The Sandpit (Hardback)
  • The Sandpit (Hardback)
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The Sandpit (Hardback)

(author)
£16.99
Hardback 448 Pages / Published: 23/07/2020
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Who do you trust with a secret that could save the world - or destroy it?

'A remarkable contemporary thriller - with shades of Graham Greene and Le Carre about it...Brilliantly observed, captivatingly written, grippingly narrated - a triumph' William Boyd


When John Dyer returns to Oxford from Brazil with his young son, he doesn't expect to find them both in danger. His time living on the edge as a foreign correspondent in Rio is over.

Yet the rainy streets of this English city turn out to be just as treacherous as those he used to walk in the favelas. Leandro's schoolmates are the children of influential people, among them an international banker, a Russian oligarch, an American CIA operative and a British spook. As they congregate round the sports field for the weekly football matches, the network of alliances and covert interests soon becomes clear to Dyer. But it is a chance conversation with an Iranian nuclear scientist, Rustum Marvar, father of a friend of Leandro, that sets him onto a truly precarious path.

When Marvar and his son disappear, several sinister factions seem acutely interested in Marvar's groundbreaking research at the Clarendon Lab, and what he might have told Dyer about it - especially as Dyer was the last person to see Marvar alive.

'Quite simply excellent. If you're looking for something exciting and sinewy to read, this is it.' John Simpson

Publisher: Vintage Publishing
ISBN: 9781787301764
Number of pages: 448
Weight: 685 g
Dimensions: 240 x 162 x 162 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
A joy to read, the novel reflects John le Carre's genre-stretching influence on every page: the boys' school setting, the mixture of social comedy and Hitchcockian shenanigans, the astute, sophisticated prose, the central philosophical dilemma, and the exploration of what it means to be English in a globalised world. * Sunday Times *
Wonderfully well written...old school in the best possible way, with an insidious escalation of menace, and paranoia that fairly shimmers off the pages * Guardian *
A remarkable contemporary thriller - with shades of Graham Greene and Le Carre about it - but also a profound and compelling investigation of a hugely complex human predicament. Brilliantly observed, captivatingly written, grippingly narrated - a triumph * William Boyd *
A grimly absorbing literary thriller with shades of John le Carre... opens a window onto the murky world of international nuclear policy and espionage amorality * Evening Standard *
Quite simply excellent. If you're looking for something exciting and sinewy to read, this is it. There's no mistaking quality when it appears in book form * John Simpson *
A beautifully considered, subtle exploration of Englishness, of betrayal, of social change and character - elegantly and engagingly wrapped in a classic spy novel * Rory Stewart *
Echoes of Greene, Conrad and Le Carre. Yet these influences have been absorbed as good writers always absorb the influence of their predecessors and go beyond it to make something that is wholly their own...One good test of novel is: does it re-read? Well, I've now read The Sandpit twice, and I'm pretty sure I shall read it again in a few months' time * Scotsman *
Shakespeare sets up the myriad pressures on his protagonist with consummate skill, keeping the reader guessing about the motives of everybody Dyer encounters. There are more than a few hints of Graham Greene and John Le Carre here... In its exploration of how individual actions can have huge and unexpected ramifications, The Sandpit is an enthralling read....the theme of how ordinary individuals negotiate the pressures brought down on them by extraordinary events generates superb drama.' * Literary Review *
Exceptionally well written * Spectator *
Gripping stuff, deftly told. Yet within this nail-biting novel of suspense is another, more contemplative novel... that invites comparison to Graham Greene. Here is a fine writer, spinning suspense with the ease, patience and control of a fly-fisherman * Oldie *

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“A sophisticated summer read”

I have read a book by Nicholas Shakespeare before; and continue to be impressed with his writing. In this suspense thriller, John Dyer is an ex-Phoenix prep school pupil and ex-foreign correspondent journalist. He is... More

Hardback edition
Helpful? Upvote 3

“Literary thriller”

Dyer used to be a journalist in South America, but gave up journalism after spiking what could have been his best ever story on ethical grounds. He has moved to Oxford to send his son to a prep school where the other... More

Hardback edition
Helpful? Upvote 3

“For me a very Good Read”

My thanks to Random House and Netgalley for the copy of this eBook in exchange for a fair and unbiased review.
This is my first Nicholas Shakespeare novel, to date, I have only read his biographies which I have also... More

Hardback edition
Helpful? Upvote 2

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