Monday, May 2, 2011

Book Tour & Review: Ordinary Thunderstorms

Ordinary Thunderstorms by William Boyd
Publisher: Harper Perennial (Reprint edition)
Publish Date: February 1, 2011
Paperback, 432 pages 

My Review:
Why I read this book:  It sounded like a fascinating premise and I have heard good things about this book so I wanted to read it.

My thoughts:  Stunning is the first word that comes to mind while reading and definitely after reading Ordinary Thunderstorms.

Ordinary Thunderstorms is one of those books that I started reading and just marveled at how the story came together.  How the characters worked in and out of each others lives and how the plot kept twisted to add to the suspense.  But let me make one thing clear.  It's something I learned while reading this book.  I am a long time fan of thrillers from authors like James Patterson, Lisa Gardner, Michael Connelly and many others.  Ordinary Thunderstorms is not like those books.  It is more of a literary suspense.  Mr. Boyd goes out of his way to show us London, even different areas of London zeroing in on the Thames River so much that it is almost a character itself.  The writing is one way it's more literary, but I think the main reason is that it unwinds slowly.  Yes there are a few very tense moments, but mostly the story just slowly unwinds over a period of time, jumping back and forth between the characters building the suspense without making you feel on the edge of your seat continually and I found that enjoyable in this book.

The characters are well fleshed out.  There is Adam who was in the wrong place at the wrong time.  A police officer who is in the midst of evaluating her life.  A business executive that just wants to do what is right and make money.  A pharmaceutical company head that just wants to make money.  A gun-for-hire that wants to find his prey and stay alive and so many other players that make the story.  I enjoyed getting to know each of them and learning what role they played in the overall story.

So a gripping and tightly woven plot, interesting characters and great setting made Ordinary Thunderstorms, anything but ordinary to me.  I've already passed it on to my husband because I think he will truly enjoy the book as well.  If you haven't tried this one out in hardback when it came out, give it a try in it's new paperback version and let me know what you think.

My Rating:  4.5/5.0

About the Book:
One May evening in London, Adam Kindred, a young climatologist in town for a job interview, is feeling good about the future as he sits down for a meal at a little Italian bistro. He strikes up a conversation with a solitary diner at the next table, who leaves soon afterward. With horrifying speed, this chance encounter leads to a series of malign accidents, through which Adam loses everything—home, family, friends, job, reputation, passport, credit cards, cell phone—never to get them back.

William Boyd’s electrifying follow-up to the Costa Award-winning Restless, Ordinary Thunderstorms is a profound and gripping novel about the fragility of social identity, the corruption at the heart of big business, and the secrets that lie hidden in the seamy underbelly of every city.
About the Author:

William Boyd is the author of ten novels, including Ordinary ThunderstormsA Good Man in Africa, winner of the Whitbread Award and the Somerset Maugham Award; An Ice-Cream War, winner of the John Llewellyn Rhys Prize and shortlisted for the Booker Prize; Brazzaville Beach, winner of the James Tait Black Memorial Prize; Any Human Heart, winner of the Prix Jean Monnet; and Restless, winner of the Costa Novel of the Year.
Visit William at his website.

William’s Tour Stops

Monday, April 25th: The Road to Here
Thursday, April 28th: Life In Review
Thursday, April 28th: The House of the Seven Tails
Monday, May 2nd: My Reading Room
Tuesday, May 3rd: Lit and Life
Tuesday, May 10th: Dolce Bellezza
Thursday, May 12th: For the love of books
Tuesday, May 17th: Book Chatter
Wednesday, May 18th: Bibliophiliac
Thursday, May 19th: English Major’s Junk Food
Tuesday, May 24th: Bluestalking
Wednesday, May 25th: Man of La Book



Anonymous said...

I'm not a big fan of books that keep me in a state of high suspense and tension throughout - I find it literally exhausting to read books like that. But I do love a slow build-up of suspense and drama, and that is what it seems this book has a lot of.

I'm glad you enjoyed it even though it isn't like the books you usually read. Thanks for being on the tour!

Anonymous said...

Glad to hear you enjoyed the book. I'm on the tour as well and am looking forward to reading it.

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