158. Fear the Worst by Linwood Barclay

Fear the Worst by Linwood Barclay

Pages: 399
Ages: 18+
Finished: Aug. 31, 2009
First Published: Aug. 11, 2009
Genre: mystery, suspense
Rating: 4/5

First sentence:

The morning of the day I lost her, my daughter asked me to scramble her some eggs.

Read the first five chapters for free!

Reason for Reading: Last year I read and enjoyed Barclay's Too Close to Home so much I just had to read his newest book. I received a review copy from Random House. Qualifies for the Canadian Book Challenge. Qualifies for the RIP IV Challenge.

Comments: One day Tim Blake's 17yo daughter Syd goes off to work her summer job as per usual but she doesn't come home. Since they had a spat that morning he gives her some leeway thinking she's angry and not calling to say she's working late but once plenty of time has gone by he drops by the hotel she's been working at all summer to find out that they've never heard of her, she hasn't worked there at all. And thus begins the worst journey of Tim's life as he searches for his missing daughter finding out about a dark and dangerous world he'd never known existed and also finding out that the police are not always on your side.

Wonderful book. First, a very different type of story than Too Close to Home, which is closer to my usual murder mystery genre. This one would be classified more as a suspense and I could very much see it as a being made into a movie. The plot isn't exactly fast-paced as it is pretty much one theme all along, the search for Sydney, or rather the chase. However, there is so much action happening all the time that the book does move along at a fast past. The twists and turns and reveals that are thrown regularly at the reader at any point in the story keeps the suspense and tension high, as one doesn't know what is going to happen next or who is not really whom they seem to be. From the two books I've read, I'm seeing this as Barclay's forte as an author. I look forward to reading more of his books.

I enjoy Barclay's writing. He keeps a tight, taut thriller with plenty of possible chances for the reader to figure it out but with all the twists from start to finish you'll be lucky to completely solve the intricate plot on your own. I had my eye on a suspect from the beginning but what they were guilty of I hadn't a clue, I was right in the end, but not very proud of simply picking out a guilty person. The only thing I'm not pleased with is the ending. The mystery plot itself is wrapped up nicely but it ends with the characters and it's a "what the?" ending. It's very abrupt and seeing as where the characters' plot was going, disappointing. Not a nice note, for me at least, to end a book on. If you've read the book you'll know what I mean. If you haven't don't let that stop you reading the book. Books don't always have "happily ever after" endings and this one is worth the ride. Looking forward to dipping into Barclay's backlist and hopefully a new book in the new year (2010)!

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  1. Nearly all the reviews I've seen of this book say the same thing about the ending. This book is on my desk waiting to be read, and I'm looking forward to it. I just hope I'm not too disappointed by the ending.

    Diary of an Eccentric

  2. I haven't tried anything by this author, but it looks like I ought to. You've got me curious about the ending now!

  3. I really enjoyed this one. I want to "dip into Barclay's backlist" as well. :)

  4. I just finished the book and I honestly think the publisher left out the last page. The last line is at the very bottom of the page and would seem to continue on the next page, but there's nothing there. I look forward to a second printing to see if anything changes.


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