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2.0 out of 5 starsA bizarre story with a disappointing ending
Reviewed in the United States on May 2, 2020
I’m usually a fan of Harlan Coben but this book wasn’t great. The story started out strong but then quickly switched plots and became kind of confusing because there were so many people going in different directions. Grace’s husband, Jack freaks out when he sees an old photograph of himself and some friends from college and then he disappears. The story wasn’t believable because the simple truth is that it didn’t make a lot of sense. Only one person in Jack’s picture did anything wrong and he wasn’t the one responsible for everything that happened afterwards. The big threat which caused all the fear from Jack and his friends was weak and not intimidating at all. The ending was really sad and only left more questions about what happened to Jack.
Karyn Smith the people who received this loved it!
4.0 out of 5 starsThis Was So Much Fun, Until.......
Reviewed in the United States on August 8, 2019
The end. I had read reviews that said there were a lot of characters. So from the very start of the story, I made a list on my cell phone of who each character was. This worked really well through most of the book. I really enjoyed this story, the writing was great, it was a real page turner. I really liked Grace, the main character. I was fascinated by all the different sub plots, and was trying to piece it all together.
Then, the ending came. So, I'm sure that it all makes total logical sense. But, I would have to sit there and read it several times, probably draw out diagrams to figure out exactly what happened. I have a general idea, but that's about all. Because there are just so many details and characters, it was too confusing.
Regardless, the good of this book far outweighs the bad. I enjoyed so much of this book that I can forgive the confusion at the end, but I also cannot give it five stars. This is the first Harlan Coben book I have ever read. I will definitely read more of his work, but I do hope that I can figure out what happens in his other books without so much brain drain.
4.0 out of 5 starsAn impossibly complicated mystery — that I couldn’t stop reading
Reviewed in the United States on June 4, 2021
Amazing how much I enjoyed this book despite the large number of characters sometimes hard to keep track of, despite the overwhelming complexity of the plot, despite the unconvincing motives, despite the almost unbelievable twists.
Grace Lawson’s husband dashes out of the house and disappears after she shows him an old photo that appeared mysteriously in her packet of current photos fresh from the developer. She spends the rest of the book looking for Jack. She turns out to be impressively resourceful, wildly courageous in the face of danger, and fiercely protective of her children. A very likable heroine.
The plot is rich in bad guys, including a nightmarish hitman expert at lethal pressure points, a career mobster, and his chief muscle Cram, whose mere appearance is scary enough to freeze the blood.
Motives for bad behavior abound. Grace is hard pressed to get to the truth.
Harlan is a riveting storyteller – and that’s what matters.
I have read six Coben novels, and this one was by far my least favorite. Instead of the usual surprise ending Coben served up in the others I have read, this book has a truly fantastical final twist -- not only ridiculous, but also completely superfluous. Moreover, the Eric Wu character is Just too much and not an enjoyable character to read about from any perspective. I did not mind Wu's limited role in "Tell No One," but I very much disliked Wu's much larger role in "Just One Look."
I am a fan of Harlan Coben, so I was disappointed when I read this book. Too many characters; to many plots; no satisfying anything. Characters were so unreal, I thought I was reading a fairy tale, except that people kept getting killed, and/or tortured. I plodded my way through, however, thinking it will all come together. Well, it never did. I should have paid more attention to the reviews. Major Fail.
Too many characters. Hard to follow. Not the best book by this author. I found it tedious. Dragged out. When you thought it was over a new surprise emerged. I was thinking “alright already, let’s end this”.
The book was fantastic, as usual with Harlan Coben books, but OMG, the voice reading the audible book! Spoiled the whole book and I ended up buying the Kindle book after the audible because it was so terrible!
Reviewed in the United States on September 14, 2021
Amazing characters and plot. Caught me from the blurb and I had to buy it and read it. Used to get his books at my local grocery store then they just didn't have them anymore. I wasn't sure what happened. it was good to find them online. Now I can catch up with the ones I missed. This guy is one of my favorite authors. His books are compelling reading with satisfactory endings.
When reviews go into triple figures, it' most likely that whatever you want to say has, pretty much, already been said. So I shall keep this short and for the person wanting a quick scan to find out how good this book is, try to mention the salient points.
A look at the author here will lead you to think that this is a thriller that will keep you glued to this book as you plough your way through it at too quick a pace. You'd be right. The characters are disparate, well drawn and, no surprise here, often not quite who they seem. The story moves along excellently and you only have little respites here and there before the next revelation or action propels you forward. Again, some of the plot you see coming but often you just don't. so what you anticipate may happen, or not! To summarize, just well written.
So I have just two recommendations here. Firstly, if you like a good thriller, you'll enjoy this book, so read it. Secondly (the only reference to the plot here, for more of that, read other reviewers, or better still, the book itself) when you get to the end and the next chapter is the epilogue, don't skip it because you think the story is over. You'll see what I mean once you've read it.
2.0 out of 5 starsSometimes the plot just doesn't work!
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on February 8, 2013
This is the fourth Coben novel I've read, and although I find his writing style engaging and gripping, to be a good novel it needs a good plot to sustain it. For me, the number one attribute I look for in a good thriller is the plot. If you judge thrillers in the same way, I strongly suggest you pass this one by. The book starts off quite promisingly, in Coben's usual style with multiple threads, mysterious set-ups and cliff-hanger chapters. However, after the halfway mark the story really begins to sag, and the conclusion is very disappointing. The plotting is ultimately rather silly, with coincidence and people acting in an unlikely a overly sensational manner in order to make it all work. As you can tell, for me the plot didn't really gel at all. A very contrived storyline. Coben's writing style can make for a good thriller, but this story couldn't deliver it. I see there are a great many high scoring reviews, so others obviously think otherwise. You decide, but if you get to the end and think the same, don't say I didn't warn you...!
3.0 out of 5 starsThrills and spills but not much depth
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on January 25, 2019
Let me start off my saying I prefer literary and psychological thrillers. This Jan I'm trying to broaden my horizons and test out diff sub-genres. I found some of his characters so clinched - the hot divorcee in a low cut leopard print top? Seriously? Others were more interesting, like Eric Wu. Some plot twists were fun, others stretched credibility. Coben has sold gazillions of books so he's clearly getting something right - for me, that was his narrative pace. Flawless use of tension and cliffhangers. If that's all you want in a book, buy this immediately.
The plot was really interesting I was hooked ! I thought I’d figured it out but I hadn’t the spoiler was insane ! I feel like the number of characters was unnecessary as it was sometimes hard to keep track. Also epilogue didn’t make sense so imma just ignore that. Overall, probably my 3rd favourite coben book for far.
All I will say is this book really does keep you guessing and the reveal waits till the last page. Quite simply a brilliant book which would make a fabulous film. It really does twist and turn and keeps you completely hooked in. If you only read one Coben book make it this one.