Promise Falls isn’t the kind of community where a family is shot to death in their own home. But that is exactly what happened to the Langleys one sweltering summer night, and no one in this small upstate New York town is more shocked than their next-door neighbors, Jim and Ellen Cutter. They visited for the occasional barbecue, and their son, Derek, was friends with the Langleys’ boy, Adam; but how well did they really know their neighbors? That’s the question Jim Cutter is asking, and the answers he’s getting aren’t reassuring.
Albert Langley was a successful, well-respected criminal lawyer, but was he so good at getting criminals off that he was the victim of revenge? A debt his innocent family also paid in blood? From the town’s criminally corrupt mayor to the tragic suicide of a talented student a decade before, Promise Falls has more than its share of secrets. And Jim Cutter, failed artist turned landscaper, need look no further than his own home and his wife Ellen’s past to know that things aren’t always what they seem. Suddenly the Cutters must face the unthinkable: that a murderer isn’t just stalking too close to home but is inside it already. For the Langleys weren’t the first to die and they won’t be the last.
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Linwood Barclay’s novels reminds me a lot of Harlan Coben’s novels. They typically follow a male protagonist, who is married with a beautiful wife and they have 1-3 kids. The lead has some minor faults, but overall they are your typical average nice guy. A murder happens and they end up getting involved and eventually take down the killer.
The biggest problem for me was that I felt like I had already read this novel because it follows a typical pattern. I was disappointed that nothing really shocked me, including who the killer was.
I also didn’t enjoy the characters. You had Jim, who was your average lead. I felt that he was suppose to be this super great guy, but I couldn’t connect with him. I hated Jim’s wife Ellen, she just seemed super shady and you could tell that she was hiding something. Derek, their son, was ok. I liked how the first chapter was from his point of view so you got to know more about him and his actions. I also didn’t like how the Cutter’s could of solved a lot of their problems by just talking to each other. Instead, stuff happens and then they would reveal their secrets.
2 calculators out of a potential 5. Meh just not the book for me.