Run Awayby Harlan Coben Published 19 Mar 2019
|Publisher||Grand Central Publishing|
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A perfect family is shattered in RUN AWAY, the new thriller from the master of domestic suspense, Harlan Coben.
You've lost your daughter.
She's addicted to drugs and to an abusive boyfriend. And she's made it clear that she doesn't want to be found.
Then, by chance, you see her playing guitar in Central Park. But she's not the girl you remember. This woman is living on the edge, frightened, and clearly in trouble.
You don't stop to think. You approach her, beg her to come home.
And you do the only thing a parent can do: you follow her into a dark and dangerous world you never knew existed. Before you know it, both your family and your life are on the line. And in order to protect your daughter from the evils of that world, you must face them head on.
"Run Away" Reviews
What a rush!!! This story kept you guessing until the final chapter, so much adrenaline and intensity.
Simon is a concerned father who is searching for his daughter. He believes she has succumbed to drugs and the wrong crowd. He spots her in Central Park, almost unrecognizable. He approached her and tries to convince her to leave with him but his attempts are thwarted by her drug crazed boyfriend and his daughter, Paige, slips away. Simon is taken into custody and begins to learn difficult truths about his daughter and how nothing is as it seems.
Simon and his wife, Ingrid, decide to search for their daughter as they believe she may be in danger, which now puts them in danger. Soon, there are murders that appear to have a common thread which connects to their daughter.
The story is fast paced, and is tied together very well. I did not want to put down this book, I was hoo!ed by the first chapter. This is a favorite author of mine and this story did not disappoint........Well done!!!!!!!
Simon's eyes stayed locked on the panhandling girl mangling John Lennon's legacy. Her hair was matted clumps. Her cheekbones were sunken. The girl was rail-thin, raggedy, dirty, damaged, homeless, lost. She was also Simon's daughter Paige."
Over the years, I've found myself moved on a deeply emotional level when I read stories about parents trying to save their wayward children. This is likely due to the fact I'm now a parent myself, and even though my kids are still young and dependent upon me for most everything, I still find myself getting lost in the "what ifs" that come with having another person's life being your responsibility. As children grow and become young adults themselves, at what age is the line drawn where they become dependent on themselves and cut out the middle man? And at what point, as a parent, are we supposed to step back and let our kids make their own mistakes vs. roaming the ends of the earth to save them from life-altering mishaps? These are some of the debates that Coben tackles in his latest thriller.
Don't get me wrong; when I use the term emotional I do not belittle the fact that Run Away is simultaneously a compulsive page turner and a rip-roaring adventure that delves deep in the underbelly of every form of seedy activity you can imagine going on in New York City. Due to Simon and his loved ones being a privileged white family living a more than comfortable life, it was interesting to see how the author picked apart the details of their privilege and how, at the end of the day, it did nothing to protect them from the nightmare they endured. Simon works as a financial advisor on Wall Street and his wife is a pediatrician in NYC as well, and their children grew up sheltered within that cocoon of wealth and providence.
As an avid reader of thrillers and mysteries, we all know it grows more and more difficult to find novels that keep us guessing and entertained for roughly 300-500 pages. The beauty of Coben's books, and what I think a significant number of debuts lack, is the simple aspect of writing characters who come alive off the page and matter to the reader. Once again, Run Away focuses more on drawing the reader in by becoming the conduit to connect reader to cast which results in a memorable read, much more memorable than putting all the proverbial eggs into the "wild, unimaginable twist". Don't get me wrong, there were a few good twists here, and one that I was so blindsided by that I had to reread a certain page THREE TIMES to make sure I was understanding correctly, but the details that have kept me picking up Harlan Coben novels for over a decade now are the deeply personal characters.
And this, my friends, is why Harlan Coben remains KING of the thriller.
*I received a review copy via the publisher.
Wow. Wow. Wow! Harlan Coben, where have you been all of my life!?
“Murder was simple if you kept it simple.”
Run Away has all of the elements that I look for in a thriller: action, intrigue, danger, secrets and lies, twists and turns. It’s well-written, intricately plotted and kept me on my toes! Furthermore, there’s a creepy cult, quirky characters, and commentary on popular culture! Yes, it’s a little over the top, but who cares, because it works!
This is a must read for thriller fans!
Thank you to NetGalley and Grand Central Publishing for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.
Simon Greene and his wife Ingrid live a somewhat privileged middle class life, together with their 3 children Sam, Anya and Paige. The kids have had everything that wealth could throw at them, but while mum and dad were busy living their perfect lives, Paige has taken a wrong turning on life’s journey, and has fallen into a world of drugs, dealers, criminals and an abusive boyfriend. It’s a dark and dangerous world hidden from the circles which the Greene’s inhabit, but Simon and Ingrid are about to clash head on with a particularly vicious cast of characters, when Paige disappears, and it’s clear that she doesn’t want to be found.
This is Harlan Coben at his best - the master at work. The slick and entertaining narrative exposes family secrets of enormous proportions, and makes one question how much we really know those closest to us. Right from page one the action begins, with New York’s Central Park setting the scene. And it’s here that Simon discovers Paige busking, but she’s not in a good place, frail to the point of skeletal, she’s just a shadow of her former self. A fight ensues between Simon and Paige’s drug dealer boyfriend, after which Paige disappears again. Shortly afterward her boyfriend is found dead in what appears to be a particularly frenzied and bloody attack, but with both Simon and Paige under suspicion who really did it? In addition to the main storyline, there’s a sub plot that not only adds enormous interest, fear and tension, but produces a shocking conclusion.
The situation regarding Paige’s addiction mimic reality, with scenarios that will be played out in many ordinary homes across the world - the sheer desperation of parents who will do anything to get their child back from the clutches of drug addiction and the deviant world that comes with the territory, but for Simon and Ingrid it takes them head on into that territory into a terrifying world they’ve only ever seen in the movies.
Harlan Coben is renowned for his twisty plots, and it’s what contributes to his reputation as a master of his trade - So not unnaturally there were twists galore as we’ve come to expect, but just when I thought I was all twisted out, Coben does it again and pulls the mother of all twists!
*Thank you to Netgalley and Random House UK, Cornerstone for my ARC. I have given an honest unbiased review in exchange*
Another engaging thriller from Harlan Coben, and, as usual in his books, not everything is as it seems.
Simon Greene is given a tipoff that his estranged, drug addicted daughter is busking in Central Park, so he goes to find her, has an altercation with her junkie boyfriend, and she runs off. Simon and his wife try to find her, and so their lives spiral out of control as this leads them down a path that they, and the reader, would never have imagined.
I really don't want to say too much as I don't want to give anything away. This is one rabbit hole that the reader has to experience for themselves, as it takes you far away from the promise of the blurb, it is so much more than that. Gripping and exciting, this is one I recommend for all lovers of crime fiction.