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Customer Review

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Rich tale full of moral issues, 28 Aug. 2010
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This review is from: Inheritance (Paperback)
This enthralling and original book is about many things. Love and betrayal. The effects of divorce and custody battles. How to deal with an enormous financial windfall? Always wanting to be someone else vs. being someone different from what others believe. Unlikely personal histories meet through a chance event, and chance plays as a big a role in this tale as planning and determination to meet set objectives. Too abstract?
The main protagonists are a benefactor and a beneficiary. The first half of the novel sketches the life of underpaid, debt-laden Andy Larkham(AL), junior editor in a small company specialized in self-help books whose girl friend, a successful model gives up on him. When a beloved former teacher dies AL arrives late at his final service. He is the only other attendant apart from an older woman and a man who asks him to sign the condolence register afterwards. A girl who arrived even later is not asked to sign. At the end of the service it becomes evident to AL that he chose the wrong venue. He attended the service of a complete stranger. He signs anyway.
AL soon learns he is the beneficiary of GBP 17m, resigns his job, buys a luxury flat, car, etc. and embarks on a spending spree at home and abroad. But after less than 2 years of this AL is bored and begins his quest to learn more about his benefactor...
This is the subject of the second part of the book, which NS could easily have turned into a strong stand-alone novel. AL's benefactor is not at all who or what the few Londoners who know him, believe he is. Relevant tags for him are the year 1915 in Eastern Turkey, his birth in Aleppo, Syria, his coming of age in Perth and Sydney, Australia, retiring to London as a rich man. And there is a third person, who is his nemesis, his shadow, who followed him to Britain to cause great damage to him and his loved ones without his knowledge.
This is a rich, marvelous piece of work. It contains moral choices on the part of benefactor and beneficiary that individual readers and reviewers have to come to terms with. This reviewer would have made some but not all the choices AL and his benefactor made during their lives. These moral issues cry out for discussion at book readers' clubs. The book's ending is a bit of a letdown. But other readers will celebrate it as a happy end.
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Showing 1-1 of 1 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 18 Feb 2013 08:46:35 GMT
JS says:
No need to read the book really, now, is there? Here is the story all nicely laid out.
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