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The Pretender Kindle Edition
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Top Customer Reviews
I warmed to the young protagonist with his enthusiasm for literature, social awkwardness and unexpected gift for writing in the style of others. Supporting characters often blended charm with an implied threat. The picture of literary London and the world of small (printed!) magazines was an added deligh
This book comes from the excellent independent publisher Five Leaves, which has a very good catalogue but is still too little known. I sometimes read titles just because they're from Five Leaves and am rarely disappointed.
I gather the author, David Belbin, has a new crime novel out. I may have borrowed The Pretender but I reckon on buying the new crime novel - first of a series too ...
I loved this book. It is written as a first person narrative, with an older and wiser Mark looking back on his teenaged self, and this works extremely well (perhaps because of his experience writing books for young adults, the author ssems to capture a lonely late-teenage boy perfectly). The plot itself is excellent: well-paced, interesting and original. I never thought a story about imitating the style and voices of the great twentieth century novelists could generate such tension.
Above all though, this novel exudes a love of books and I think a love of writing, which comes across as being an extremely difficult and yet supremely seductive vocation. I ripped through this book in less than a day and came out the other side wanting to read more Hemmingway, more Greene.... and yes, more Belbin.
I absolutely loved "The Pretender". The author's obvious affection for the writers and literature featured in the book are evident, and there is clearly a passion here for the subject matter. The characterisation is terrific, and by the time I got past half way, I couldn't put it down.
Beautifully paced, well written and with a wholly original story, I'd recommend "The Pretender" to anyone. Superb.
Belbin's writes in a highly enaging way creating characters that you at once care and fume about. The book has strong narrative drive. It has a truly delicious revenge scene towards the end. If I have a criticism the book ended too soon. I just did not want it to end when it concluded. I thought the plot lines and characters had plenty of juice in reserve.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I enjoyed this novel. It's well-written, with interesting characters, and it oozes authenticity about the milieu of literary magazine publishing. Read morePublished 3 months ago by CatsAndBooks
As an aspiring writer I enjoyed the central character's writing struggle and, as i'm finding with David Belbin, the richness of the background. Read morePublished on 26 Mar. 2012 by Tania Thorenson
The story seems simple enough, a young aspiring writer, Mark, finds out he is better forging the works of others than he is at writing his own material. Read morePublished on 15 July 2010 by Gordon McLean