The Thief of Time
by John Boyne
An engrossing and utterly absorbing read, The Thief of Time introduces a storyteller of rare distinction. It is 1758 and Matthieu Zela is fleeing ... Show synopsis An engrossing and utterly absorbing read, The Thief of Time introduces a storyteller of rare distinction. It is 1758 and Matthieu Zela is fleeing Paris for Dover, having witnessed the murder of his mother by his stepfather and his subsequent execution for that crime. With Matthieu is his five year old brother Tomas and his companion and 'one true love', Dominique Sauvet. What follows is the story of Matthieu's life. Beginning in murder and ending in redemption, Matthieu's life is characterised by one extraordinary fact: before the eighteenth century ends, he discovers that his body has stopped ageing. At the end of the twentieth century, he is able to look back on a life lived to the full. He has been an engineer, a rogue, a movie mogul, a soldier, a financier, a lover to many, a cable TV executive and more. The tale of his life involves murder, love, treachery, despair, passion, glamour, and, ultimately hope. Spanning two and a half centuries, The Thief of Time is a prodigious and entertaining achievement that takes in Hollywood in the 1920s, the Great Exhibition of 1851, the French Revolution, the Wall Street Crash, the formation of the modern Olympic Games in Athens in 1896, and much more. All is interwoven in a dazzling narrative that ingeniously juxtaposes history and personal experience and presents us with a stunning portrait of a life lived selflessly.