Wednesday, December 14, 2016

FOOL ME ONCE by Harlan Coben

As her brother-in-law observes, death follows Maya Stern.  Her sister was murdered in a home invasion, and her husband Joe has just been murdered in a park right before her very eyes.  Joe’s brother supposedly fell overboard years ago during a trip to Bermuda, and that’s the last straw:  something really fishy is going on.  Plus, Maya suffers from PTSD after a stint in the Middle East in which one particular mission tarnished her record.  Now she’s a single mother and wants some answers, particularly given that the same gun was used to kill both her sister and her husband.  When an image of her supposedly dead husband turns up on her nanny cam, even more questions arise.  She has to decipher what is reliable information and what is misinformation and, more importantly, who is trustworthy and who is not.  As an amateur sleuth, Maya is better than most, and she’s an expert marksman--if firearms are required, and you can bet they will be.  Character development is a little slipshod for the most part, but Maya is fairly well scoped out.  She’s tall, fierce, fearless, confident, and never backs away from a possible confrontation, even with her wealthy and overbearing in-laws who seem to have something to hide.  We don’t have much to go on with regard to the personalities of the dead sister and Joe, but the mother-in-law is obviously a snake in the grass.  When Joe’s sister Caroline shares a juicy clue, we don’t know if she’s the only truthful person in the family or if she’s just playing a role to muddy the waters.  Of course, there’s a twist at the end, and I feel particularly gullible here, because I did not see it coming.

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