Book Review - Nameless Night by G. M. Ford
I was sent an advance readers copy of the novel Nameless Night by G. M. Ford. This was my first exposure to Ford, so I wasn't predisposed to like or dislike his work based on prior novels. And since this was billed as a "stand-alone" novel not based on any of his prior characters, I wasn't being dipped into the middle of a story-line I was unprepared for. Overall, Nameless Night was an entertaining read, with plenty of suspense and mystery as the main character searched for his true identity.
Paul Hardy had been living in an assisted-living facility for seven years. He was found near death back then, and he had no recollection or identification as to who he was or where he came from. It didn't help that he had facial injuries that distorted any true image of who he might have been. While out walking with one of his friends at the care center, he's hit by a car and again is near death. The driver, a software tycoon, pays for extensive reconstructive surgery on Paul's face, which also involves correcting some of the skull damage from the original accident. This surgery alters Paul's brain, restoring many of his mental faculties, but still doesn't answer the main question... who was Paul prior to the accident seven years ago? All he knows is that Paul Hardy isn't his real name, he has vague images of a past life in Florida, and all of a sudden federal agents are *very* interested in finding him. He's just as interested in avoiding them until he can get some answers, as being detained as a threat to "national security" means you many never surface again.
Overall, Nameless Night was a page turner. I enjoyed the premise of someone with no identity becoming whoever he wanted to be, since there was no past he had to conform to. I did think the reason behind his initial accident and the subsequent government efforts to find him was a bit strained. While anything is possible in a conspiracy novel, I just didn't get the feeling that this particular event would have led to the level of effort to eliminate Hardy and all the related individuals. Still, that didn't detract from the general urgency in the plot-line to figure out who he was and why someone considered him better off dead.
Nameless Night was a good escape from reality, and was worth the time spent reading it. Based on his work here, I'm likely to go back and check out some of Ford's earlier works.