BOOKLIST – “Pilcher has created an ambitious cast of characters of different ages and from all walks of life, and as their lives intersect and mesh, he tells a beautiful and cohesive story about the human spirit and our capacity for adaptation and growth.” Patty Engelmann
PUBLISHERS WEEKLY – “Pilcher keeps the stage full of light and colour”
It’s Edinburgh in August. A group of people, drawn to the city for the forthcoming Festival, meet for the first time, little knowing that the events of this long hot summer , and the arrival of Angelique Pascal, a talented and beautiful violinist, will throw their lives into turmoil. Angelique Pascal is in Edinburgh to headline at the Festival’s finale and her fiery spirit is already making waves. Tired of being controlled by her overbearing tutor, Albert, Angelique finds herself yearning for a moment’s respite from both the constant touring and the restrictions of her celebrity status. But when events take a sinister turn and Angelique must flee in terror from all that she has known, she finds safety in the most unexpected place. Starburst is the enthralling new novel from the bestselling author of An Ocean Apart. Combining intrigue, passion and suspense, this is storytelling of the highest quality.
The bustling Edinburgh International Festival—an actual annual cultural event in Scotland featuring a plethora of the arts—serves as the dynamic backdrop for this nicely handled ensemble novel from Pilcher (A Risk Worth Taking). The first 100 pages introduce a multitude of lead characters, including renowned violinist Angelique Pascal, smalltown comedienne Rene Brownlow, supposedly reformed criminal Thomas Keene, retired cinematographer Leonard Hartson and others. Each has something another needs — a paying job to offer, a room to let, a shoulder to cry on. As their lives begin to intersect over the course of the three-week festival, betrayal, new love, car chases and attempts at artistic glory ensue.
A Gem of a Book!!!, 10 Sep 2007, Sissel M. Østdahl “smaureen” (Norway)
What a gem of a book! And how sad that it’s probably two years until next time!
Everybody who have seen Robin Pilcher as having not only inherited his mother’s (Rosamunde Pilcher) talent but also her writing style, are in for a BIG surprise with this book. “Starburst” is quite different from the author’s other three novels, and positively so. This book is a genuine Robin Pilcher novel, written in a unique style of his own. The only thing remaining from his mother being the name.
“Starburst” takes place in Edinburgh during the annual international festival. We are following some very different people/destinies during those three weeks in August, first separately and then when they accidentally intertwine.
Robin Pilcher’s knowledge of the various aspects of the festival and the professional secrets behind the many kinds of art being performed, as well as his insight into the human mind, whether it’s world famous violinist Angélique, retired cameraman Leonard, comedienne cum housewife Rene or young car thief T.K. struggling to go straight, is impressive. These people are made so alive they literally walk out of the book.
I’ve got to especially mention “the two roses”, Rene from “‘hartlepool”, Yorkshire and Matti from Lancashire. I’m convinced their show at the “Underbelly” is real, and would somebody please get me a ticket for next year?
“Starburst” is warm, funny and beautifully written. Often I just stopped and repeated sentences, enjoying the masterful use of the English language. Rene’s hilarious remarks in cockney, Angélique’s stilted English with charming bits of French thrown in, Leonard’s polite gentleman English and T.K.s badly twisting of his mother tongue.
The description of the city of Edinburgh during the festival, from classical concerts in famous concert halls to simple street performances, is vivid. I have never been to Edinburgh – until now!
The book is not without drama. It’s not only a colourful tale of partakers and events. Destinies are determined, lives changed forever.
With “Starburst” Robin Pilcher has taken a huge step forward in his authorship. A professional reviewer has written “Why has this guy not started to write earlier?” Agreed. But how glad I am that he finally did!
A book to read and read again!, 30 Aug 2007, Ronelle E. Nicholson (CA)
“After waiting for what seemed like years, I devoured this latest book in one day. I tried to make it last longer, but the characters and the setting called to me like home baked chocolate chip cookies. Mr. Pilcher has improved on perfection and I will find it hard to wait for his next book-but I shall! Ronelle Nicholson”
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“Robin Pilcher is popular novelist Rosamunde Pilcher’s oldest son, and living proof that talent does run in families…..with his Scottish sensibility and captivating wordplay, Pilcher is able to craft a fine and fulfilling novel.” (Booklist)
“If An Ocean Apart is any indication of Robin Pilcher’s works, then it is only a matter of time before the author becomes as well-known as his mother.” (Amazon.co.uk.)
“My family was brought up with the feelgood factor, so that’s what I write about. Real people and believable situations. My characters may be criticized by some as being stereotypical, but quite honestly, I take that as a compliment. One can associate with them.” (Robin Pilcher)