A love affair is flourishing between Ivor Tesham and Hebe Furnal. What excitement Hebe lacks at home is compensated for by the well-bred and attractive Tesham. On the eve of her twenty-eighth birthday, Tesham decides to give Hebe a present to remember: something far more memorable than the costly string of pearls he's already lavished upon her.
Mention his name and most people will say, 'Who?' while the rest think for a bit and ask if he wasn't the one who got involved in all that sleaze back whenever it was ...? It's late spring of 1990 and a love affair is flourishing: between Ivor Tesham, a thirty-three year old rising star of Margaret Thatcher's Conservative government, and Hebe Furnal, a stunning North London housewife stuck in a dull marriage. What excitement Hebe lacks at home, however, is amply compensated for by the well-bred and intensely attractive Tesham - an ardent womanizer and ambitious politican. On the eve of her twenty-eighth birthday, Tesham decides to give Hebe a present to remember: something far more memorable than, say, the costly string of pearls he's already lavished upon her. Involving a fashionable new practice known as 'adventure sex', a man arranges for his unsuspecting but otherwise willing girlfriend to be snatched from the street, bound and gagged, and delivered to him at a mutually agreed venue...Set amidst an age of IRA bombings, the first Gulf War, and sleazy politics, "The Birthday Present" is the gripping story of a fall from grace, and of a man who carries within him all the hypocrisy, greed and self-obsession of a troubled era.
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'The Rendell/Vine partnership has for years been producing consistently better work than most Booker winners put together' Ian Rankin 'Barbara Vine is Ruth Rendell letting rip' Daily Telegraph 'A superb and original writer' Amanda Craig, Express
About Barbara Vine
Barbara Vine is the pen-name of Ruth Rendell. Viking have published her twelve previous novels, including A Dark Adapted Eye, which won the Crime Writers Association Gold Dagger Award, and more recently Grasshopper, The Blood Doctor and The Minotaur. Barbara Vine is widely regarded as the pre-eminent crime novelist of her generation. Ruth Rendell sits in the House of Lords as a Labour peer. She lives in Maida Vale, London.
The Birthday Present by Barbara Vine
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