Tuesday, 8 March 2016

Far From True

Author: Linwood Barclay
Genre: Suspense
Series: #2 in the Promise Falls series
Type: Hardcover
Pages: 480
Source: Random House Canada
Publisher: DoubleDay Canada (Random House Canada)
First Published: March 8, 2016
First Line: "They ain't seen nothing yet."

Book Description from GoodReads: After the screen of a run-down drive-in movie theater collapses and kills four people, the daughter of one of the victims asks private investigator Cal Weaver to look into a recent break-in at her father’s house. Cal discovers a hidden basement room where it’s clear that salacious activities have taken place—as well as evidence of missing DVDs. But his investigation soon becomes more complicated when he realizes it may not be discs the thief was actually interested in....

Meanwhile, Detective Barry Duckworth is still trying to solve two murders—one of which is three years old—he believes are connected, since each featured a similar distinctive wound.

As the lies begin to unravel, Cal is headed straight into the heart of a dark secret as his search uncovers more startling truths about Promise Falls. And when yet another murder happens, Cal and Barry are both driven to pursue their investigations, no matter where they lead. Evil deeds long thought buried are about to haunt the residents of this town—as the sins of the past and present collide with terrifying results.

My Review: With Far From True Barclay continues the suspenseful plots and gaggle of unique characters from the first book in the trilogy, Broken Promise.  The various story lines pick up right where the first book left off.  I haven't read many books that have story lines continue from book to book, especially suspense novels where one expects some closure. Hats off to Barclay because he had me riveted from the get go once again. 

Barclay doesn't shy away from multiple story lines and loads of characters but the thing is, he handles it all in stride and the result is a well written book complete with engaging characters and some wicked twists.  Barclay uses three male characters to carry the story lines and keep the reader abreast of what's going on in this small town.  Cal, a private investigator, Detective Duckworth with the Promise Falls PD and David Harwood, the once newspaper reporter who now works for a not-so-up-and-up politician.  Having three main characters was an interesting choice.  It gives the reader a few different views of the crimes/story lines but the reader has to be able to change tack with each POV change within the short chapters.

I admit to struggling a little bit trying to remember how certain characters were related to each other (I had read the first book last summer) as well as former plot lines.  Barclay has a very large cast of characters in this book but he has a knack for reminding his readers what happened in the previous book - relationships and plot lines - without spoon feeding them with unnecessary info.  He's able to keep a lot of balls in the air with apparent ease and his story telling ability and writing are impressive.

He's also quite adept at keeping the pace high while leaving his readers with some unsettled mysteries, namely the identity of the person who has been terrorizing the small town.  Normally keeping me in the dark for any extended period of time, let alone multiple books, wouldn't sit well with me but Barclay has me hook line and sinker.  I'm eager to pick up his next book in the series to see if Duckworth can crack the case.

Note: Make sure you read the first book, Broken Promise, before you pick up this book.  If not, you'll struggle to make sense of the fast moving story lines and relationships between the characters.

My Rating: 4/5 stars

Disclaimer: My sincere thanks to Doubleday Books for providing me with a complimentary hardcover copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

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