“No Time for Goodbye” by Linwood Barclay

After having a fight with her parents, fourteen year old Cynthia Bigge wakes up to find her entire family has mysterious vanished without a trace.  Twenty-five years later, the mystery of just what happened to them remains unsolved, leading Cynthia to agree to a segment on a popular reality show in the hopes of finding a few answers about the past that haunts her.

Following the show’s airing, a series of mysterious events begins to occur including a mysterious car following her daughter, a fedora just like her father’s showing up in the house and the suspicious death of a family member after talking to a private eye Cynthia hired to give her some closure. 

“No Time For Goodbye” has all the pieces that should make for a fun and entertaining thriller but is ultimately let down by its execution.  For one thing, the story is told from her husband’s point of view, allowing us little or not access into what Cynthia thinks or feels beyond the prologue establishing the events.  There are also a variety of red-herrings and poorly explored side avenues in the story that rob the momentum Lindwood Barclay is trying to create at critical points.

And that’s even before we get to the ending.  It’s a Hollywood thriller type of ending, with random bits coming together in unconvincing ways that strain crediblity and will leave you with a sour taste in your mouth once the last page is turned.  Yes, Cynthia gets some closure, but as a reader I was left wanting something more than what I got.

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Filed under mystery, review

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