Payback Time by Geraint Anderson

paybackPayback Time by Geraint Anderson is a compelling thriller from the bestselling author of Cityboy. He was born in Nottinghill, London, England to a Labour politician, Donald Anderson, Baron Anderson of Swansea, Wales and his missionary wife, Dorothy. He then undertook a degree in history at Queen’s College, University of Cambridge and he followed this with an MA in Revolutions at Sussex University. Anderson later went to the Goa, India where he planned a trading lifestyle selling trinkets. However, his older brother, Hugh, who worked as fund manager with ABN Ambro, a Dutch investment bank, arranged an interview in 1996 and Geraint Anderson was subsequently employed as a utilities analyst, composing models of publicly listed companies.

It was in 2006 that Anderson started writing his City Boy column for thelondonpaper and this became a popular piece with some readers of the newly launched free newspaper. but he was not revealed as the City Boy columnist until 18 June 2008. The following week he published his first book: Cityboy: Beer And Loathing In The Square Mile.

Payback Time was  published in 2012. It tells the story of city high-flyer Bridget who, after she was recently fired from her bank, is found dead outside her high rise apartment. Her colleagues assume that she committed suicide. Cityboy Steve Jones is outraged. So, he and five city workmates who all knew Bridget, and each other, since university, decide to take revenge.  They decide to hatch a plan which will involve bringing the very bank she worked for to its knees.

I was looking forward to this book as I really enjoy crime novels and am interested in the world of finance. However, I quickly tired of the constant drug taking, drinking and general attitude of ‘we have loadsa money’ from various characters.

At the early stage of the story,when Bridget’s body is discovered, the reader meets the five friends in the group.  They geraintconsist of Fergus (Bridget’s boyfriend), John, Rachel,Colum and Cityboy, Steve. The characters make the story interesting and the reader is constantly guessing as to who is the rat amongst them. Initially, it seems that their plan worked but there is somebody within the group that has their own plan. This involves taking down not only Gedlust Bank but their friends.

As the plot is largely based around the bank where Steve works, for some readers, there may be too much financial detail in the plot itself. Having said that, it is explained pretty well so everybody should be able to follow the plot. Payback Time was a good enough read, however, if I am being honest I expected a lot more. I enjoyed this book well enough but I doubt that I would seek out more novels by Geraint Anderson.

Valerie Penny



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