By Bryan Reesman
BEST;SELLING CRIME novelist Harlan
Coben has a career that many authors
would kill for. A master of the twist ending, he has scored eight consecutive
No. 1 New York Times best-sellers and
sold more than 60 million books worldwide. Maintaining his A game and
staying fresh and exciting can be challenging, but the climax of his novel
Fool Me Once—this month’s book buyer’s pick—delivers.
“With 28 books, it’s hard to continue to shock people, but I do think it’s
a pretty big surprise,” Coben tells The Connection,
from his home in New Jersey.
In his latest page turner, a former special-ops
pilot named Maya, now the widowed mother of a
2-year-old girl, has just buried her murdered husband, Joe. Things get strange when Joe eerily shows
up later on her nanny cam, and then a blogger who
exposed a bungled war mission resurfaces with
potentially incriminating information on her. With
the help of a fellow vet, she digs for the uncomfortable truth that may connect everything.
The initial inspiration for Maya came when
Coben met a couple of female pilots while he was on
a USO tour overseas with other authors in 2013. He
also spoke with soldiers from different branches of
the armed forces, including those suffering from
Signed book gıveaway
COSTCO HAS 50 signed copies of Harlan Coben’s
novel Fool Me Once to give away. To enter, go to
NO PURCHASE, PAYMENT OR OPT-IN OF ANY KIND IS
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Purchase will not improve odds of winning. Sweepstakes is
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10014. Open to legal residents of the U.S. (except Puerto Rico)
who are age 18 or older at the time of entry. One entry per
household. Entries must be received before the May issue is
available online, which will happen around April 26, 2016.
Winners will be randomly selected and noti;ed by mail
on or before June 1, 2016. The value of the prize is $28. Void
where prohibited. Winners are responsible for all applicable
federal, state and local taxes. Odds of winning depend on the
number of eligible entries received. Employees of Costco or
Penguin Random House and their families are not eligible.
IF YOU’RE A regular reader
of this page, you’ll know
that I’m not a frequent
reader of thrillers. However,
when I do get a hankering
for a page turner, I reach for
something by Harlan
Coben. His writing is sharp,
the suspense is palpable
and he laces it all with real
emotion. His latest novel,
Fool Me Once—this
month’s book buyer’s
pick—is no exception.
Maya, a former special-ops pilot, sees something
on the nanny cam that she
can’t believe. It shows her
2-year-old daughter playing
with Maya’s husband, Joe,
who was murdered two
weeks earlier. To get to
the bottom of what’s really
going on, Maya must come
to terms with deep secrets
from her past before she
can face what’s happening
in the present.
Coben’s Fool Me Once
is available now in most
For more book picks,
see page 75.
post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
After the manuscript was done, he had
it read by soldiers for accuracy in terms
of the portrayal of PTSD, which he
wanted to be sensitive to.
The resulting crime tale also handles the hot-button topic of guns. Less
heart-on-her-sleeve than previous
Coben’s twisting tales have been translated to
the screen successfully as well. The 2006 adaptation
of his novel Tell No One was directed by Guillaume
Canet and won critical acclaim; it was nominated
for nine César Awards (the French Oscars) and
ended up winning four.
The author recently helped bring his work to
overseas television. His book No Second Chance was
aired on French channel TF1. He also created an
original 10-part series forthcoming on Britain’s Sky
1 network called The Five, and assisted the screen-writers in developing the story and doing rewrites.
Unlike many crime authors who focus on murders to solve, Coben focuses on missing persons. “I
prefer more the mystery of whether the person is
alive or dead and that hope,” he explains. “A theme
that I go back to a lot is both the strength and the
tragedy of hope. Hope can make your heart soar like
it’s on wings or can crush it like it’s an eggshell. A lot
of my books [also] deal with family, both the romanticized view of it but also the reality, having four kids
of my own. I thought Maya was one of my more
realistic parents, where for her it wasn’t just bliss
being with her kid every moment. She worries about
her own inadequacies as a parent, which we all do.”
Coben was the first writer to win the genre-oriented Edgar Award, Shamus Award and
Anthony Award. Reading William Goldman’s
Marathon Man as a teen was a life-chang-ing event. “Even back then, subconsciously
I was thinking, ‘How cool would it be to
be able to make people feel that?” he
says. “I always wanted that page turnabil-ity, that compulsive, ripping read.” C
Bryan Reesman is a New York-based journalist.
Author enjoys exploring the layers of hope
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Click here for a book
trailer for Fool Me Once.
(See page 11 for details.)
Pennie Clark Ianniciello
Costco book buyer