Review: Caught by Harlan Coben

Title: Caught
Author: Harlan Coben
Obtained: borrowed from library
Publisher: Dutton (Penguin)
Format: hardback
Rating: 2.5/5
Read for: Amazon Best of 2010 Challenge

Seventeen-year-old Haley McWaid is a good girl, the pride of her suburban New Jersey family, captain of the lacrosse team, and headed off to college next year with all the hopes and dreams her doting parents can pin on her. Which is why, when her mother wakes one morning to find that Haley never came home the night before and three months quickly pass without word from the girl, the community assumes the worst.
Wendy Tynes is a reporter on a mission: to identify and bring down sexual predators via elaborate–and nationally televised–sting operations. Working with local police on her news program Caught in the Act, Wendy and her team have publicly shamed dozens of men by the time she encounters her latest target. Dan Mercer is a social worker known as a friend to troubled teens, but his story soon becomes more complicated than Wendy could have imagined.

My Thoughts

I went into this book expecting it to be about child abduction, pedophiles, and TV news reporters catching said pedophiles. Instead, it turned out to be some moral-filled story, with said TV news reporter as the main character. The missing seventeen-year-old is really just a side story; her parents and family show up once every few chapters.
I felt like the actual plot-line got mixed up somewhere in the novel, but it felt like it was a bunch of sideline plots that, when strung together, end up being long enough for an almost-400-page novel. At one point, probably about 100 pages in or so, I started skimming. Not much was happening, and it turns out that the 20 or so pages I skimmed didn’t bring anything new to light.
Overall, I was pretty disappointed. I went in expecting one thing, came out with another thing, and neither really fits with the other. The summary doesn’t even begin to describe what the book is really about.


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