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Six Years | [Harlan Coben]

Six Years

Six years have passed since Jake Fisher watched Natalie, the love of his life, marry another man. Six years of hiding a broken heart by throwing himself into his career as a college professor. Six years of keeping his promise to leave Natalie alone, and six years of tortured dreams of her life with her new husband, Todd. But six years haven’t come close to extinguishing his feelings, and when Jake comes across Todd’s obituary, he can’t keep himself away from the funeral. There he gets the glimpse of Todd’s wife he’s hoping for...but she is not Natalie....
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Publisher's Summary

Six years have passed since Jake Fisher watched Natalie, the love of his life, marry another man. Six years of hiding a broken heart by throwing himself into his career as a college professor. Six years of keeping his promise to leave Natalie alone, and six years of tortured dreams of her life with her new husband, Todd.

But six years haven’t come close to extinguishing his feelings, and when Jake comes across Todd’s obituary, he can’t keep himself away from the funeral. There he gets the glimpse of Todd’s wife he’s hoping for...but she is not Natalie. Whoever the mourning widow is, she’s been married to Todd for almost two decades, and with that fact, everything Jake thought he knew about the best time of his life - a time he has never gotten over - is turned completely inside out.

As Jake searches for the truth, his picture-perfect memories of Natalie begin to unravel. Mutual friends of the couple either can’t be found or don’t remember Jake. No one has seen Natalie in years. Jake’s search for the woman who broke his heart, who lied to him, soon puts his very life at risk as it dawns on him that the man he has become may be based on a carefully constructed fiction.

Harlan Coben once again delivers a shocking novel that deftly explores the power of past love and the secrets and lies that such love can hide.

©2013 Harlan Coben (P)2013 Brilliance Audio, Inc.

What Members Say

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  •  
    John C. South Dakota 03-24-13
    John C. South Dakota 03-24-13 Member Since 2003

    Born with earbuds.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    269
    ratings
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    Story
    "Gone Girl Sans Sociopaths"
    What did you love best about Six Years?

    The book has some overarching themes (gray versus black & white, keeping promises, fresh starts) and explores these very well--sometimes at the expense of the immediate story.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Six Years?

    The book really takes off early on when the main character realizes that the husband of the woman he loves has died and he can't wait to get in touch with her again.


    What does Scott Brick bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Scott brings the main character's love-sick puppy qualities to the surface. This is good for some, and annoying for others. Overall, I think it is the way Coben intended the character to be so don't blame Scott.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Coben books always have solid pacing and interesting starting premises so the book was easy to keep listening to. However, at some point, it became a little tedious waiting and waiting for the payoff. The author could have added some side-plots to the story or developed the relatively flat characters further to prevent some readers getting bored. The single plot line also put too much pressure on the ending to live up to expectations. In fairness, Coben has guts to still write one-off novels rather than always writing series books.


    Any additional comments?

    The book is definitely worth reading, and is entertaining despite its flaws. If you have read all Coben's books, you will find this one a bit below par. The negatives are a main character that's only moderately likable and whose actions are only moderately plausible. Most of the main characters best traits seem borrowed from Myron Bolitar such as sarcastic self-talk.

    6 of 8 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Malia Nash Hawaii 03-22-13
    Malia Nash Hawaii 03-22-13 Member Since 2010

    Malia Nash

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "His worst yet"
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    Drop the soapy love obsession. It got old after the first few times; I found myself saying, all right already. And I really wished the guy would quit getting beat up. I wanted someone I could cheer on; instead I found myself joining the other characters who told Jake, DROP IT ALREADY!!


    What do you think your next listen will be?

    Oh I'll pick another Colben book since the last 3 was outstanding. This was really, really bad and I'm glad it wasn't the first I had read from Colben or I would never have bought another.


    What didn’t you like about Scott Brick’s performance?

    He made Jake sound stupid as well as love sick.


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Six Years?

    the second and third attack. Come on the guy is supposed to be big as well as a professor and he can't keep from being attacked???


    27 of 38 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ed Saint Augustine, FL, United States 09-03-13
    Ed Saint Augustine, FL, United States 09-03-13 Member Since 2006

    Retired former magazine editor who is working harder than ever as Mr. Dad to his 11-year-old daughter.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Stretches credulity but enjoyable nonetheless"

    I like the way Coben injects a sprinkling of romance into his mystery/thriller novels and this one definitely fits the mold. I had difficulty unraveling the mystery until Coben revealed what was happening. Some of the reason for this was because he wove a complicated tale, but most of it was because the tale was pretty unbelievable. But there are many examples of well-written fiction that strain credulity and I have no problem suspending my belief threshold if the story holds my interest. And this story certainly held my attention. I didn't want to shut my iPod off. There were also some marksmanship issues near the conclusion of the book that put some serious strain on the aforementioned credulity, but to reveal what they were might spoil some of the fun. Coben fans will like this book.

    8 of 11 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Think about this IL, United States 04-23-14
    Think about this IL, United States 04-23-14 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Where's Natalie?!!!!"

    That's the question that plagues Jake Fisher. When Jake is dumped 6 years earlier, after falling in love with Natalie, he was willing to bow out. Now, it appears she's missing and some very bad people want to know where she is. Everyone in this story has a secret and not telling it, which is driving Jake mad, but the worst of it all, is that Natalie is missing and he doesn't know if she's safe or not. The whole book is a huge dangerous puzzle that doesn't get solved til the end, but keeps you guessing as the clues mount up.
    The kind of book that I wanted to go to the end and read it, just to get rid of the anxiety, but I didn't so I thoroughly enjoyed it, as everything unfolded.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dubi New York, NY, United States 03-11-14
    Dubi New York, NY, United States 03-11-14 Member Since 2011

    People say I resemble my dog (and vice-versa). He can hear sounds I can't hear, but I'm the one who listens to audiobooks.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    115
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    83
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    "Good Expectations"
    What did you like best about Six Years? What did you like least?

    This is the crux of the matter -- what would one like best, what would one like least? Given the decidedly mixed reviews, extreme at both ends, any one person's take will depend on what they like best or least in a book that is part mystery, part double chase, part thriller, part love story. Six Years wins out on mood (dark, brooding, mysterious) and, to a point, suspense. But character and motivation are iffy, depending on how much you buy into what drives the narrator/protagonist, college prof Jake Fisher, all 6'6-230 ex-bouncer pounds of him.

    It's the Heisenberg Principle of art -- if your expectations are too high, you're likely to be disappointed, if they're low, you'll probably like it. I saw all the negative reviews about the slow pace and questionable characterization. I came close to choosing not to listen to Six Years. I ended up going for it on the recommendation of a friend (Coben in general, not this particular book). But coming in with low expectations, I found myself pleasantly surprised.

    Yes, there were moments when the narrator's thought process was too, uh, thought out -- a paragraph or two when a simple statement would have sufficed. Yes, his obsession is over the top, clearly designed to drive the plot rather his character, or at the very least failing to do the latter. Yes, the whodunit and why they dun it, after taking too long to emerge, isn't exactly the be all and end all that would justify the hours of hand wringing.

    So, some flaws, for sure. But overall, I liked it and I couldn't wait to find out the who, what, why. Definitely more so early on while me the reader and Jake the protagonist were trying to figure out what exactly was going on, somewhat less once the reasons emerged. My only explanation for why that may be is that my expectations were exceeded by enough of a margin for me to get sucked into it, and I wasn't too disappointed in the end.


    Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

    At first, yes. But then I started to wonder if the suspense was being dragged out too deliberately, unfolding too slowly and with not enough of a clue for me to figure it out.


    What about Scott Brick’s performance did you like?

    The performance did not make or break the book. Scott Brick is a prolific reader whom I have listed to a number of times is different genres without even realizing it, which is perhaps the best thing you can say -- the book carries the day, for better or worse. Here, he is as deliberate in his pace and as ponderous in his tone as the book wants him to be. If that's a problem, it's in the writing, not the reading.


    Could you see Six Years being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

    A movie, sure -- too neatly sewn up at the end to justify a series. I already know that Hugh Jackman has been signed to play Jake Fisher, so it's hard for me to come up with my own suggestions for that role. I don't think there are any supporting roles large enough to warrant speculation, not even Jake's love interest, who is spoken of more than she actually appears.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Peter Port Crane, NY, United States 02-16-14
    Peter Port Crane, NY, United States 02-16-14 Member Since 2007
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    "Don't waste your credits or time"
    What did you like about this audiobook?

    This story was so contrived it was painful to sit through it. I tried to accept it as a fun, light-heated read, but in the end realized I spent most of the story time wanting it to end. To make matters worse, the narration was worse than the story itself. Brick sounded as if he were reciting rather than reading or portraying the characters. I thought I was listening to a trumped up attempt at recreating "Johnny Dollar" (an old radio show.)


    Do you have any additional comments?

    I hate to say it but most anything will be better than this. I only wish I could get my credit back.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    R. Pontiflet Fairfield, CA USA 02-15-14
    R. Pontiflet Fairfield, CA USA 02-15-14 Member Since 2013

    retired writer

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "When A Man Loves A Woman ~ Wow!"

    This is a great mystery! It hooked me from the first sentence and it just kept reeling me in! The narrator is excellent and I can't say enough about his voice! It is read like a story should be read with all the emotions (and longings in this case) that the author intended. I have not read much of Coben (maybe one many years ago) but I would recommend this one to any mystery lover... Highly Recommend...

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Calliope Toronto, ON, Canada 06-16-13
    Calliope Toronto, ON, Canada 06-16-13 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    136
    ratings
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    3
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    "Couldn't stand the histrionics and abandoned it"

    I was trying to decide it it was the author or the narrator that I disliked so much, and I decided it was both........After I had listened to about 25% of the book, I had to abandon it because it sounded like the whining melodramatics of a 17 year old girl trying to write meaningful poetry, which ends up being neither meaningful nor poetic. I chose this title because the author had been recommended to me and the audiobook was on sale, so I thought Bingo! Perfect opportunity! Well, I'm glad I tried this author's book on sale, because, frankly, it's drek. I was intrigued by the concept of the story: Man is dumped and has his heart broken, but nevertheless accepts an invitation to attend the wedding of his now-ex to her old beau; years later he reads about the new hubby's death, but then he discovers the dead man's widow is not his old flame, that the wedding he attended never seems to have existed, and the old flame can't be found and no one knows of her existence. Yeah, sounds intriguing until you get to the execution and discover the writing is ponderous and the narration is somehow both melodramatic and soporific. I'll pass.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    S new york, NY, United States 05-28-13
    S new york, NY, United States 05-28-13
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Standard Harlan Cobe book--good! An easy listen."
    Any additional comments?

    This book felt a little like an older HC book, Tell No One. Both really enjoyable and the Scott Brick/Harlan Coben combo is always a good listen, but it's a standard HC mystery/thriller. I'm looking forward to the next Myron Bolitar book.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lee Farmington Hills, MI, United States 04-09-13
    Lee Farmington Hills, MI, United States 04-09-13 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
    ratings
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    "Such a disappointment"
    Any additional comments?

    There's a chance this might be a decent story, but we'll never know. The over-the-top dramatic narration reduces the story to barely tolerable. Couldn't wait for it to end. Perhaps the narrator should have read a little Myron Bolitar before he took on the Jack Fisher character. Take a pass on this.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
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