Posts Tagged ‘eyes wide open’
Jay Erlick’s life has been a text book example of success. His brother Charlie’s life has been messy from the start. Charlie drifted away from his family and into the hippy culture of the sixties until he eventually gets caught up in a fringe cult led by a charismatic leader with a psychopathic personality. Fast forward a few decades and Jay’s life is still text book perfect while Charlie has put the past behind him, married and has a family. And then tragedy strikes. Charlie’s son is found at the bottom of a cliff assumed to be a suicide victim. Heading west to help his brother deal with the loss of his son, Jay immediately realizes there is more to the death than a suicide. Could his nephew have been murdered? And is there something in Charlie’s wild past that has come back, after all these years, to haunt Charlie? Jay soon realizes he knows little about his brother’s past.
The plotting of this book will come as no surprise to readers. The basic story formula is one that has been used countless times with variations in setting, characters’ back story and eventual outcome. There is a death of an innocent person under suspicious circumstances, family members are looking for answers, the past comes into play and there is a breakneck paced rush to the finale between the hunter and hunted. Whether this formula works or not is entirely dependent on the skill of the writer to craft the tale in such a way as to keep the suspense building and the pages turning until the end. Author Gross does this just about as well as any suspense writer around. Readers pretty much know what’s coming-or at least they think they do, but even with the boogie man on the other side of the door (or in this case the next page) they are driven to go there and go there quickly. Gross does this mainly through the use of very short chapters with teasing endings that just dare the reader to try and put the book down-and of course they can’t. Read the rest of this entry »
Another terrific story by Andrew Gross who seemingly had his writing career boosted to stardom by writing several books in collaboration with James Patterson. In “Eyes Wide Open” Jay Erlich, a physician had a wonderful family. Kathy was his wife and they had two grown children. Unfortunately, Jay had an older half-brother, Charley, who was not a good family man. Yes, he was married and had a son, Evan, who had to be on medication to make life near normal. Charley had moved to California but his life was always in turmoil. Jay received a phone call from a distressed Charley who had received the word that Evan had committed suicide jumping from high rocks. Charley, in his usual stupor, did not think that Evan had taken his own life and he pleaded with Jay to come to California and help him get to the truth. Jay didn’t know if Charley knew what he was talking about or not but he reluctantly went after promising Kathy that he would only stay a day or two and would then return home.
Upon Jay’s arrival he learned all he could about the entire situation, not knowing what the truth was. Jay turned to Detective Don Sherwood who was handling the case for the coroner’s office. After hearing the detective’s description of what occurred, Jay had his doubts that this was a suicide and determined that he would dig into things. The detective said it is possible that it was not suicide but all he could go by was the coroners report. The first clue was the fact that the home Evan had been assigned to for his rehab released him in only one day, certainly not enough time for any rehab. This only made Jay dig deeper. The deeper Jay got into the investigation the more he suspected that something else dreadful had caused Evan’s death, not a suicide. Read the rest of this entry »
Evan Erlich’s body has been found at the bottom of a cliff. It appeared he jumped from a rock and committed suicide. Evan’s father, Charlie, called his brother, Jay, to tell him the news. Although the two brothers have not seen each other in years, Jay knew he had to leave his medical practice and go to his brother at this difficult time.
Charlie and his wife informed Jay of Evan’s many problems. They had him committed but the institution released him. Charlie, on the other hand, is no angel. He has a past that involved drugs and many other things. In the 1970’s Charlie had links to cultist murderer Russell Houvnanian.
After investigating, Jay is convinced that Evan’s death was not a suicide. Could Evan’s death be related to Charlie’s past? Jay soon finds himself involved in a cluster of lies, secrets and danger.
Will Jay be able to find out if Evan’s death was really a suicide or something much more? Read the rest of this entry »