Jeffrey Archer is one of the world's most successful authors. He has sold over 500 million copies of his novels and short stories worldwide. After a life in politics he was elevated to the House of Lords in 1992. Archer is married with two children and currently lives in Lincolnshire.
Veteran novelist and British politician Archer (Kane and Abel) is currently serving a prison sentence for perjury, so readers can perhaps forgive him if this latest effort falls short of his usual standard. The implausibly plotted novel follows fraternal twin boys separated at birth by a bizarre set of circumstances. Nat Cartwright and Fletcher Davenport are born in Hartford, Conn., in the early 1950s. A meddlesome nurse sends them home with different families. Nat is raised in a lower-middle-class household, attends the University of Connecticut, serves heroically in Vietnam and goes into banking. Fletcher, the wealthy Yalie, becomes a lawyer and a politician. The men are repeatedly thrown into competition with each other, whether for admission to college or in their professional lives, their rivalry culminating when they both run for governor of their home state. The characters are too thin, and their respective worlds too littered with clichs, to offer a satisfying portrait of the baby boomer generation. Contrived plot twists offer little distraction, while the dialogue sometimes reads like a set of photo captions-information without emotion. "When you think about it, they are the obvious predator," says Nat about a takeover threat. "Fairchild's is the largest bank in the state; seventy-one branches with almost no serious rivals." Archer is usually a skillful storyteller, but he drops the ball here. (Jan.) Forecast: Archer, who has had to resign from political office three times because of financial and sexual scandals, usually draws reliable sales, but this weak offering may break the mold. Copyright 2003 Cahners Business Information.
"Archer provides a fine read with a keen sense of the good and the bad in people and the importance of kinship...[he] masterfully creates a great villian in Elliot, who jumps off the pages in all of his vengeful and shady glamour" -- "Los Angeles Times""One of the top ten storytellers in the world." -"Los Angeles Times""A master at mixing power, politics, and profit into fiction." -"Entertainment Weekly""Archer is a master entertainer." -"Time""Archer plots with skill, and keeps you turning the pages." -"The Boston Globe""Cunning plots, silken style...Archer plays a cat-and-mouse game with the reader." -"The New York Times""A storyteller in the class of Alexandre Dumas...unsurpassed skill...making the reader wonder intensely what will happen next." -"The Washington Post"