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Past Caring Paperback – 30 Sep 2010

4.4 out of 5 stars 172 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 624 pages
  • Publisher: Corgi (30 Sept. 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0552162957
  • ISBN-13: 978-0552162951
  • Product Dimensions: 13 x 4 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (172 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 103,681 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

"A complex trail of blackmail and murder. Recommended" (Daily Express)

"A hornet's nest of jealousy, blackmail and violence. Engrossing" (Daily Mail)

"One of the best novels I've read in a long time... The story is absolutely compelling... I loved every one of its 500 pages" (The Washington Post)

"Combines the expert suspense manipulation skills of a Daphne Du Maurier romance with those of a John Le Carre thriller" (The New York Times)

Book Description

A riveting bestseller from one of the UK's biggest thriller writers.

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
A down at heel, disreputable former teacher is enlisted to research a mystery which has spanned the first half of the 20th century ... and beyond. As he delves into the past, his own failures come back to haunt him. It seemed, at first, to be an excuse for a bit of a jaunt and a chance to earn some spare cash; it quickly turns into a real mystery in which the teacher must anticipate threats to his own life and the total disruption of his world.
Robert Goddard does an excellent job of taking the Liberal Government's pre-World War One constitutional crisis and making it the backdrop for his mystery. Prime Minister Asquith is not one of the most memorable of British politicians, and the crisis occasioned by Lloyd George's welfare policies is forgotten by all but those few historians specialising in the era.
Goddard, nevertheless, brings it alive and makes it both comprehensible to the non-historian and relevant to the plot. Using themes of political rivalry between Asquith, Lloyd George, and Churchill, and the radical intervention of the Suffragette movement, he constructs a highly entertaining page-turner of a novel.
He handles the exposition of the history very well. This is no fluffy 'costume drama': the themes of rivalry, jealousy, intrigue, and political manipulation are timeless, and Goddard sets them up neatly and convincingly.
His hero is flawed. He has a past ... he seems unlikely to have a future. He's no conventional thriller hero - if it came to a fight between him and an aged nun, I'd put my money on the nun. He is, effectively, a nondescript little bourgeois with contacts from his Cambridge days - he has all the social graces and some of their advantages, but he's squandered his opportunities because of his flawed character.
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Format: Paperback
Published in 1986, this was Robert Goddard's stunning debut novel. A tale of intrigue and deception that flipped from Edwardian England to the1970's and places in between, Pulling the reader into a labyrinth of deception and cover ups, murder and double crosses that would become the hallmark for his future career as a novelist as well as setting the bar very high for the novels that were to follow.
Martin Radford is a washed up teacher and historian with a past he is trying to escape,not your average hero at all. A flawed character who is used to uncover the secret behind the stunning rise and fall of a Liberal politician who served in Asquith's Governmemt alongside Lloyd George and a young Churchill.What is the secret behind Edwin Strafford's downfall and why? When Radford starts investigating the facts 60 years later, he finds himself suddenly in mortal danger.

'Past Caring' set the standard that Robert Goddard novels then had to match or better. It was a brilliant debut novel and best seller. Many admirers of his writing career will agree that the first five books he wrote during the period 1986-1991 are his finest. However, he has used the historical split time technique to good effect in many subsequent novels, most notably 'Caught in the Light' and 'Long Time Coming'
As we look forward to the publication of his concluding 'Maxted 'novel in the summer, it is worth looking back to where and how it all started for this quintessentially English novelist.
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Format: Paperback
Brilliant ! I have read all Robert Goddard's books but this has always remained at the number one spot with its great characterisation and complex plot which keep you hooked from start to finish. As well as being a beautifully written complex, crime mystery it is a story about honour, love and betrayal and utterly unputdownable. I cannot recommend it too highly.
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By Skelf TOP 500 REVIEWER on 6 May 2009
Format: Paperback
This has to be one of Robert Goddard's best. I was hooked from page one, a page turner of first order. This does exactly what you want from a great book - it sucks you in and before you know it the day has melted away and you're lost in the pages. You're driven to keep turning pages to know how the story develops. Goddard proves himself as a superb storyteller.

It's easy to be a bit more critical with his more recent works, but here I can only express my admiration for his work. He is really on top of his creative capabilities.
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Format: Paperback
Great story. I haven't read a Robert Goddard book before and I am very much taken with his story-telling and style of writing. The story had me gripped from the start and it was a joy. However, I am SO disappointed by the number of typos and mis-spellings in the book. Never before have I read a book with so many errors. It was really off-putting. If I were Mr Goddard I would be very upset to think that my hard earned novel had been so poorly packaged. Editors, please review this edition and get it off the shelves. Isn't reading supposed to be an education as well as a pleasure? Shame on you!
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Format: Paperback
You too would reach the point where you were PAST CARING if the found that your perfect life had been wrenched from you; the love of your life had suddenly abandoned you and your once promising career was in tatters all for reasons unknown to you.......reasons that no one would explain but vehemently insisted were known to you.

Such is the fate of Edwin Strafford. Once a man with a promising political career as a British cabinet minister, contemporary and friend to the likes of Winston Churchill and Lloyd George, he becomes an outcast of sorts relegated to life on the island of Madeira. After his death his autobiographical memoir is found and Martin Radford, a historian with a few dark secrets of his own, is commissioned to take a copy of the memoir and attempt to reassemble the jig-saw puzzle that was Strafford's life. Radford, like many of author Goddard's protagonists, is a man without purpose or focus. He is unemployed, has an ex-wife who despises him, a daughter to whom he is a less than perfect father, and a proclivity for manipulative women whose motives are questionable.

Author Robert Goddard has once again delivered an ingenious, complex and compelling story that is filled with mystery, historical fact, political intrigue, betrayal, deception, heartbreak and murder. This book is an absolute must read for anyone who enjoys a well written narrative and a plot with as many twists and turns as a mountain road. Be prepared to lose some sleep because PAST CARING will have you reading well into the wee small hours of the morning.
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