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The Thousand Faces of Night by Jack Higgins
== About the author ==
Jack Higgins is a pseudonym of Harry Patterson who has also written under the names of Martin Fallon, James Graham, Hugh Marlowe and his own name.
His most famous novel is most likely ' The Eagle Has Landed' and the Sean Dillon series of books.
== Plot ==
We meet Hugh Marlow, a tough young man, as he is being released from prison after serving a 5 year sentence.
He fought during the Korean War, but then when he came back home, he got caught up on the wrong side of the law. He was arrested while working as a getaway driver on a job to steal £20000.
Now, he is the only one who knows where the money is and he will do anything and fight anyone who comes in his way . . .
== My thoughts ==
This was unabridged and read by Michael Page. He has a very clear voice, but I didn't really like his voice and the way he voiced Marlow, the main character. He gave him a gruff voice which didn't seem to match the fact he is supposed to be 30 years old. It is 4 hours and 48 mins in length.
This is one of Higgins earlier novels. It is very short and I'd say it was set in the early 1960's as there is the mention of the Korean War + they use shillings as currency.
The author seems to have a fascination with churches. The main character, Marlow visits one in this novel and I've noticed that churches appear in a lot of his other novels also.
The main character Marlow, is similar to many of the other anti-hero's that appear in Higgin's latter novels. He is a criminal, but he has his own set of moral codes that he follows. He is basically a decent man underneath the hard exterior.
The story starts off with him trying to retrieve the £20000, but he ends up helping out some people he meets along his journey.
It reminded me a bit of one of those Western movies when the hero walks into a village and helps out the villagers by defending them against the bandits.
He ends up helping a young lady called Maria and her father who own a small trucking business which usually involves them trucking fruit and veg to the local town. They are being bullied by O Connor, who doesn't like competitors.
I found the story boring for the most part. The characters seemed a bit too melodramatic and the dialogs they came out with seemed run of the mill.
The villains didn't seem all that dangerous compared to ones in other novels.
A lot of this is due to the fact that we don't really get to know any of the characters in the book, apart from Marlow, even though this is written in the third person. The other characters seemed one dimensional two me.
I noticed the author manages to overuse the word 'terrible'. For example he may say 'his smile was terrible' or 'he groaned terribly'. It got annoying after a bit.
== Price and availability ==
This is available from Amazon for £27.40 with free delivery. I would say it would be better to borrow this from your local library if possible.
== Summary and recommendation ==
I give this one star. This is one of Higgin's earlier works and you can tell this from the story. I couldn't get into it. You'd be better off reading one of Higgin's latter novels like A Prayer for the Dying instead.