Monday, January 16, 2017

FADE AWAY by Harlan Coben

Harlan Coben’s Fade Away (1996) reminds me of how much I’ve changed.

When I was reading these back in the 1990s, the sexism and shallow values of many of the characters didn’t bother me. Now it does.

But still, I liked the book.

At first, the book seemed dated to me. Then it occurred to me that it is me who changed.

One of the characters nails it. “Folks always talking about the price of fame, but you wanna know the real price? Forget that privacy shit. So I don’t go out to the movies as much. Big fucking deal--where I came from you can’t afford to go anyway. The real price is you ain’t a person anymore. You’re just a thing, a shiny thing like one of those Benzes out there.” (T.C. Collins, New Jersey Dragons’ basketball superstar.)

The New Jersey Dragons part owner Clip Arnstein hires Myron Bolitar to find a missing star player Greg Downing. To cover up what is happening, Bolitar signs to play with the team.

Bolitar finds the body of a murdered woman, a 1960s left wing radical, who was blackmailing Downing. So now the question becomes who committed the murder? What is Greg’s part in all this?

Along the way, Bolitar learns about himself. He gets the full story of the devastating injury that ended his career. He learns a terrible secret. And he starts to face up to a truth he has avoided for years.

I still remember Esperanza, Big Cyndi, and Win, three defining characters in these books. And I still admire the way Coben keeps me reading (and guessing) to the end.

I checked out this book as a Kindle book from our local library. Also, I found out there are new Myron Bolitar books. (I thought the series ended years ago.)

So I will probably be checking in with Myron Bolitar again.

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