Boyd, William. Ordinary Thunderstorms. Harper: HarperCollins. Feb. 2010. c.416p. ISBN 978-0-06-187674-5. $26.99. Fiction

In his ninth novel, award-winning British author Boyd (Restless) seamlessly fuses a picaresque tale with the threatening storms of a thriller. Climatologist Adam Kindred, in London for a job interview, strikes up a dinner conversation with Dr. Philip Wang, director of a medical trial seeking a cure for childhood asthma. When Wang leaves behind his briefcase, Adam tracks him down, only to find that the doctor has been murdered. With the killer still in the flat, Adam flees for his life, thus beginning his descent into London’s underworld, where he will lose his identity, possessions, job, and reputation. Drawn inadvertently into a complex conspiracy involving pharmaceutical giants, he will need guile, tenacity, and the privileged information found in Wang’s dossier to survive. On Adam’s heels, Thames River cop Rita Nashe has her own family problems, as does Ingram Fryzer, a pharma CEO struggling to handle his disintegrating health while facing a furtive takeover of his company. VERDICT Not just for thriller fans, this engaging blend of trickery, danger, and human eccentricity will appeal to readers who enjoy not only John Grisham but also John Irving.

Library Journal, 135, no. 1 (January, 2010), 85-86.


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