If this book had not so many glowing reviews such as quote – “Without question John Banville is one of the great living masters of English Prose” – unquote… I would have stopped reading it at page 61.
But, I ploughed on. The main character is Oliver, a rather introverted chap – forever self-analysing. He was/is an artist, not particularly likeable, and has a penchant for petty theft and cheating on his wife. The plot and the characters are generally uninspiring, but the prose is indeed wonderful, and that alone keeps one on the journey.