Don’t Let Go by Harlan Coben
Published by Dutton Books on September 26, 2017 (expected)
Genre(s): fiction, action, crime, mystery, suspense, thriller
Format & Pages: e-book, 283
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With unmatched suspense and emotional insight, Harlan Coben explores the big secrets and little lies that can destroy a relationship, a family, and even a town in this powerful new thriller.
Suburban New Jersey Detective Napoleon “Nap” Dumas hasn’t been the same since senior year of high school, when his twin brother Leo and Leo’s girlfriend Diana were found dead on the railroad tracks—and Maura, the girl Nap considered the love of his life, broke up with him and disappeared without explanation. For fifteen years, Nap has been searching, both for Maura and for the real reason behind his brother’s death. And now, it looks as though he may finally find what he’s been looking for.
When Maura’s fingerprints turn up in the rental car of a suspected murderer, Nap embarks on a quest for answers that only leads to more questions—about the woman he loved, about the childhood friends he thought he knew, about the abandoned military base near where he grew up, and mostly about Leo and Diana—whose deaths are darker and far more sinister than Nap ever dared imagine.
I’ve been a fan of Harlan Coben’s books for a while, and much like his previous work, Don’t Let Go doesn’t disappoint.
It’s entirely possible that I’m biased on this point. As a New Jersey native, I particularly love that this author’s novels take place in actual locations in New Jersey that I know and recognize. Not only is it fun to be able to say, “Ooh, I know that spot!” but it also adds helps ground the stories in a layer of realism that some crime novels lack. And I feel like I’m always learning something new about my home state.
Case in point: it was only after reading Don’t Let Go and doing some internet searching that I discovered there was a Nike missile control center (like the one this story centers around) in the town next to where I grew up. And Coben has done the very thing that I love, which is to take the legend about the Nike missile control center in his hometown, ask what if, and spin it into fiction. Be still, my heart.
True to the author’s style, this book is fast paced and easy to read. The writing is seamless and witty, with several remarks that had me laughing out loud. Many characters felt wonderfully complex, toeing the line between good and villainous, and leaving me with a feeling that I truly got to know them. With plenty of secrets and tons of twists, this kept me guessing until the very end.
Ultimately, Don’t Let Go was a riveting read that I’d recommend to anyone looking for a solid crime thriller.
*Many thanks to Penguin Random House’s First to Read program for providing an arc of this edition in exchange for an honest review.