Newest Review: ... would be logical to assume that someone has a grudge against Will. The who and the why are more than a little bit vague. Will finds phot... more
Gone for Good - Harlan Coben
Member Name: moo2moo
Gone for Good - Harlan Coben
Date: 24/06/10, updated on 25/06/10 (28 review reads)
Advantages: The book can be recycled at charity shpos throughout the UK
Disadvantages: Tenuous links from one scenario to the next
Eleven years ago Will's ex-girlfriend Julie was murdered and his brother disappeared leaving behind a trail of blood. The logical conclusion would seem to be that there was a struggle and Will's brother escaped injured, went on the run and was never seen again. Will has never accepted this and believes to this day that there was a third person involved.
Life moves on and Will falls in love with a girl named Sheila who disappears in the middle of the night and is found dead several days later, killed in exactly the same way as Julie. It would be logical to assume that someone has a grudge against Will. The who and the why are more than a little bit vague.
Will finds photographic proof that his brother is still alive and sets off on a quest to find him and prove his innocence aided and abetted by Katie, the dead Julies younger sister. Surely Will can succeed where the FBI and an international man hunt have failed?
Will is helped along his journey by an ex-Nazi turned internationally acclaimed yoga guru who spends his nights helping the homeless children of the city in the hopes of persuading them that there is an alternative to drugs and prostitution. This gives him entry into the seedy underworld of switched identities and Mafioso dons.
Quite frankly its all too absurd and convoluted for words. I never developed any empathy for any of the characters, the book failed to come alive and I'd go so far as to describe it as a tedious read with incredibly flimsy leaps of faith linking one bit of plot to the next. I reached a point where I was reading it to get it over and done with rather than to find out what happened next. It got more and more bizarre and relationships became more and more tenuous to the point that even in a fictional world they really didn't make any sense at all. There were plenty of plot twists but they didn't flow with the story. It was almost as if someone had a flow diagram for the perfect novel which read page 20 insert scene on murder, page 26 reveal sighting of third person in vicinity, page 40 add obscure detail and this was rigidly stuck to even though the story hadn't quite made it that far.
I've seen Harlan Cobens name gracing the covers of a number of novels lately, quite why he's the current darling of the crime genre is beyond me. His writing is mediocre at best and that's a very generous compliment for the author of a novel with more holes than a Swiss cheese.
Summary: The plot has more holes than a Swiss cheese