Downing’s novels are wonderful, dark yet hopeful vignette’s into the evil and ?? of the human soul. This one follows an extended family’s story in the last gasps of Hitler’s Germany. What I like most about Downing is the focus on “small” people and events caught up in the epic fails and Great Men of history. His stories are all the more real for it.
Read all of Downing’s “Stations.”
Child’s “Reacher” novels follow a very specific but successful and entertaining template. Occasionally, he does get some ‘facts’ very wrong, which makes you doubt the veracity of the truth given on other subjects you’re not aware of.
Then, there’s the “Chekhov’s Gun” unnecessary additions, which in this novel is Reacher’s concussion, which plays into both points one and two made here.
Still a good read.
There seems to be a trend these days for talented mystery novel writers to try their hand at short stories, mostly for worse. They’re two very different art forms.
Thank goodness Le Carre finally left Smiley behind and let his true genius come out.
Too bad this one was done before that and barely contains Smiley at all.
Weak, weak effort.
Try one of his other books.
This isn’t a plot/character line (single, young, first-generation woman on her own in Manhattan in the 1930s, making her way through the restrictions of societal conventions) I’m usually attracted to, but I picked it up because I wanted to read Towles A GENTLEMAN IN MOSCOW but found his debut novel first.
The book is absorbing; the style and word choice are elegant and consuming. Well worth your time.