“The night they killed our neighbors, we never heard a thing.”
In a quiet suburban neighborhood, in a house only one door away, a family is brutally murdered for no apparent reason. And you think to yourself: It could have been us. And you start to wonder: What if we’re next?
Linwood Barclay, critically acclaimed author of No Time for Goodbye, brings terror closer than ever before in a thriller where murder strikes in the place we feel safest of all. 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. But not even Jim and Ellen are ready to know that their son was in the Langley house the night the family was murdered.
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.
Praise for Too Close to Home
“[Linwood] Barclay knows how to put ordinary people into extraordinarily dangerous circumstances. . . . Readers will zip through it with delight.”—Publishers Weekly
“[An] affecting and effective thriller.”—Wall Street Journal Review
Barclay's latest novel about ordinary people in extraordinary peril is filled with complications and coincidences that in a less propulsive thriller would push readers past the boundary of credibility. Christopher Lane adds a needed layer of reality to the yarn, giving each character unique shadow and substance. The novel's hero is a grass cutter named (oddly enough) Cutter, whose neighbor, a hotshot lawyer, is murdered along with his family. Lane provides Cutter with the voice of an educated, clever guy operating beneath his potential and rounds out the book's other characters, too Cutter's literary wife, his surly teenage son, a smarmy mayor, the arrogant dean of the local university and his Mafia-princess wife, a slow-talking mysterious stranger and assorted thugs and lawn-owners. A Bantam hardcover (Reviews, Aug. 11).
Enjoyed the plot but too much foul language.
The story started fast with lots of tension. A little predictable at times and excessive use of the F-word. I’ve read a few books by this author and loved them all so I’ll buy more hoping for less expletives.
Too Close to Cliche
As ever, Barclay constructs good plots, but this one is thin on character development.