Today’s Team Review is from Terry, she blogs at http://terrytylerbookreviews.blogspot.co.uk/
Terry has been reading Back Home by Tom Williams
BACK HOME by Tom Williams
5 out of 5 stars
Reviewed by me as a member of Rosie Amber’s Review Team
I loved this book. Although the third part of a trilogy, it is a complete stand-alone (I haven’t read the other parts), with a two page preface that gives exactly the right information about what has happened before; this is so well written that I couldn’t wait to get cracking on the main story.
Back Home is an excellent piece of intricately researched historical fiction, set in the mid-19th century, when affluent, middle class John Williamson returns home from thirty years in Borneo and India to find England a place that has gone through much change. Circumstances take him to London, where he becomes involved with the murky, criminal side of life in order to rescue a friend from danger—and because he is being blackmailed.
I enjoyed every word of this novel. It’s so cleverly written, with low-key humour in parts, the research used subtly and unobtrusively. Williamson’s new life centres around an underground industry; the detail about this is fascinating, as are the eye-opening accounts of life in early Victorian slums. That aside, I loved reading about his impressions of this new London, his observations about the sociological changes and patterns, and the people he meets. Even the mundane domestic detail held my attention a hundred per cent.
I shall be reading the previous book, Cawnpore, very soon, and highly recommend this novel to all lovers of intelligent historical fiction. Really impressed!