Bad Move by Linwood Barclay
(Zack Walker)

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In the too-quiet town of Oakwood, only the lucky die of boredom…and new homeowner Zack Walker isn’t feeling lucky. Whoever said the burbs were boring will think twice after reading Linwood Barclay’s hilarious debut mystery, in which Dad learns the hard way that he doesn’t always know best.

Zack wouldn’t blame you for thinking he’s safety-obsessed. True, he masterminded a plot to trade his family’s exciting city lifestyle for one of suburban tranquillity. True, even after this strategic move, Zack still has issues with family members who forget their keys in the front door, leave their cars unlocked, or park their backpacks at the top of the stairs—where you could kill yourself tripping over them. Just ask his wife, Sarah, or his teenage kids, Paul and Angie, who endure their share of lectures.

Zack knows that he needs to chill out and assume the best for once—but we know what happens to those who assume.

When Zack realizes their two-faced developer sent a petty thief to fix their leaky shower, he starts fighting hard to ignore the fact that Oakwood isn’t the crime-free paradise he was hoping for. But his brief state of denial comes to an abrupt end when, during a walk by the creek, he stumbles across a dead body. Even more shocking, Zack actually knows who the victim is—and who might want him dead.

With a killer roaming around their neighborhood and Zack’s overactive imagination in overdrive, he’s sure things can’t get any worse. But then another local is murdered—and Zack’s paranoid tendencies get him implicated in the crime. While his wife is trying to remember why she married him in the first place, and his kids are considering whether it’s time to have him committed, Zack decides there’s only one thing he can do. To protect his family—and avoid being busted for a crime he didn’t commit—he’s going to have to override his safety-first instincts, tap into his delusions of machismo, and track down the killer himself.

From the Hardcover edition.

About Linwood Barclay

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Linwood Barclay is a former columnist for the Toronto Star. He is the #1 internationally bestselling author of nine critically acclaimed novels, including The Accident, Never Look Away, Fear the Worst, Too Close to Home, and No Time for Goodbye. Multiple titles have been optioned for film. He lives near Toronto with his wife and has two grown children. He is currently at work on his latest thriller, to be published by Bantam in Summer 2012.
Published June 1, 2004 by Bantam. 416 pages
Genres: Humor & Entertainment, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Bad Move

Kirkus Reviews

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Zack Walker (Bad Move, 2004) has moved his family back to the city, taken a job at The Metropolitan, the daily where his wife is his editor, and begun accompanying a shamus named Lawrence on stakeouts to write a feature on the life of a private eye.

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Kirkus Reviews

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Sarah’s habit of leaving her purse in the grocery cart while she studies the aisles irritates Zack Walker so much that he grabs it, tosses it in the trunk of their car, then waits for her to realize it’s been stolen.

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Book Reporter

Walker may be in the middle of an assignment --- one that could get him killed --- but that doesn't keep him from worrying about the household income, trying to work things out logistically so that his daughter can have the family car, or wondering if his son is engaging in underage beer-drinking.

Dec 22 2010 | Read Full Review of Bad Move (Zack Walker)

Book Reporter

Linwood Barclay is well known to Canadian readers by virtue of hisToronto Star newspaper column, as well as a number of nonfiction books he has published.

Dec 22 2010 | Read Full Review of Bad Move (Zack Walker)

The Best Reviews

The humorous story line grips readers once they realize how foolish Zack takes things (never dawned on him to check whether his daughter was home) and never slows down until he places himself at risk from a killer and the stalker.

Jun 27 2005 | Read Full Review of Bad Move (Zack Walker)

The Best Reviews

Zack Walker is a loving husband, father and a published science fiction writer.

Jun 01 2004 | Read Full Review of Bad Move (Zack Walker)

“The Rex Stout books, the Star Trek books, Rod Serling’s Twilight Zone books—just about every book that I bought as a teenager was published by Bantam.”.

Jan 27 2016 | Read Full Review of Bad Move (Zack Walker)

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