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Fool Me Once

A Novel of Suspense by Harlan Coben

Fool Me Once by Harlan Coben

Review: Maya Burkett, an ex-special operations helicopter pilot who flew missions while assigned to a unit in the Mideast, is home burying her husband, Joe. He had been shot three times in Central Park, dying while Maya ran for help. She testified that she saw two hooded men leave the area immediately afterward, but never got a good look at their faces. Now, days after the funeral, she's home with her daughter when she decides to check the new nanny-cam that she recently installed, only to see Joe playing with their daughter, in Fool Me Once, a novel of suspense by Harlan Coben.

It can't be. She shows the video to her daughter's nanny, a woman whose own mother was Joe's nanny when he was a child, and they get into an argument. In an unguarded moment, the nanny takes the video card and returns to the Burkett family estate. When Maya follows her, Joe's mother refuses to allow her to see the nanny. She also believes that Maya, stressed from both her time overseas and the deaths of her husband and her sister Claire, who was killed several months earlier during Maya's deployment, may have simply imagined the whole thing. But then Maya learns from the police that ballistics on the bullets that killed Joe and Claire, months apart, indicate that both were killed by the same gun. Claire and Joe had worked together on Burkett family business; could they have discovered something that someone thought so damaging that they both had to die?

Readers who have read some of the author's stand-alone novels will find several common elements in Fool Me Once, possibly leading them to jump to all sorts of conclusions on how it will turn out in the end. That would be a mistake, for while there are, indeed, a number of familiar plot points, the execution of how they play out is quite original. The denouement is foreshadowed in a number of places in the narrative, but is easily dismissed at the time as being too far-fetched. Or simply not possible. And yet, when it happens, it comes as a surprise and the logic seems reasonable. To be sure, the final turn in the path is a little messy and over-complicated, relying on the sudden appearance of a few previously unrevealed details and counting on the reader to gloss over some of the whys and wherefores, but those are minor quibbles. Overall, a solid, well-structured and quite entertaining suspense thriller.

Acknowledgment: Penguin Group provided an eARC of Fool Me Once for this review.

Review Copyright © 2016 — Hidden Staircase Mystery Books — All Rights Reserved

Selected reviews of other mysteries by this author …

Mystery Book Review: The Stranger by Harlan CobenThe Stranger
Dutton (Hardcover), March 2015
ISBN-13: 9780525953500; ISBN-10: 0525953507

Location(s) referenced in Fool Me Once: New Jersey

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Fool Me Once by Harlan Coben

Fool Me Once by A Novel of Suspense

Publisher: Dutton
Format: Hardcover
ISBN-13: 978-0-525-95509-2
Publication Date:
List Price: $28.00

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Page Author: Lance Wright
Site Publisher: Mysterious Reviews

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