Monday, September 15, 2014
Missing You by Harlam Coben
Coben never met a technological device he couldn’t turn into a riveting plot element. His latest thriller is no exception. The story examines what can happen to people who use online dating sites, and his hypothesis builds to a truly frightening conclusion. Coben’s meticulous plotting and his incorporation of the technology are first-rate. His characterization and dialogue? Not so much. All of Coben’s characters, regardless of age, sound like entrants in a Damon Runyon dialogue contest. (The reader keeps waiting for some guy to pull a gat on some doll.) The relentless onslaught of one-liners doesn’t help, and the characters themselves, while caught up in the beautifully crafted plot, tend toward cardboard. What sets the plot in motion is when a friend of NYPD detective Kat Donovan enters Kat on an online dating site. She discovers her old boyfriend, now a widower, and tries to contact him; the complications multiply from there.