Trust Your Eyes is the latest book from Canadian author Linwood Barclay. In tiny letters on the front cover it also says 'A Thriller.' This really should read A Thriller. Barclay is always good for a wild ride of a read, but this time he's outdone himself!
Thomas Kilbride loves maps. When a new computer program called Whirl360 is released he is in heaven. He can continue his 'work' - memorizing the streets of all the major cities in the world.
"You picked a spot anywhere on the globe and initially viewed the location from above, either in a traditional map form or in satellite mode, as though you were suspended in the sky. You could click on a specific street, and see it. Really seeit. Like you were standing there, right in the middle of it. With each click of the mouse you progressed several yards ahead. If something in a store window or a restaurant caught your eye, you could zoom in on it. Read the daily special - 'Liver and onions $5.99' if you wanted." (sound familiar?)
And then one day, Thomas looks up at a building in New York. Normally he doesn't, but today he does. And he sees something - "What was that he was witnessing? Someone putting a bag over another person's head? Cutting off their air supply? Smothering them? Who was this happening to? A man? A woman? And who was doing it to them?"
But who can he tell? Who will believe him? For map obsessed Thomas is also schizophrenic and lives an isolated life, never leaving his home. When Thomas's brother Ray comes back home to help him out, he is torn between humouring Thomas and dismissing his ramblings. But what if...?
And don't worry, I haven't spoiled the book for you, as that's all in the first few pages! Each subsequent chapter introduces us to many other characters, scenes and situations. I wondered how in the world would these disparate threads be woven together? Quite ingeniously as it turns out.
Barclay kept me frantically turning pages as the action ramped up and the twists and turns kept me off balance as the plot went places I could never have imagined. There were several little gotchas that were really clever and had me going back to reread to see what I had missed catching. And I really couldn't put it down - I devoured in a day when I had no electricity for 10 hours. (long story)
In a recent interview in The Toronto Star, Barclay is quoted as saying "“Trust Your Eyes is the best book I’ve written, and I don’t know if I can do any better.” Watch for the next book A Tap on the Window in the fall of 2013. Betcha it's just as good or better.