. Perhaps if I had read this, Boyd's first work written in 1981, first, I would have appreciated it rather more. In fairness to him there are not many writers around today with the versatility to turn their hand to serious literary studies of the human condition such as Any Human Heart, fast paced thrillers like Restless and light, knockabout quintessentially English comedies such as this. As other reviewers have said if books by writers like Tom Sharpe and Kingsley Amis about upper-class English society and mores featuring put-upon, affable twits float your boat then you will probably enjoy this too. In Morgan Leafy Boyd gives us an inconsequential, thoroughly second-rate diplomat who is not particularly endearing but who will almost certainly make you chuckle as he blusters his way through petty political crises and compromising sexual situations galore. Just don't expect any meaningful revelations about the psyche of the isolated diplomat or even any exploration of the ambiguities of late 20th-century colonialism, because you won't get them. Fun but ultimately forgettable. Sorry William.
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Review Details

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4.1 out of 5 stars (53 customer reviews)
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