When someone mentions the City of Cambridge you probably think of an iconic building, its four corners stretching out of the once medieval mud and into the arms of everlasting heaven, its white limestone yearning into eternity… and without even knowing exactly what ephemeral joys or permanent wonders the vision brings to mind, it’s a safe bet that the one thought which does not occur to you is that the Chapel might not be there by Christmas.
Theo (Theophilus Ambrose Fitzwilliam Wedderburn to his friends) is a Junior Research Fellow in Number Theory. Prompted by a supervisee to demonstrate how to trace the provenance of bitcoins, Theo happens across a shocking revelation, with embarrassing ramifications for the whole University. Meanwhile he is being stalked unseen by someone from his childhood. To his annoyance, Theo falls for a cheap con… and discovers a horror set not only to rock the very seat of power itself but to change the face of Cambridge and its beautifully iconic image forever.
You just have to look at the beautiful and atmospheric cover of An Elegant Solution to be drawn to Anne Atkins splendid book.
Set in Cambridge a place I have often been, although not too recently, this book brought it back to life, I felt I was there. I was sauntering along with Theo, Charlotte and the rest. Once again I was seeing this beautiful place they live and work in, breathing in the history, the atmosphere and, of course, enjoying a nice cup of tea.
Theo is the main character a junior research fellow he is looking into bitcoins. I hope readers will enjoy this charming, selfless and loveable character as much as I did. You will find him, as he tells us, somewhere on the Autism spectrum. It is obvious that Anne Atkins has first hand experience and knowledge of this condition as she brings it so lovingly and clearly to the reader through Theo. Charlotte is another character I particularly liked. The scenes which contained both her and Theo I very much enjoyed.
There are, of course, a number of characters in the book some to love and some to loathe. Anne Atkins takes these characters and gives us their stories. I was immersed, drawn deeper into the storyline and as these stories are weaving away a thread appears which simply and ingeniously pulls them all together.
At the heart of this story is a diabolical plan which falls into Theo’s hands. In order to get the authorities to believe him and take action he needs someone who will listen to him. Someone who will accept his reasoning and see what he sees. Someone with the right connections. Even when this happens he’s not altogether sure things are quite right. And so Theo has to unearth from his fragile mind past experiences he has long buried. He is then presented with another situation Clare urgently needs to see him and off he goes not knowing what danger he may be in.
I spent most of this book reading it with a smile on my face. Sometimes a little confused – bitcoins, that’s all I’m going to say! Then there are those heart wrenching moments when sadness envelops you.
These are mere snippets of An Elegant Solution which don’t cover anywhere near all that takes place. Nor should it, if it did you may not read it and then you would miss out on a wonderful story. This enthralling, enigmatic mystery deserves to be read by a wide audience. It is a charming, at times challenging, book. A story I would like to read more of. One I thoroughly enjoyed and would certainly recommend.
Many thanks to #LoveBooksTours for the invitation to join this charming Blog Tour. Thanks, Kelly. Why not take a delighyful journey through the rest of the An Elegant Solution Blog tour…
I would also like to send my heartfelt thanks to Malcolm Down Publishing for a copy of this gorgeous book…
Publishers: Malcolm Down Publishers @malcolmdown
Anne Atkins is a well-known English broadcaster and journalist, and regular contributor to BBC Radio 4’s Thought for the Day. She took an involuntary, and long, break from writing fiction when her son was diagnosed with Asperger Syndrome, their daughter repeatedly hospitalized with a severe illness, and finally the family was made homeless.. Thankfully those dark days are now behind her and she and her husband Shaun along with some of her children now live happily in Bedford, England.
Anne Atkins has also written
Lost Child; On Our Own; A Fine and Private Place;
Split Image; Child Rearing for Fun; Agony Atkins.
You can follow Anne online: @anne_atkins