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This would make a good BBC weekly series. Liked ties to American Embassy before WWll.
What disappointed you about Princes Gate?
I love books set in this period, but listening to this it felt like the author had done some research on London during the Blitz, and then made a list of things to reference. He then went down the list, checking off items - driving in blackout, check! Bomb shelter, check! Upper class house party, check...The characters were just as 2 dimensional as the setting, and there were too many of them. Clearly most of them were there to appear on stage - the refugee Jew, the two thugs, the chinless wonders, the country girls in town to do their war service, the emotionally scarred DI, and many, many more. Did I say many?
Would you ever listen to anything by Mark Ellis again?
Funnily enough, I might. He had some good ideas, and a clever plot, but it was like sitting around with someone telling you their idea for a book - "What if I wrote a book about the US Embassy in London in the run-up to America getting involved in the war and all the various residents from Joseph Kennedy on down to the lowliest typist?". And then he did research about the period, but didn't bother to flesh out the characters.Oh, and it was way too easy to figure out who dunnit. Authors have to play fair in mysteries and give clues, but these weren't subtle hints, they were flashing lights and sirens saying "This one's a Bad Guy! and this one! and this one!" I am usually hopeless at solving the mystery until the very end, and if *I* figure it out early on it is as subtle as a dead skunk!
Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Matt Addis?
He wasn't that bad. I don't know if anyone else could have improved the book.
What character would you cut from Princes Gate?
None of them, or all of them. None was developed enough to care about.
Any additional comments?
I hope this was a book from Mark Ellis's early writing career and he got better with practice. It showed enough potential I was disappointed instead of just going meh and tossing it.