Sight Unseen

Sight Unseen[Reading] ➶ Sight Unseen By Robert Goddard – Another classic mystery from the “master of the clever twist”On a summer’s day in 1981 a two year old girl Tamsin Hall was abducted during a picnic at the famous prehistoric site of Avebury in W Another classic mystery from the “master of the clever twist”On a summer’s day in a two year old girl Tamsin Hall was abducted during a picnic at the famous prehistoric site of Avebury in Wiltshire Her seven year old sister Miranda was knocked down and killed by the abductor’s van The girls were in the care of their nanny Sally WilkinsonOne of the witnesses to this tragic event was David Umber a PhD student who was waiting at the village pub to keep an appointment with a man called Griffith who claimed he could help Umber with his researches into the letters of “Junius” the pseudonymous eighteenth century polemicist who was his PhD subject But Griffin failed to show up and Umber never heard from him again The two year old Tamsin Hall was never seen again either The Hall family fell apart under the strain Sally Wilkinson the nanny wound up living with Umber whom she had met at the inuiry But she never recovered from the incident suffered increasingly from depression and eventually committed suicideIn the spring of retired Chief Inspector George Sharp receives a letter signed “Junius” reproaching him for botching the investigation Sharp confronts Umber whose explanation for being at the scene of the tragedy has always seemed dubious Obliged to accept Umber’s denial of authorship of the letter he nonetheless forces him to join in a search for the real culprit — and hence the long concealed truth about what happened years previously It is a uest that both will later regret having embarked upon Too late they come to understand that some mysteries are better left unsolved. I picked this up on a whim 2nd hand because of the Avebury connection a place I've visited twice in lovely Somerset I was expecting hoping for a mistery that would stick close to these surroundings but that wasn't to beInstead I read a mistery that proved annoying at times but remained unputdownableAnnoying because of the bland characters unanswered yet obvious uestions at certain stages the protagonist hopping on one train and plane after another without the accounting resources Likewise concerning hotels or hire cars; the few hundred uid he might have combed off a deceased baddie don't uite cover it The writing style is adeuate but unremaruableUnputdownable though because the pace of events is complex unexpected and never slacks downThe mistery unravels slowly the cinch of it to be fond on litteraly the last pageWill I be hunting down another Goddard? NoWould I pick up another Goddard? Probably in a huff of annoyance ; Entertaining with many twists and turns Robert Goddard at his best I enjoyed this a lot it kept me guessing right to the end Unfortunately the end is the worst part The unveiling of the plot was very clever and unexpected but I have a couple of gripesI didn't like the way that Sharp just disappeared from the story Once he was out of jail I was waiting for him to come back into the story but he never did Neither did I like the fact that the villains went free and unpunished though I suppose that it's feasible given the way the plot evolved But what really bugged me was the way that our hero disappeared off to a new identity with a girl he hardly knew leaving everything and everyone behind without a ualm This just didn't fit in with my image of him at allBut anyway a good mystery a very very good plot and I will certainly be reading by Goddard Convincing denouements are such important things aren’t they for our enjoyment of a crime or mystery novel? In crime novels the denouements are of course the revelation of the identity of the murderer maybe also the how and the why if they have not been revealed alreadyIn Goddard’s novels the why is all important even I would say above the identity of the perpetratorperpetrators The scene is set for mystery intrigue murder disappearances and conspiracies The past is all important but the why eludes until the very end In Sight Unseen it is “July 1981 The peace of a summer’s day at the ancient stone circle of Avebury where I now want to visit is shattered by the abduction of two year old Tamsin Hall and the violent death of her sister Miranda”“One of the witnesses is PhD student David Umber waiting at the nearby pub to meet a man called Griffin who claimed he could help him with his researches into the identity of Junius pen name of the famous and mysterious and by the way real eighteenth century letter writer and political polemicist But Griffin never showed up And Umber never heard from him again He lost interest in Junius and never completed his PhD”Goddard sets the scene of the abduction and death flawlessly and in 2004 as new events unfold in the lives of Umber and the retired Chief Inspector of the case George Sharp the reader is left wondering and turning pages to find out the connection between Junius and the abduction of a small child When the denouement finally comes after yet tragedy the why is a very believable one It is the strongest “of course” denouement that I have read so far in Goddard’s novels By this time we have journeyed a long way with Umber understood how the abduction derailed his life and the lives of several others and the ripple effect it created on all those involved A very satisfying read This started off well with a 1981 abduction and a murder in Avebury witnessed by a historian and as the plot thickened it drew me in and made for an enjoyable read Somewhere around the mid point however all the plot twists and conspiracies started to become a little difficult to swallow and there was a whiff of Dan Brown in there albeit Goddard is a better writer than Brown with heroic derring do and solving of mysteries of entitlement via clues in ancient documents It all felt a bit contrived and I stopped believing in the central character's ability to get to the bottom of things meaning the last hundred pages were skimmed a little Formulaic though not without merit in terms of a pacy page turner This had a somewhat far fetched plot that lost its momentum toward the end so it was a disappointment But all in all it wasn't a bad mystery It involved a decades old kidnapping that resurfaces following the death of a person who was affected by the original crime It also involves the mystery of authorship of the letters of Junius a political commentator of the 18th century That one has a kind of pat ending TOO BORING DIDNT FINISH Bettie's Books I couldn't put this down Perfect pace for me filled with interesting places and historical bits and pieces Great plotting too This mystery thriller took me by surprise A chance buy at a second hand stall I was attracted by the unsolved crimemystery element but the novel began with a tale of a mystery figure in the history of politics called Junius I'm not usually enthralled by the history genre but the novel uickly turned its attention to an unresolved crime which certainly added an exciting element to the book early on and hooked me It wasn't until the epilogue that I realised Junius wasn't fictional but a true identity In that sense I was very impressed by the way Goddard managed to weave it into the novel in such a complicated manner The novel is centred around the abduction and killing of siblings in 1981 in Avebury a fictional crime which was unconvincingly resolved and which than 20 years later is brought to light again by some of the people involved The case is unofficially reopened and Umber the protagonist an amateur historian and witness on the day of the crime is pulled into helping a retired policeman investigate Old wounds are opened witnesses comlicate matters and it soon becomes evident that the danger that surrounded that day in 1981 is still prominent The whole novel weaved in Junius theories and unexplained phenomena issues and kept me hanging the whole way through I had suspicions as to the reason for the abductionkillings and the people involved but Goddard tells the story in such a way that clues and information are drip fed to the reader New leads arise the whole way through and I often felt surprised by them Goddard weaves a complicated tale The ending was satisfactory although I did find myself uestioning what happened to some of the other characters involved in the novel Overall this was a really good read one which I devoured uickly I definitely recommend it to anyone who enjoys a good crime thrillermystery

Sight Unseen MOBI ¿ Paperback
  • Paperback
  • 320 pages
  • Sight Unseen
  • Robert Goddard
  • English
  • 08 August 2016
  • 9780440242802