Book Review: Never Look Away – Linwood Barclay

Title: Never Look Away
Author: Linwood Barclay
ISBN: 9780553807172
Pages: 432
Release Date: March 9, 2010
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Genre: Mystery/Thriller
Source: Personal Copy
Rating: 4 out of 5

Summary:

Reporter David Harwood isn’t having the easiest time.  The story he’s been working on about privatizing the nearby prison has gotten him into some trouble, and his wife, Jan, seems to be depressed.  When Jan suggests a family outing to a nearby theme park with their young son, Ethan, David is ecstatic.  A fun trip turns into a nightmare, though, when Jan goes missing and David becomes the prime suspect in her disappearance.

Review:

I’ve heard great things about Linwood Barclay’s novels, and have been wanting to read one since I’ve been on my mystery kick (though I’m not sure it qualifies as a “kick” anymore since it’s been going on for over a year!)  I decided to pick up his latest mystery/thriller, and I have to say, I can’t believe it’s taken me this long to read one of his books.  Never Look Away was a riveting thrill ride from beginning to end.

Barclay is very talented at writing suspense.  This was a book I’d planned on reading slowly, in installments, but instead I was hooked.  I couldn’t stop turning the pages, eager to learn what kink the author would throw in David’s life next.  The story was told from two different points of view, and the one that is not David’s (I can’t be more specific without giving away key plot points) bored me a bit.  I found myself skimming these sections, eager to get back to David’s story.  Even when it became clear what was going on, Barclay still kept me reading frantically.

David was a great character, and I really enjoyed getting to know him in Never Look Away.  I’m not sure he was convincing as a investigative reporter, as it took him a long time to come to the reader’s conclusions, but then again, it’s hard to face difficult truths when they are about your own life.  I appreciated that he was a good father and he tried to be the best husband he could to a depressed woman.

I did have some qualms with Never Look Away, but it was just so tightly written and difficult to put down that it didn’t really matter.  Barclay has written a great thriller with this book, and the mystery is enough to keep any reader interested into the wee hours of the morning.  I’ll definitely be checking out more of his books soon.

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Comments

  1. I love Barclay’s thrillers too! And I got my aunt hooked on them 🙂

  2. I love Barclay’s thrillers too! And I got my aunt hooked on them 🙂

  3. I’ve never read Barclay’s work, but this one sure sounds good! I can overlook things if the book keeps me turning the pages.

  4. I’ve never read Barclay’s work, but this one sure sounds good! I can overlook things if the book keeps me turning the pages.

  5. Lenore – I really need to read more of them!

    Kathy – I feel the exact same way. If the book sucks me in, I don’t often ask questions, and even if I do, they don’t really bother me too much if I’m into the novel enough.

  6. Lenore – I really need to read more of them!

    Kathy – I feel the exact same way. If the book sucks me in, I don’t often ask questions, and even if I do, they don’t really bother me too much if I’m into the novel enough.

  7. I’ve never read any works by this author, but I think I should. Nice review, Swapna!

  8. I’ve never read any works by this author, but I think I should. Nice review, Swapna!

  9. I love Barclay’s novels! I haven’t gotten to this one yet but can’t wait. His books always keep me so engrossed that I can’t put them down.

  10. I love Barclay’s novels! I haven’t gotten to this one yet but can’t wait. His books always keep me so engrossed that I can’t put them down.

  11. He’s one of the authors I keep meaning to check out, too. I guess I really should get on that.

  12. He’s one of the authors I keep meaning to check out, too. I guess I really should get on that.

  13. I love your reviews lately because they make me want to branch out more 🙂

  14. I love your reviews lately because they make me want to branch out more 🙂

  15. Every time you review a book from this genre, I find myself wanting to put aside preconceived notions and pick it up. This one sounds great, and although it had some rough patches, I am glad it kept you so hooked!

  16. Every time you review a book from this genre, I find myself wanting to put aside preconceived notions and pick it up. This one sounds great, and although it had some rough patches, I am glad it kept you so hooked!

  17. I’m on a mystery and cozy “kick” too. Enjoy!

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