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on 4 July 2014
This is the most original and thought provoking book I have read in a long time, and also one of the most compellingly written. It is hard to define its genre - partly mystery, partly comedy, partly a novel about modern society. It is really hard to review this book without giving any of the plot away, so I won't say much. It is the story of a young man who reads the news and weather on local radio, and the impact on his life of his live-in girlfriend leaving. Or rather, not leaving. It is about what happens to him, and the influence this one act has on his life. It is so, so readable and will leave you feeling sad when it ends - simply because it has ended.
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VINE VOICEon 15 July 2014
This is Danny's second fiction book and is very good- a lot deeper than Charlotte Street. I like the fact it approaches some harder issues- never taking them full on, but never ignoring them either. The characters are good, even if the premise of CC is a bit 'out there'. In fact, I was well on the way to give it 5 stars- except- the ending. It was a lot weaker than I thought, than I hoped.

Despite this, I still whole heartedly recommend this. And no, Danny is not paying to write this. (He can if he wants though!!)
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on 10 August 2017
Great holiday read, which I'd recommend highly if you're looking for a well-written but easy going book.
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on 10 January 2016
His books never disappoint. His comedy style is so real life that it doesn't distract from the story just makes it better.

This book has in no way inspired me to stalk him.
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on 4 July 2017
Loved this book - loads of twists and surprises right to the last page - funny and thought provoking - enjoyed it
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on 5 May 2017
Very funny story
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on 17 November 2015
brilliant!
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on 21 March 2015
Now, I love Danny Wallace very much in everything he does but I was very disappointed with this book. I found myself trawling miserably through the last 30%, desperately hoping something interesting was going to happen but it really didn't.
Every so often that Danny Wallace comedic spark would pop out the book, which was great but most of the time it dragged on and on. Sadly I wouldn't recommend it.
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on 24 July 2014
Danny Wallace is the foremost exponent of `Bet Non-Fiction' that I know. This is when a bloke says something daft in the pub and follows through; Wallace has started his own cult, his own nation and said Yes to absolutely everything. However, some things are fine as a quirky adventure in the real world, but following people around London and copying their every move? That sounds a little like stalking to me and should perhaps be best explored in the world of fiction. In a world like Danny Wallace's new novel `Who Is Tom Ditto?'

Is it the Tom who works as a news reader for a London based talk radio show? One day he returns home to find a note from his girlfriend saying that she has gone, but not left him. What on Earth does that mean? Tom decides to investigate where Hayley has disappeared too and soon finds a secret club whose members wish to be someone else. Can Tom enlist the help of the eccentric Pia to search for his girlfriend and will he find out more about himself in the meantime?

The great things about all of Wallace's books, both fiction and non-fiction, is the heart. Wallace has a wonderfully warm way of writing that is witty and intelligent, always making you feel uplifted by the end. `Tom Ditto' is his darkest project to date and builds upon the fine work seen in his first work of fiction `Charlotte Street'. That book was about someone finding a disposable camera and using the images to find the women who dropped it; `Tom Ditto' takes this concept of mild stalking and builds upon it.

At its heart `Tom Ditto' is a mystery novel. There may be no murders, but there is certainly a missing person. What has happened to Hayley? The book takes a while to warm up and actually start telling us, we have to get through Tom's anger and denial before he reaches some acceptance and start to do something about it. At this point the book opens up. The idea of following strangers is a dark one, but Wallace uses it to show wonder. Where is that dapper gentleman going? Are that couple married or having an affair? The middle third of the book is a joyous adventure as Tom and Pia set out on adventures of discovery, not unlike those seen in Wallace's non-fiction outings.

It may be that the premise for `Tom Ditto' is a non-fiction concept that Wallace rejected. How can he possibly follow people unwittingly and write about it? By moving the idea into a work of fiction he can explore the idea and create characters too. It is in this area that Wallace has developed more than any other. Tom is a rounded character whose fight with depression adds yet another layer to the book. All of a sudden this is not a book about a jolly series of adventures, but damaged people finding one another after apparently lacking something in their own life.

There is a darkness that permeates the book at times, but that is offset nicely by Wallace's deft use of humour. The Talk Radio elements of the novel are very amusing and the inane work emails cut a little close to the bone at times. There is also one excellent side thread that secretly hides that. Wallace uses real intelligence to weave elements of the story together.

`Who is Tom Ditto' is Danny Wallace's most accomplished book to date, but perhaps not his best. Its slow start and darkness means that it lacks the sheer joy I loved from `Charlotte Street' and `Yes Man'. What it does show is a real progression in style that suggest he is not far from hitting the right balance between heart and character development. Check out `Tom Ditto' and the body of Wallace's work, this is an author who is one to watch in the coming years. Review originally on bookbag.co.uk
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on 28 May 2014
It's fair to say I was intrigued enough by the haphazard nature of the blurb to want to read Who is Tom Ditto? It sounded like a fun, quirky read and I'm always on the look out for something a little bit different to the norm.

The whole 'following' thing was slightly freaky-I have actually found myself looking over my shoulder as I walk around Morrison's, for fear that someone is going to buy the same teabags and own brand Custard Creams as me- but made for an interesting and unusual plot. The whole premise of CC was uncomfortable and yet strangely alluring. I guess we all have that nosiness deep within us where we model ourselves on ours choices and actions.

Who is Tom Ditto? reads very much like Danny Wallace's other books-fluid in style, conversational text, observational humour and quick quips. It is a very accessible book, and I can imagine it appealing to those who don't read a lot as well as avid readers. The characters, especially Pia, had me longing to know more, infact I think Pia deserves another book all of her own-she is fantastically barmy. I think I actually want to be her.

I really love the whole 'Britishness' of this book, I can't see that it would work if it were set anywhere else. There are eccentricities which add depth to the story, along with a serious issue of relationship break ups (or not), yet overwhelmingly this is a story of humour in the midst of despair.

This is a fresh, well written novel with hidden depths. Ideal for fans of Mike Gayle and William Boyd.
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