×

Uh-oh, it looks like your Internet Explorer is out of date.

For a better shopping experience, please upgrade now.

Almost a Crime
     

Almost a Crime

3.6 9
by Penny Vincenzi
 

See All Formats & Editions

In Almost a Crime, Vincenzi exposes the cracks in a British power marriage.
Tom and Octavia Fleming glitter among the chattering classes of London in the late 1990's. Tom, a brilliant political strategist, and Octavia, an equally talented charity consultant, appear to have it all—good looks, money, success, and three pretty children—everything but

Overview

In Almost a Crime, Vincenzi exposes the cracks in a British power marriage.
Tom and Octavia Fleming glitter among the chattering classes of London in the late 1990's. Tom, a brilliant political strategist, and Octavia, an equally talented charity consultant, appear to have it all—good looks, money, success, and three pretty children—everything but precious time together. When Octavia realizes that Tom is having an affair, she plots her revenge against her husband. But nothing prepares Octavia for the identity of Tom's mistress, and her misdemeanors hardly compare to the revenge enacted by the other woman after Tom calls it off. Described by Dominick Dunne as a writer "with verve and heart, immersing the reader in a world of engrossing and unforgettable glamour and passion," and praised by Barbara Taylor Bradford as "marvelously engrossing," Penny Vincenzi has been captivating European and American audiences ever since the publication of her Spoils of Time trilogy. Packed with twists and trysts, Almost a Crime continues the tradition of the thrilling Vincenzi bestseller.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Vincenzi's latest saga (after Into Temptation) exposes the cracks in a British "power marriage" and charts the frightening evolution of a spurned woman's love into a dangerous obsession. In late 1990s London, Tom and Octavia Fleming glitter among the chattering classes. Tom, a brilliant political consultant, and Octavia, an equally talented charity consultant, appear to have it all three pretty children, money, success, health and good looks everything but precious time together. When Octavia realizes that Tom is having an affair, she turns for support to her best friend, Louise Cheltenham, a former top model now married with children, and embarks on professional and sexual revenge against her husband. But her initial hurt is magnified tenfold when she learns the identity of Tom's mistress, and her misdemeanors hardly compare to the revenge plan of Tom's very troubled lover once he ends his affair. This deft, swift contemporary epic will have hooked readers exclaiming, "Good grief!" (Nov.) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Library Journal
Fans of Vincenzi's (Into Temptation) expecting the beginnings of another thrilling family saga will be disappointed. This book takes place in 1990s London (before Princess Di's death) and bares the lives of power couple Octavia and Tom Fleming, both rich, hard-working, and boring. Vincenzi makes Octavia rather whiny, immature, and unlikable, and she never fleshes out Tom's character any more than to establish that he's handsome, smart, and has a chip on his shoulder about attending public school. As for the secondary characters, there is not one that really stands out. Octavia's best friend is the stereotypical "other woman" full of jealousy. There is a creepy relationship between Octavia and her father that borders on incest. And in more than 600 pages, the plot just plods along. Unless readers crave an inside peak into the inner workings of a rich, tiresome English family, they should read one of Vincenzi's other excellent novels instead. Marianne Fitzgerald, Severna Park High Sch., MD Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
A London charity czarina and her fabulous lobbyist husband run aground over the shallows of marital infidelity in this latest from British novelist Vincenzi (No Angel, 2003, etc.). Octavia Fleming is the kind of fashionable, well-connected working mother who manages both to enrich her power marriage with social contacts and to return home intact to tuck in her school-age twins and her baby. "Combine and Rule" is how the glossies treat the Flemings' marriage, although Octavia finds her professional integrity in danger of compromise when public-affairs consultant Tom Fleming suggests she throw her sensitive charity know-how into helping a developer construct a community center. Meanwhile, Octavia's businessman father, Felix Miller, detests Tom for taking his only daughter away from him (her mother died in childbirth), but tosses the son-in-law business from time to time; aging Felix has a longtime society live-in girlfriend, Marianne, who has to shuffle two teenaged daughters, Romilly and Zo‰, as well as appease her temperamental lover. There is a cast of thousands in this busy, tedious novel, and once Octavia finds evidence of Tom's affair, she reveals as much to her father. Plus, she has to deal with the news that the mother of her best friend from college, Louise, is sick with cancer, while Tom seems to be pounding away at easing a proposed merger of charming player Nico Cadogan's financial group. Even politicians make a timely cameo here, in the form of Gabriel Bingham, a Labour leader who is also extremely attracted to the bereft Octavia. Yet Octavia simply can't resist loving her sexy husband. As for the prospect of being a stay-at-home mom: It would have left the restless, questing,ambitious Octavia "bored, depressed, and therefore, and inevitably, a bad mother."Vincenzi's fatally bloated novel nods to the sweet daddy-daughter partnership, and neatly compartmentalizes the guilt working women feel for leaving their children at home with nannies.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781585678525
Publisher:
The Overlook Press
Publication date:
11/16/2006
Pages:
672
Product dimensions:
6.20(w) x 9.20(h) x 1.60(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

Meet the Author

Penny Vincenzi, before becoming a novelist, worked at such magazines as Vogue, Tatler, and Cosmopolitan. She is the author of The Dilemma, Almost a Crime, No Angel, Something Dangerous, Into Temptation, Sheer Abandon, An Absolute Scandal, An Outrageous Affair, Windfall, and Forbidden Places, all available from Overlook.

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Post to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews

Almost a Crime 3.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 9 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
not my favorite of hers, but a still entertaining read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
I read this book on vacation and really looked forward to another great story. But, I was disappointed. I thought that the plot was quite transparent and that the characters lacked depth. I also found the ending unrewarding. To have the conflict with Felix resolved this way was just not up to snuff. I enjoyed the Lytton Saga so much that this was a real let down.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This has to be one of the WORST books I have ever read. Not one sympathetic character (and there are a lot of them) in the bunch. Poorly written and repetitious, its length could have been cut by half. Please, do not be swayed by the other 'rave' reviews. You would be better off reading the New York City telephone directory for entertainment.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I was excited to see that Vincenzi had written another book. I particularly liked her previous books. Although I would recommend this book, I found it difficult to read at times because of all the typos. There were words left out or printed twice in a row on a regular basis. Names were misspelled, so sometimes it was hard to figure out who she was talking about. It appears that the book was not really edited before publishing. I thought it was a good story so I hope they edit the book before they publish it in paperback. It's way too distracting to read as it is.
harstan More than 1 year ago
Everyone envies the ¿power marriage¿ between charity lawyer Octavia and public relations specialist Tom Fleming except for her father Felix Miller who detests his son-in-law though he loves his three grandchildren, the twins and the infant Minty. A widower, Felix has a girl friend, but his life is his daughter.-------------- Octavia¿s best friend Louise Trelawny informs her that her beloved mother Anna is dying from cancer. Her spouse Sandy and their young child Dickon are worried about Louise who is very upset. Octavia is upset too as Anna is like a mother to her.---------------- Octavia finds a lacy hanky that does not belong to her and becomes suspicious. She checks up on Tom, who is on a business trip and learns he is staying at a hotel with his ¿wife¿. She informs him she wants a divorce. He meekly agrees as his life professionally collapses too. Tom knows he loves his wife and screwed up, but he doesn¿t know what to do as Felix is coming for him and Octavia has apparently found someone else. He hides the worst of his indiscretion from her (who he did it with) because the consequences of his actions would make the betrayal hurt her so much more-------------------------------- Though the tale takes a bit to get started as Penny Vincenzi introduces her ensemble cast, readers will enjoy this complex contemporary (the above only follows one subplot of several) )with strong characterizations. Fans will believe in the relationships that form or break up as these move the multifaceted story line forward. With a cast of many, all containing differing personalities, Ms. Vincenzi provides a deep modern day English relationships drama that is totally enthralling.-------------------- Harriet Klausner