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Reviewed by Vincent Dublado for Readers' Favorite
Lord Byron's Ring by James Pumpelly is a haunting story of love, loss, and power. Through an omniscient narrator, we get to know of Sara Burden’s blissful marriage to Jack, who has always regarded himself lucky in all respects. His admirable work ethic has yielded him millions in oil and gas; he is blessed with a good-looking and ambitious son, Drew; his wife, a Byron devotee, is the living likeness of an ivory girl carved by a Greek sculptor. But the world of this idyllic family is tested upon their encounter with Frank Caulder, a cunning businessman who is untrue to everything, even to his own first name. Caulder is intent on acquiring Jack’s company, and his motive is more than avarice and worse than the vilest greed. But when Caulder is found lifeless at the bottom of Jack’s mud pit, Drew is pushed to uncover motives of greed and revenge.
It has been a while since a suspense novel has shaken me, and Lord Byron’s Ring will probably give you the same effect. James Pumpelly’s narrative is profound and poetic, and it seeps through your veins. It knocks you off your feet through its deep-seated exploration of consciousness. The story manages to detail the Burdens’ struggle from different vantages, from the omniscient narrator to the self-aware thoughts of the characters. It is uncanny how Pumpelly constructed a suspenseful tale that effectively pits spirituality against decline. He has stirringly written the idea of how mysterious ways help good to triumph over evil, but this can sometimes be painful when sacrifices have to be made. This work is astounding in all respects, and it deserves to be read.