I fondly remember when Ben Elton published his first novel Stark in 1989. It was a ripper. Since then, I have read a few of his novels but none came near that first big hit. So, I was interested to have a go at his historical fiction novel Two Brothers. Initially, I thought it was over simplistic stuff, but perhaps that was because I was coming off the very obscure Keri Hulme book.
The novel is set in two time zones. The brothers birth starting in 1920 progressing through to the war year and a post war Britain where we follow the progress of one of the brothers. Early in the novel you can see a twist coming and it looks pretty clumsy. But persevere, the twists keep coming until we get the answers to bring a conclusion.
I found it a bit of a page turner and was keen to know the fate of the main characters. Some of the dialogue seemed a bit overblown – respectable Germans swearing in the 1930’s and an immigrant from the West Indies saying Dat etc a bit too often. But if you like a good yarn, here’s one for you.