Sunday, July 13, 2008


Title: Engleby
Author: Sebastian Faulks
Vintage, 2008 (2007)

I have only ever thought of Faulks as a writer of historical fiction (probably because I have only ever read Birdsong and Charlotte Gray.) Even though I have thoroughly enjoyed his novels, Birdsong in particular, and felt that he is very competent and talented within this genre, this pigeonholing has been unfair, I now discover. Because Engleby, a portrait of a man who slowly discovers who he is and what he has done, is sharp, dark, beautiful handiwork. The creepy unravelling of the man and the surfacing of his crime could be a bit shorter (then again, I always feel that novels could be shorter; it's my thing), but other than that, Faulks could not have done a better job. To my immense delight, there are quite a few novels by him that I have yet to read. Lucky me!

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