Books - Review

Showing all books by: Sebastian Faulks

Engleby is a Cambridge student who fancies Jen, but he falls under suspicion when Jen disappears. Always a loner, he narrates the story of his difficult childhood, and the bullying at school, and then his falling into journalism. But his memory plays tricks on him and he drinks a lot and takes lots of pills. And then, years later, Jen's body is discovered...
Quite good. He's certainly a gloomy old character, but I definitely felt some sympathy for him. I liked the last third where you start to realise that he really is very weird indeed, and get the point of view of those around him.
Score: 6.5
Published: 2007
Read: August 18th 2008

A Week in December
A group of Londoners from different walks of life live through a week, their paths intercepting, sometimes unknowingly. Foreign footballer, bookish solicitor, tube train driver, potential Islamic terrorist, and nasty rich hedge-fund manager.
Interesting, but fizzled out tamely, when it could have finished with more of a bang.
Score: 7
Published: 2009
Read: October 23rd 2009

Charlotte Gray
Charlotte is a plucky Englishwoman (or Scottish maybe? Just put that in to irritate all the Scots who might be reading this). Anyway, she is definitely plucky. So she volunteers for WW2, and ends up as a spy in France because she is a) plucky, and b) fluent in French and c) in love with an airman who was doing spy-flying and went missing. So she does her mission, searches for her lover and helps Jewish children evade the Nazis.
A bit of a disappointment after Birdsong. Characters all a bit one-dimensional and the plot a bit daft in places. Not a bad story overall though.
Score: 6.5
Published: 1998
Read: June 15th 2013