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  • Apr 18, 2014
  • Updated: 10:25pm

Too Close to Home

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 27 September, 2009, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 27 September, 2009, 12:00am

Too Close to Home
by Linwood Barclay Orion, HK$114

Linwood Barclay may sound like a fugitive from Wuthering Heights but in fact he is a Canadian writer whose previous novel, No Time for Goodbye, received an enormous sales boost from British television's Richard & Judy Book Club. Although the R&J effect seems to be rapidly on the wane, it hasn't stopped Barclay: Too Close to Home has already hit several No1 spots across the world. It is not hard to see why. Like Jodi Picoult, he produces meaty, genre-defying narratives with irresistible premises. Here, a family of three (the Langleys) is murdered in the beatific surroundings of Promise Falls in upstate New York. As the investigation proceeds (led by the less than brilliant Barry Duckworth), it becomes apparent that the intended victims were the Langleys' neighbours, the Cutter family. But who would want to kill the Cutters? Is it because of the father, Jim, a bodyguard who once worked for the hated mayor? Could it be Ellen, who organises that famous corrupter of all things good, the literary festival? Or is it their son Derek, who finds a best-selling porn novel on an abandoned computer? If the final twist is a slight disappointment, it is a rare low point in a gripping story.

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