Book Review: Tell No One by Harlan Coben

Tell No One
Harlan Coben

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Dr. David Beck’s life fell apart eight years ago when his wife Elizabeth was taken by strangers. Even though a serial killer sits in prison, Beck can’t move on. He trudges through life and work as a pediatrician in a low-income New York neighborhood. The years have passed, but how can he let go of his best friend and sweetheart?

When Beck receives a computer message, he’s certain it’s from Elizabeth because it’s about something only she would know. But there’s a warning: “Tell no one.”

Readers are in for a wild ride as Beck tries to make sense of this message and later instructions. Set in New Jersey, New York and parts of Pennsylvania, the story revolves around Beck, his sister Linda and her partner, plus-size supermodel Shauna, as well as Elizabeth’s cop family. Added to the mix is the powerful billionaire, Griffin Scope, a third-generation rich guy. Scope is consumed by avenging the death of his golden-boy son Brandon and by preserving Brandon’s good-works charitable foundation, headed, coincidently, by Linda.

Several messages later, Beck is certain Elizabeth is still alive. He needs help and turns to Shauna. Shauna keeps him grounded, but events get out of hand when Beck becomes a wanted man for murder.

Coben leads the reader through the preliminaries, then adds a great variety of side characters, including my favorite, the conflicted Tyrese Barton and the unknowable bad guy Eric Wu, someone you don’t want to meet in an alley. Other characters with questionable morality, but a sliver of conscience make this story more than just a thriller, but an interesting character study.

In addition to an exciting plot, Coben’s writing style is full of dry humor as well as many laugh-out-loud moments, as Beck somehow escapes certain death, more than once.

Just as in an action movie, Tell No One is a terrific, fast-moving suspense, with twists and turns to the final page. I recommend this book to readers who enjoy reading about the battle between good and evil in a highly entertaining story.

And if you like watching action movies, Tell No One was adapted to the screen in the French film of the same name. Read all about it here.

I’ve read four other books by Harlan Coben. Follow the links to read my reviews:

Caught, Run Away, Don’t Let Go and Fool Me Once

Thanks for visiting – come back soon!

12 thoughts on “Book Review: Tell No One by Harlan Coben

  1. While I was reading your post, I kept thinking, “I know I’ve read this one, haven’t I?” But it didn’t sound completely familiar. Then I saw your bit about it being made into a French movie which I saw and really liked. Mystery solved!

    1. Haha! I just found out about the movie yesterday. We have it at the library and I’ll probably watch it eventually. Did you like it? Thanks for stopping by and commenting. Happy reading and movie watching to you, Carrie!

  2. I love Coben’s writing style, but I haven’t read this one yet. Thanks for the terrific review. Any idea how many books a Kindle can hold? I might be reaching the limit! 🙂

    1. Hi Jill! I’ve read one other – Home and I also like his style. This one was a good one. I bet you still have room on your Kindle! 😉 Thanks for reading and commenting. Have a great night!

    1. Hi Jacqui – this is my second. I thought it was very entertaining, but I think when you read a lot of books (especially mysteries) by one author, you begin to see a pattern. I jump around a lot so that helps. Have a great weekend!

  3. I am a great fan of Harlan Coben’s books. I’ve read and loved this one, too. They’re all so similar and yet so different. I love his love sick heroes who go to extreme lengths to recover the women they love. So romantic in spite of the fast paced action!

    1. Yes, I agree, there is definitely an element of romance in Coben’s book. I also like the battle between good and evil and the characters who are a little of both. Thanks for reading and commenting, Luccia. Have a great weekend!

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