Thursday, January 07, 2016

Reader's Diary #1239- Linwood Barclay: Fear the Worst

Linwood Barclay first came to my attention through the Canadian Book Challenge. A lot of participants read, and I assume enjoy, his books. I was finally curious enough to try one on my own.

Hated it. Right away I knew it wasn't going to be high literature. That's fine. I can do fun and entertaining. There was a tendency towards minute details

A young guy, late twenties maybe, dirty blond hair, his face cratered by the ravages of acne a decade earlier.

and it reminded me, in a way, of Stephen King. Again, that's good. These guys can really paint a picture. Plus, I thought, it was fitting of a thriller with an air of mystery. Who knows what details might wind up being relevant?

But then it increasingly became more and more farfetched. Tim's daughter goes missing, he's kidnapped briefly, suddenly he's the suspect of a murder and the police are always conveniently distant. They don't think much of the missing girl-- just a runaway. And Tim implausibly tries to figure everything out on his own. But none of that is as ridiculous as the twist revelation that comes about 3/4 of the way in. It all felt like a bad movie.


raidergirl3 said...

aw, that's too bad. I've enjoyed his books a lot in the past. It's all about plot and action - don't think too much! Good comparison to King, but King is a step above in all regards, in my opinion.

Barbara Bruederlin said...

I hope at least it was a short book. There's little worse than plodding your way through something lengthy and hating every minute.

John Mutford said...

Raidergirl: Yeah, it might have just my mood. That said, I have enjoyed "non-thinkers" in the past. And I agree, King is a step above. Many steps, I would argue.

Barbara: Yeah, not overly long. Long enough though!

Teena in Toronto said...

I read it when it came out ... it was okay.

John Mutford said...

Teena: I think you were the one who very first introduced me to his name and it was you I was nervous about offending with a negative review. But before posting my thoughts I did review what you had to say and seeing that you too had called it out on a couple of things, I was relieved!