Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
The Philanthropist's Danse Paperback – June 15, 2012
|New from||Used from|
The Amazon Book Review
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
Frequently bought together
About the Author
Paul was born in England and raised in the picturesque city of Bath. He lived and worked across the South of England and in London. He moved to Canada in 1996 and lives in Ontario with his wife Lesley. The Philanthropist’s Danse is Paul’s first novel.
If you buy a new print edition of this book (or purchased one in the past), you can buy the Kindle Edition for FREE. Print edition purchase must be sold by Amazon. Learn more.
For thousands of qualifying books, your past, present, and future print-edition purchases now lets you buy the Kindle edition for $2.99 or less. (Textbooks available for $9.99 or less.)
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
This book has all the right ingredients to create the book of a dreams: a cast of random characters, each with a secret, an intense setting, and a mystery.
I found myself reading because I just had to know what the big reveal would be. Something had to be happening at the end of the book that would blow my mind and make me think about the book days later, right?
WRONG. It felt like I invested a lot of my time to read the book and was left with an empty, almost nonchalant feeling at the end. I didn't care about the conclusion because it didn't live up to the rest of the book. It was like, umm...ok. That's it?!
It seems like I spent more time conjuring what I thought would be the final twist in the end than the author did.
The Philanthropist's Danse delivers smart, psychological drama of the type I haven't seen in quite some time.
Take "12 Angry Men", the psychological gymnastics of "The Game", add a little sexual innuendo, and tie it all together with 12 personalities that clash incessantly. Then, let an impartial lawyer lay out and enforce the ground rules with the assistance of a highly skilled majordomo.
With that, the Danse is off to a smashing start, full of arguments, tantrums, and a fair bit of grousing about who "deserves" the money. The question is a legitimate one, as many in the room don't even know why Mr. Thurwell summoned them posthumously.
Johnston Thurwell continues to assert his control through carefully planned contingencies that give us some insight as to why he was so wealthy to begin with. All of his commands are executed with swift and exact justice. His wishes are honored exactly.
People may dismiss this scenario as far-fetched. They would be wrong. One of the things I find engaging about this book is its realistic portrayal of the ultra wealthy.
Individuals who possess a great deal of money, respect, and power attempt to keep that once they are dead. The Pharoahs did it? Why should this aspiration be beneath your common, modern-day billionaire?
The author gives us ample detail as to Thurwell's motivations and machinations. Every twist is worth the wait.
The crew assembled in the mansion is textured and diverse, with a spattering of family, business associates, servants, and those of indefinite categorization.
Familiar jealousies and tenuous alliances form quickly, as money forges and breaks the most fragile of bonds. Fraternal rivalries soon surface, along with marital quibbles and relationship issues.
This turmoil, along with the pressures of time keep the situation quite fluid. Just when you think you have the motives and arc of a character nailed, a deft twist comes along to destroy your theory entirely.
These people all have secrets. Some are sinister, others are pleasant. It will be your pleasure to uncover most of them.
William Bird is Thurwell's handsomely paid lawyer with an equitable disposition. The fascinating bit is that he's in the dark as to what is taking place. Some of his instructions are activated quickly, other scenarios make you wonder "What if?".
He's part referee and part player, except he has no stake in the game.
Jeremy, the majordomo is well used throughout. He displays noble character, and the utmost in humility and kindness. He restores balance and order in the middle of raging, emotional tempests.
A Perfect Blend
I personally haven't read a better book in this genre. It's an atypical "whodunnit" containing characters with realistic flaws and virtues. All are adequately exposed for scrutiny.
Page-turner is a cliche I happily give to this particular novel, although "button-masher" may soon take its place.
The language in this novel is realistic, and one particularly hot-tempered misogynist in the bunch uses the full vocabulary of profanity when proffering his opinions. It fits the character, and the situation.
My only complaint with regard to this novel is that Mr. Wornham didn't have second novel that I could purchase. Hopefully, he will remedy that situation quickly.
The Philanthropist's Danse is a brilliant mystery, chock full of smart dialogue and plot twists that will keep you intrigued until the last page.
Because of this, I happily award "The Philanthropist's Danse" five stars. Buy it or borrow it(if you are a Prime Member). If you can't afford that, email me, and I'll happily use the single lend Amazon has given me so I can loan it to you. First come, first served.
The Philosopher's Danse had the exact opposite effect on me!
It's 1 am as I write this. I tried to sleep tonight, but my mind kept coming back to the characters in this story. I wanted to know how the story would be resolved. I wanted to know if the people involved would be treated the way I thought they should be. I also wanted to know if someone was going to die! So I stayed up to finish the book.
I'm not going to spoil anything for you. One of the hooks of this book is not knowing what is going to happen next. But I will tell you that Paul Wornham has earned a spot on my list of favorite authors. I eagerly await his next book and hope that he is able to sign with a major publisher that can get the word out for him.
In the meantime, get this book!