A Thousand Steps

A Thousand Steps
A Thousand Steps by T. Jefferson Parker

Monday, September 9, 2019

Run Away by Harlan Coben- Feature and Review


A perfect family is shattered in RUN AWAY, the new thriller from the master of domestic suspense, Harlan Coben.

You've lost your daughter.

She's addicted to drugs and to an abusive boyfriend. And she's made it clear that she doesn't want to be found.

Then, by chance, you see her playing guitar in Central Park. But she's not the girl you remember. This woman is living on the edge, frightened, and clearly in trouble.

You don't stop to think. You approach her, beg her to come home.

She runs.

And you do the only thing a parent can do: you follow her into a dark and dangerous world you never knew existed. Before you know it, both your family and your life are on the line. And in order to protect your daughter from the evils of that world, you must face them head on.



Run AwayRun Away by Harlan Coben
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Run Away by Haran Coben is a 2019 Grand Central Publication.

Enjoyable, but not up to Coben’s usual standards-

Simon Greene’s daughter, Paige, is on the run. She’s addicted to drugs and under the influence of her abusive boyfriend, Aaron. Her family has done everything humanly possible to help her, but they’ve finally accepted that there is nothing more they can do until Paige is ready to get clean.

But, on the sly, Simon, continues to search for his daughter. Following up on a tip, Simon spots Paige, but gets into a physical altercation with Aaron. Paige seizes the opportunity and runs away from Simon.

Not only that, the scuffle between Aaron and Simon is captured on video, leading to Simon’s arrest. He is then ostracized in the court of public opinion for ‘picking on a homeless guy’. Shortly, thereafter, Aaron is murdered.

So, guess who becomes suspect number one?

Coben’s novels, like those of Stephen King, or any other consistent NYT bestselling authors are pure pleasure reads for me. I seldom request ARCs from authors of this caliber because they don’t need the reviews or promotion in the same way other authors do. So, I usually wait for his books to show up at the library and feel no real urgency about getting my hot little hands on it. I just fit these in when and where I can, just for fun. That said, Coben is still one of my favorite suspense writers, and reading his clever thrillers are always a big treat.

I could tell from the very high ratings, this book was another well received effort by this author, but unfortunately, for me, this one was an uncharacteristic misstep.

Early in the novel the author employed a clever plot device which all but guaranteed my undivided attention and instantly forged my connection with Simon. As usual Coben held me in the palm of his hand, luring me deeper into his mesmerizing trap until….

Suddenly the plot veered off track with the introduction of an entirely new thread that seemed to have no bearing on Simon’s dilemma, which totally threw me. As this very strange thread expands, things got super weird, and I completely lost focus. Sadly, I never regained it.

One of the things that draws me to this author time and time again is his ability to challenge me. But, on this occasion, I easily met that challenge, piecing together key developments in advance, despite what I thought were some rather weak and obvious red herrings.

The big twists were effective, and strange enough to make me squirm in my seat a little, not because I was shocked, but because of how twisted and bizarre the scenario was.

Overall, I suppose one can tell I’m a bit disappointed in this one. It didn’t have to blow me away, but it at least needed to be up to par, which is wasn’t. However, it sufficed for a quick, pleasure read, and was entertaining enough to warrant a three -star rating.






With over 60 million books in print worldwide, Harlan Coben’s last seven consecutive novels, MISSING YOU, SIX YEARS, STAY CLOSE, LIVE WIRE, CAUGHT, LONG LOST and HOLD TIGHT all debuted at #1 on the New York Times bestseller list and lists around the world. His books are published in 43 languages around the globe.

Coben is the winner of the Edgar Award, Shamus Award and Anthony Award – the first author to win all three – and he has received an eclectic variety of honors from all over the world. His novel TELL NO ONE has been turned into a hit French film of the same name. His essays and columns have appeared in many top publications.

Harlan was born in Newark, New Jersey. He still lives in New Jersey with his wife, Anne Armstrong-Coben MD, a pediatrician, and their four children.

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