cover image The Match

The Match

Harlan Coben. Grand Central, $29 (352p) ISBN 978-1-5387-4828-2

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.)