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Customer reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars

on 16 February 2018
Having read and enjoyed this author’s work before, I looked forward to losing myself in a conspiracy theory; especially one that still is as clear as mud. This book had good pace, narrative, pov, characterisation and a satisfactory end. The twists were fun. I found the heroine well rounded but would have liked a tinge darker element once her life was invaded by the suits. I was pleasantly surprised by the love theme and its depiction throughout the remainder of the plot. To justify the recommendation of this novel; it was read in its entirety without skipping to the end.
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on 10 April 2017
A gripping romantic thriller - I enjoyed this
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on 14 October 2016
At first i didn't to know what to expect but i was gripped by the mystery the character Bill held. I wanted to know more and was unable to put this book down. The author definately teased her readers. I enjoyed the strength of Olivia's character. The start was a little slow but once you realise that not all is right you are hooked.
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on 1 February 2016
This is a really entertaining book, quite different from what I have read before. The heroine in the story is 60 - ish - and yes it is a romance story, too. I thought that would have put me off, after all aren't the main characters supposed to be young? Well no, as it happens, why should they? Olivia was a great character that went through an incredible experience.

The story is an alternative view - what if Lee Harvey Oswald, who shot the American President in 1963, didn't die? It's a great thriller, with lots of twists and turns. The author did a wonderful job weaving a tale that keeps you right there. It only took me a three days to finish it, because I simply couldn't put it down!

Highly recommended if you want something a little different than the norm.
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on 19 January 2016
A fascinating and unique take on an unforgettable event in American history.
The book is as much a romance as it is a thriller. It's well-written and the story ticks along at a steady pace.
The main characters of the story, Olivia and Bill, are believable and make a great couple. It was refreshing to read a book in which the protagonists were older than I am!
The book is written in the first person and after a page or two, I felt like Olivia was telling her story to me personally and from that moment on I was hooked on this interesting and enjoyable read!
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on 13 January 2016
This is an intriguing and entertaining read. The initial premise - that Lee Harvey Oswald survives Jack Ruby's assassination attempt and goes on to live anonymously somewhere in the USA is not too hard to accept for the purposes of fiction given that reality seems to outstrip fiction in its wayward bizarreness these days. I picked this out to read as a Brit old enough to remember where and when I was when it was announced that the American President, John F Kennedy, had been shot in Dallas. My mother was ironing clothes and even now that smell of a hot iron on new laundered sheets takes me straight back. This novel presents an alternative reality and is a well written tale,
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on 13 January 2016
Not a bad book a bit confusing in places in all very interesting nice read Steve
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on 6 December 2015
View From The Sixth Floor: An Oswald Tale is one of the most fascinating books I’ve read this year. For those who love romance, mystery and alternate history, this is the book for you. Dedicated to both President John F. Kennedy and Lee Harvey Oswald, it’s a story that burrows deep inside and presents the intrepid widow, Olivia (Livvy), whose iron will makes her more than worthy of the task ahead.

I think one of the most poignant visuals I have of this book is Livvy watching the snow fall over the ice rink in front of the British Museum. “I can’t say I was lonely. I can’t say I wasn’t lonely. I guessed I was in a sort of limbo.” At this point, I had that belly-tingling feeling this story was going exceptional. The writing style is personal and although I’ve never been a fan of first person, this book has changed my mind.

As we rewind to the beginning - to an old Victorian house in the Smoky Mountains of Western North Carolina - it’s the 50th anniversary of the Kennedy assassination and words like “Did Oswald Act Alone?” have become a mantra in the streets. Assassination theories on the TV, an unfamiliar car in the street, Bill’s rising anxiety and a hang-up call on the house phone provide the catalyst to a new adventure. Livvy’s fascination to relive history is further whetted by two young man canvassing the neighborhood on the pretext of offering special deals on security systems. It was warp speed ahead after that.

As special agents speak into their cuffs and play cat and mouse, you can’t help rooting for Livvy. At least twice, I almost jumped up out of my chair and shouted YOU GO GIRL! Livvy is a determined character, armed with healthy traces of skepticism. She has great charisma and that’s what drew me to her.

If I could describe the pace, it would be fast. I hated every distraction that came my way because it forced me to put away such a compelling journey for a time. For me, it’s a curl-up-in-bed book, an evening-by-the-fire book, a just about every-occasion book. A deeply satisfying book about a friendship bursting with devotion and an ending that quite simply blew my socks off!
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on 22 June 2015
One Thursday after school six of us teens met up outside the Gaumont in Cheltenham. With the exuberance of youth we giggled our way in to watch The Village of the Damned, a film adaptation of John Wyndham’s science fiction novel, The Midwich Cuckoos. I was mad keen on science fiction and eager to see the film and to hold the hand of Elaine (surname withheld to protect our blushes.). Sadly, Colin wasn’t so keen on the film and might have imbibed too much under-age cider. He kept tickling the girls either side of him and their histrionics, followed by booing from the audience around us attracted the manager who gave us a warning. A few minutes later the film was stopped and I thought we were definitely going to be ejected but sadly it was worse.
The date was 22nd November 1963
The manager walked in front of the now blank screen, coughed and said, “I am afraid I have shocking news. I’m sorry to say that John F Kennedy, the President of the USA, has been shot and feared dead.” He stood there as if not knowing what to say next. The auditorium hushed, waiting for him to say more.
He spread his arms wide. “There will be more news on the radio over the next hour or so, and television might be interrupted to update us. I don’t know about you, but I want to go home.”
People stood, too shocked to speak. Expect Colin, who giggled. Not understanding.
Over the years we have been subjected to many scenarios about the assassination. No one I knew believed that a lone gunman could have been so skilful, or ‘lucky’ to get those bullets in the right spot, at the right time with such a poor gun and yet it was harder to believe that an organisation, let alone the government, could do it. The whole topic is compelling, so it wasn’t that this was yet another book on whether Oswald did it, but oh good, another chance to ruminate on the tragedy. At the same time, that ‘where was I when...’ feeling returns to tease me.
In the words of Jean Gill when reviewing Mark Fine’s The Zebra Affaire, ‘this is a book to savour’ rather than gallop through. I thought the plot was developing too slow a pace to keep me interested until a revelation occurred that sent shockwaves through my Kindle, up my arm and blew me away. After that the pace changed from a gentle canter to gallop—later to canter again, and I was grateful. View from the Sixth Floor is one of those rare delights that uses pace to grab you by the throat, daring you to breathe, changing your view for ever.
On the 50th anniversary of JFK’s anniversary Olivia has the urge to see the Book Depositary for herself. Her neighbour, Bill, is a loner, tries to dissuade her from her journey but eventually insists on accompanying her. It’s a road trip romance spiced as a thriller. Some of the Americanisms made me laugh. The protagonist, Olivia, is fond of what she calls ‘hard apple cider’. In the UK all cider is hard apple except for scrumpy, which is made in the southwest in vats, often with meat thrown in to sizzle to nothing in the high acidity. I drank so much as a teen that I cannot bear the taste now. We’d drank some before entering the Gaumont...
Elizabeth Horton-Newton is adept at bringing luxuriant settings to the reader especially at the beginning of chapters such as ‘bright reds and golds of autumn looked like fire on the water’ and I loved where it was so hot the ‘rain caused steam to rise from the ground like small ghosts’. All right, the climatologist in me knows you can’t see steam, it’s condensation we view but it would lose its magic if rewritten. I’d ponder on what kind of music it was when the ‘band played covers’, a term not used in the UK and what on Earth are ‘snicker doodles’? Vive le difference!
I like quotes that set a chapter up. Many good ones in this book and my favourite and most appropriate is one by JFK: ‘The great enemy of the truth is very often not the lie, deliberate, contrived and dishonest, but the myth, persistent, persuasive, unrealistic.’ And as Olivia says, ‘We weren’t angry with one another, we were angry with the world.’
View from the Sixth Floor is both gentle in performance yet powerful in content, a page-turning thriller I’m glad to have read.
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A View from the Sixth Floor is an amazing read. It starts out a story about loving, kind people in their twilight years, looking out and caring for one another, but accelerates rapidly into an incredibly adrenalin-fuelled ride that one could never have imagined these characters embarking on in the first few pages of easy going, homespun delight. These characters – Olivia and Bill – are wonderful to read. Through the superb writing talent of Elizabeth Horton-Newton their lives leap from the page and captivate you; engross you, so that you know not what is even around you. I really was rooting for Olivia from the beginning. I warmed to her instantly. Olivia was introduced with a touching gentleness. A proud grandmother, dedicated mother, caring friend and wonderful woman in one. But something also defined Olivia, in every word she said, every action delivered, Olivia showed unfaltering determination. Nothing could make her waver. In the beginning this determination was seen as her being a sturdy and reliable homemaker, but when the tension racked up and the chips were against her, that determination flooded back anew. Facing down shadowy G-Men, handling the press, managing friends and family during a crisis or even facing the inevitable with her lover, that determination to win is imbued in Olivia from head to toe. Feisty and formidable, Horton-Newton has crafted in Olivia a character that forces you to love her whatever she’s doing. And what she gets up to in this book is truly astonishing for someone who is just embracing the big six-O. In fact it would be astonishing for someone half her age. It is strange, despite the fact that Bill and Olivia are elderly, their adventures make you forget their ages completely.

Much has been written about the JFK assassination, but this is the first book I’ve read to take you into a multiverse of possibilities, with a skin tingling everlasting unto eternity love story that wraps around the espionage and conspiracy like a tightly fitted glove. A glove that fits perfectly. At the heart of it, View from the Sixth Floor is a story of secrets. How everyday people are not what they seem, how we all have a secret we’ll never share and how a secret love can grow and grow until it encapsulates everything, giving hope to the impossible. I highly recommend A View from the Sixth Floor for anyone who wants to feel humanity in a heart-warming tale of true love, courage and determination. Wonderful!
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