Just One Look
It does not take long for readers of Harlan Coben’s novel to empathize with his protagonist and think, “Everything you know is wrong,” as a comedy troupe put it years ago. Soon, the innocent person swept up in danger realizes her life was built on lies.
The focus of Just One Look is on a woman, Grace Lawson, whose world is upended after a couple of odd—but not earthshaking—incidents. A largely contented artist living a placid existence in suburbia, where kids Emma and Max eat Lunchables and play Game Boy, Grace is exposed to considerable confusion, anxiety, and fear after a peculiar photo comes in a packet of familiar pictures.
Her husband Jack dismisses the old photo, then inexplicably vanishes, so Grace starts to suspect that the picture had been a warning, threat, or lure that took him and jeopardizes their family. Questions and doubts, dread and rage all swirl about her home and life, as mystery and history interweave and overlap like a ragged tarp atop a funhouse mirror. Odd deaths and odd lives are revealed.
Steadily, though, the award-winning author shows Grace to be a survivor, of sorts. After all, she had been at a rock concert fifteen years earlier, when a shooting sparked a panic and riot in which people died.
Through deft pacing, easy dialogue, and unusual-but-natural plot twists, Coben takes readers along for what becomes an exhilarating ride. His other characters—captivating assassin...
(The entire section is 307 words.)
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