The Steady Running of the Hour, Hardback Book

The Steady Running of the Hour Hardback

3 out of 5 (1 rating)


In this mesmerizing debut, a young American discovers he may be heir to the unclaimed estate of an English World War I officer, which launches him on a quest across Europe to uncover the elusive truth.

Just after graduating college, Tristan Campbell receives a letter delivered by special courier to his apartment in San Francisco.

It contains the phone number of a Mr. J.F. Prichard of Twyning & Hooper, Solicitors, in London - and news that could change Tristan's life forever.

In 1924, Prichard explains, an English alpinist named Ashley Walsingham died attempting to summit Mt.

Everest, leaving his fortune to his former lover, Imogen Soames-Andersson.

But the estate was never claimed. Information has recently surfaced suggesting Tristan may be the rightful heir, but unless he can find documented evidence, the fortune will be divided among charitable beneficiaries in less than two months.

In a breathless race from London archives to Somme battlefields to the Eastfjords of Iceland, Tristan pieces together the story of a forbidden affair set against the tumult of the First World War and the pioneer British expeditions to Mt.

Everest. Following his instincts through a maze of frenzied research, Tristan soon becomes obsessed with the tragic lovers, and he crosses paths with a mysterious French girl named Mireille who suggests there is more to his quest than he realizes.

Tristan must prove that he is related to Imogen to inherit Ashley's fortune - but the more he learns about the couple, the stranger his journey becomes.

The Steady Running of the Hour announces the arrival of a stunningly talented author.

Part love story, part historical tour de force, Justin Go's novel is utterly compelling, unpredictable, and heartrending.


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Nicola Smith The Steady Running of the Hour is a dual timeframe novel. In the current day story Tristan recieves a letter at his home in California informing him that he might just be the heir to an 80 year old fortune that has never been collected, but he needs to prove it by finding out if his grandparents are indeed Ashley Walsingham and Imogen Soames-Andersson. This leads Tristan to London, Paris, Berlin and Iceland on his quest to discover his heritage and claim the fortune.The other strand of the novel is the love story of Ashley and Imogen. This takes the reader to the trenches of WWI and to Mount Everest. I thought the WWI sections were particularly well-written and Go did not stint on detail, however horrendous. I liked this book and Tristan's investigations drew me into the story, but it was all quite implausible somehow, and that spoiled it a little for me. I didn't find any of the characters particularly interesting either and cared little for them. Overall though, this is a reasonably good debut novel and one which will appeal to those who like dual timeframe stories, or reading about WWI and the attempts to conquer Everest.Thank you to the publishers for allowing me to review this book through Netgalley.