A Tap on the Window

A Tap on the Window

4.2 23
by Linwood Barclay
     
 

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One of the Boston Globe's Best Crime Novels of the Year!
One of Suspense Magazine's Best Books of 2013!


Since private investigator Cal Weaver’s teenage son died in a tragic accident, Cal and his wife have drifted apart. Cal is mired in a grief he can’t move past. And maybe his grief has clouded hisSee more details below

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Overview

One of the Boston Globe's Best Crime Novels of the Year!
One of Suspense Magazine's Best Books of 2013!


Since private investigator Cal Weaver’s teenage son died in a tragic accident, Cal and his wife have drifted apart. Cal is mired in a grief he can’t move past. And maybe his grief has clouded his judgment.

Driving home one night, a rain-drenched girl taps on his car window and asks for a ride. He knows a grown man picking up a teenage hitchhiker is foolish—but he lets her in. Cal soon senses that something’s not right with the girl or the situation. But it’s too late. He’s already involved.

Drawn into a nightmare of secrets, lies, and cover-ups in his small, upstate New York town, Cal knows that the only thing that can save him is the truth. And he’s about to expose the town’s secrets one by one—if he lives long enough.

 

Editorial Reviews

The New York Times Book Review - Marilyn Stasio
…a killer of a thriller.
Publishers Weekly
Early in this intricately plotted stand-alone from Arthur Ellis Award–winner Barclay (Trust Your Eyes), middle-aged PI Cal Weaver hesitates to pick up a teenage girl hitchhiking one evening outside a bar in Griffon, N.Y., just across the Canadian border. He decides to give her a ride after she says she was a friend of Cal’s teenage son, Scott, who died a few months earlier while under the influence of ecstasy. The girl, who gives only her first name, Claire, soon feels sick, so he pulls over at a burger place he knows. The girl who returns to his car resembles Claire, but is not Claire. When confronted, the second teen demands to be let out. The next day both girls are missing, and Cal feels honor bound to find them. To complicate things, Claire turns out to be Claire Sanders, the daughter of Griffon’s mayor. Barclay offers one surprise after another in a mystery that unfolds with the mundane heroism and tragedy of a local news story. Agent: Helen Heller, Helen Heller Agency (Canada). (Aug.)
From the Publisher
“A suspense master.”—Stephen King

“A killer of a thriller.” —The New York Times Book Review

“This tap on the window is worth answering.” —The Associated Press

“A smart whodunit with satisfying twists and turns. Mystery buffs couldn’t ask for more.”—Kirkus Reviews

“Fast-paced, spine-tingling plots have long been a staple of Barclay’s domestic thrillers, and his latest installment doesn’t disappoint.”—Library Journal (starred review)

 

Library Journal
Shortly after the apparent drug-fueled suicide of their teenage son, Scott, Cal and Donna Weaver each deal with their grief in their own way, neither able to close the growing chasm that has formed between them. While Donna finds comfort in her artwork and in trying to create a perfect impression of her son, Cal uses his skills as a private investigator to track down the people he feels are responsible for his son’s death, albeit indirectly. However, Cal’s search for justice is sidelined when, while stopped at a light on a rainy night, he picks up a teenage hitchhiker, Claire, and becomes an unwitting participant in her ploy. When Claire disappears, Cal’s subsequent quest to find her leads him down an unexpected path to uncover secrets long held by some of the residents of his seemingly sterling hometown of Griffon.

Verdict Fast-paced, spine-tingling plot twists have long been a staple of Barclay’s (Trust Your Eyes) domestic thrillers, and his latest installment does not disappoint. Writing primarily from the first-person perspective, Barclay paints character portraits that are strikingly lifelike and entirely believable. Although the story runs a bit long, the surprising tidbits that are revealed at key points keep the reader engrossed to the very end.—Natasha Grant, New York
(c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Kirkus Reviews
2013-09-01
Atmospheric tale of small-town mayhem by Toronto-based mystery writer Barclay (Trust Your Eyes, 2012, etc.). Barclay may live over the line, but he's got a fondness for upstate New York, especially that within earshot of Niagara Falls, where bad guys can dump their victims and watch them bob in the waves just for grins. It takes a certain sadistic type to do so, of course. Check: Barclay's got one. Maybe more than one, given the strong-arm ways of the local gendarmerie. The story takes off with a start from the get-go, when private investigator Cal Weaver, lost in a depressed fog since the death of his son, picks up a hitchhiker who claims to have been a friend of the boy--and perhaps more. Bad idea, picking up a young woman in the rain, but that's where that insistent tap on the window comes in, and that's where things begin to go haywire. Suffice it to say that by the end of the tale, there's a pile of bodies to account for ("You don't think he did it," says his wife of one suspect. "I don't," Cal replies. "But I've been wrong before"), and Barclay has skillfully hidden the identity of the perp behind a couple of barrels' worth of red herrings. Barclay turns in a taut procedural. His prose is often relaxed, even conversational; "It struck me that she was dressed for much colder weather than we were currently having" lacks the smart-alecky zinginess of a Raymond Chandler, but it's also exactly the sort of thing a real-live gumshoe on a cooling trail might think. A smart whodunit with satisfying twists and turns. Mystery buffs couldn't ask for more.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781101623442
Publisher:
Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
08/06/2013
Sold by:
Penguin Group
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
512
Sales rank:
23,281
File size:
2 MB
Age Range:
18 Years

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From the Publisher
“A suspense master.”—Stephen King

“A killer of a thriller.” —The New York Times Book Review

“This tap on the window is worth answering.” —The Associated Press

“A smart whodunit with satisfying twists and turns. Mystery buffs couldn’t ask for more.”—Kirkus Reviews

“Fast-paced, spine-tingling plots have long been a staple of Barclay’s domestic thrillers, and his latest installment doesn’t disappoint.”—Library Journal (starred review)

 

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