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In a Nutshell: A multi-millionaire conman vs the homeless man he ruined.
An action packed tale about James, whose life was ruined by crooked financier Kent Bancroft, and his plans to retrieve his lost half a million pounds. It's also about Kent himself, and how the life of a rich man does not always run as smoothly as you might think.
What I liked about this book:
The structure - ever since reading Jeffrey Archer's Kane and Abel decades ago, I've adored alternate POV books, especially when, as with this, the lives are poles apart.
The pace - the book marches along with just the right amount of inner narrative versus events - there are no boring waffle bits, the characters are well-developed, and all the backstory is nicely woven in at just the right time. This is something that you may not notice unless it isn't right (like how you don't notice if something is clean, but you do notice if it isn't) - getting it spot on is an art.
The writing style - flowing and so readable, so much so that I wasn't tempted to skip-read even when I wasn't too sure about the content itself.
The quality of the research that had clearly taken place, about the financial detail, life as a homeless person, the art world and other aspects throughout the book.
The basic storyline, which appealed to me as soon as I read about it.
What I was not so sure about:
There were way too many errors that editor/proofreader should have picked up on, such as the phrase 'the gig is up' instead of 'the jig is up', Marlborough cigarettes instead of Marlboro, multiple instances of the word 'invite' that should have been 'invitation' (unlikely to occur at this level of society), numerous backwards apostrophes at the beginning of words.
I wasn't convinced that an exclusive gym patronised by the aristocracy would be called 'MuscleBound', which sounds more like an establishment owned by Phil Mitchell from EastEnders. It's only a small thing but it really stood out to me.
The story development, which I thought needed more thinking through; many developments/details seemed a tad unfeasible. An example: a rich financier sharp enough to con thousands of people out of millions but doesn't have an efficient alarm and CCTV system at his house.
To sum up, if you're willing to suspend your disbelief, it's a jolly good, fun book that zips along, entertains and keeps you turning the pages, and for this I commend it; being able to tell a story that amuses and keeps the attention is indeed a talent worthy of note. Everyone has different levels of belief suspension, and mine are particularly low; most of the reviews for this book are very positive indeed.