John Turner, a young man with a chequered past, has been told he has just one year to live. He decides to use his time in search of three very different men he met briefly during the war: an snobbish British pilot, a young corporal accused of murder, and a black G.I. accused of attempted rape. Along the way, Turner learns about forgiveness, tolerance and second chances, and overcomes his fear of death.
Not only a brilliantly fluent storyteller but also an ironic commentator on the world scene
Shute was a brilliant storyteller and a terrific example for any writer
As a novelist, Nevil Shute goes from strength to strength, experimenting, drawing out life as he sees it, and setting it before us in ordered pattern...The Chequer Board is a notable novel
Blessed with an unaffected poplar touch, Shute has come close to the sentiment of his readers not only through a very genuine quality of sympathy but also through a singular ease and liveliness of topical invention...he is a storyteller of an uncommonly veracious stamp, whose performance is more remarkable that his quiet and refreshing modest airs might suggest
A happy knack endows this story with a character who is slightly greater than life-size. It proves once again how the ordinary, the average, the season-ticket holder sitting next to you, can still, in the hands of an expert, furnish the very stuff of literature