At the risk of sounding like the bitter literary critic R. Tranter, whose story makes up one of the threads in this novel, A Week in December is a little disappointing. In fact I'd go so far as to say pedestrian. It has the dryness of an exercise well done. But what I really object to - and I admit this is a failing on my part perhaps - are the endless pages of financial talk, of synthetic bonds and proprietary bank traders and gilts and trades and mercantile exchanges. I am sure that such a book needed to be written, but Tom Wolfe this ain't.
The second half is much better than the first, and I nearly wept at the end of two separate threads. This obviously is no mark of quality but rather a demonstration of a thundering sentimentality on my part that I try very hard to hide. So: not as bad as I originally tought, but not pushing my top ten for 2009.