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No Night is Too Long (Penguin audiobooks)

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Tim Cornish thought he'd gotten away with murder. For months after he'd killed his lover off the Alaskan coast, there hadn't been a word about the murder. But then the letters started to arrive, giving intimate details of the murder. It seems that someone knows what Tim has done. From the author of A Dark Adapted Eye. Ruth Rendell writing as Barbara Vine. Tim Cornish thought he'd gotten away with murder. For months after he'd killed his lover off the Alaskan coast, there hadn't been a word about the murder. But then the letters started to arrive, giving intimate details of the murder. It seems that someone knows what Tim has done. From the author of A Dark Adapted Eye. Ruth Rendell writing as Barbara Vine.


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Tim Cornish thought he'd gotten away with murder. For months after he'd killed his lover off the Alaskan coast, there hadn't been a word about the murder. But then the letters started to arrive, giving intimate details of the murder. It seems that someone knows what Tim has done. From the author of A Dark Adapted Eye. Ruth Rendell writing as Barbara Vine. Tim Cornish thought he'd gotten away with murder. For months after he'd killed his lover off the Alaskan coast, there hadn't been a word about the murder. But then the letters started to arrive, giving intimate details of the murder. It seems that someone knows what Tim has done. From the author of A Dark Adapted Eye. Ruth Rendell writing as Barbara Vine.

30 review for No Night is Too Long (Penguin audiobooks)

  1. 4 out of 5

    Gerhard

    One star lopped off automatically for that ending, which belongs in a torrid MM romance rather than in a fairly nuanced psychological thriller about obsessive love and its consequences. Vine plays coquettishly with stereotypes about gay characters in fiction, from their unbridled lust to their latent murderous tendencies, but always remains in control of the material, no matter how melodramatic or purple the prose. Until the last page, of course. And careful as she is in tying up all of the loose One star lopped off automatically for that ending, which belongs in a torrid MM romance rather than in a fairly nuanced psychological thriller about obsessive love and its consequences. Vine plays coquettishly with stereotypes about gay characters in fiction, from their unbridled lust to their latent murderous tendencies, but always remains in control of the material, no matter how melodramatic or purple the prose. Until the last page, of course. And careful as she is in tying up all of the loose ends, there is at least one glaring omission in this carefully constructed house of pink cards.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Eleanor

    I have abandoned this halfway through. I just couldn't get myself to care enough about the characters or what happens to them. I know a lot of people really like Barbara Vine, but after trying a couple of her books, she isn't for me. I have abandoned this halfway through. I just couldn't get myself to care enough about the characters or what happens to them. I know a lot of people really like Barbara Vine, but after trying a couple of her books, she isn't for me.

  3. 4 out of 5

    K.Z. Snow

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. What a horrible, crushing disappointment this book turned out to be! I absolutely HATE the ending. Hate it, hate it, hate it. The conclusion felt like a betrayal and ruined the entire reading experience for me. Actually, the nauseating and wholly unbelievable insta-love that took place earlier on almost did the ruining, but I was willing to give Vine's fertile imagination a chance to redeem itself. Then, shortly before the end, the revelation of the letter-writer's and the murderer's identities What a horrible, crushing disappointment this book turned out to be! I absolutely HATE the ending. Hate it, hate it, hate it. The conclusion felt like a betrayal and ruined the entire reading experience for me. Actually, the nauseating and wholly unbelievable insta-love that took place earlier on almost did the ruining, but I was willing to give Vine's fertile imagination a chance to redeem itself. Then, shortly before the end, the revelation of the letter-writer's and the murderer's identities nearly made me pitch the book across the room. (Both of these characters were minor and virtually irrelevant to the main plot, and they seemed like nothing more than convenient, eleventh-hour scapegoats.) By far the worst blow to my expectations, however, was that conclusion, that formulaic HEA, that sugar cube with a bow on top for the two most deceitful and generally despicable characters in the story. Vine's portrayal of a gay relationship as destructive and a hetero relationship as redemptive -- a cure-all for the poor, confused, hitherto shallow and self-absorbed narrator -- was appalling and reprehensible. I'd expected more from Barbara Vine than this. The quality of her prose is all that kept the novel from a one-star rating.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Margie

    I eventually skipped ahead to confirm my assumption of the major plot twist. The main character was tremendously petulant and self-absorbed, and as it was written in the first person, it was impossible to get out of his whiny head. I stuck with the book longer than I should have, because I respect Rendell/Vine's writing, but found it interminable. I can't recommend it. I almost forgot - one of the minor characters is a professor of geology at UC Berkeley! I eventually skipped ahead to confirm my assumption of the major plot twist. The main character was tremendously petulant and self-absorbed, and as it was written in the first person, it was impossible to get out of his whiny head. I stuck with the book longer than I should have, because I respect Rendell/Vine's writing, but found it interminable. I can't recommend it. I almost forgot - one of the minor characters is a professor of geology at UC Berkeley!

  5. 5 out of 5

    Monica

    Ruth Rendell simply is the best mystery writer alive. Her books tend more toward psychological studies than toward suspense, with subtle, devious clues throughout. Even the best sleuth will ask themselves, "How did I miss that?" And, she's an outstanding writer. Every now and then I say to myself, "I've earned another Ruth Rendell." Not just for mystery lovers. Ruth Rendell simply is the best mystery writer alive. Her books tend more toward psychological studies than toward suspense, with subtle, devious clues throughout. Even the best sleuth will ask themselves, "How did I miss that?" And, she's an outstanding writer. Every now and then I say to myself, "I've earned another Ruth Rendell." Not just for mystery lovers.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Bruce

    I've read about two dozen books by Rendell/Vine and this is my favorite. Can't recommend it enough for a thoroughly engrossing and satisfying read. I've read about two dozen books by Rendell/Vine and this is my favorite. Can't recommend it enough for a thoroughly engrossing and satisfying read.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Martha

    aka Ruth Rendell. Writes the best psychological mysteries in my opinion

  8. 4 out of 5

    Don Bradshaw

    I picked up this story after a friend raved about it. Tim was a mess as far as obsessive relationships went. Ivo had his own insecurities to worry about but Tim just completely flipped him around. The ending was awful as many reviewers have stated. I did enjoy the psychological twists and turns but I'm not sure about jumping into another of Ms. Vine's books. I picked up this story after a friend raved about it. Tim was a mess as far as obsessive relationships went. Ivo had his own insecurities to worry about but Tim just completely flipped him around. The ending was awful as many reviewers have stated. I did enjoy the psychological twists and turns but I'm not sure about jumping into another of Ms. Vine's books.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Em Chainey (Bookowski)

    First I need to say that I watched the movie (didn't read the book). With Lee Williams and Marc Warren, it was well acting movie. The scenes were so natural and impressive. It is a good movie, intriguing. About the story: OMG! What have you done Tim? You ruined your life. ATTENTION PLEASE, THERE COMES SPOILERS, TOO MUCH INDEED!!!! Tim is a bisexual very handsome young man. In college, he has lots of girlfriends. One day he sees a lecturer, paleonthologist, Ivo Steadman (gay man). They just look a First I need to say that I watched the movie (didn't read the book). With Lee Williams and Marc Warren, it was well acting movie. The scenes were so natural and impressive. It is a good movie, intriguing. About the story: OMG! What have you done Tim? You ruined your life. ATTENTION PLEASE, THERE COMES SPOILERS, TOO MUCH INDEED!!!! Tim is a bisexual very handsome young man. In college, he has lots of girlfriends. One day he sees a lecturer, paleonthologist, Ivo Steadman (gay man). They just look at each other and there is the attraction. Tim sees him everywhere, one day he decides to meet him. They start a passionate relationship. When Ivo needs to go for a ship cruise about his work, he takes Tim with him to Alaska. In the days which Ivo is on ship and Tim is waiting for him alone and bored in the hotel, he sees an attractive woman (she is married, but unhappy because of her husband's cheatings). He decides to have a little fun. But with everyday spending time with her, he fell in love with Isabel Winwood. When Ivo comes they get in the ship and he doesn't let him to touch him. Ivo is upset and when Tim explains the situation he becomes very angry. When they stopped a little island, they argue and Tim mistakenly hit Ivo, he hit his head to a big rock and there he is with blood and stood still. Tim finds a way to let people think that Ivo is seasick. But he left him there... Then he remembers he left the address card of Isabel in Ivo's jacket. He goes to Vancouver. He searches for Isabel but he finds an drug addict man called Thierry. They spend some time together. Tim comes back to England, his hometown, one year pasts with everyday hallucinations. And one day comes Ivo. When he explains that Isabel is her sister and she was there because Ivo wanted her to look after Tim, Tim is shocked. And of course, he talked before Isabel about they're cheating him as: "You knew what I felt for him!" Ivo forgives Tim and when he wanted to go (Tim asked for staying in his home) to the hotel, Tim gives his coat to Ivo (secretly put all the money he saved for he took from him when thinking he is dead) because it is raining like cats and dogs. When Ivo walks down the road to hotel and looks back to Tim's house, he got killed by Thierry with a knife. And there he is.. Innocent and with passionately love, Ivo Steadman is dead. And there is Tim with all the guilt he feel, he ruined his life... I loved the movie. Think I'd loved the book. So here my 4 STARS! :))

  10. 4 out of 5

    Bianca

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. No Night is Too Long reads like a darker, more sinister and explicit version of Evelyn Waugh’s Brideshead Revisited, and that is one of the many reasons I found myself so enamored by this novel. It’s not a perfect read, though it’s definitely close, and that’s much more than I initially expected. This book’s appearance and summary felt dated and underwhelming, but everything about Barbara Vine’s story is the exact opposite. Tim, the main character, is unlikeable; he’s cruel and unfaithful, but h No Night is Too Long reads like a darker, more sinister and explicit version of Evelyn Waugh’s Brideshead Revisited, and that is one of the many reasons I found myself so enamored by this novel. It’s not a perfect read, though it’s definitely close, and that’s much more than I initially expected. This book’s appearance and summary felt dated and underwhelming, but everything about Barbara Vine’s story is the exact opposite. Tim, the main character, is unlikeable; he’s cruel and unfaithful, but he receives his comeuppance for all his deceit, and he suffers tremendously. Not until the very end of the novel did I find the ability to forgive him, though my dislike for Isabel, his mistress, never faded. Regardless of the history that led to the affair, she was still able to recognize the weight of her deception, and I did not feel sorry for her throughout the course of the novel. Not once. She’s a superficial character with superficial dilemmas while Tim often deceived others based on a psychological narcissism that is recognized and repeatedly discussed in his narrations. Meanwhile, Ivo, who was viewed in Tim’s eyes as the villain, quickly became my favorite character, and he’s certainly the victim in more ways than one. Yes, Tim suffers, but he is never outwardly punished by those he hurt, and I feel Ivo is the one who endured the most pain. The two people Ivo loved the most consciously betrayed him, and his fate left me heartbroken. Just like Brideshead Revisited, the ending is less than stellar. It’s not a conclusion I wanted or hoped for, but the only difference is that while I find Brideshead Revisited to possess a realistic, beautifully tragic finish, No Night is Too Long seems to meet an unconvincing demise. Still, Vine’s novel is gripping and poised, and I do see myself rereading it in the future. I only wished it ended on a different note.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Alex Ankarr

    Loved it. Bitter and sexy and ominous, with a bleak passionate chiaroscuro atmosphere, and an extremely flawed, troubled narrator. Just how I like it.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Rodolfo

    I, like many before me, first heard of the haunting Barbara Vine (aka Ruth Rendell) novel No Night is Too Long via the BBC adaptation. The plot twist at the end of the film indeed takes it to a whole new level, as does the references (and musical quotes) to Strauss's opera Der Rosenkavalier. But I had no idea of the mind-blowing impression the book would have on me! Isn't it great when we find these beautiful and intricate meanings in what we expected to be the most mundane of paperbacks? Read the I, like many before me, first heard of the haunting Barbara Vine (aka Ruth Rendell) novel No Night is Too Long via the BBC adaptation. The plot twist at the end of the film indeed takes it to a whole new level, as does the references (and musical quotes) to Strauss's opera Der Rosenkavalier. But I had no idea of the mind-blowing impression the book would have on me! Isn't it great when we find these beautiful and intricate meanings in what we expected to be the most mundane of paperbacks? Read the rest of my review here: (full of spoilers!) Sex and Fiction in "No Night is Too Long"

  13. 4 out of 5

    Evridiki Amanatidou

    having read it four times, I find it one of her most compelling, a dive into the depths of the human mind and soul.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Lady Delacour

    You never know where you are going to go when you start listening to a Barbara Vine - Ruth Rendell story. She will certainly surprise you. Started listening not knowing anything about this story. Oh! My! Oh! My! Oh! My! Narrators did a nice job. Not Clean. Adult and Foul Language.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Kim

    I'll admit, I saw the movie version before I read the book, so I knew how it would end, but I still loved the book. The ending (that I won't reveal) annoyed me, but I'm still giving it five stars because the story was interesting and the relationship between Tim and Ivo was crazy. I kept going from liking Ivo to hating Tim and vice versa. Other readers have criticized this book for making Tim fall in love with a woman and subsequently reject his gay relationship with Ivo. While I feel Tim and Is I'll admit, I saw the movie version before I read the book, so I knew how it would end, but I still loved the book. The ending (that I won't reveal) annoyed me, but I'm still giving it five stars because the story was interesting and the relationship between Tim and Ivo was crazy. I kept going from liking Ivo to hating Tim and vice versa. Other readers have criticized this book for making Tim fall in love with a woman and subsequently reject his gay relationship with Ivo. While I feel Tim and Isabel's relationship was one of the weaker parts of the book, I didn't have an issue with it in terms of heterosexuality winning out over homosexuality. I just thought Tim made a decision in his personal life that he felt best suited him. He's an adult and entitled to do that. The book was so much better than the movie because it really got into the heads of Tim and Ivo in a way that the movie really couldn't. The main characters in the movie were also terribly miscast, but the film is still worth a look if you read the book already and liked it, or if you're considering reading the book.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Marlene

    This book is a bit different with twists and turns. Sort of like a soap opera. But it was written in first person. Mainly by the main character, Tim Cornish. He is writing his story; telling his own story. Consequently, some paragraphs are in the past, some are in the present, and some are in the present talking about the past. Most of Tim's story about himself is very introspective. Because of that, it dragged on and on, in my opinion. I almost stopped reading the book several times. The last t This book is a bit different with twists and turns. Sort of like a soap opera. But it was written in first person. Mainly by the main character, Tim Cornish. He is writing his story; telling his own story. Consequently, some paragraphs are in the past, some are in the present, and some are in the present talking about the past. Most of Tim's story about himself is very introspective. Because of that, it dragged on and on, in my opinion. I almost stopped reading the book several times. The last two chapters were also first person but different characters. Susan's chapter was pretty much a letter she was writing repeating most of the stuff the reader already knew. The last chapter, James, was Tim's lawyer sort of explaining everything that had happened. The only reason it got a 2 from me was because I hit a couple of spots that were interesting and moved along a bit faster than most of the book.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Kathy

    As she so often does, Barbara Vine tells the story of a murder from the point of view of the murderer, in this case beginning with his student days in London. Tim becomes infatuated with Ivo, who strings him along for awhile before beginning an intimate relationship. It's obvious that both are extremely self-centered men with very little in common. This becomes especially apparent when Tim accompanies Ivo on one of his yearly nature cruises in Alaska, where he shares his passion for the geology As she so often does, Barbara Vine tells the story of a murder from the point of view of the murderer, in this case beginning with his student days in London. Tim becomes infatuated with Ivo, who strings him along for awhile before beginning an intimate relationship. It's obvious that both are extremely self-centered men with very little in common. This becomes especially apparent when Tim accompanies Ivo on one of his yearly nature cruises in Alaska, where he shares his passion for the geology of the area with the passengers. Tim could care less--all that science bores him--so he's happy to have some time alone. Then he meets Isabel, and everything changes . . . and leads to murder. The surprise ending is less than believable, but fitting.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Sally

    Really good. Not read Barbara vine for a while. Missed this one.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Thorne Moore

    I took time to get into this one, then reached a critical point where I had to finish it, even if I read through to dawn. Allowing that I disliked all the characters, apart from Isabel, I found them all intricately and convincingly drawn. The book is a study of character and the absorbing, harrowing nature of love and hate, desire, obsession and hopelessness. Which meant that I found the ending rather limp – a resolution that belonged to a different kind of book altogether. It’s not a murder mys I took time to get into this one, then reached a critical point where I had to finish it, even if I read through to dawn. Allowing that I disliked all the characters, apart from Isabel, I found them all intricately and convincingly drawn. The book is a study of character and the absorbing, harrowing nature of love and hate, desire, obsession and hopelessness. Which meant that I found the ending rather limp – a resolution that belonged to a different kind of book altogether. It’s not a murder mystery, far too long-winded for that, so it shouldn’t have had a murder mystery conclusion.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Karen McMullin

    The discovery of a Barbara Vine novel that I haven't read is BIG NEWS in my world! Found this one at a book sale, and it's my favourite yet (big words, considering the number of amazing works from Vine) As per other books by this author, there's an ongoing element of menace and foreboding that drives you to find out the answer. Who did what, and to whom? You know it's coming. Set between the UK and various remote islands, it was the perfect summer read. The discovery of a Barbara Vine novel that I haven't read is BIG NEWS in my world! Found this one at a book sale, and it's my favourite yet (big words, considering the number of amazing works from Vine) As per other books by this author, there's an ongoing element of menace and foreboding that drives you to find out the answer. Who did what, and to whom? You know it's coming. Set between the UK and various remote islands, it was the perfect summer read.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Ysabel

    I first read this book after watching the BBC film adaption of it. It's a nice story of love and friendship and the human psyche. Although many people have read it, I like to think of this book as a little treasure only I have found. I really miss the characters when I finish it. I must admit I did prefer the ending of the film to the book, though ;) I first read this book after watching the BBC film adaption of it. It's a nice story of love and friendship and the human psyche. Although many people have read it, I like to think of this book as a little treasure only I have found. I really miss the characters when I finish it. I must admit I did prefer the ending of the film to the book, though ;)

  22. 4 out of 5

    _inbetween_

    My gateway to Rendell, whom I had avoided before then (thinking the was boring). I hadn't even seen the movie, and in hindsight her take on m/m might be slightly problematic, but I was hooked on her Vines from this novel on. *add long old review that -i- hope -i- had actually written and not just dreamed* My gateway to Rendell, whom I had avoided before then (thinking the was boring). I hadn't even seen the movie, and in hindsight her take on m/m might be slightly problematic, but I was hooked on her Vines from this novel on. *add long old review that -i- hope -i- had actually written and not just dreamed*

  23. 4 out of 5

    Marie

    Vintage Barbara Vine! I was gripped from page One by the haunting atmosphere of this story of an abusive relationship. There are several unexpected twists to the mystery - the best thing is not to read the blurb to start with, which I think spoils the mystery a bit. The story is great and the writing is beautiful, making this novel one of Barbara Vine's best. Highly recommended! Vintage Barbara Vine! I was gripped from page One by the haunting atmosphere of this story of an abusive relationship. There are several unexpected twists to the mystery - the best thing is not to read the blurb to start with, which I think spoils the mystery a bit. The story is great and the writing is beautiful, making this novel one of Barbara Vine's best. Highly recommended!

  24. 5 out of 5

    Margaret

    Unfortunately, I guessed the central twist only a few pages in. Since I didn't like any of the characters (often a problem for me with Vine/Rendell), having figured out the essence of the plot pretty much ruined the rest of the book for me. Unfortunately, I guessed the central twist only a few pages in. Since I didn't like any of the characters (often a problem for me with Vine/Rendell), having figured out the essence of the plot pretty much ruined the rest of the book for me.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Paul

    A tremendous achievement of characterization, plotting, and psychological suspense. An utterly stunning novel that I'm sure Patricia Highsmith and Graham Greene are reading and rereading wherever they are. A tremendous achievement of characterization, plotting, and psychological suspense. An utterly stunning novel that I'm sure Patricia Highsmith and Graham Greene are reading and rereading wherever they are.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Dawn

    Very slow getting into for me, then roller coaster ride to the end! Never thought of reading this author, but I'd like to read some more of her books. I totally did not see what was coming as the story went along. Nice change of pace for me Very slow getting into for me, then roller coaster ride to the end! Never thought of reading this author, but I'd like to read some more of her books. I totally did not see what was coming as the story went along. Nice change of pace for me

  27. 4 out of 5

    J'Anne Jackman

    Haunting and disturbing. I will always remember Iao.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Jessica

    A bit drawn out, but then most of the Vine novels are. The setting and scenario are arresting.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Ann

    very haunting! love Rendell writing as Vine.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Harry Tomos

    read and re read, both readings left me different, thats quite some book

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