The Man Whose Dreams Came True is a novel published by Julian Symons in 1968, and although it is a Forgotten Book, it should not be. I borrowed a copy from the local library not long after it came out, having recently discovered Symons,and I thought it was terrific. I still do. Symons' cynical wit is much in evidence, and the plot is wonderfully twisty and ironic. As with its immediate predecessor, The Man Who Killed Himself, Symons was working very much in the tradition of Anthony Berkeley/Francis Iles, while producing a novel that was distinctive and thoroughly entertaining.
Tony Jones is a good-looking but feckless young man who has plenty of ambitions, but neither the money nor the character - it seems - to realise them. When we are introduced to him, he is working for a crusty old general as his secretary, and indulging in a variety of petty fiddles as well as an affair with a local girl who is - like several characters in the book - not all that she seems.
Things don't work out for Tony in this job, and he soon drifts into an affair with an older woman, before a new job, working for the wealthy husband of a sexy woman, seems to offer him that long-awaited chance to make his dreams come true. There are numerous excellent plot complications, and plenty of surprises before Tony finds his destiny.
This is a very readable story, which stands up well nearly fifty years after it was written. Yes, the price of a flight to Venezuela has changed, and so have some of the other specifics in the storyline, but Symons describes human folly with cool insight as well as humour. Returning to this book so long after I first read it, I definitely was not disappointed, and if you track it down, I don't think you will be, either.