TITLE: LOVE IS BLIND
AUTHOR: WILLIAM BOYD
Whilst always being aware of William Boyd and thinking I knew what type of writer he is, Love is Blind is the first novel of his which I have read. I had assumed (I have no idea why) he was similar to Graham Greene, a contemporary author writing intelligently, with insight and comment. I was not too far off the mark although for me Boyd does not match up, but who does? However, I did like this book…very much.
Set at the turn of the twentieth century, Love is Blind is the story of Brodie Moncur, an unassuming, dependable, loyal piano tuner/repairer/customizer whose skills take him on an improbable yet wholly believable journey. He falls for Lika, head over heels, utterly consumed by his love for her. I found her manipulative and self-serving but love is blind indeed.
Having expected Mr Greene (why?) it took me a couple of chapters to pick up on the rhythm of Boyd’s writing but once I did it flowed at just the right pace. It is not a page turner but I was willing the plot to go my way and was eager to reach each conclusion, of which there are many before the final end.
Written in thethird person, there is a great deal of detail, none of which is superfluous, all of which is fascinating. Boyd’s characterisation is well observed and non-judgemental, allowing the characters to judge each other and the reader to do likewise. It is very much a comment on the human condition, good and bad, love, loyalty, greed, envy, revenge, desire…it’s all there!
I would happily read more of Boyd’s novels, although there may always be other authors higher up my “To Be Read” list and there are so many books and so little time…
Thank you to NetGalley and Viking for the Advanced Reader Copy of the book, which I have voluntarily reviewed.