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Play Dead by Harlan Coben

Play DeadReviewed by Allen Hott

An older Coben mystery but still great reading. Pretty much as usual he has tied the characters into basketball but along with that approach he has integrated a love story and also a really intriguing murder mystery.

Play Dead opens with a prologue telling of a meeting between several people who appear to be arguing. That prologue ends with a gunshot and then the story begins to unfold. Not with the gunshot and possible murder. At least not yet. Oh no, Coben then weaves in the love story and explains how Celtics basketball star David Baskin and Laura Ayars are enjoying their honeymoon in Australia.

Sadly however that honeymoon turns out very badly as David supposedly is drowned while out swimming. Laura is devastated. After a period of mourning and self-pity she returns to her business where she is the CEO of a large fashion house which she had founded some years ago. One of her top models, Serita, as a major player in the company and Laura’s closest friend, begins to do everything possible to get Laura away from the sadness and on with her life.
Several strange things happen which all seem connected to David’s death. Shortly after his drowning someone took a large sum of money from his bank account and moved it offshore. And about the same time David’s older brother, Stan, shows up supposedly to mourn the death. The truth of the matter is that Stan and David never got along. Stan has lived a completely different life with lots of gambling, women, and little money. He is however very persuasive with the ladies and he begins his own systematic endeavor to work his way into Laura’s life through Laura’s sister. The sister, Gloria, has recently been saved from a terrible life of drugs, sex, and attempted suicide. Read the rest of this entry »

Play Dead by Harlan Coben

Reviewed by Vickie Dailey

Play Dead by Harlan CobenThis book is fantastic. It is filled with great plot twists. As we learn from the author in the Note: This book was written 20 years ago as his first novel (remained unpublished until now) and he resisted updating the book to today’s time. This may be why the book is filled with such energy.

The story revolves around Laura (former model) and champion basketball player David. While eloping to Australia, David tragically drowns. Laura is heartbroken and cannot stop thinking about David.
For reasons not even known to herself, she starts delving into David’s life to try and make sense of his death. Unfortunately, this stirs up the past and people start dying. With the help of her sister Gloria and several others. Luara starts to put the pieces together.

Enter Mark Sneidman – new all-star basketball player that plays remarkably like David. Gloria’s new boyfriend Stan (David’s brother) and a Boston Celtics game, one person decides the truth from the past must be told.

The author offers several likely murder suspects – with a climactic end. Read the rest of this entry »