A Harlan Coben Trifecta

Years ago, in 2016, I received a text from my aunt that said “The Five, on Netflix, watch it, you will love it!”. I didn’t hesitate in the slightest. To KNOW me is to really know me and she most definitely does! Terry (my aunt) and I share an affinity for a good mystery/psychological thriller and British Television. It was just from the little synopsis (this was before Netflix did the preview trailer), I knew I’d watch in one sitting, binge is the phrase now, I believe 😉

Not only did I binge, The Five, I proceeded to immediately find out if there were any other series out of this nature. I saw the name Harlan Coben in the title but at that time it didn’t occur to me to look into him any further. I just knew that I absolutely wanted more and I wanted it as soon as possible.

As Netflix continued to release them, I followed this trend into Safe, The Stranger, Gone for Good and Stay Close. When I tell you that by this point I was completely obsessed, that’s not an exaggeration, I was. For this genre, I couldn’t ask for better storytelling nor more compelling characters. The addition of phenomenal casting only added to my cravings for more! There are too many, wonderful names to list, but trust me, it’s incredible television!!

Last year, as I found my way back to my love of reading, I decided it was time to know the source material and Harlan Coben. So, I hit pause on watching the television series (I believe I’m now two behind) and started picking up the books. My first read was The Woods and I chased the daylight of the first days of my beach vacation with it. It was consumed at the same pace as the television shows, only breaking for the truly crucial of activities and I, again, found myself wanting more, and also wishing I’d gotten a basket of HC’s work instead of an assortment of other authors. No offense to them either, as their books were also enjoyable, I was just elated to add a new name to my ‘favorites’ list.

A few months ago, I chose another title, on Audible, so that I could have the trifecta of experiences. In fact, The Boy from the Woods was the entire reason I started this post draft in the first place. As I am learning in my own writing journey, when your instinct tells you that there is more to say, perhaps you should.

Here we are then, at so much more than an audio book review and a post prompted by a fan-girl moment earlier today.

Harlan Coben has become one of my favorite authors and one I have to find myself not binging all at one time because I don’t want to be left with nothing to read (lol). For me, there is something about his style that makes it easy for me to connect to. The first time he described the song one of his characters was listening to, I smiled because in that moment, it’s exactly how I’d have done it and it fit so well. In TBFTW, I adored the way Hester (in her 70’s) had moments of feeling like a teenager when it came to going on a potential date with a crush and the moments when Wilde had to completely withdraw into nature to find solace. I connected to both of those feelings and found them an anchor in the storm that was going on the background of the story.

Steven Weber (who I was first introduced to via the show WINGS) is a superb narrator and as I understand he works on just about all of the audio books, I am sure I will return to that method of partaking many times in the future.

What I have learned through this journey is that, above all, as fellow writer, I am going to support his written word first and, happily, fill my watch/listen list with the other two options! Speaking of written word, The Match is out in paperback!!!

If you are a fellow fan, go and add it to your collection! I know I will be!

Happy page turning :)~CC


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