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The Accident
Cover of The Accident
The Accident
A Thriller
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In this mesmerizing thriller by acclaimed author Linwood Barclay, a typical American community descends into darkness, as an ordinary man is swept into one of the most violent mysteries of modern...
In this mesmerizing thriller by acclaimed author Linwood Barclay, a typical American community descends into darkness, as an ordinary man is swept into one of the most violent mysteries of modern...
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Description-

  • In this mesmerizing thriller by acclaimed author Linwood Barclay, a typical American community descends into darkness, as an ordinary man is swept into one of the most violent mysteries of modern life.

    It's the new normal at the Garber household in Connecticut: Glen, a contractor, has seen his business shaken by the housing crisis, and now his wife, Sheila, is taking a business course at night to increase her chances of landing a good-paying job.

    But she should have been home by now.

    Waiting for Sheila's return, with their eight-year-old daughter sleeping soundly, Glen soon finds his worst fears confirmed: Sheila and two others have been killed in a car accident. Adding to the tragedy, the police claim Sheila was responsible.

    Glen knows it's impossible; he knew his wife and she would never do such a thing. When he investigates, Glen begins to uncover layers of lawlessness beneath the placid surface of their suburb, secret after dangerous secret behind the closed doors.

    Propelled into a vortex of corruption and illegal activity, pursued by mysterious killers, and confronted by threats from neighbors he thought he knew, Glen must take his own desperate measures and go to terrifying new places in himself to avenge his wife and protect his child.

    Bold and timely, with the shocking twists and startling insights that have become trademarks of this new master of domestic suspense, The Accident is a riveting triumph, a book that moves at a breathless pace to a climax no one will see coming.

    From the Trade Paperback edition.

Excerpts-

  • From the book

    If I'd known this was our last morning, I'd have rolled over in bed and held her. But of course, if it had been possible to know something like that--if I could have somehow seen into the future--I wouldn't have let go. And then things would have been different.I'd been staring at the ceiling for a while when I finally threw back the covers and planted my feet on the hardwood floor.

    "How'd you sleep?" Sheila asked as I rubbed my eyes. She reached out and touched my back.

    "Not so good. You?"

    "Off and on."

    "I sensed you were awake, but I didn't want to bug you, on the off chance you were sleeping," I said, glancing over my shoulder. The sun's first rays of the day filtered through the drapes and played across my wife's face as she lay in bed, looking at me. This wasn't a time of day when people looked their best, but there was something about Sheila. She was always beautiful. Even when she looked worried, which was how she looked now.

    I turned back around, looked down at my bare feet. "I couldn't get to sleep for the longest time, then I think I finally nodded off around two, but then I looked at the clock and it was five. Been awake since then." "Glen, it's going to be okay," Sheila said. She moved her hand across my back, soothing me.

    "Yeah, well, I'm glad you think so."

    "Things'll pick up. Everything goes in cycles. Recessions don't last forever."

    I sighed. "This one sure seems to. After these jobs I'm doing now, we got nothin' lined up. Some nibbles, did a couple of estimates last week-- one for a kitchen, one to finish off a basement--but they haven't called back."

    I stood up, turned and said, "What's your excuse for staring at the ceiling all night?"

    "Worried about you. And . . . I've got things on my mind, too."

    "What?"

    "Nothing," she said quickly. "I mean, just the usual. This course I'm taking, Kelly, your work."

    "What's wrong with Kelly?"

    "Nothing's wrong with her. I'm a mother. She's eight. I worry. It's what I do. When I've done the course, I can help you more. That'll make a difference."

    "When you made the decision to take it, we had the business to justify it. Now, I don't know if I'll even have any work for you to do," I said. "I just hope I have enough to keep Sally busy."

    Sheila'd started her business accounting course mid- August, and two months in was enjoying it more than she'd expected. The plan was for Sheila to do the day- to- day accounts for Garber Contracting, the company that was once my father's, and which I now ran. She could even do it from home, which would allow Sally Diehl, our "office girl," to focus more on general office management, returning phone calls, hounding suppliers, fielding customer inquiries. There usually wasn't time for Sally to do the accounting, which meant I was bringing it home at night, sitting at my desk until midnight. But with work drying up, I didn't know how this was all going to shake down.

    "And now, with the fire--"

    "Enough," Sheila said.

    "Sheila, one of my goddamn houses burned down. Please don't tell me everything's going to be fine."

    She sat up in bed and crossed her arms across her breasts. "I'm not going to let you get all negative on me. This is what you do."

    "I'm just telling you how it is."

    "And I'm going to tell you how it will be," she said. "We will be okay. Because this is what we do. You and I. We get through things. We find a way." She looked away for a moment, like there was something she wanted to say but wasn't sure how to say it. Finally, she said, "I have ideas."

    "What ideas?"

    "Ideas to help us. To get us...

About the Author-

  • Linwood Barclay is a former columnist for the Toronto Star. He is the #1 internationally bestselling author of eight critically acclaimed novels, including Never Look Away, Fear the Worst, Too Close to Home, and No Time for Goodbye, which has been optioned for film. He lives near Toronto with his wife and has two grown children. He is currently at work on his next thriller.

Reviews-

  • Publisher's Weekly

    July 4, 2011
    Barclay (Never Look Away) examines the consequences of ordinary citizens making criminal decisions in the wake of the recession in this believable thriller that skillfully alternates between high-octane action and a slower sense of unease. Milford, Conn., contractor Glen Garber has a lot to deal with in the wake of his wife Sheila's death in a car accident that claimed two other lives: potential lawsuits over the accident, a fire in one of his houses, his eight-year-old daughter Kelly's difficulties at school, his mother-in-law's disapproval, and abiding anger and confusion over the accident's circumstances. In addition, some of Sheila's friends make inappropriate queries into the whereabouts of her purse during the accident, and while playing a hide-and-seek game at a friend's home, Kelly overhears a disturbing conversation that triggers a series of deadly confrontations. The sorry events in Milford are a great argument for people feeling the pinch in their pocketbooks to avoid illicit trafficking in knock-off drugs, purses, and construction materials.

  • The Gazette (Montreal) "Barclay tells a fine tale. . . . Just when you think you've figured it out, well, you haven't. Right to the end, there are twists and turns in the plot, and people who you thought were squeaky clean? Not so much."
  • Kirkus Reviews "Barclay has turned in a home run with plenty of edge-of-the-seat moments."
  • The Independent (UK) "Linwood Barclay excels at genuinely scary, tension-filled tales of ordinary folk in seemingly normal and peaceful small-town America, and this latest chiller is well up to the mark."
  • San Francisco Chronicle "Linwood Barclay's best thriller to date. . . . Barclay channels the best of Harlan Coben and Lisa Gardner."
  • Paris Star "Barclay is amazing at putting average people in extraordinary situations."
  • Peter Robinson, author of Bad Boy
    PRAISE FOR LINWOOD BARCLAY

    "If you like Harlan Coben, you'll love Linwood Barclay."
  • Stephen King, Entertainment Weekly "The writing is crisp; the twists are jolting and completely unexpected."
  • Tucson Citizen "Fast-paced and with an irresistible blend of suspense and tension."
  • The Wall Street Journal "Gripping . . . unfolds with mounting tension and suspense."
  • Steve Berry, author of The Jefferson Key "Fear the Worst holds the reader in a tight grip, as good and evil match wits and wiles. Barclay pushes the envelope of suspense to the edge and beyond."
  • The Washington Post Too Close to Home

    "A terrifically fast-paced suspense story."
  • The Wall Street Journal "Affecting and effective."
  • Michael Connelly No Time for Goodbye

    "You won't get up until you've turned the last page."
  • USA Today "[An] anxiety-inducing thriller."

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    Doubleday Canada
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