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Live Wire (Myron Bolitar) Hardcover – March 22, 2011
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From Publishers Weekly
Starred Review. Edgar-winner Coben's 10th Myron Bolitar novel (after Long Lost) is a perfect 10: providing readers with new information about the past of the former athlete turned agent and owner of MB Reps; a satisfyingly complex mystery; and the always entertaining, sometimes shocking exploits of Bolitar's partner and friend, Windsor Horne Lockwood III (aka Win). Suzze Tervantino, a former tennis prodigy and one of Bolitar's first clients, visits his New York office and shows him a Facebook posting that suggests that her husband, rock star Lex Ryder, isn't the father of the child she's carrying. When Ryder, also a client of MB Reps, disappears, Suzze begs Bolitar to find him. In the process, Bolitar catches a glimpse of his sister-in-law, Kitty, at a crowded nightclub, and begins a search for her and his estranged younger brother, Brad, whom he hasn't seen for 16 years. This explosively fast thriller will leave fans clamoring for more. (Mar.)
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Coben, who has perfected the techno-thriller, in which social media tools are used in ingeniously devious ways (Hold Tight, 2008), has won the trifecta of mystery awards: the Edgar, the Shamus, and the Anthony�and is the only writer to have such a clutch at his command. Here, he returns to his humble roots and resurrects his sports agent and sleuth Myron Bolitar, who appeared in Coben�s debut, Deal Breaker, in 1995, and has starred in nine other novels. Coben may be a little too fond of Bolitar; over the years, he has transformed him from a struggling New Jersey sports agent to a wildly successful superagent who handles all forms of entertainment and, bad news for the reader, is now given to self-indulgent introspection, rumination, and endless dialogue with his sidekick, Win. This overwriting changes the Bolitar novel from spare and lively to a flabby 350-plus pager. A prime example of this work�s need for a less-indulgent author (or editor) is the cringe-inducing scene in which Win appears with two Asian beauties, named Mee and Yu. Bolitar and Win carry on with sophomoric puns and a forecast of sexual activity that is supposed to be hilarious but reads as incredibly insensitive. The plot is fairly standard, involving a client whose husband disappears, with a link to Bolitar�s sister-in-law and estranged brother. Bracing action, a Coben staple, is bogged down by bloated writing. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Coben takes a literary misstep with his return to series character Myron Bolitar, but his name-brand status ensures an audience. --Connie Fletcher
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These tasks are not especially daunting for someone with Myron's skills and resources. But one thing leads to another, people get killed, and all sorts of amazing secrets are revealed.
There's a lot of family drama. Myron's father is having problems with his heart again. Myron's younger brother has disappeared, and Myron is desperate to find him and patch up past differences. And Myron gets to meet his nephew Mickey for the first time in a rather dramatic fashion. In the Myron Bolitar books, the emotional impact is as intense as the action is fierce.
The plot is intricate, clever and full of surprises I never saw coming.
Myron's friend Win is great character, as always, with his annoying upper crust looks and mannerisms, his lethal fighting skills, and his astonishing ability to arrive just in time whenever Myron is on the verge of getting slaughtered.
There's always plenty of humor going, too, between Myron's dorky quips and Win's snobby witticisms. Win's conversations with gagsters are especially entertaining in this book.
Following the adventures of Myron, Win, family and friends through this series has been immensely entertaining. I highly recommend the experience.
Some of Bolitar's early clients reappear, as well: teen tennis stars Suzze T and Kitty (also Myron's sister-in-law). Suzze needs Myron to locate her missing husband Lex, second fiddle of the rock duo Horsepower. Myron's almost pitiable need to make things right leads him on an odyssey to find his estranged brother. Along the way, buried truths are exposed putting all the characters into mortal danger.
Myron fans will find LIVE WIRE irresistible at any price. Could this be the last in the series?
On the down side, I am not a fan of long lost siblings who suddenly appear out of the blue, especially after ten Myron Bolitar books. Also, this book got off to a bit of a slow start and there was an air of finality to the ending so we may not be seeing much more of Myron and Win. My problems with the book were not that major but compared to the rest of Harlan Coben's books like Caught this novel fell short. To me, it just felt forced and a way to wrap up a series that, up until now had popped and sizzled and this one steams. But, for Coben fans this is still a must read and it still kept me up late into the night.
If he writes a book, I read it. So this four-star rating is more of a comparison with other books he's written than with other novels in the genre.
Unlike most people, I don't like rock and roll and I don't like team sports. I say this because despite the fact that LIVE WIRE makes a lot of references to both, I still related intensely with the characters even during the numerous descriptions of team sporting events and rock.
Harlan Coben has a way of really pulling at your emotion strings. He's also very funny. At times, I found myself laughing louder than I do when I watch FAMILY GUY.
All books leave me with a certain aftertaste. Sometimes I just feel good. Other times, I feel inspired. On a few occasions (never with anything Coben has written), I feel ripped off because the promise of the first chapter was never fulfilled. If I'm reading a thriller, I want a great deal of suspense, twists, and surprises. LIVE WIRE has all three, but not as much as with some of Harlan Coben books. I also need to care. LIVE WIRE made me care. A lot. Like with other books of this caliber, it was hard as hell to put down.
But if I had one word to describe the feeling I was left with after reading this novel, it would be "sad." And it's fine to feel sad, if that's what you're expecting. I wasn't, and that's why I'm only giving LIFE WIRE four stars.
Their appeal has always been interesting because the characters are so far over the top, from Win the preppie stone killer/investment whiz to Esperanza/Little Pocahantas, Bolitar partner and former professional wrestler. The cast may be strange but it is also endearing. In Live Wire Win does a star turn before (like so many other characters in this book) disappearing. This is an important book for those seeking more information about Myron's family history and it introduces Mickey/Myron who will have, it appears, a series of his own, written for young adults.
Solid fare from Harlan Coben; don't miss it.
Most recent customer reviews
Story slow to evolve. Rather boring.
The book kept you wondering what was going to happen next.Read more