Reviews for The match

Book list
From Booklist, Copyright © American Library Association. Used with permission.

“Be careful what you search for” could be the theme of Coben’s sequel to The Boy from the Woods (2020). The hero, a man named Wilde, was abandoned as a child in a chain of the Appalachian Mountains in New Jersey. The first mystery details how he survived. This follow-up explores why no one ever claimed him once he was found. Now Wilde seeks answers from an ancestry DNA site; he quickly discovers his father and then finds that he has second cousin, a reality-show star who has vanished. A group named The Boomerangs, who take it upon themselves to exact violent punishments for cruelty and abuse, may be behind Wilde’s cousin’s disappearance or death. The premise of Wilde reaching out doesn’t fit with his being a fierce loner, nor does his character ever become completely believable. Coben seems to equate speaking very tersely with being tough and capable; the one-to-three-word exchanges of dialogue grow tiresome quickly. Still, the vigilante subplot provides enough excitement to keep the legion of Coben fans engaged.HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Although Coben is not at his best here, his name will be enough to draw a crowd.


Library Journal
(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Wilde, the child rescued from the wilderness and grown to manhood in 2020's No. 1 New York Times best-selling The Boy from the Woods, returns to follow clues to who his parents were and why they abandoned him. Complicating matters, these clues are linked to a present-day disappearance that has been presumed suicide—but who knows? With escalating sales and an exclusive multiyear deal with Netflix to develop published and future projects, Coben is booming bigger than ever.


Library Journal
(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Wilde, who never knew why he was found living in the woods 30 years earlier, submits his DNA profile to several websites, seeking family connections. He meets with a man identified by one site as his father, but his answers aren't satisfying. He tries again, hoping to uncover a link to his mother. Instead, he connects with a relative whose information then disappears from the site. Wilde's resources include a foster sister who owns a security company; together, their search leads to a reality star shamed on social media who has since disappeared. Now Wilde is determined to learn why the reality star is connected with him, and whether online comments destroyed a life. The reality star is also being sought by one rogue member of a vigilante group called Boomerang that finds and punishes cyberbullies. When Wilde's search leads him to a murder victim who was targeted by Boomerang, Wilde himself becomes a suspect. VERDICT The topical follow-up to Coben's best-selling The Boy from the Woods addresses reality shows, DNA searches, cyberbullying, and social media influencers in a suspenseful novel guaranteed to be a hit.—Lesa Holstine


Publishers Weekly
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Could Wilde, a 40-something man who was discovered living on his own three decades earlier in the New Jersey woods, finally learn how he came to grow up feral? Bestseller Coben provides some answers in this uneven sequel to 2020’s The Boy from the Woods. After years of uncertainty, Wilde submits a DNA sample to a genealogy website, but after he receives a message about a possible second cousin, identified only as PB, Wilde gets distracted and never responds to PB’s message. Sometime later, just as Wilde is preparing to return to the U.S. from Costa Rica, a new alert identifies his biological father as Nevada’s Daniel Carter. But when Wilde tracks him down, Carter’s unsure about more than a one-time meeting. Wilde reaches out to PB hoping to learn more, only to find this potential second blood relative unreachable. His search for PB enmeshes him in the messy world of internet trolls, vigilantes, and reality TV, and lands him as the prime suspect in a murder. Plenty of exciting action makes up only in part for a lack of character depth. Coben has done better. Agent: Lisa Vance, Aaron M. Priest Literary. (Mar.)


Book list
From Booklist, Copyright © American Library Association. Used with permission.

“Be careful what you search for” could be the theme of Coben’s sequel to The Boy from the Woods (2020). The hero, a man named Wilde, was abandoned as a child in a chain of the Appalachian Mountains in New Jersey. The first mystery details how he survived. This follow-up explores why no one ever claimed him once he was found. Now Wilde seeks answers from an ancestry DNA site; he quickly discovers his father and then finds that he has second cousin, a reality-show star who has vanished. A group named The Boomerangs, who take it upon themselves to exact violent punishments for cruelty and abuse, may be behind Wilde’s cousin’s disappearance or death. The premise of Wilde reaching out doesn’t fit with his being a fierce loner, nor does his character ever become completely believable. Coben seems to equate speaking very tersely with being tough and capable; the one-to-three-word exchanges of dialogue grow tiresome quickly. Still, the vigilante subplot provides enough excitement to keep the legion of Coben fans engaged.HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Although Coben is not at his best here, his name will be enough to draw a crowd.

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