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Having reviewed over 1200 books on this blog, I have now written two myself. Motherdarling is a story about a search for a missing Will which reveals long-hidden family secrets. The Kids of God is a thriller set in a dystopia ruled by fascist paramilitaries. Both are available as paperbacks and on Kindle through Amazon. I live in Canterbury, England. I lived for more than thirty years in Bedford. Having retired from teaching; I became a research student at the University of Bedfordshire researching into Liminality. I achieved my PhD in 2019. I am now properly retired. I love reading! I enjoy in particular fiction (mostly great and classic fiction although I also enjoy whodunnits), biography, history and smart thinking. Follow me on twitter: @daja57

Friday, 24 December 2010

"The Survivor" by Thomas Keneally

This strange book is about an ageing Australian academic, Alec Ramsey, who is neurotically obsessed with his role in a tragic Antarctic expedition whose leader, Leeming, died. Since Leeming's body may be about to be discovered we explore the basis for the neurosis: did Ramsey and his other companion, a doctor called Lloyd, eat Leeming or abandon him before he was dead?

But on the other hand this is a story about a close-knit academic community: Kable who wants Ramsey's job and his nymphomaniac wife, the drunken 'poet', and seducer Saunders, the Professor of Physics who has just refused a doctorate to hysterical 'young' Leeming, nephew of the great explorer. These people and assorted other members of the cast bitch and philosophise with all the stagey dialogue of a drawing room comedy. Their manoeuvrings and hissy fits pad out this relatively short and simple 'did he do it' thriller into a slightly pointless tragedy of manners.

Don't bother.

December 2010; 282 pages.

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