Friday, April 30, 2010

Hold Tight Falls Short

Any reader of this blog knows that I love a good mystery, so I had high hopes for Harlan Coben's Hold Tight, even though I had been disappointed by another of his thrillers Tell No One. Hold Tight begins promisingly enough, with concerned parents installing spyware on their teenage son Adam's computer. They reluctantly decide to spy on Adam because one of his friends had recently committed suicide, and Adam had continued to withdraw from the family. The spyware reveals that he is planning to go to a party with drinking and drugs on Friday night so Mike, Adam's father, buys hockey tickets for that same night and won't let Adam refuse to come. When Adam does not show up at home the night of the game, however, his parents become terrified that something has happened. What follows is an adventure deep into the underground of blackmarket pharmaceuticals, with a healthy dose of revenge, insanity and betrayal to make things more interesting.
Each chapter is told from a different character's point of view, and several seemingly unrelated storylines are brought together for a surprising conclusion. What I liked about this is that Coben's characters use a lot of current cell phone and computer technology, which will probably render the novel outdated in a few years, but makes it seem cutting edge in 2010. What I didn't like is Coben's writing, which is not very interesting (to me, but maybe that's snobbish), or his storyline which seemed contrived. However, this novel received enough student, teacher and librarian votes to land on the 2011 Abraham Lincoln High School Book Award list, so what do I know? 2 out of 4 Bananas

Abraham Lincoln Illinois High School Book Award 2011 Nominee

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