2 December 2018

Review: THE HONOURABLE THIEF, Meaghan Wilson Anastasios

Synopsis (publisher)

'Achilles? Because...?'
'Obsession of mine. Half man, half god - and his own worst enemy.

My kind of man.' He laughed.

Istanbul, Turkey 1955

Benedict Hitchens, once a world-renowned archaeologist, is now a discredited - but still rather charming - shell of his former self.

Once full of optimism and adventure, his determination to prove that Achilles was a real historical figure led him to his greatest love, Karina, on the island of Crete and to his greatest downfall, following the disappearance of an enigmatic stranger, Eris.

He has one last chance to restore his reputation, solve the mystery of Eris and prove his Achilles theory. But it is full of risk, and possibly fatal consequences...

In her breakout novel, Meaghan Wilson Anastasios weaves an action-packed tale of honour, passion, heroes and thieves across an epic backdrop of history.

My Take

The structure of this novel turns it into demanding reading. It chops backwards and forwards across multiple time frames, designed to show the reader how Benedict Hitchens is brought low, but in actual fact disrupting the flow of the story. The time frames bring with them a number of plot strands with issues that did not always resolve.

The final chapters of the novel read like an episode from an Indiana Jones movie and for me did not sit comfortably with the Benedict Hitchens I met in the first part of the novel. And then the final element of where Achilles' shield ends up is just pure foolishness.

My rating: 3.5

About the author
Meaghan Wilson Anastasios spent her formative years in Melbourne before travelling and working as an archaeologist in the Mediterranean and Middle East. She holds a PhD in art history and cultural economics, has been a lecturer at the University of Melbourne and was a fine art auctioneer. Meaghan now uses her expertise to write and research for film and TV. She lives in inner-city Melbourne with her husband and their two children. The Water Diviner was her first novel, which she co-wrote with her husband Andrew. The Honourable Thief is her first solo novel.

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