“Oh Federico, she wants to say. Why did you lie to me? Who were you? It’s as if, within the great loss, there is a smaller, more focused, loss.”
The View From the Tower, by Charles Lambert
Exhibit A, December 2013
276 pages (ebook)
“Can she trust them? Can you?”
Helen is in a hotel room with her lover in Rome, when a gunman murders her husband, a high-level politician, less than a mile away.
Helen immediately finds herself both a suspect and suspicious of those around her – including her friends and her husband’s family, and her lover, Giacomo, an ex-terrorist with a new wife and a reinvented life.
As Helen struggles to understand her husband’s death and the extent to which she and the people she knows may have been responsible for it, she is forced to examine her own past and peel back the years of secrets and lies.
*** I requested this review copy through NetGalley. ***
The summary for this one attracted me immediately. In the end, it turned out to be more of a quiet novel than I’d thought, but the story I got was just as compelling as the one I was expecting.
There’s quite a bit of politics, most of which was lost on me, but it did provide an interesting backdrop for the story, and the details weren’t so important to the plot that I wasn’t able to keep up. More than any of the political details, I enjoyed reading about how Helen made her home in a foreign country… somewhat like I imagine The Sun Also Rises might have been if I hadn’t hated all the characters.
The other book this one reminded me of was The Silent Wife; despite a similar feel, though, The View From the Tower actually held my interest. There’s a slow reveal of information as we get hints of these characters’ history together, eventually realizing along with Helen that she may not have known her husband as well as she thought she did.
And that’s really the main focus of this novel. It’s about a murder, and the lead up to and consequences of that act. But it’s also about relationships. It’s about the parts of ourselves we keep hidden, even from those closest to us.
The View From the Tower is available in print, as well as for Kindle, Nook, and other e-readers.
Does The View From the Tower sound like something you’d pick up? What are the parts of yourself you prefer to keep private? (I guess that’s more a “food for thought” question than an actual discussion question… unless you feel like spilling all your secrets here!)