DEATH GRIP

India Today - - LEISURE - —Divya Dubey

Thriller writer Har­lan Coben’s last 10 nov­els have topped the New York Times best­seller list, so it should come as no sur­prise that his lat­est book, Don’t Let Go, is al­ready a hit. The stand-alone novel re­volves around Napoleon Du­mas or Nap, a cop de­ter­mined to solve the mys­tery of his twin brother Leo’s death 15 years ear­lier. Most peo­ple be­lieve Leo and his girl­friend Diana were killed by a train by ac­ci­dent or as part of a sui­cide pact. But Nap isn’t con­vinced.

Then po­lice dis­cover the fin­ger­prints of Maura Wells, Nap’s ex­girl­friend, at the site of a mur­der of an­other col­league, Rex Can­ton. Wells dis­ap­peared on the very night Leo and his girl­friend were killed. So Nap fig­ures some­thing must be afoot.

Help­ing him with the case, Nap’s old school friend Ellie sug­gests that Leo and Diana’s killing could be con­nected to the se­cret Con­spir­acy Club that in­cluded the two dead teenagers and four other friends—in­clud­ing Maura.

Like Sher­lock, Nap is a half­hearted so­ciopath who takes pains to ap­pear friendly enough to his im­me­di­ate neigh­bours. A part-time vig­i­lante, he doesn’t mind beat­ing up bad guys or break­ing their legs.

But his readi­ness to pay the price if he’s caught proves to the reader that he’ll go to any length to get what he wants, mak­ing him easy to em­pathise with. As will all Coben nov­els, un­ex­pected twists keep the reader hooked and sus­pense rules ev­ery page.

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