I'm reading The Stranger by Harlan Coben, one of my autobuy authors.
The Stranger appears out of nowhere, perhaps in a bar, or a parking lot, or at the grocery store. His identity is unknown. His motives are unclear. His information is undeniable. Then he whispers a few words in your ear and disappears, leaving you picking up the pieces of your shattered world.
Adam Price has a lot to lose: a comfortable marriage to a beautiful woman, two wonderful sons, and all the trappings of the American Dream: a big house, a good job, a seemingly perfect life.
Then he runs into the Stranger. When he learns a devastating secret about his wife, Corinne, he confronts her, and the mirage of perfection disappears as if it never existed at all. Soon Adam finds himself tangled in something far darker than even Corinne’s deception, and realizes that if he doesn’t make exactly the right moves, the conspiracy he’s stumbled into will not only ruin lives—it will end them.
The stranger didn't shatter Adam's world all at once.
That was what Adam Price would tell himself later, but that was a lie. Adam somehow knew right away. Right from the very first sentence, that the life he had known as a content suburban married father of two was forever gone. It was a simple sentence on the face of it, but there was something in the tone, something knowing and even caring, that let Adam know that nothing would ever be the same.
"You didn't have to stay with her," the stranger said.
“We’re in a minefield,” she said. “Like someone just dropped us right in
the middle of it, and if we move too fast in any direction, we’re going
to step on an explosive and blow this whole thing up.”
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