I was intrigued by the write-up about this book. Less impressed, however, by the commendation by Dan Brown. Being a fan of Dickens, I decided to purchase it from my hospital bookshop and at 50p it wasn't too much to spend if it turned-out I didn't like it. Well, I can see why Dan brown spoke of the author as 'immensely gifted' because it somewhat resembles his style of writing. Not that I agreed with him, but it flows along at a great pace without too little regard for literary content. The story starts off well and when Dickens son is introduced to us as a soldier in India combating the stealing of opium by the natives (which was frowned upon because the British wanted it all to sell to China) the story really perks-up. But, unfortunately this interesting bit leads nowhere, unless it's just to reveal the connection with opium! The book ends with an Historical Note. I wish some of this could have been put at the front of the book (not all because it would destroy the surprise, and we all like surprises in stories). It would have added foundation to the story - it would have been nice to know that the story is based on a great deal of historical research and was not just plucked out of the air! Nevertheless, good reading for a holiday or for a train journey!...Continua
Loved this book, especially if you know anything about Dickens' life or books, but not necessary. "Drood" got me hooked, and then this one was the perfect next step.