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Gone for Good


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"We never forget our first love. Mine ended up being murdered." Newcomers and fans alike will know they're deep in Coben country with the author's ninth book, in which a counselor of runaways with his own history of broken hearts and death finds himself caught in a web of lost identities, forgotten nemeses and smoldering grudges. Will Klein was a nice Jewish boy from a nice Jersey suburb until his ex-girlfriend was found strangled next door and his brother became an international fugitive. Eleven years later, as his mother succumbs to cancer, Will gets the deathbed confession that his brother, Ken, is alive; around the same time, his girlfriend, Sheila (herself a runaway with a "murky past"), disappears and a neighborhood psycho called the Ghost resurfaces. Will is yanked into an FBI investigation via his friend Squares (a yogi whose forehead tattoo carries multiple meanings), which jumbles up the aforementioned cast of characters with another mystery occurring in the Midwest. True to form, Coben keeps the plot twists coming fast and furious, and readers will give up trying to guess the outcome quite early on; yet the book's entertainment value lies less in its plot than its characters. From the New York streetwalker Raquel ("Many transvestites are beautiful. Raquel was not. He was black, six-six, and comfortably on the north side of three hundred pounds") to Belmont, Neb.'s Sheriff Bertha Farrow ("Murder scenes were bad, but for overall vomit-inducing, bone-crunching, head-splitting, blood-splattering grossness, it was hard to beat the metal-against-flesh effect of an old-fashioned automobile accident"), this title delivers. (Apr.) Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.

Coben has written another winner, guaranteed to keep readers awake all night. On the day of his mother's funeral, Will Klein discovers a photograph proving that his brother, Ken, is alive. Eleven years earlier, a young woman who was dating Ken was found strangled, and Ken's blood was found at the murder scene. Will never heard from Ken after that night, and his family and the police assumed that he was dead. While Will is contemplating this stunning revelation, his girlfriend, Sheila, vanishes under mysterious circumstances. Will's efforts to solve the disappearances of Sheila and Ken open a terrifying Pandora's box. Complex and unpredictable, this is even better than Coben's last novel, Tell No One. Highly recommended. [Previewed in Prepub Alert, LJ 1/02.] Jeff Ayers, Seattle P.L. Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.

Praise for Harlan Coben's "New York Times" Bestseller TELL NO ONE " A compelling and original suspense thriller...intriguing...clever and unique." -"Los Angeles Times "" A thriller of runaway tension...Masterful suspense and explosive twists of fate." -Iris Johansen" "" In this pulse-pounding hunt, Harlan Cobenlayers secret upon secret, crisscrossing years and crime scenes...a beach-read so gripping it ought to come with a jumbo tube of sunscreen...bottom line: tell everyone." -"People "" A terrific thriller." -Larry King" "" Tell No One rocks the house. My head felt like a pretzel by the time i was done because i never, not once, saw where the book was going until Coben wanted me to. an exhilarating, bang-up, porsche turbo of a novel that you absolutely will not put down." -Dennis Lehane" "" I forced myself to read slowly. I wanted to savor every clue, every detail, and I never wanted it to end. There are numerous aspects to the clincher ending, with surprises in store for the reader until the very last page." -"USA Today "" This is suspense at its finest--gut-wrenching thrills and honest, heart-tugging emotion. A big book in every sense of the word, Tell No One speeds along at such a breakneck pace that we have to remind ourselves continually to slow down and savor the writing--and Coben's marvelous characters." -Jeffery Deaver"" "From the Hardcover edition."

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