WIN by Harlan Coben

In this #1 New York Times bestselling thriller from Harlan Coben, a dead man’s secrets fall into the hands of a vigilante antihero—drawing him down a dangerous road.

Over twenty years ago, the heiress Patricia Lockwood was abducted during a robbery of her family’s estate, then locked inside an isolated cabin for months. Patricia escaped, but so did her captors — and the items stolen from her family were never recovered. 

Until now. On the Upper West Side, a recluse is found murdered in his penthouse apartment, alongside two objects of note: a stolen Vermeer painting and a leather suitcase bearing the initials WHL3. For the first time in years, the authorities have a lead — not only on Patricia’s kidnapping, but also on another FBI cold case — with the suitcase and painting both pointing them toward one man.

Windsor Horne Lockwood III — or Win, as his few friends call him — doesn’t know how his suitcase and his family’s stolen painting ended up with a dead man. But his interest is piqued, especially when the FBI tells him that the man who kidnapped his cousin was also behind an act of domestic terrorism — and that the conspirators may still be at large. The two cases have baffled the FBI for decades, but Win has three things the FBI doesn’t: a personal connection to the case; an ungodly fortune; and his own unique brand of justice. 


The very versatile Harlan Coben presents a new character in his latest book. He uses his Myron Bolitar series of novels as a point of departure to give life to Windsor Home Lockwood III. or Win as he is called. Win had the good fortune to be born a member of the old money super rich crowd. He has no need to work but has kept himself busy and one of his skills is knowledge of most of the unarmed offensive techniques that exist including karate, Jiu Jitsu and others. A veritable walking weapon but not a bully. He counts Myron as one of his good friends and there are enough references to  Bolitar and his sayings and opinions to solidify the relationship. Myron is an ex-basketball player who has become a sports agent and continually finds himself involved in solving murders for his clients. The initial novel with Win puts him into a similar position having to investigate not only murder but decades old disappearances of people.     

Twenty years ago Win’s cousin Patricia Lockwood was abducted during a home robbery of her house and kept in a remote cabin for several months subject to constant rape. She managed to escape but neither the attackers nor the items they stole during the robbery were ever found. Fast forward to the present when a rich recluse was found murdered in his upscale westside Manhattan apartment. When the police arrive, they find a painting by Vermeer and a leather suitcase both traced to Win Lockwood. He decides to look into the situation and finds himself involved with the disappearance of six people and his cousin’s kidnapping all occurring at the same time about twenty years ago.     

The novel utilizes Win as the sole narrator and he is given a wisecracking personality as well as a showcase for the wisdom of Myron Bolitar, who does not appear but is referenced several times. I’m in the position of being a fan of the author reading everything he writes. I therefore look forward to Win joining Harlan Coben’s list of go to characters and getting his share of adventure either with or without Myron.

3/2021 Paul Lane

WIN by Harlan Coben. Grand Central Publishing (March 16, 2021). ISBN: 978-1538748213. 384 pages.

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