Thursday, April 10, 2014



I had this desire to see the world. I couldn't see any of it, but I saw it in my imagination, and that's why I always read books, and I could go to Mars or Middle Earth or the Hyborian age.
-George R. R. Martin


by Harlan Coben


Eighteen years after her fiance dumped her, a New York City police detective runs into him again online, with results that make her head spin and leave several people dead.

Given a one-year subscription to, Kat Donovan browses languidly through the photos of eligible men looking for love until she sees the face of Jeff Raynes. Although she’s not exactly carrying a torch for her ex, she can’t resist dropping him a line. His reactions are puzzling. First he doesn’t seem to remember her, then he greets her with warm affection, then he says they’d better not continue to be in touch. Jeff’s not the only one acting oddly. Brandon Phelps, a college student from Connecticut, comes all the way to New York to ask for Kat’s help in finding his missing mother, Dana. Even though he’s asked for Kat by name—how does he even know her name?—it’s obvious that he’s hiding something from the detective whose help he begs. And there’s more. When Kat goes to visit Monte Leburne, the dying contract killer who was convicted years ago of shooting her father, another NYPD detective, and the prison nurse puts Leburne into twilight sedation, he denies killing Henry Donovan. No matter where she turns, Kat can’t figure out what’s going on or whom she can trust. Jeff, who’s vanished once more? The unreliable Brandon Phelps? Her partner, Charles "Chaz" Faircloth, who’s convinced he’s God’s gift to Kat? Her father’s ex-partner, Capt. Thomas Stagger, who’s clearly not telling everything he knows about Donovan’s death? Her judo instructor, Aqua, a schizophrenic, homeless sometime transvestite? Her defensive mother, Hazel, who seems determined to protect Donovan’s reputation? Her own cherished memories of her father?

The setup is irresistible, the twists generously piled on and the climax suitably pulse-pounding, even though best-selling Coben (Six Years, 2013, etc.) is hard-pressed to tie all those complications together or produce a payoff that rises to their deliciously suspenseful levels.

Pub Date: March 18th, 2014
ISBN: 978-0-525-953-49-4
Page count: 400pp
Publisher: Dutton
Review Posted Online: March 5th, 2014
Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15th, 2014


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