I picked up The Care of Time because I had read a strong piece by Eric Ambler in an anthology edited by Alan Furst called The Book of Spies The Care of Time, however, isn t strong It s slapdash with a lot of undeveloped characters and motivations careening into one another The prose is professional and crisp, but it s full of cliches The settings from Bucks County, Pa., through Milan, Italy, into Austria are underexploited Much of the plot is presented in the form of e The Warning Message Arrived On Monday, The Bomb Itself On Wednesday It Became A Very Busy Week Ambler s late in the day thriller pitches an American ghostwriter into regime change and middle east intrigue through the rather novel device of a simple television interview Of course, the interview is heavily rigged as it is conducted deep within an Austrian mine shaft, which an Arab prince proposes to turn into a nuclear shelter The latter part of the book consists of the Pri Later Ambler, picked up at a book sale just to see what it was like Didn t expect much, and wasn t disappointed His protagonist is still a little clueless, but in this case winds up acting a bit too clever I liked the old protagonists better This book also suffers from the literate dialogue disease Real people don t talk like this Plus, there s too much talk and not enough action Robert Halliday is an ordinary writer for hire till one day he gets a letter telling him that a bomb will arrive by next post The bomb is to serve as a credential, and Halliday s correspondent closes by saying that he looks forward to working with him Not long after, Halliday s agent calls to let him know that he has a plum offer from an Italian publisher that wants him to collaborate on a book What s the subject They didn t say Who s he to collaborate with They didn t say Like the bomb i Robert Halliday is an ordinary writer for hire till one day he gets a letter telling him that a bomb will arrive by next post The bomb is to serve as a credential, and Halliday s correspondent closes by saying that he looks forward to working with him Not long after, Halliday s agent calls to let him know that he has a plum offer from an Italian publisher that wants him to collaborate on a book What s the subject They didn t say Who s he to collaborate with They didn t say Like the bomb in the mail, it leaves him with lots of questions and no one wants to give an honest answer.One of theintricate Ambler novels of the seven I ve read so far, The Care of Time can be a little bewildering, as the story involves a false pretext, complex character background, and an elaborate ruse to accomplish the ultimate aim of the devious emir who serves as the story THE CARE OF TIME 1981 Eric AmblerThis was Ambler s last novel published before he passed away It followed his usual plot device of an unsuspecting individual in this case, Robert Halliday, a ghost writer getting embroiled in a plot that turns out to be deeper than he thought He was offered 50,000 to ghost write a recently discovered text on the principles of terrorism written by a historical figure The money looks good, and his publisher seems behind it too Then he discovers t THE CARE OF TIME 1981 Eric AmblerThis was Ambler s last novel published before he passed away It followed his usual plot device of an unsuspecting individual in this case, Robert Halliday, a ghost writer getting embroiled in a plot that turns out to be deeper than he thought He was offered 50,000 to ghost write a recently discovered text on the principles of terrorism written by a historical figure The money looks good, and his publisher seems behind it too Then he discovers that the whole project is backed by The thing I learned from reading this book is that although Eric Ambler s early novels are entertaining and paved the way for people like Len Deighton, his later work, this being an example, is tired and doesn t stand up in such company The Care of Time is sort of all right, but has long passages in which nothing much happens, a chief protagonist you don t really care about, and plot holes big enough to drive a bus through It is almost true that once I put it down I could not pick it up again, The thing I learned from reading this book is that although Eric Ambler s early novels are entertaining and paved the way for people like Len Deighton, his later work, this being an example, is tired and doesn t stand up in such company The Care of Time is sort What I find remarkable about Eric Ambler s writing is his ability to fuse the intrigue of a thriller with the conviction of a political manifesto In his final spy novel, The Care of Time, originally published in 1981, he does so, however, with mixed results Editor Bob Halliday s new contract begins with a bang when he receives a bomb threat followed by an actual, albeit already defused, bomb from Karliss Zander, a known terrorist middleman seeking Halliday s assistance With this bluff of viol What I find rema Actually, I didn t read very far into this book The nearly exclusive use of dialogue, boring dialogue at that, became annoying enough that I finally decided to give it up and move on to another book I read The Mask of Demetrios originally The Coffin of Demetrios about a year ago, and loved, loved it Written in 1939, it relates to events dating from the early 1920s Greco Turkish War and the horrible events in Smyrna now Izmir through the narrator s protagonist s present time of 1938, Actually, I didn t read very far into this book The nearly exclusive use of dialogue, boring dialogue at that, became annoying enough that I finally decided to give it up and move on to another book I read The Mask of Demetrios originally The Coffin of Demetrios about a year ago, and loved, loved it Written in 1939, it relates to events dating from the early 1920s Greco Turkish War and the horrible events in Smyrna now Izmir through the narrator s protagonist s present time of 1938, taking place in Tur ambler wrote thrillers for nearly five decades, and in doing so transformed the genre completely his early thrillers were written in the backdrop of world war 2, while this one his last at tail end of the cold war his mastery of geopolitics is very sound, as always the beauty of the book is how much he accomplishes merely through clever dialogue and intricate plotting he doesn t need explosions, cool gadgets or contrived action to keep the book interesting robert halliday, a profess