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Terrence Rafferty[Boyd's] a novelist of a kind that's fairly unfamiliar in this country, less rare in Britain: a debonair, versatile, casually philosophical literary entertainer—clever and thoughtful, but not so dauntingly brilliant that you suspect him of being, as Jeeves would say, "fundamentally unsound." Ordinary Thunderstorms is, like all his books, ambitious in an offhand, almost insolent manner, bringing home once again Boyd's favorite ideas about identity and the tribulations of the beleaguered self while also smuggling in a good deal of information about pharmacology, the Thames, homelessness in modern London, the formation of clouds, the internal politics of Blackwater-like private security companies and the peculiar charm of cult religions…He's all over the map, as his hero is, but the novel somehow manages to establish its own, unmistakable identity. And no matter how digressive Boyd sometimes seems to be, you can't accuse him of being evasive or of being untrue to himself. It's just that he's a writer with a lot of selves to be true to.
—The New York Times