"My life is different now. I don't go to work. I don't have an office. I stay at home, hide behind curtains and make notes.
I wait for something to happen." Gordon Kingdom struggles with the fate of his seriously-ill wife while patiently observing and methodically recording the lives of those around him: his neighbours.
He has files on them all, including Don Donald (best friend and petty thief), Annie Carnaffan (lives next door, throws footballs over the fence), and Benny (the boy who paints with his eyes closed).
Then there's Angelica, the new girl (42) on the street, with her multi-coloured toenails and her filthy temper.
It's when she arrives that Gordon's world of half-truths really begins to unravel.
Faced with a series of unexpected events and a faltering conscience, he's left with an impossible decision. Because in the banality of everyday life, what would you do if the unthinkable happened?
- Format: Paperback
- Pages: 256 pages
- Publisher: Legend Press Ltd
- Publication Date: 22/08/2012
- Category: Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)
- ISBN: 9781908775986
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Review by judylou
On the one hand, Gordon’s life is embedded in the factual monotony of the everyday. He watches his street, obsessively taking copious notes on what his neighbours are doing, when they do it and with whom. On the other hand his life is embedded in pretence. His wife is lying in bed, suffering the effects of a severe stroke, but he has told everyone that she is visiting relatives. Gordon is a difficult man to like at first. He seems emotionally removed from his ill wife, who is totally dependent on him; his surveillance of the street has taken Neighbourhood Watch to a creepy level; and his obsessive note taking is fairly disturbing. But keep on reading and you will soon find yourself warming to Gordon.A wonderfully fast read, this book was intriguing. At times depressing, at times amusing, but always entertaining.