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Decent Prose For Once, As For The Story...
on 9 March 2014
Koethi Zan has the potential to write decent modern mysteries, but it's a shame she came out of the woodwork with this, which, despite the book's huge promotional campaign, isn't all that great.
The story is ham-fisted at times, with obvious twists and some unbelievable coincidences. The characters seem to jump in and out of certain traits that in earlier segments define them, making for an uneven experience overall. The conclusion pretty much sucks, as it opens the door for a sequel (please, Zan, resist the temptation), and by the time you've worked your way through, it really seems like a missed opportunity, as the opening is relatively strong.
Like "The Silent Wife", which was well-written but lacked an actual story, "The Never List" deceives you with an interesting event that is well-described (though literally given to you in the opening chapters, rather than revealed through introspection), but then becomes plain, dull, and at times, downright silly. Not something you'll be recommending to your friends, unless they want a brainless beach read. Which reminds me: am I the only one tired of the press comparing everything to "Gone Girl?" I mean, come on. "Gone Girl" wasn't so great itself. Guess I'll be waiting a while before the next big bestseller storms out of the gate with a quote telling me it's the next "Every Dead Thing"...