Friday 3 February 2017

Corpus by Rory Clements

Published by Zaffre on January 26, 2017

I loved the sound of historical spy thriller Corpus and really couldn’t wait to start my copy once it arrived. I have read other books from Rory Clements in his John Shakespeare series which I have really enjoyed. His books are definitely out of my typical reading comfort zone as they are not in a genre I read too much of but I have liked every book I have read from the author so I was looking forward to starting Corpus which is book one in a new series.

There’s definitely a different feel to Corpus but this was no bad thing. The first couple of chapters were really intriguing and I was drawn into the story straight away. One thing I loved about Corpus was that the level of intrigue never died down. I was always fascinated by what had happened and what was to come next. There were several characters and strands to the story but each one had me gripped and I was constantly eager to discover where any betrayals and twists and turns would lay.

Somehow, despite the book having historical themes, they also felt quite relevant to current times too and this also made reading Corpus a thoroughly more engaging experience for me. I have to say that, even though I enjoy reading historical novels, sometimes I find them a bit overwhelming and difficult to get into. This wasn’t the case at all with Corpus. Rory Clements’ writing style is very accessible. The story is rich in detail which strongly builds up the time and place and whilst the storytelling is reliant on an understanding of the timeframe the book is set in, it was still an “easy” read in that I never wanted to put it down.

Corpus is a highly entertaining novel packed with exhilarating action thrown at us in a delightfully breakneck speed. The author capably included so many themes within the story whilst developing them with skill and not leaving any part lacking in excitement or anticipation. From exploring the Nazis to the civil war in Spain to the abdication of the King and every little thing in between, there is plenty of action in Corpus which I couldn’t get enough of. At the beginning of the book I found there was a lot to keep up with and it takes a bit of time, but by the end I could have kept reading this book for another few hundred pages had they been there.

The standout part of this book, for me, was the character of Thomas Wilde. I loved Tom’s character. His background as a history professor at Cambridge was an interesting one and I liked the attitude towards political viewpoints that he encouraged from his students. He’s a very resolute character with morals and determination. There is so much potential in Tom’s character that I hope to, and cannot wait to, read more from him in future. Corpus is just the beginning, albeit it a very solid, exciting beginning, and there should be so much more to come from Thomas Wilde in later novels. All I can say is that for me, any future books in this new series will be absolute must-reads.

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