Five Roundabouts to Heaven

Five Roundabouts to Heaven

by John Bingham

FROM THE INTRODUCTION BY JOHN LE CARRÉ "This novel comprises some of the best work of an extremely gifted and perhaps under-regarded British crime novelist....What gave John Bingham (1908-1988) his magic was something we look for in every writer, too often in vain: an absolute command of the internal landscape of his characters, acutely observed by a humane but wonderfully corrosive eye." Peter Harding and Philip Bartels share a friendship that goes back to childhood.

Now trapped in a disenchanted marriage with his wife, Beatrice, Philip meets and falls in love with the graceful, charming Lorna Dickson.

But when he invites his best friend, Peter, to meet his mistress he sets off a shocking chain of events that will forever change the lives of everyone involved.

  • Language: English
  • Category: Thriller
  • Rating: 3.51
  • Pages: 224
  • Publish Date: July 17th 2007 by Simon Schuster
  • Isbn10: 141654044X
  • Isbn13: 9781416540441

Read the Book "Five Roundabouts to Heaven" Online

Mistresses are generally young and attractive, and there is that universal desire to want to show them off, not to everyone, but to someone. One of his oldest friends, Philip Bartels, is telling him that he has decided that his relationship with his wife Beatrice, a school chum of both men, has never been quite right. She loves him well enough now, but Barty lays awake at night feeling like he missed something marrying a woman who didnt love him. I may have left the bar/restaurant feeling like I needed a shower, not a cold one, a cleansing one, but Harding leaves his first meeting with Lorna Dickson definitely in need of a cold shower. I had trouble ascertaining if his attraction to her was one of those cosmic things with balloons falling from the ceiling and fireworks going off behind his eyes, or if it was really more about the fact that she was with Philip Bartels. Wouldnt he be doing the right thing by taking her away from Bartels and saving a marriage in the process? The wife, knowing nothing, is behaving like a natural person does: sometimes pleasant and amusing, sometimes dull, critical, or irritable. As an added twist, but not THE twist, Bartels decides that he cant just leave Beatrice. Yeah, sure Bartels, how could she ever get over losing a loser like you? Now dont forget Peter Harding is floating around out there, the fly in the ointment, the irritation that Barty doesnt even know he is supposed to be scratching yet. Despite their difficulties with one another Le Carre has acknowledged the great influence Bingham had on him as a person and as a novelist.

Sure, says author Bingham, a remarkable writer, time may soothe wounds, but many of us are exacerbated by the imagination...dogs don't suffer like that. Author Bingham knows too much about the dark night of the soul. Yes, Bingham says through the orphaned Bartels who craved love throughout his life, "Moses was an old fraud who claimed divine inspiration for some laws he thought up in his goatskin tent." You won't find this kind of writing in Ross Macdonald or Highsmith. Now, who does Peter murder -- or do I mean Bartels ?

Theres no reason why I should not be a director one day. With men who are likely to succeed, you can afford to discuss the probabilities and chances; you cant do that with failures. For the murderer, it is the last and most extreme resort, in a rising crescendo of desperate behavior. John Bingham's "Five Roundabouts To Heaven" lingers in the painstaking setup and the slow, careful exposition. With the slow motion start, all that and a vicious little balancing act reminiscent of Strangers On A Train give Bingham's second novel an almost giddy pace (once we're on the rails).

The murderer is painted as somewhat sympathetic by the narrator who claims all of the villainy for himself (in an unreliable way) but the events are told in as matter of fact way as possible, shorn of hyperbole and melodrama.

The narrator claims the most noble motivations for everyone except himself, and says that this is a tale of good people committing crimes - again excluding himself - which is what makes it interesting, but I wonder.

Que diferença fazem alguns anos a mais ou a menos, se considerarmos a infinidade sem limites do tempo?" Este é o argumento utilizado (demasiadas vezes) pelo assassino principal do livro "Casamentos e Infidelidades" de John Bingham. E digo principal porque esta história não tem apenas um, mais dois assassinos, se é que lhes podemos chamar assim. Deixem-me que vos diga que nenhum dos assassinos de John Bingham possui uma destas características. Peter Harding conta-nos a história do seu melhor amigo Philip Bartels, na qual ele também representa um papel, ainda que pequeno.O enredo não podia ser mais trivial: Philip é casado com Beatrice, mas apaixona-se por Lorna e pretende lutar pela sua felicidade ao lado dela. Contudo, este homem excessivamente carente, ingenuamente pensa que a sua mulher não consegue viver sem ele. Afinal de contas, um casamento apenas pode ser a base de uma história rica em tramas e conflitos. Por outro lado, confronta o leitor com o tema do matrimónio, infidelidade, amizade e, ainda que de uma forma mais superficial, a família, num enredo que só pode ser comparado a um cavalete com uma tela em branco. Sinceramente não me recordo do desfecho, mas garanto-vos que apesar de ser mais um filme comum, sem nada que o torne especial, proporciona mais entretenimento que o livro em que foi baseado.

(Lots of books had one title in the UK, another one in the US.) The kicker is that the author, John Bingham, apparently was a real-life spy and one of the models for John LeCarre's Smiley. The guy also has a friend, the narrator, who has fallen in love with the mistress and is determined to steal her. Bingham wrote a lot of books; I'll be reading more of them.

John Michael Ward Bingham - who became the seventh Lord Clanmorris - was born in Haywards Heath on 3 November 1908. These included 'My Name is Michael Sibley', his first novel published in 1952, 'A Fragment of Fear', and 'I Love, I Kill'.