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Tell No One
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on 14 April 2018
Tell No One had it all: a tense plot, humour, romance, surprise twists and turns - everything I love about mystery/crime thrillers. I was hooked from after just reading the prologue as my curiosity was piqued: what did Beck have to tell his wife? How and why did she die? Who did it? These were questions I was constantly asking myself throughout and I am pleased to say that all your questions are answered by the end of the book. I loved how complicated the plot was and Coben has done a fantastic job in linking all the various strands back to one single event. Shock after shock kept coming towards the end and just when I thought I knew everything and exactly what had happened eight years ago, Coben shocked me again.

I would not hesitate to recommend this book to those who enjoy mystery thrillers.
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VINE VOICEon 4 December 2014
I read this because it is one of the recommended titles in the excellent mystery anthology "Books To Die For", where well-known writers say why a certain crime/mystery title has influenced them so much. If you've not seen it, check it out.

That said, "Tell No One" didn't particularly do it for me. It's a fast enough page turner, but the plot is one of those over-egged stories which start with an interesting enough premise and then spiral out of control with unbelievable backstories and plotlines that are both a little hard to follow and more than a little unlikely. I always feel a writer is cheating us when they take this approach, as they've started with a situation that readers could initially identify with in terms of "what would I do?" or "how would I feel?" in similar circumstances, before taking us on the most unbelievable of adventures.

Coben is clearly a prolific and much-rated writer, but this one is a bit of an also-ran for me, unfortunately. No doubt there are loads of much better books out there waiting to be discovered.
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on 11 December 2013
I had heard good things about Harlan Coben; amazing things even, from friends and reviewers alike. Most of his book plots sound intriguing and draw you in.

The first downside, as I discovered with this, my only Coben book so far, is the absolutely terrible writing: he presents, at best, two-dimensional characters; he uses some quite awkward dialogue; and he crow-bars in some of the most unnecessary and extraordinary similes.

The second downside is the plot development. It twists and turns so much that it becomes illogical and insensible - it is not a satisfying read. The description on the back of the book described it as having "the most jaw-dropping plot twist ever" - a week later I am still waiting for my jaw to drop. I am not even sure which of the various twists this refers to as none really qualify. By the last page I literally didn't care about what was revealed because somehow it managed to be simultaneously both predictable and unbelievable.

I have given this book two stars because, despite all my criticisms, I did at least keep turning the pages. I did, to some extent, want to see what happened next, although, by the last chapter my interest had waned.

I've picked up two or three other Coben books second-hand so I probably will try them, to see if this was an unlucky one-off.
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on 17 December 2014
It is nice to find a serial author who doesn't do serial fiction. You can read Coben in any order as each appears to be a standalone. This is a good entrance to his writing. The storyline is well constructed - although if you don't like time line switches, and first to third person narratives, you might find it annoying - and the characters for the most part seem to be real enough. Yes, of course there is the usual coincidence here and there to be able to make the story work, but readers generally forgive these if they aren't too far fetched. The central character is likeable enough for the reader to be on his side and the villains are not too grotesque for the most part.
I would recommend this to readers who like American crime (eg Lee Child), don't mind a bit of violence and who read for fun rather than to dissect the story afterwards.
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VINE VOICEon 7 December 2012
This is a thriller that is written in a style typical of the author. Coben writes tense thrillers, with swift and rapidly changing action scenes, and cliff-hanger chapters, always trying to throw in something unexpected. This no different.
The basic story line is that the main protagonist, Dr David Beck, is sent a message, secretly and unexpectedly, suggesting that his wife, who was apparently murdered about seven years previously, is actually alive. Events start to unfold that lead to a re-evaluation of what happened all those years ago and whether she was really killed or not. I'll say no more for fear of spoilers. As I suggested above, the first half sets up intruiging mysteries, and contains the usual suspense and range of assorted colourful characters typical of a Coben thriller.
However, I did find when all was revealed that some aspects of the plotting seems rather difficult to fully believe, with the result that the plotting was a little bit clunky. Some aspects just about made sense if you didn't think about them too hard. Naturally, this is a bit of a disappointment because I'm always in search of a cleverly and originally plotted thriller.
Another criticism is that, although Coben can no doubt create suspense and excitement (and there's plenty here), it does all seem a little formulaic, bordering on the unoriginal, with some strange characters thrown in that add colour at the expense of believeability.
The result here is a reasonably good but not outstanding book.
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on 17 November 2014
Fast-paced thriller with lots of twists and turns and there are elements in here which are (too ?) strongly linked to 'The Woods' - a few characters pop up too from previous books.

Although I enjoyed the book and found the plot was well constructed, the final twist actually ruined the whole book for me. I don't want to give it away but rather than add to the story it sort of make me think "well, if that is the case, then the central character should have realised what wad going on from page 1, rather than be completely unaware of why things were happening...." Could have ended 2 pages earlier and it would have been fine!
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on 2 July 2016
Another engrossing Coben novel. A doctor starts receiving email messages from his murdered wife containing information only he would know and including a link to what seems to be live footage of her. His search for the truth of what happened on the night of the murder, why it happened and who is responsible keeps the pages turning. He has luck in having a shady friend who feels he is in the doctors debt and a criminal hiding out at the murder scene....a bit of a stretch for the imagination, but it is fiction!
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on 22 January 2015
A colleague recommended this book to me after I incessantly talked about Gone Girl. I was not disappointed!! This is just my sort of book and I have found in Harlan Coben an author that excites me and makes me want to complete the collection. Tell No One is just as a Thriller novel should be, it keeps you guessing but ultimately in the dark until the final few pages. There's twists and turns allover but still with enough continuity to glue the story together and keep you compelled. I absolutely loved it, I could not put it down, and now can't wait to read some more of Harlan Coben's work.
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on 10 February 2018
This is hard to right without a spoiler but I really enjoyed this from the begging i was capture wanting to know what exactly had happend to EEluzabeth though did find it strange that in 8 years her husband never knew any details i think I would have asked a lot of questions if it was me.
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 23 October 2009
This is a gripping story of a man who was sure his wife was murdered and suddenly becomes sure she is alive. At the same time the police (lots of them) and FBI (a couple of them) are after him, and so are some very vicious gangsters. There's even a deadly oriental martial arts villain, as seen in early Bond films. So we get some thrilling chases. Between the chases, a host of female characters and the dead(?) wife's creepy parents introduce more plot complications. The book was made into a French film that moved the American setting to France, but otherwise stayed very close to the story.

It's an easy read, written in simple language, so relax and enjoy. I read it in two sittings ("I'm coming to bed in a minute. Just one more page").

But -- a couple of gripes. Firstly, our hero somehow has to escape from cops, FBI and crooks all at once, so the author slots in a powerful criminal who is grateful to the good doctor and keeps saving him from disaster like magic. Secondly, all the loose ends are tied up in a terribly rushed conclusion that you might have to read through twice.
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