Posted in All Book Reviews, Crime fiction, Mystery, Thrillers

Book Review: Find You First (By Linwood Barclay)

I discovered Linwood Barclay when I came across Elevator Pitch. That book had been a fast read, with a lot of connected story arcs, and a satisfying end (check out its full review here). It also got me interested in Linwood Barclay’s other works. Which is how I ended up reading Find You First.

How did it compare to Elevator Pitch? Read on to find out.


Thriller, Mystery


438 pages


Tech millionaire, Miles Cookson, had little time for things other than the business empire he built and his success. Until he was diagnosed with a fast-progressing terminal illness. Now, Miles needs to redefine his priorities and address an unexpected challenge – a fifty percent chance that his illness is passed on to the next generation. As a sperm donor in the past, Miles has nine children that he’s never met, nine adults who could be carrying his illness. Determined to equip them with the knowledge of their potential future and a part of his fortune, Miles begins his search for his biological children.

Chloe Swanson, an aspiring film documentarian, knows that her mother used a New York sperm bank to become pregnant twenty-two years ago. And she’s determined to find her biological father and any biological siblings.

When Miles and Chloe meet, they both find some of the answers they’ve been searching for. They also find that someone is killing off Miles’ children. Will they find out who is behind the terrifying events unfolding around them before Chloe becomes the next target?

Overall Rating:

7 out of 10 stars


8 out of 10 stars


8 out of 10 stars

Primary Element:

6 out of 10 stars for its mystery; 6 out of 10 stars for its thrill

Writing Style:

8 out of 10 stars

Part of a Series:


Highlighted Takeaway:

A well-paced crime fiction that may not produce a lot of thrills, but definitely keeps the pages turning with its suspense.

What I Liked:

Linwood Barclay always manages to weave tales with numerous layers in a compelling and taut manner. Find You First is no different. The way the story comes together is great, made better by the fact that its characterization definitely has you invested.

One of the most intriguing (and surprising) parts of the story was one character who was definitely created in the image of (or at least heavily inspired by) an infamous predator who made the news in the past few years. It made the story much more believable and realistic.

What I Didn’t Like:

Like Elevator Pitch, there’s nothing to specifically dislike in Find You First. It checks all the boxes for a mystery and thriller. It isn’t creepy, nor does it give you the chills (like Dead Silence), but it keeps the pages turning. It just isn’t the best mystery or suspense out there and does seem to drag a bit at times.

Who Should Read It:

If you enjoy crime fiction, mystery, and serial-killer-themed books, you’ll probably enjoy Find You First. It also has some emotional aspects that work really well. It is one of those books that you can read over a weekend or carry along on vacation and relax with for a few hours every day.

Who Should Avoid:

If you’re not a big fan of crime fiction or consistent-paced thrillers (instead, preferring to stick to those that make your skin crawl a bit), I’d recommend skipping this one. You could, instead, try Alex North’s The Whisper Man, if you haven’t read it already.

Read It For:

A multi-arced story that keeps you engaged and guessing.

I’m definitely going to be following Linwood Barclay and his books, even if they won’t be my first choice for a “thriller”. They’re excellent comfort reads when you want to follow an interesting story that is gripping but that does not leave you looking over your shoulder.

If you’d like to grab a copy of Find You First, you can get it here. Or get a copy of Elevator Pitch here. Want to share your thoughts on Linwood Barclay and his books? Leave us a comment below. And as always, thank you for taking a quick break at The Book Review Station.

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– Rishika