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Portobello

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The Portobello area of West London has a rich personality - vibrant, brilliant in colour, noisy, with graffiti that approach art, bizarre and ... Show synopsis

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Reviews of Portobello

Overall customer rating: 4.000
Paul

A great thriller

by Paul on Jan 8, 2013

I always look forward to Ruth Rendell's "non-Wexford" novels, having started many years ago by reading "A Demon in my View", and having since then worked my way through most, if not all, of them. The main protagonists always seem to have some sort of intriguing psychological problem and, in "Portobello", Ms Rendell comes up with not one, but several! I love her style and her masterly command of the English language and, even if the plot didn't quite live up to my expectations this time, I found, as always, the author's writing compulsive and satisfying. In "Portobello" she creates a mesmerising tale of diverse characters - from Eugene, a well-to-do art gallery owner who surprises and dismays himself with an unexpected addiction and Ella his lady-love, a GP, both of them from the higher echelons of society, to the less privileged petty thief, Lance, and his girlfriend, Gemma. The author weaves their stories into a multi-layered tale, with input from other characters as well: Lance's uncle with a very shady history and his involvement with a strange religious sect; Joel, a young man with a tragic past; and a couple more petty criminal characters as well. The story is set against the backdrop of the Portobello Road, London - an area unknown to me - but which Ms Rendell brings vibrantly to life in the novel with her detailed descriptions. I first of all awarded this book 3 stars but, on reflection, I realise that I enjoyed it to such an extent that I feel it deserves four. It was an easy and pleasant read and long may Ms Rendell continue to produce such novels!

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Discussions about Portobello

Joan L

Once Upon a Time...

...I would buy a new Rendell book in a heartbeat, not giving the contents or writing prowess a thought. These days, however, I study customer reviews with great interest, and wonder what's happened to the Great Ruth Rendell. She seems to have lost both her brilliance and her fan base. Judging from ... Read more

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