By Lisa Mulholland
“Three friends, united by nature, divided by nurture”
As soon as I read the first page of this book that is released tomorrow; I knew I that I would love this tale and that it would be one of those ‘unputdownable’ novels. From the outset it is clear that this fictitious story that’s based on real life events has an underlying moral message.
When it opened with the nature and nurture debate on the first page, I was hooked.
We start with three men born 3 seconds apart in the same hospital. And we follow the twists and turns of their lives with their very different fates and fortunes guiding the way. And then we are transported by Sheldons’ words, back into the 1700s. His vivid descriptions bring to life the smells of the workhouse, the visuals of the muddy, dreary banks of London and the motivations and dreams of each of the main characters Hugo, Archibald and Mayer.
It is a compelling tale that has underlying messages about the class system of the this country, while it allows us to rethink some of our own beliefs that we may have had instilled in us from a young age. It bravely challenges us to challenge our own beliefs when we see how three men are divided and connected at the same time.
I couldn’t help but draw parallels with the issues raised in the story and the issues we are faced with today in Tory Britain. 300 years on from the time period of when this story is set, we are still faced with similar issues, such as attitudes towards migrants, poverty and education.
It’s quite a revelation despite being a politics graduate, to learn historical facts about the origins of money, debt and economics. I have learned so much that I had not expected to learn and I have actually now been inspired to research more into British history, and the origins of class and will probably be blogging about these subjects in the near future, thanks to Sheldon.
For those readers that might not normally be interested in these subjects, I would say that this story stands alone as an interesting, engaging and thought provoking story for anyone!
Even those not usually interested in politics or economics. And that is because this writer weaves facts in with a story that is captivating: we desperately need to know what happens to these characters who are motivated by very different things; money, power and love.
I thoroughly enjoyed it and like any good book I feel a little piece of this will stay with me forever.
My message to any potential reader would be to read this book and just enjoy the tale it tells. If you feel inspired as I do to reflect on the wider issues it addresses or if you find that Rolling Stones song reference (I challenge you to find it) then that is an added bonus!
The book goes on sale tomorrow: