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You're Next

You're Next

4.0 27
by Gregg Hurwitz

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Mike Wingate, abandoned by his father at four and raised in foster care, is finally living the life he always dreamed of—he's happily married with a precocious 8-year-old daughter, and his construction company is about to finish a "green" housing development that will secure a solid future for them all. But then something from his own past, a past he doesn't


Mike Wingate, abandoned by his father at four and raised in foster care, is finally living the life he always dreamed of—he's happily married with a precocious 8-year-old daughter, and his construction company is about to finish a "green" housing development that will secure a solid future for them all. But then something from his own past, a past he doesn't even remember, comes back to visit terror upon him and his family.

Shady characters begin threatening Mike and, when he reports them, the police seem more interested in Mike's murky past than in protecting him. Now, with Mike, his wife Annabel and daughter Kat suddenly under attack from all sides, Mike turns to Shep, a dangerous man—and Mike's only true friend— from his childhood days in foster care. Together they will do whatever it takes to protect Mike's family against the hidden men behind the terrifying warning, "You're Next."

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Hurwitz (They're Watching) masterfully provokes feelings of extreme dread in this thriller centered on Mike Wingate, who's worked his way up from the bottom to become a successful home contractor in Lost Hills, "a Valley community thirty miles northwest of downtown Los Angeles." Without warning, two thugs, William and Dodge, show up and begin threatening Mike; his beautiful wife, Annabel; and their environmentally aware eight-year-old daughter, Kat, in really creepy ways. William and Dodge sneak into the house and steal Kat's toys, harass Mike at a ceremony honoring him, go to Kat's school, and attack Annabel. Mike, who was raised in a foster home, summons his only friend from those days, the formidable Shep, who has grown up to be a career criminal of considerable skill. The thugs work for the mysterious Boss Man, whose intentions remain unknown until Shep and Mike fight and sleuth their way through intensifying mayhem until they find the unexpected answer to the Boss Man's motive. (July)
From the Publisher

“3 ½ (out of 4) stars!” —People

“A tour de force in all respects…You're Next has the sense of a writer scraping ambitiously for more, something great, and finding his way there in almost magical fashion. All great thrillers make you think, but this one makes you feel as well.” —Providence Journal

“An emotionally evocative, page-turning exploration of human corruption at its very worst. Chilling and riveting!” —Jonathan Kellerman

“A first-rate thriller.” —Library Journal (starred review)

“Gregg Hurwitz sets up a compelling puzzle…Readers will be satisfied with and surprised by the conspirators.” —USA Today

“Hurwitz starts the pressure early and never, never lets up.” —Cleveland Plain Dealer

“Masterful.” —Publishers Weekly

Library Journal
Someone recognizes Mike Wingate's picture in the newspaper and begins to destroy Mike's life. But why? Tagged a terrorist, Mike winds up on the run from the cops and a nasty crew. He and a friend from his foster home days follow a faint trail back to the surprising source of the plot. The bad guys are suitably evil and the mystery satisfying, but Hurwitz's (They're Watching) real success is depicting Mike's hard-won life as a husband, father, and successful businessman. A first-rate thriller. [Library marketing; see Prepub Alert, 1/24/11.]
Kirkus Reviews

In Hurwitz's (They're Watching, 2010, etc.) latest thriller, Mike Wingate learns it's no fun to confront a bad guy who watches C-SPAN to discover the technique of water-boarding.

Labeled Michael Doe by a jaded social-services worker after being abandoned by his father, who many suspect of having murdered his mother, Michael spends 14 years under the neglectfully benign foster care of Couch Mother. He meets stoic Shepherd White, another youngster tossed into the nobody-wants-these-kids jungle, who teaches Mike what matters in life are "loyalty and stamina." Mike earns Shep's undying loyalty by taking a rap for him just as Mike was ready to leave the system, saving Shep from a third strike. But that kept Mike from college. Shep became a safecracker extraordinaire. Mike became a laborer, then a foreman, then the developer of green housing. Mike also married Annabel, daughter of a lawyer who never learned to respect Mike. But life is good, complete with a beautiful little girl, Kat, who shares Mike's trait of one brown eye, one amber. Mike is photographed shaking hands with the governor while celebrating Mike's green development. Mike doesn't realize it, but the distinctive eyes, identical to his mother's, mean he has rights of inheritance to a multibillion-dollar industry. The "Boss Man" sees the photo and sends his killers. The action begins. Stolen cars. Knifings. Shootings. Mike slowly begins to realize why he is a target, and worse, why his daughter Kat is also in jeopardy. Enter Shep, with his underworld skills. What follows is a danger-filled trek around the Golden State. Along the way, Mike and Shep encounter a mystery surrounding an extinct Indian tribe; learn why Mike's mother died and father disappeared; and battle William and Dodge, assassins for hire, to a bloody but sentimental conclusion.

A thriller that grabs readers by the seat of the pants and gives them a Wow, what next! action thrill ride.

Product Details

St. Martin's Press
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Read an Excerpt

Chapter 1

Mike lay in the darkness, his gaze fixed on the baby monitor on the nightstand. He had to be up in three hours, but sleep wasn’t coming any easier than it usually did. A blowfly had been circling the bedroom at irregular intervals as if to ensure his continued alertness. His mother used to say that a blowfly in the house meant that evil was stalking the family—one of the only things he remembered about her.
He took a moment to catalog some less morbid memories from his early years. The few imprints he’d retained were little more than sensory flashes. The scent of sage incense in a yellow-tiled kitchen. His mother bathing him. How her skin always seemed tan. Her smell, like cinnamon.
The red light bars fanned up on the monitor. A crackle of static. Or was that Kat coughing?
He nudged the volume down so as not to wake Annabel, but she shifted around beneath the sheets, then said hoarsely, “Honey, there’s a reason they call it a babymonitor.”
“I know. I’m sorry. I thought I heard something.”
“She’s eight years old. And more mature than either of us. If she needs something, she’ll march in here and announce it.”
It was an old argument, and Annabel was right, so he muted the volume and lay morosely staring at the damn thing, unable to click it off altogether. A little plastic unit that held a parent’s worst fears. Choking. Illness. Intruders.
Usually the sounds were just interference or crossover noise from other frequencies—a charge in the air or the neighbor’s toddler snuffling from a cold. Sometimes Mike even heard voices in the rush of white noise. He swore there were ghosts in the thing. Murmurs from the past. It was a portal to your half-conscious mind, and you could read into its phantom whisper whatever you wanted.
But what if he turned it off and this proved to be the night Kat did need them? What if she awakened terrified and disoriented from a nightmare, sudden paralysis, the blowfly’s evil spell, and lay stricken for hours, trapped alone with her fear? How do you choose the first night to take that risk?
In the early hours, logic and reason seemed to fall asleep before he did. Everything seemed possible in the worst kind of way.
He finally started to drift off, but then the blowfly took another loop around the night-light, and a moment later the red bars flared again on the muted unit. Kat crying out?
He sat up and rubbed his face.
“She’s fine,” Annabel groaned.
“I know, I know.” But he got up and padded down the hall.
Kat was out cold, one slender arm flung across a stuffed polar bear, her mouth ajar. Chestnut hair framed her serious face. She had her mother’s wide-set eyes, pert nose, and generous lower lip; given her looks and whip-smart demeanor, it was sometimes hard to tell whether Kat was an eight-year-old version of Annabel or Annabel a thirty-six-year-old version of Kat. The one trait that Kat had received from Mike was at least an obvious one—one brown eye, one amber. Heterochromia, they called it. As for her curls, who knew where she got those?
Mike leaned over her, listened for the whistle of breath. Then he sat in the glider chair in the corner and watched his daughter. He felt a stab of pride about the childhood he and Annabel had given her, the sense of security that let her sleep so soundly.
“Babe.” Annabel stood in the doorway, shoving her lank hair off her forehead. She wore a Gap tank top and his boxers and looked as good in them as she had a decade before on their honeymoon. “Come to bed. Tomorrow’s a huge day for you.”
“Be there in a moment.”
She crossed, and they kissed quietly, and then she trudged off to bed again.
The movement of the glider was hypnotic, but his thoughts kept circling back to the unresolved business of the coming day. After a time he realized he wasn’t going to be able to sleep, so he went into the kitchen and made a pot of coffee. Back in the chair, sipping contentedly from his mug, he soaked in the pale yellow walls, the raft of dolls on the floating shelf, his daughter in angelic repose. The only interruption was the occasional buzz from the blowfly, which had stalked him down the hall.

Copyright © 2011 by Gregg Hurwitz


Meet the Author

Gregg Hurwitz is the author of a number of critically acclaimed thrillers, including They're Watching, Trust No One, The Crime Writer and Troubleshooting. International bestsellers, his novels have been finalists for several awards, including the Crime Writers of America Ian Fleming Steel Dagger and the ITW Best Novel of the Year awards. In addition to his novels, he has also written comic books and screenplays, developed television series for Warner Brothers and Lakeshore, published scholarly articles on Shakespeare, and is currently a consulting producer on ABC's "V." He has taught fiction at the University of Southern California and guest lectured for UCLA and Harvard. Hurwitz grew up in the Bay Area and earned his B.A. from Harvard and a master's from Trinity College at Oxford. He lives in Los Angeles, California.

GREGG HURWITZ is the New York Times bestselling author of numerous thrillers including You’re Next and Orphan X. Critically acclaimed, Hurwitz is a two-time finalist for ITW’s Best Novel prize and a finalist for CWA’s Steel Dagger. In addition to his novels, Hurwitz is a screenwriter, TV producer, and comic book author. The first book in the Evan Smoak series, Orphan X, has been sold in twenty-one countries. Hurwitz, who lives in Los Angeles, is writing the screenplay adaption of Orphan X for Warner Brothers and Bradley Cooper.

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You're Next 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 27 reviews.
KenCady More than 1 year ago
Having recently read Trust No One and They're Watching, two of the author's previous works, my advice to him is to slow down. Perhaps writing so many books thins the herd. I loved Trust No One, and really liked They're Watching. But, You're Next pales in comparison to the first. It was hard to care much for the characters, although I did like the bond between Mike and Shep. But the story was pretty hokey, as if the author was out of good ideas. So, take a rest. We can wait for What's Next.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Gregg Hurwitz is an extremely good story teller. This one is about a man and his family who are subjected to almost unbearable pressure, with the pressure starting when the man is 4 years old! The suspense is almost too much to bear at times, and the feeling of being utterly lost is intense. It ends up as a story of a man and his 8 year old daughter, and his foster brother, and their relationship. It is a must read for anyone who can withstand extremely emotional situations.
gramgramSG More than 1 year ago
My first time reading Hurwitz! Fast pace, twist and turns! An excellent read! My new best mystery writer! You will not be disappointed!
scrapbooker56DM More than 1 year ago
This book kept me reading until the very end.
Juneleo More than 1 year ago
This book is definitely a page turner. Twists and good character development.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Fast paced, and interesting read. Likable characters.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is a fantastic, very suspenseful book! I could not put it down! Definitely a must-read if you are looking for a suspense/mystery novel that is action-packed and will keep you on the edge of your seat
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This story will keep you on an emotional rollercoaster with tears running down your face!!! A MUST read!
harstan More than 1 year ago
After being abandoned as a pre-school aged child and growing up in foster care, Mike Wingate has worked his way up from the ooze below the ladder of success to the top. He lives with his wife Annabel and their eight years old daughter Kat in Lost Hills near Los Angeles and runs a profitable contracting business. The Boss Man sends two of his thugs William and Dodge to Lost Hills and threatens the Wingate family. They steal Kat's toys go the child's school to cause mischief, harass Mike and assault Annabel. The police ignore the two punks instead blaming Mike for something he must have done in his past. Mike turns to his only friend from foster care Shep the dangerous criminal. They take the fight to the two predators and their boss. Although at first the assaults seem over the top of the Sierras (even to Mike), once he and Shep learn why the Boss Man sent his thugs, readers and Mike will know this super thriller is grounded. Fast-paved from the first attack to the final confrontation as Mike learns what lies and avarice can do to am unsuspecting person and his loved ones. Harriet Klausner
Anonymous 11 months ago
Story begins when a father leaves his child in a school playground with the promise that "he will return ." He is found in the schoolyard and ultimately placed in the foster parent system. There he comes to the aid of another foster child and so begins the story that has life long ramifications. J M Lydon
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
In middle of book now and its a rollercoaster great read can hardly put down
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I've never read any of this authors books before but this was pretty good! I'm a James Patterson fan and he's really hard to beat!
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Good suspense and well written. Much better than expected.
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