Too Long in the Business

Written by Tim Topps
Review by Rachel Malone

Have you ever stopped to think how many people a door-to-door insurance salesman met? Or who?

Now imagine an insurance broker, who travels amongst the elite universities, selling policies to the ex-National Service boys. Imagine the secrets he could find out, what governments would want to know and just how easy it is for him to find out. Now imagine it is the sixties and the Cold War has very definitely begun.

Too Long in the Business is a rare little gem. The characters are fabulous and the writing is nothing short of marvellous. There is one big issue that makes it an extremely annoying book to read: the author meanders. He admits it as much in the story, our hero has trains of thought that wander and he is happy to take the reader along on those tangents. Don’t get me wrong, this fills in so many blanks and gives clues to the story further in; but with addendums at the back of the book and with so many notes it is difficult to keep up, you find yourself turning backwards and forwards, and it is very easy to lose sight of the actual plot.

Other than that, a damned good read that has some laugh-out-loud moments. I would like to see a good technical re-edit to put more structure to the meandering bits – because this would then be a brilliant book.