Excerpt from A Traitor To Memory by Elizabeth George, plus links to reviews, author biography & more

Summary |  Excerpt |  Reviews |  Readalikes |  Genres & Themes |  Author Bio

A Traitor To Memory

by Elizabeth George

A Traitor To Memory by Elizabeth George
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

  • First Published:
    Jun 2001, 736 pages
    Paperback:
    Aug 2002, 1024 pages

  • Rate this book


Buy This Book

About this Book

Print Excerpt


He looked down at the dog, who'd taken the opportunity of this respite from their walk to deposit herself at the base of the liquidambar, where she now lay curled, with the apparent and martyred determination to sleep in the rain. How reasonable was it, Ted wondered, to suppose he could coax P.B. into a fast trot that would take them out of the immediate area before Eugenie reached the edge of the car park? Not very. So he would offer Eugenie the pretence that he and the dog had just arrived.

He squared his shoulders and gave a tug on the lead. But as he was doing so, he saw that Eugenie wasn't heading his way at all. Instead, she was walking in the opposite direction, where a path between buildings offered pedestrians access to Market Place. Where the blazes was she going?

Ted hastened after her, at a brisk pace that P.B. didn't much care for but couldn't avoid without serious risk of strangulation. Eugenie was a dark figure ahead of them, her black raincoat, black boots, and black umbrella making her an unsuitable ambler on a rainy night.

She turned right into Market Place, and Ted wondered for the second time where she was going. Shops were closed at this hour, and it wasn't in Eugenie's character to frequent pubs alone.

Ted endured a moment of agony while P.B. relieved herself next to the kerb. The dog's capacious bladder was legend, and Ted was certain that, in the lengthy wait for P.B. to empty a pool of steaming urine onto the pavement, he'd lose Eugenie to Market Place Mews or Market Lane when she crossed halfway down the street. But after a quick glance right and left, she continued on her way, towards the river. Passing by Duke Street, she crossed into Hart Street, at which point Ted began thinking that she was merely taking a circuitous route home, despite the weather. But then she veered to the doors of St. Mary the Virgin, whose handsome crenellated tower was part of the river vista for which Henley was famous.

Eugenie hadn't come to admire that vista, however, for she swiftly ducked inside the church.

"Damn," Ted muttered. What to do now? He could hardly follow her into the church, canine in tow. And hanging about outside in the rain wasn't an appealing idea. And while he could tie the dog to a lamppost and join her at her prayers -- if praying was what she was doing in there -- he couldn't exactly maintain the pretence of a chance encounter inside St. Mary the Virgin after nine in the evening, when there was no service going on. And even if there had been a service, Eugenie knew he wasn't a churchgoer. So what the hell else could he do now except turn tail for home like a lovesick idiot? And all the time seeing seeing still seeing that moment in the car park when she touched him again, again that touch...

Ted shook his head vigorously. He couldn't go on like this. He had to know the worst. He had to know tonight.

To the left of the church, the graveyard made a rough triangle of sodden vegetation bisected by a path that led to a row of old brick almshouses whose windows winked brightly against the darkness. Ted led P.B. in this direction, taking the time that Eugenie was inside the church to marshal his opening statement to her.

Look at this dog, fat as a sow, he would say. We're on a new campaign to slim her down. Vet says she can't go on like this without her heart giving out, so here we are and here we'll be nightly from now on, making a circumvention of the town. May we toddle along with you, Eugenie? Heading home, are you? Ready to talk, are you? Can we make this the soon you spoke to me about? Because I don't know how much longer I can hold on, wondering what it is that you want me to know.

The problem was that he'd decided upon her, and he'd reached the decision without knowing if she'd reached it as well. In the last five years since Connie's death, he'd never had to pursue a woman, since women had done the pursuing of him. And even if that had demonstrated for him how little he liked to be pursued -- damnation itself, when had women become so flaming aggressive? he wondered -- and even if what evolved from those pursuits tended to be a pressure to perform under which he had consistently wilted, yet there had been an intense gratification in knowing that the old boy still had It and It was highly in demand.

Excerpted from A Traitor to Memory by Elizabeth George Copyright 2001 by Elizabeth George. Excerpted by permission of Bantam, a division of Random House, Inc. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Support BookBrowse

Become a Member and discover books that entertain, engage & enlighten!

Join Today!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: Wonderful Feels Like This
    Wonderful Feels Like This
    by Sara Lovestam
    High school is hard; or perhaps, more accurately, growing up and finding oneself is hard. This is ...
  • Book Jacket: Blue Light Yokohama
    Blue Light Yokohama
    by Nicolas Obregon
    Blue Light Yokohama, Nicolás Obregón's crime fiction debut, takes place in an exotic ...
  • Book Jacket: Inferno
    Inferno
    by Steven Hatch
    The word "Ebola" sets off an almost visceral reaction in many of us; we think about the men, women ...

Book Discussion
Book Jacket
The One-in-a-Million Boy by Monica Wood

A richly layered novel of hearts broken seemingly beyond repair and then bound by a stunning act of human devotion.

About the book
Join the discussion!

First Impressions

  • Book Jacket

    The Book of Summer
    by Michelle Gable

    The bestselling author of The Paris Apartment, Michelle Gable now transports readers to Nantucket.
    Reader Reviews

  • Book Jacket

    The Scribe of Siena
    by Melodie Winawer

    Equal parts transporting love story, meticulously researched historical fiction, and compelling time-travel narrative.
    Reader Reviews

Win this book!
Win The Chalk Pit

The Chalk Pit:
A Ruth Galloway Mystery

A string of murders takes Ruth underground in the newest book in the series.

Enter

Word Play

Solve this clue:

T W Don't M A R

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.

 
Modal popup -