On the morning she will never forget, suburban teenager Cynthia Archer awakes with a nasty hangover and a feeling she is going to have an even nastier confrontation with her mom and dad. But when she leaves her bedroom, she discovers the house is empty, with no sign of her parents or younger brother Todd.
In the blink of an eye, without any explanation, her family has simply disappeared. Twenty-five years later Cynthia is still haunted by unanswered questions. Was her family murdered? If so, why was she spared? And if they're alive, why did they abandon her in such a cruel way?
Now married with a daughter of her own, Cynthia fears that her new family will be taken from her just as her first one was. And so she agrees to take part in a TV documentary revisiting the case, in the hope that somebody somewhere will remember something - or even that her father, mother or brother might finally reach out to her.
Then a letter arrives that makes no sense and yet chills Cynthia to the core. And soon she begins to realise that stirring up the past could be the worst mistake she has ever made.
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©2007 Linwood Barclay; (P)2007 Brilliance Audio
A mystery masterpiece is read by a master narrator....Christopher Lane...takes us deep into the perilous journey to find the truth....Lane exploits Barclays breathtaking momentum, building to an edge-of-the-seat climax and superbly portraying every character. (AudioFile)
I bought this book last weekend and my daughter started reading it before me. I eventually got my hands on it 2 days later. Loved the story - like all who did its - it was great. This is a really brilliant book and its not until near the very end that you find out the truth and even then there is a sting in the tail. Well worth the two evenings I spent reading it.
The write up for this book intrigued me hence why i bought it, i was expecting a tense,intelligently weaved thriller,however i was dissapointed with the both the pace and the plot. All of the not so great subplots were happily and unbelievably tied up, which made me feel cheated that the author didn't wind the story up with a bit more finesse.
I've already read the printed version of this book and remember a particular scene which went like this: A bogus psychic visits Terry & Cynthia's home with information leading to Cynthia's missing family. The 'psychic' mentions a house and Terry gives her cues such as: "Did this house have yellow curtains/blue car in the drive?" etc. The woman answers "yes" to his questions and believing she's got him hooked, says something like, "Do you know this house?" Terry says "no", and throws her out of the house for being a fraud. This entire scene is missing from the audio version of this book. In fact, the psychic doesn't even show her face at all, which is disappointing.
Already have listened to audio versions but now wonder if there are parts missing from the original text.
Yes, but a TV series would be better than a movie as a movie would have to be condensed to 2 hours or so and would likely miss out a lot of the plot. A TV series would give more suspense to those who haven't read the book. Can't think of any particular actors who would play the characters. Cynthia is an interesting character who would have to gain sympathy from the audience while at the same time, make them suspicious of her. Is she having a mental breakdown? Does she know something about her missing family that we don't? Is she being truthful?
By the way, I'm a 'resting' actress and if nobody was available would love to play Cynthia ... chance would be a fine thing :(
I'm currently listening to the audio version of the next book: "No Safe House" and have already recommended Lynwood Barclay's books to others.
From promising beginnings this suddenly changes into an odd, inexplicable series of outrageous plot twists. As new people arrive and die horribly the central character struggles to maintain his marriage to his damaged wife. Halfway through we suffer a history lesson which explains all. The final plot twist descends like the foot in the Monty Python credits. We're left feeling that the paint we chose not watch dry was a real missed opportunity.
Felt quite let down. Intriguing premise but the story ending seemed to be cobbled together without much thought.
You know you ve read too many mystery novels when you can figure out most of the story after just one clue. Even so the story still held my interest and Barclay does throw in a few surprises and a few unexpected twists along the way.
Most importantly, Barclay builds strong characters that you can t help but care about.
Then,once you ve gotten to know the characters,the clues start dropping, and the pace picks up. And once it does, there is just no putting this book down. A nice summer read
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