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The perfect family. The perfect house. The perfect life. All gone now.What could cause a man, when all the stars of fortune are shining upon him, to suddenly snap and destroy everything he has built? This is the question that haunts Sergeant Ryan DeMarco after the wife and children of beloved college professor and bestselling author Thomas Huston are found slaughtered in t The perfect family. The perfect house. The perfect life. All gone now.What could cause a man, when all the stars of fortune are shining upon him, to suddenly snap and destroy everything he has built? This is the question that haunts Sergeant Ryan DeMarco after the wife and children of beloved college professor and bestselling author Thomas Huston are found slaughtered in their home. Huston himself has disappeared and so is immediately cast as the prime suspect. DeMarco knows—or thinks he knows—that Huston couldn't have been capable of murdering his family. But if Huston is innocent, why is he on the run? And does the half-finished manuscript he left behind contain clues to the mystery of his family's killer? A masterful new thriller by acclaimed author Randall Silvis, Two Days Gone is a taut, suspenseful story that will break your heart as much as it will haunt your dreams.


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The perfect family. The perfect house. The perfect life. All gone now.What could cause a man, when all the stars of fortune are shining upon him, to suddenly snap and destroy everything he has built? This is the question that haunts Sergeant Ryan DeMarco after the wife and children of beloved college professor and bestselling author Thomas Huston are found slaughtered in t The perfect family. The perfect house. The perfect life. All gone now.What could cause a man, when all the stars of fortune are shining upon him, to suddenly snap and destroy everything he has built? This is the question that haunts Sergeant Ryan DeMarco after the wife and children of beloved college professor and bestselling author Thomas Huston are found slaughtered in their home. Huston himself has disappeared and so is immediately cast as the prime suspect. DeMarco knows—or thinks he knows—that Huston couldn't have been capable of murdering his family. But if Huston is innocent, why is he on the run? And does the half-finished manuscript he left behind contain clues to the mystery of his family's killer? A masterful new thriller by acclaimed author Randall Silvis, Two Days Gone is a taut, suspenseful story that will break your heart as much as it will haunt your dreams.

30 review for Two Days Gone

  1. 4 out of 5

    Kaceey

    A grisly murder of an entire family. Now the husband, a best-selling author is on the run. Is it even conceivable that he’s responsible for this horrid crime? Is he running because of guilt? Or is he tagged as the next victim? Thomas Huston is a College Professor and best-selling author. His wife and three children are discovered dead in their home from vicious, devastating knife wounds. Huston himself is nowhere to be found. Hiding out. Detective DeMarco, a friend and confidant is in charge of t A grisly murder of an entire family. Now the husband, a best-selling author is on the run. Is it even conceivable that he’s responsible for this horrid crime? Is he running because of guilt? Or is he tagged as the next victim? Thomas Huston is a College Professor and best-selling author. His wife and three children are discovered dead in their home from vicious, devastating knife wounds. Huston himself is nowhere to be found. Hiding out. Detective DeMarco, a friend and confidant is in charge of the investigation. He is obliged to follow the clues where ever they may lead… even if that points to his old friend Huston. To aid in the investigation, DeMarco cleverly uses excerpts from Huston's own novels to get in the mind of Huston...either a killer or the last victim. When does a novel become reality? Where do the lines blur between the written word and an author’s brutal reality? “Had the writer become the character?” It is heavyhearted. Even borderline depressing. Can a thriller actually be depressing? The characters are all sad and tragic souls, all fighting their own personal demons. Searching for redemption and perhaps a second chance at anything resembling a normal life. Certainly not a book to rush through. It's a slow read that builds in tension. A well-executed dark thriller.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Cheri

    ! NOW AVAILABLE ! In writing a novel, writers may research different places, people, professions. While working on his best-seller, Thomas Huston had conferred with state trooper Ryan DeMarco about legal aspects, criminal behavior and related topics. They became friendly over the course of many of these meetings,. Ryan DeMarco can’t quite make himself believe that Huston has killed his family, this family DeMarco believed he so cherished. He had everything, why would he do that? And where is Tho ! NOW AVAILABLE ! In writing a novel, writers may research different places, people, professions. While working on his best-seller, Thomas Huston had conferred with state trooper Ryan DeMarco about legal aspects, criminal behavior and related topics. They became friendly over the course of many of these meetings,. Ryan DeMarco can’t quite make himself believe that Huston has killed his family, this family DeMarco believed he so cherished. He had everything, why would he do that? And where is Thomas? Huston’s been working on a new novel, which may or may not hold some clues to his state of mind, give DeMarco something to probe, but are there answers there? Huston’s also a college professor with students and co-workers. Student affair? Professional jealousy? And where is the novel he was working on? Thomas Huston is a man with his own demons, though, his mother brutally murdered during a holdup in their little store, his father, unable to live without her, with the memories, takes his own life soon thereafter. As happy or content as he may be now, these memories never really leave. “He understood how a single event could shred a privileged life, leave it tattered and flapping in the black gales of night.” Ryan DeMarco also has his own demons, his son and wife gone – a tragic car accident which both Ryan and his wife survived, only to lose the one thing that tethered them to each other. This haunts him still. A student of Huston’s, Nathan, is helpful in giving insights into what Huston’s new novel-in-progress was about, a Lolita-like character merged with Poe’s Annabelle Lee who is young and hopeful, an exotic dancer? Perhaps. In the name of research Huston went in search of the one to build his Annabelle from. And, also in the name of research, DeMarco follows in an attempt to find a girl who Huston might have viewed as his muse. There were parts of “Two Days Gone” which I loved, but there was so much of this that I “knew” from fairly early on in the story to take some of the thrill out, but by this point in the story there were enough other avenues involved that kept my attention. I enjoyed the various forks in the road taken. I was entertained. The writing was atmospheric, the prose often lovely. Pub Date: 1 Jan 2017 Many thanks to Source Books Landmark, NetGalley, and to Randall Silvis for providing me with an advanced copy.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Diane S ☔

    3.5 A wife and mother, three children found murdered. Suspect, husband, college professor, successful author. Things seemed perfect in their lives, happy,, complete as a family, could there be a hidden darkness to the man? Is he capable of this horrific act? DiMarco, a man marred by his own private sadness, is given the case. The professor was a friend and he is not convinced by his guilt. In alternating narratives we hear from DiMarco, learning his tragic back story in the process, and the suspe 3.5 A wife and mother, three children found murdered. Suspect, husband, college professor, successful author. Things seemed perfect in their lives, happy,, complete as a family, could there be a hidden darkness to the man? Is he capable of this horrific act? DiMarco, a man marred by his own private sadness, is given the case. The professor was a friend and he is not convinced by his guilt. In alternating narratives we hear from DiMarco, learning his tragic back story in the process, and the suspected killer, now on the run. Starts out strong, but then there was some dialogue that seemed out of place, not fitting the circumstances and the author almost lost me there. DiMarco saved it for me, I just loved his character, this police officer that needs all the answers, asks questions, follows his own rules, but a bit deeper than the regular renegade officer. Along the way we are privy to some of the artistic elements of putting together a book, thought processes. There is an underlying sadness to many of the characters and the tone of the book is often melancholy. So the strength of a character made this an better read for me than I initially expected, along with a few plot twists. Appreciated the end, and DiMarco's realizations and actions taken in his personal life. ARC from Librarything.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Norma

    I have never read anything by RANDALL SILVIS before and I thought that TWO DAYS GONE was a fairly good murder mystery/thriller with aspects of it written like a literary fiction novel. I really enjoyed the authors writing style and the narrative throughout this story as it was very interesting and entertaining, which is actually what made me appreciate this book so much more. The story was told in two different points of view that of Thomas Huston a writer and professor who was accused of murder I have never read anything by RANDALL SILVIS before and I thought that TWO DAYS GONE was a fairly good murder mystery/thriller with aspects of it written like a literary fiction novel. I really enjoyed the authors writing style and the narrative throughout this story as it was very interesting and entertaining, which is actually what made me appreciate this book so much more. The story was told in two different points of view that of Thomas Huston a writer and professor who was accused of murder and Detective Ryan DeMarco who was tracking him down. I actually really enjoyed both of these characters; they were funny, witty, and a bit sarcastic with each of them dealing with their own personal struggles. The story unravels slowly as we follow along with Detective DeMarco's investigation, learning all the different facts and sides of the people involved. You can't help but feel for Huston that there must be a reasonable explanation for his actions. It was an interesting, enjoyable, steady-paced, quick and easy read with a satisfying ending. Would recommend!! http://www.twogirlslostinacouleereadi... Thank you NetGalley and the publisher for the opportunity to read an advance copy of this book.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Esil

    3.75 stars. I agree with a few other GR reviewers that Two Days Gone starts off really strong but then loses a bit of momentum. But I thought it came together pretty well in the end. Two Days Gone starts with the murder of a mother and her three children. Set in a small town in northern Pennsylvania, it is told from the point of view of the children's father -- a bestselling author and English professor -- and the police officer charged with solving the case. Both are interesting troubled men. I 3.75 stars. I agree with a few other GR reviewers that Two Days Gone starts off really strong but then loses a bit of momentum. But I thought it came together pretty well in the end. Two Days Gone starts with the murder of a mother and her three children. Set in a small town in northern Pennsylvania, it is told from the point of view of the children's father -- a bestselling author and English professor -- and the police officer charged with solving the case. Both are interesting troubled men. I won't say much more to avoid spoilers, but I will emphasize again that the set up is really strong. This is very much a literary mystery/thriller. Silvis is an excellent writer, and he throws in plenty of good literary references. The characters are interesting, and his take on relationships is not simplistic. The story deflated for me toward the middle when it took a few turns that felt quite ordinary and the plot line got a bit slack, but then the end picked up again with a good twist and satisfying closure. Two Days Gone makes for a good read and I would be happy to try Silvis' next book. Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for an opportunity to read an advance copy.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Lisa

    Darkness falls in the town of Pennsylvania a grisly muder of a man's whole family occurs & Thomas Huston a college proffessor & author is accused but did he do it? sergeant Ryan DeMarco comes in to look into the deaths of Thomas Huston's family, he was friends once with Thomas but now Huston is on the run in the woods he has to survive & keep one step ahead, but when Demarco learns the details of the heinous crime stab wounds, throats cut etc it reminds him of his own demons that he is struggling Darkness falls in the town of Pennsylvania a grisly muder of a man's whole family occurs & Thomas Huston a college proffessor & author is accused but did he do it? sergeant Ryan DeMarco comes in to look into the deaths of Thomas Huston's family, he was friends once with Thomas but now Huston is on the run in the woods he has to survive & keep one step ahead, but when Demarco learns the details of the heinous crime stab wounds, throats cut etc it reminds him of his own demons that he is struggling to cope with. The story is told by 2 POV's De Marco & Huston, at times the dialogue was quite graphic, dark & very disturbing had to take breaks throughout then come back, but i enjoyed this so much learning about Demarco's tragic past & how it affected him the characterisation was brilliant wanted to know more about Demarco character hope he develops in the next installment, i have already put the next 2 books on my wish list, that says it all doesnt it!! This was a very descriptive dark read so take note if you don't like dark this will not be for you, but if you do your in for one hell of a ride.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Meredith ( on Semi-Hiatus until February)

    There’s a darkness that pervades Two Days Gone. Not only in the horrible events that occur--a man’s family is brutally murdered, but also in the characters and the setting of northwestern Pennsylvania.. The water is dark, the woods hide a murderer, and a grayness fills the sky eliminating all signs of warmth and color. The author’s use of descriptive details and imagery brought the dark, eerie setting alive and transported me into this book, which was not a comfortable place to be. Thomas Huston, There’s a darkness that pervades Two Days Gone. Not only in the horrible events that occur--a man’s family is brutally murdered, but also in the characters and the setting of northwestern Pennsylvania.. The water is dark, the woods hide a murderer, and a grayness fills the sky eliminating all signs of warmth and color. The author’s use of descriptive details and imagery brought the dark, eerie setting alive and transported me into this book, which was not a comfortable place to be. Thomas Huston, renowned author and college professor, was living the perfect life: “The perfect family. The perfect life”, all destroyed in an instant: “All gone now. Snap your fingers five times, that’s how long it took. Five soft taps on the door. Five steel-edged scrapes across the tender flesh of night.” Huston’s wife, two sons, and daughter have been murdered and the “perfect man” has fled from the scene of the crime, hiding out in the woods. The community is in shock. No one believed that this perfect man was capable of committing such a crime. Why would the man who was living the perfect life kill his family? Sergeant Ryan DeMarco, who is battling his own demons, also is in a state of disbelief that Huston could do such a thing. The two men formed a bond when Huston was doing research for a book. DeMarco leads the investigation, trying to uncover the reason why this crime occurred. Two Days Gone is more of a character study of Huston and DeMarco, and the focus is on events that tie them together vs. the mystery of whether or not Huston killed his family. This was a really interesting reading experience for me. At times, I felt like I had to force myself to to continue reading. There was something about it that I wasn’t connecting with and I felt like the darkness was pushing me away. Now that I have finished, I feel differently. This book and characters have stayed with me, and I continue to think about DeMarco and Huston. I would definitely recommend Two Days Gone--the characters are complex, the sentences are finely crafted, and DeMarco is a likable main character. Just be prepared for the darkness. I received a copy of this book from NetGalley and the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Barbara

    3.5 stars Thomas Huston seems to have everything going for him. He's a college professor, best selling author, and devoted family man - with a beautiful wife, Claire, and three wonderful children, Thomas Jr., Alyssa, and David. Then one night Claire and the children are brutally murdered.....and Huston goes on the run. The professor immediately becomes the prime suspect in the eyes of the Pennsylvania State Police. Police Sergeant Ryan DeMarco gets the job of tracking Huston down. As it happens th 3.5 stars Thomas Huston seems to have everything going for him. He's a college professor, best selling author, and devoted family man - with a beautiful wife, Claire, and three wonderful children, Thomas Jr., Alyssa, and David. Then one night Claire and the children are brutally murdered.....and Huston goes on the run. The professor immediately becomes the prime suspect in the eyes of the Pennsylvania State Police. Police Sergeant Ryan DeMarco gets the job of tracking Huston down. As it happens the two men are acquainted, having met when Huston was researching a 'state trooper character' for his new book. DeMarco got a favorable impression of Huston and can't fathom how the writer could wipe out his whole family. DeMarco isn't a stranger to tragedy himself. Years ago he and his wife Laraine lost a child in a tragic car accident. Inconsolable, Laraine left DeMarco and began a string of one-night-stands. For his part DeMarco took to excessive drinking and lurking outside his estranged wife's apartment. The novel is told from the alternating points of view of Huston and DeMarco. As the story unfolds Huston is trudging through the freezing woods, looking for food and shelter, hoping to get assistance from a woman he calls Annabel. The writer is distraught and disturbed and thinks of himself as a character in his own book. DeMarco, meanwhile, interviews Huston's neighbors, colleagues, and students - trying to figure out the writer's state of mind and where he might go. One student, Nathan Briessen, informs the detective that Huston kept a journal and that his new book is inspired by Edgar Allan Poe's poems and Vladimir Nabokov's novel "Lolita" - all of which are liberally referenced in the story. Thus "Two Days Gone" feels like a literary novel as well as a mystery. For me though, the numerous literary references stalled the story a little too much. While chasing Huston, DeMarco uses troopers and dogs..... and stakes out places Huston might go. All this heightens the suspense. Eventually DeMarco learns the truth about what occurred on the night of the murders and what led up to it. This revelation is followed by additional drama - with some twists and surprises. The story contains a variety of compelling characters, but to mention specifics would lessen the thrill of discovery, so I'll refrain. (You're welcome. LOL) "Two Days Gone" is very dark but there are lighter moments when DeMarco is bantering with his station commander, Sergeant Kyle Bowen. I enjoyed these humorous scenes, which provided a respite from the tension. At one point, DeMarco calls his boss an asshole, and Bowen says "I'm getting a little annoyed with your insubordination. From now on, it's Sargeant Asshole." (ha ha ha) This is a well-written, well-plotted book that I'd recommend to mystery fans. Thanks to Netgalley, the author, and the publisher for a copy of the book. You can follow my reviews at http://reviewsbybarbsaffer.blogspot.com/

  9. 5 out of 5

    Taryn

    2.5 Stars. I'm beginning to think that I have a bias against books centered around college professors! (See also: Listen to Me, All Things Cease to Appear) I didn't dislike Two Days Gone. I just couldn't get into it. The writing was lovely, but the story and characters were just okay for me. Tom Huston's wife and three young children were stabbed to death and he's on the run. Could the beloved college professor and bestselling author have slaughtered his family? Sergeant Ryan DeMarco leads the se 2.5 Stars. I'm beginning to think that I have a bias against books centered around college professors! (See also: Listen to Me, All Things Cease to Appear) I didn't dislike Two Days Gone. I just couldn't get into it. The writing was lovely, but the story and characters were just okay for me. Tom Huston's wife and three young children were stabbed to death and he's on the run. Could the beloved college professor and bestselling author have slaughtered his family? Sergeant Ryan DeMarco leads the search for the missing professor. Perhaps Tom’s latest manuscript holds the answers to this mystery? The investigation takes DeMarco from the campus of Tom's university to seedy strip clubs. I'm reminded of Nabokov's contention that there are always two plots at work in a story. The first is the plot of the story, but above it, hovering ominously like a fat-bellied cloud, is the writer's consciousness, which is the real plot of everything he writes. If a book is filled with love, it is because the writer longs for love. If the book drips violence, it is because the writer burns to levy justice, to decimate his enemies. The writer composes such books as a means of survival. Otherwise, his psyche would unravel. And the unraveling, depending upon its form, can be either pitiful or disastrous. RYAN DEMARCO Amazon calls this book a Ryan DeMarco Mystery, so I'm assuming it will eventually be part of a series. DeMarco is the character we spend the most time with. He was the inspiration for one of Tom's fictional characters, so they had previously become acquainted during Tom's research. DeMarco is disdainful of academics, but he immediately identified with Tom despite their many differences. He is shocked when the picture perfect Huston family is found murdered, presumably by Tom's hand. The banter between DeMarco and his boss (his former subordinate) at the station was sometimes amusing, but I felt like I'd missed an earlier book in a series. I liked DeMarco most when he was doing fieldwork because the investigative interviews allowed me to know Tom from different perspectives. The two worlds that Tom was traveling between couldn't have been more different: (1) a university campus filled with grudges and professors fighting to make a name for themselves & (2) the strip club with tight-lipped employees who would rather stay off the grid. The closer DeMarco gets to finding Tom, the more he has to look to the literary greats to get a view into the suspect's psyche. DeMarco suffers from a lonely and empty home life. His personal life slowly takes over the narrative, which might have been why I wasn't overly enthused by the story as a whole. He and his wife Laraine separated after the tragic death of their only child. Laraine lives in a cottage where she entertains random lovers. DeMarco sits outside her home and watches, occasionally becoming one of his wife's nighttime visitors. (Their story would have been right at home in Roxane Gay's Difficult Women!) While I wasn't that interested in DeMarco's personal life, the description of his relationship with his estranged wife had a good mix of the intimate and the everyday that made their relationship feel authentic. THE HUSTON FAMILY He was both a fiction and the truth. The stronger of the two was truth, however, and the truth sickened him and hollowed him out. When we first encounter Tom Huston, he has just disposed of a large knife and is on the run. Unable to process what happened to his family, he begins to disassociate and think of himself as a fictional character. He decides to contact the mysterious Annabel, the only person who can help him piece together what happened. I was disappointed when his frenzied perspective became less frequent as the story continued! The death of Tom's entire family was objectively horrifying, but I never got a real sense of Tom as a family man so I had a hard time linking into his grief or caring whether he was guilty or innocent. The humanizing parts where there (victim intros and the Huston/DeMarco interviews), but I wasn't completely sold--maybe because the family was just a little too perfect. At round 75% there’s a picture of family life which gave me inklings of emotion, but it was already too late. Tom's beautiful wife Claire is such a perfect extension of him that her portrayal, as minor as it was, irritated me. She felt more like wish fulfillment than a real-life person. The most interesting thing about her was that she and Tom used to spend nights in abandoned buildings, "places where their only real concern was how far through the night Claire’s cries and moans might carry." I was rolling my eyes by the time she murmurs "Baby, make love to me again. I can never get enough of you." Doesn't every guilty man hide his deeds behind his words and hid his thoughts behind his smile? Or behind other deeds? I liked what I assumed was the dramatic finale, but the story just kept going and added an unnecessary complication. It was beautifully-written. Even the acknowledgments were a pleasure to read! I just didn't care about the characters enough to care about the other elements. Since what makes a character and their relationships compelling differs for everyone, I'm going to end with links to two positive reviews from Kirkus and Publisher's Weekly. “What I have to do now is that which is not easy. That which I most fear. If I keep accommodating my fears, I can only move in reverse. That would be fine if by moving in reverse I could move back through time, but the past is a wall, a solid and impermeable wall. The past is a fortress that cannot be stormed.” _______________ I received this book for free from Netgalley and Sourcebooks Landmark. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review. The publication date is January 10, 2017.

  10. 5 out of 5

    DeB MaRtEnS

    Frankly, I thought that Two Days Gone, by Randall Silvas, was of two minds and that the author couldn't decide which one he was choosing to write with, in what became a rambling affair of a novel. The lyrical introduction and breadth of character ascribed to both Professor and novelist Tom Huston and the defeated detective Ryan DeMarco grabbed me by the throat as soon as I opened the book. I forgave awkward dialogue in the police station with the useless character of boss Bowen since I was so in Frankly, I thought that Two Days Gone, by Randall Silvas, was of two minds and that the author couldn't decide which one he was choosing to write with, in what became a rambling affair of a novel. The lyrical introduction and breadth of character ascribed to both Professor and novelist Tom Huston and the defeated detective Ryan DeMarco grabbed me by the throat as soon as I opened the book. I forgave awkward dialogue in the police station with the useless character of boss Bowen since I was so intent on pursuing the ravaging mystery and intense depths of the first two men. Bereft, Huston runs from police. Alternating between agony over the murder of his family and a shocked psychological distance where he tracks his course as if he is the protagonist in one of his novels, it is Tom's intent to find the woman who will point to the murderer. The prose is dark and dramatic, heart rending. I, meanwhile, am thinking that I've been introduced to a virtuoso storyteller, similar to my favourite famous Southern writers, those who bend words and wring emotions. Full stop. " He wanted Claire’s body against him again, wanted her breasts crushed against his chest, wanted his dick in her mouth, wanted to taste her pussy and to feel her body rocking against him wave after wave. He wanted all of it and he would never have any of it ever again. Only a man like Thomas Huston deserved those things. Who he was now, he did not know." I did not know this character either. He had nothing to do with the desperate man who had just a paragraph prior been bleeding his pain through the page. He wanted HIS DICK SUCKED? Randall Silvis' characters and I suffered a parting of the ways from that point on. From depth, the novel dived into sleeze, stripper joints, lap dances and hookers displacing earlier nuance, instead meant to approximate the noir grittiness of a hard line detective oeuvre. The promising beginning was beguiling, not sustained and Silvis could not bring himself to give us a good dose of Southern redemption for those most fragile heroes. I tiredly read the conclusion, and thought, "Who cares?" Randall Silvis, you shouldn't have shown me that you could write like a genius, and then mid-book give up your pen to a publisher's flack. The hard landing after such a heady lift off as I began Two Days Gone may have predisposed my review to be a bit harsher than it should have been, but I really was disappointed. ARC from NetGalley, SourceLandmark Publishing Jan. 2017

  11. 4 out of 5

    Louise Wilson

    A college professor is accused of murdering his whole family. His wife and children are found brutally murdered in their own home. The professor is missing. What a great read this was. I liked the authors style of in writing this story. I do recommend this novel. I would like to thank NetGalley, Sourcebooks Landmark and the author Randall Silvis for my ARC in exchange for an honest review.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Debra

    Received from the publisher and NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Thomas Huston is on the run and is being searched for by the police (one of whom is his friend ) for the Murder of his family. He is a college professor and best selling author. Ryan DeMarco, a police officer and Thomas' friend is leading the investigation into the Huston family Murder. This is the gist of the book. The book also contains several other characters who tie into the story rather nicely. There are some twists Received from the publisher and NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Thomas Huston is on the run and is being searched for by the police (one of whom is his friend ) for the Murder of his family. He is a college professor and best selling author. Ryan DeMarco, a police officer and Thomas' friend is leading the investigation into the Huston family Murder. This is the gist of the book. The book also contains several other characters who tie into the story rather nicely. There are some twists and turns, and several reveals. Most of the characters have a purpose that is revealed during the book. I'll be honest, in the beginning I was not a big fan of this book. I kept finding other thins to do and read. Then I got past a certain part of the book, and I found that I had to keep reading. It was not a pager turner for me but yet I wanted to see "who dunnit" and why. Did Thomas Murder his family? If he did not, who did and why? I found the book to be nicely paced, even though the beginning was slow for me. Nice detective work. See more of my reviews at www.openbookpost.com

  13. 5 out of 5

    Liz

    A college professor supposedly snaps and kills his entire family before taking off on the lam. Ryan's DeMarco, the state trooper searching for him, is a recent friend, having helped the professor with research on his most recent published novel. The mystery dwells on the man hunt with flashbacks to each man’s life. It's well written but at times I wished it were faster paced. The author gives in depth descriptions of each man’s mental state. When Thomas is on the run, he writes “something had ha A college professor supposedly snaps and kills his entire family before taking off on the lam. Ryan's DeMarco, the state trooper searching for him, is a recent friend, having helped the professor with research on his most recent published novel. The mystery dwells on the man hunt with flashbacks to each man’s life. It's well written but at times I wished it were faster paced. The author gives in depth descriptions of each man’s mental state. When Thomas is on the run, he writes “something had happened to his concept of time. Time had been shattered and broken, some of the pieces melted together, others wholly lost. Ten minutes might carry the pain of a month, two days nothing more than a sliver of glass in the corner of his eye”. Thomas’s confused mental state makes for some difficult reading. And Thomas is so detached, it's hard to feel sympathy for him. Or would I have liked him more if his novel in progress wasn't so pretentious? DeMarco is also a wounded soul. His young son died in a car accident and that event caused the failure of his marriage. As he tries to understand what might have caused his friend to murder his entire family, he flashes back on his own life. His search for Thomas is an odd one, concentrating on Thomas’s new work in progress. He's a well written character and all my interest lay with him. The book finishes with a strong ending. My thanks to netgalley and Surcebooks Landmark for an advance copy of this book

  14. 4 out of 5

    Sarah Joint

    I really loved this book and would highly recommend it. I wasn't aware when I came across it that the author lives and teaches locally. That was intriguing enough, but he also based the novel in the same area. There was just something so neat about recognizing the bars and places mentioned, they're the same establishments I've visited! He described the city perfectly, a "season of surliness prevails" during the six months of bleak gray. While the personal touch added something extra, that's not I really loved this book and would highly recommend it. I wasn't aware when I came across it that the author lives and teaches locally. That was intriguing enough, but he also based the novel in the same area. There was just something so neat about recognizing the bars and places mentioned, they're the same establishments I've visited! He described the city perfectly, a "season of surliness prevails" during the six months of bleak gray. While the personal touch added something extra, that's not the reason I rated this book five stars. It's perhaps the most literary mystery novel I've read lately. Beautifully and intelligently written, it deserves each one of those five stars. I usually burn through books in a day or less, but I savored this one. It's not a short read and not one to rush through. Author Thomas Huston is very well known in the small town he teaches in. To his students, he's a supportive and well-liked professor to look up to. To many others around the world, he's an amazing author. To his wife and kids, he's the perfect husband and father... until they're dead. His wife and three children are murdered, and he's fled the scene. He's led a seemingly admirable and successful life. What could possibly drive him to murder? Sergeant Ryan DeMarco doesn't have the perfect life anymore either. Once happy and in love, tragedy has touched him as well. Now he must chase Huston, a man he considered a friend. He's having a hard time wrapping his mind around the idea that Huston is the only suspect in the murder of his entire family and is now on the run. He starts to pour over Huston's notes for his novel in progress, hoping to find clues hidden in the thoughts the author scribbled down. He begins to find out surprising things about his friend that seem very suspicious... but does that make the man a murderer? I received a copy of this book from Net Galley and Landmarks, thank you! My review is honest and unbiased.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Ashley

    It's rare that I come across a book I enjoy reading simply because of the way the author has strung together words as much as I did this one. I found myself pausing to appreciate a sentence more than once, and I have to admit that I am envious of the author's talent. Thrillers are one of my favorite genres; so, it wasn't surprising that a story with a mysterious synopsis would capture my attention. I really enjoyed the way the book was told from two points of view: the professor accused of murde It's rare that I come across a book I enjoy reading simply because of the way the author has strung together words as much as I did this one. I found myself pausing to appreciate a sentence more than once, and I have to admit that I am envious of the author's talent. Thrillers are one of my favorite genres; so, it wasn't surprising that a story with a mysterious synopsis would capture my attention. I really enjoyed the way the book was told from two points of view: the professor accused of murder and the detective hunting him down. I always feel this makes plot lines more interesting because the back and forth keeps the momentum going and keeps me turning the pages. This story was very enjoyable and entertaining for the majority of the book. Somewhere around three-fourths of the way through, however, it started to drag for me a bit. The book could have ended a little sooner for my personal tastes. I felt the ending was too long and a bit contrived. Overall, however, this was a very enjoyable read, and I will be looking for more books from this author in the future. I would like to thank Randall Silvis, Sourcebooks Landmark, and NetGalley for providing me with an advance reader copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Susan

    Thomas Huston is a beloved college professor and bestselling author, living in a small, Pennsylvania town. When his beautiful wife, Claire, and his seeming perfect family – children Thomas Jr, Alyssa and toddler David – are all found murdered and Huston vanished from the house, he seems the obvious suspect. Sergeant Ryan DeMarco is in charge of the case, even though he previously met Huston several times, when he was researching his latest book. DeMarco admired Huston and also envied him his fam Thomas Huston is a beloved college professor and bestselling author, living in a small, Pennsylvania town. When his beautiful wife, Claire, and his seeming perfect family – children Thomas Jr, Alyssa and toddler David – are all found murdered and Huston vanished from the house, he seems the obvious suspect. Sergeant Ryan DeMarco is in charge of the case, even though he previously met Huston several times, when he was researching his latest book. DeMarco admired Huston and also envied him his family and career. His own personal life is troubled and has affected his career; leaving him sleepless, lonely and depressed. As DeMarco sets off in pursuit of Huston, he discovers that the professor had his own issues behind the perfect façade. There are problems with colleagues at work as well as the tragic loss of his parents. This is very much a literary mystery, which goes beyond the normal thriller boundaries and delves into the background and relationship between the two main characters. DeMarco uses Huston’s writing to try to understand his state of mind – if he is guilty, why would a successful, seemingly happy man snap? If he is not guilty, then where is he? We do have some scenes where Huston is on the run, but mainly the book centres on DeMarco, his investigation, and with clues in the manuscript he is currently working on. With the background in academia, plus the fact that the main suspect is a writer, this will appeal to book lovers everywhere. I really enjoyed DeMarco as a character – he was undoubtedly the best part of the novel for me. I received a copy of this book from the publisher, via NetGalley, for review.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Carolyn

    Thomas Hutson, popular professor and best selling author in a small college town in Pennsylvania seemingly has it all, including a good marriage to a beautiful wife who adores him and three beautiful children. That is until his wife's parents arrive at his house to find their daughter and her children murdered and Thomas on the run. Shocked at the scale of the crime, Sergeant Ryan deMarco must hunt Huston down and bring him in for questioning. However, deMarco has trouble believing that the man Thomas Hutson, popular professor and best selling author in a small college town in Pennsylvania seemingly has it all, including a good marriage to a beautiful wife who adores him and three beautiful children. That is until his wife's parents arrive at his house to find their daughter and her children murdered and Thomas on the run. Shocked at the scale of the crime, Sergeant Ryan deMarco must hunt Huston down and bring him in for questioning. However, deMarco has trouble believing that the man he knows and likes so much could be responsible and he starts to delve deeper into Huston's life and movements prior to the murders, hoping to get some clues as to where he has gone. This was an excellent, suspenseful literary psychological mystery. By interweaving chapters describing the hunt for Huston with Huston's own thoughts while he is on the run, Silvis has drawn a picture of two complex main characters, one who has already been damaged by life's events and one who is struggling to believe all that has happened to him. Huston's life as a writer and teacher is central to the book and deMarco is slowly able to put together some idea of what may have happened with the help of one of Huston's students. This is a hard book to put down as the questions and suspense keep building right up to the final chapter and a very satisfying but unexpected ending. 4.5★ With thanks to NetGalley and the publisher SOURCEBOOKS Landmark for a digital copy to read and review

  18. 4 out of 5

    Erin Clemence

    Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for the free electronic ARC of this novel, received in exchange for an honest review. In Randall Silvis’s “Two Days Gone”, a popular and renowned professor, Thomas Huston, is accused of murdering his entire family. Officer DeMarco is given the job of investigating the case. If Huston didn’t kill his family- why is he on the run? And if he was responsible- what caused the well-respected man to crack? What brought him to that unbelievable brink of insanity? Sil Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for the free electronic ARC of this novel, received in exchange for an honest review. In Randall Silvis’s “Two Days Gone”, a popular and renowned professor, Thomas Huston, is accused of murdering his entire family. Officer DeMarco is given the job of investigating the case. If Huston didn’t kill his family- why is he on the run? And if he was responsible- what caused the well-respected man to crack? What brought him to that unbelievable brink of insanity? Silvis is not a new author, although he is new to me, and that is evident in his polished and detailed writing style. This plot in particular was full of suspense, leaving readers second guessing throughout the whole novel, until it finally reached its satisfying conclusion. Without giving away too much, I was very enchanted with this novel. I really loved the storyline with Huston, and would’ve loved it if he could’ve been examined more. I was hopeful for a mental breakdown, a fragile tear in reality that would’ve made Huston guilty so I, as a reader, could have fallen down that very precarious rabbit hole with him. When that didn’t happen, I was disappointed (and it was probably only me who was disappointed with Huston’s outcome) but no less in awe over the book. DeMarco was a very flawed character, very stereotypical “good cop trying to do right while his own life is in shambles”, but he was also very likable. The writing was spot-on, the ending was satisfying and the characters were real and relatable. These are my big three facets that dictate whether or not I like a book. Silvis totally hit the trifecta.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Elizabeth of Silver's Reviews

    Author and loving family man turned murderer? Thomas Houston loved his family, his job, teaching, and writing his novels. What made him kill his entire family on a Saturday night? No one and especially his ​State Trooper friend, DeMarco, can believe he did it, but everything points to Thomas. The missing knife and the missing Thomas himself were strong clues but difficult to believe. Mr. Silvis keeps you guessing​ as we follow Thomas as he struggles with this nightmare and as he is running and hidi Author and loving family man turned murderer? Thomas Houston loved his family, his job, teaching, and writing his novels. What made him kill his entire family on a Saturday night? No one and especially his ​State Trooper friend, DeMarco, can believe he did it, but everything points to Thomas. The missing knife and the missing Thomas himself were strong clues but difficult to believe. Mr. Silvis keeps you guessing​ as we follow Thomas as he struggles with this nightmare and as he is running and hiding. We also follow State Trooper DeMarco as he questions suspects and people who knew Thomas as well as his questioning whether or not Thomas really did kill his entire family. TWO DAYS GONE has marvelous, descriptive writing that allows you to feel Thomas' physical pain as he is on the run and his emotional pain at the thought of his beautiful family being gone. Trooper DeMarco's investigation was relentless, oh so good, and impressively described. Mr. Silvis definitely knows how to tell a terrific story that has extraordinary, believable characters. This was the first book I read by Mr. Silvis, and I thoroughly enjoyed TWO DAYS GONE. The book kept spinning and spiraling into better and better as it became more frightening and more tense leaving the reader with an awesome finish. ENJOY if you read TWO DAYS GONE. 5/5 This book was given to me free of charge and without compensation by the publisher in return for an honest review.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Karen

    Two Days Gone by Randall Silvis This dark, atmospheric novel was the perfect read for me. It contains beautiful imagery and vivid prose. Dark, gray, bleak, gusts of wind whipping across the water. "The waters of Lake Wilhelm are dark and chilled. In some places, the lake is deep enough to swallow a house. In others, a body could lie just beneath the surface, tangled in the morass of weeds and water plants, and remain unseen, just another shadowy form, a captive feast for the catfish and crappie an Two Days Gone by Randall Silvis This dark, atmospheric novel was the perfect read for me. It contains beautiful imagery and vivid prose. Dark, gray, bleak, gusts of wind whipping across the water. "The waters of Lake Wilhelm are dark and chilled. In some places, the lake is deep enough to swallow a house. In others, a body could lie just beneath the surface, tangled in the morass of weeds and water plants, and remain unseen, just another shadowy form, a captive feast for the catfish and crappie and the monster bass that will nibble away at it until the bones fall asunder and bury themselves in the silty floor. In late October, the Artic Express begins to whisper southeastward across the Canadian plains, driving the surface of Lake Erie into northwestern Pennsylvania. From now until April, sunny days are few and the spume-strewn beaches of Presque Isle empty but for misanthropic stragglers, summer shops boarded shut, golf courses as still as cemeteries, marinas stripped to their bonework of bare, splintered boards. For the next six months, the air will be gray and pricked with rain or blasted with wind-driven snow. A season of surliness prevails." The novel takes place in a small collegetown in Northern Pennsylvania. Thomas Huston is a successful professor of writing and a professional writer himself. He seems to have everything that anyone could want. One cold October morning his wife's parents discover Clair, his beautiful wife and three children murdered. Ryan DeMarco, a state trooper has to lead the investigation into these horrific murders and find his friend Thomas Huston who was seen walking through the neighborhood dazed. Where is Thomas? The novel is told from the points of view of both Thomas Huston and Ryan DeMarco. The whole time while I was reading this I didn't know who committed these grisly murders. Both protagonists I cared about more and more. They are both flawed and haunted by their own demons. As Thomas is wandering through the woods I could tell that he was cold, hungry and exhausted. His only hope was in reaching Annabelle, who is an exotic dancer whom he was meeting to discuss with her questions about the profession she worked for. In his novel he was writing he made references to Poe"s Annabelle Lee and Nakabov's Lolita. Nathan, who was Huston's student told Sergeant Ryan DeMarco that Huston's manuscript was a maroon journal. DeMarco located the journal, but will it give him some insight into Huston's state of mind or help him locate Huston? I really loved this literary mystery crime thriller. I was spellbound while reading this and read it straight through. I like to be kept guessing and I loved the noir atmospheric setting. DeMarco had lost an infant in a car accident, his wife left him. He can't let her go. Many nights he spends in his parked car watching her bring home a different guy every single night. I believe a novel has successfully caught my attention when I can't stop thinking about the characters long after I have finished the book. Highly recommended! 5 stars. Thank you to Randall Silvis, Source books publisher and Net Galley for providing me with my copy of this outstanding work.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Robin

    3.5 stars please, for the love of everything holy, Goodreads, can we make half star ratings already?? there's such a difference between 3 and 4 stars A great thriller continues to be such an elusive animal for me. Main character Thomas Huston is a successful writer and a professor of creative writing. One day, his wife and three beautiful children are found murdered in gruesome violence - and he is on the run. Police detective Ryan deMarco, a friend of Huston's, is desperately trying to find him be 3.5 stars please, for the love of everything holy, Goodreads, can we make half star ratings already?? there's such a difference between 3 and 4 stars A great thriller continues to be such an elusive animal for me. Main character Thomas Huston is a successful writer and a professor of creative writing. One day, his wife and three beautiful children are found murdered in gruesome violence - and he is on the run. Police detective Ryan deMarco, a friend of Huston's, is desperately trying to find him before the situation gets worse. He's also desperately hoping Huston didn't massacre his family. Both men are haunted by loss and have darkness in their hearts, a basis for an unlikely but unwavering friendship. I was initially entranced because, as someone who loves reading and writing, I'm always hooked with literary references and writerly inferences. This story has both. Huston is inspired by the greats (Nabokov, Faulkner and Poe to name a few) and those authors are echoed through the book, as are Huston's writing techniques and journals. "The woods are UGLY, dark and deep..." Huston thinks, twisting Frost's words as he shivers in the forest, barely able to touch his thoughts to what happened to his family. The writing in these scenes is masterful, describing the avalanche of pain that crashes over him with each fresh realisation. He eventually has to dissociate and become the author of this nightmare story, deciding his own actions as he would for a character in one of his books. It is the only way he can put one foot in front of the other. Writing like this propelled me forward and left me in admiration of this author. The unraveling of plot, while perfectly ok, wasn't quite as brilliant, unfortunately. Oh thrillers, why am I so easily left unsatisfied? Thank you to Netgalley and Sourcebooks Landmark for providing a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Nicay (dearnicay)

    “The past is a fortress that cannot be stormed.” The perfect family. The perfect house. The perfect life. All gone now. This has been a catchy start for a synopsis that you will look twice and read carefully and fully grasped what the story all about. Thomas Huston, a famous novelist suddenly disappeared as all his family members were killed. All gone. Sergeant Ryan DeMarco investigated the cause of this unexpected killings. He never thought that Thomas Huston would do this to his belo “The past is a fortress that cannot be stormed.” The perfect family. The perfect house. The perfect life. All gone now. This has been a catchy start for a synopsis that you will look twice and read carefully and fully grasped what the story all about. Thomas Huston, a famous novelist suddenly disappeared as all his family members were killed. All gone. Sergeant Ryan DeMarco investigated the cause of this unexpected killings. He never thought that Thomas Huston would do this to his beloved family. But as Sergeant Ryan DeMarco gathered all the possible pieces of evidence, a question has been occurred in the mind of DeMarco, was really Thomas Huston the one who killed his entire family? Or there is any involved person in this crime? (To see the full review, click HERE) Wordpress┃Instagram ┃ Twitter ┃ Tumblr┃Facebook ┃Pinterest

  23. 5 out of 5

    Petra

    3.5 stars. Thomas Huston is a popular professor and best-selling author who has a seemingly picture perfect life with a loving wife and three children. But when his wife and children are found brutally murdered, Huston, who has disappeared, becomes the prime suspect. Sergeant Ryan DeMarco, who got to know Huston personally when he helped him with some research for Huston's book, can't believe the mild-mannered author could be capable of such a horrific crime and starts to look into Huston's back 3.5 stars. Thomas Huston is a popular professor and best-selling author who has a seemingly picture perfect life with a loving wife and three children. But when his wife and children are found brutally murdered, Huston, who has disappeared, becomes the prime suspect. Sergeant Ryan DeMarco, who got to know Huston personally when he helped him with some research for Huston's book, can't believe the mild-mannered author could be capable of such a horrific crime and starts to look into Huston's background. Could the latest script Huston has been working on have anything to do with what happened? This wasn't an instant page-turner, but it became more engrossing the more I read. It was an intricate character study of two troubled men set amidst a slowly unraveling mystery. Written in detailed, atmospheric prose from the perspectives of DeMarco and Huston, I preferred the chapters from DeMarco's perspective. Yeah, he was the quintessential flawed cop fighting his own demons, but he was extremely likable and I enjoyed his humorous exchanges with his superior and colleagues, which were a welcome boost in an otherwise very heavy and depressing tale. I also enjoyed the book-related elements of this, such as the insights into the writing process and the literary references, which were quite cleverly incorporated into the plot. The strength of this was certainly in the characterization of the two main characters. This should appeal to anybody who enjoys elaborately written literary fiction. I received an ARC via NetGalley.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Karen

    I couldn't stop reading this novel. Maybe because it's not a superficial retelling of events, but because you the reader become immersed into the mind of a Pennsylvania State Police investigator who is confronted with both the good and the horrible interactions that go along with his profession. I look forward to reading the next in this series! I couldn't stop reading this novel. Maybe because it's not a superficial retelling of events, but because you the reader become immersed into the mind of a Pennsylvania State Police investigator who is confronted with both the good and the horrible interactions that go along with his profession. I look forward to reading the next in this series!

  25. 4 out of 5

    Fictionophile

    Five years ago I read  a great book by Randall Silvis called "The boy who shoots crows".  I was very impressed by the plot and the writing so was therefore happy to see another book by this author offered on Edelweiss. Set in late autumn, "Two Days Gone" features two admirable and likable protagonists. Sergeant Ryan DeMarco is a man with little hope in his life.  His wife has left him. It would seem she found life with him intolerable after the traffic accident that killed their baby son. DeMarco Five years ago I read  a great book by Randall Silvis called "The boy who shoots crows".  I was very impressed by the plot and the writing so was therefore happy to see another book by this author offered on Edelweiss. Set in late autumn, "Two Days Gone" features two admirable and likable protagonists. Sergeant Ryan DeMarco is a man with little hope in his life.  His wife has left him. It would seem she found life with him intolerable after the traffic accident that killed their baby son. DeMarco was driving. Now, the only things left in his life are his work as a policeman, and a love of literature and the written word.  He is an avid fan of the local author Thomas Huston and was Huston's police adviser on his latest novel.  The two become friends of a sort. Huston gave him an autographed, hardcover copy of his novel as a thank-you. The book was personally inscribed for DeMarco. "DeMarco, on the other hand, had no center. He ventured out to other relationships from emptiness, and to emptiness he returned. Every action synchronized with nothing. Emptiness first, emptiness last, emptiness always." Author/Professor Thomas Huston is a bestselling novelist. He is happily married to a woman he adores and has three lovely children. When he is not writing he teaches a creative writing class at the town's university. He has a perfect life - until - his entire family are found dead in their beautiful home. His wife and all three children slaughtered. "Huston still had his wallet, his debit and credit cards and probably a little cash, but all of that belonged to another life, a life eradicated, an eviscerated life." Now DeMarco is tasked with finding Huston who has disappeared.  Could it be possible that this man who had everything actually committed this atrocious act? DeMarco deploys officers to search the woods near Huston's home. Meanwhile, the reader enters the mind of Thomas Huston.  On the run and reeling from the devastation he witnessed in his home, he is barely functioning.  He reverts to his most base and animalistic form. He sleeps in a cave overnight, he wades through freezing water to deter the dogs who he knows must be on his trail... His mind wanders. He is disturbed and beyond distraught. Recent events have left him alternating between suicidal thoughts and thinking that he is a character in one of his own books. "...a man in a cave in a situation that could only be fictional, was too horrific to be believed." While reading you wonder... Could this learned man with the perfect life be guilty?  If he is what would make him turn to committing this heinous act? If he isn't guilty, then what is there left in life for him? A pivotal scene takes place in an old decommissioned lighthouse. A scene in which two men with little to live for make some profound decisions. The book contains insight into the writer's mind. Thomas Huston was a huge fan of Edgar Allan Poe and in the few phone calls he makes while on the run he recites the poems "Annabel Lee" and "Lenore". Equal parts literary fiction and psychological thriller, "Two Days Gone" is the very opposite of 'uplifting'.  Although the writing is superb, I cannot quite give it the 5 stars it no doubt deserves.  The reason? The entire time I was reading it I felt down. The hopelessness of the protagonist's situation didn't leave room for a satisfactory or in any way positive turn to their lives.  I liked both Thomas Huston and Ryan DeMarco, so I felt 'bummed out' while reading as I couldn't imagine how their situations could improve, regardless of the outcome of the story. A 'dark' read with themes of loss and revenge, it is nonetheless very well written. I received a complimentary digital copy of "Two Days Gone" from Sourcebooks Landmark via Edelweiss.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Judy D Collins

    The 30 Best Books of 2017 Readers who take their novels strong and dark will savor Randall Silvia’s skillfully-written latest literary thriller-contemporary crime noir: TWO DAYS GONE with the introduction of his new series and intriguing character (Ryan DeMarco Mystery). The best part is the connection and relationship between writer and reader. The Author’s Acknowledgement "Writer/Reader relationship" earns a 5 Star +. An added bonus following the book. For every author and reader. If you’re s The 30 Best Books of 2017 Readers who take their novels strong and dark will savor Randall Silvia’s skillfully-written latest literary thriller-contemporary crime noir: TWO DAYS GONE with the introduction of his new series and intriguing character (Ryan DeMarco Mystery). The best part is the connection and relationship between writer and reader. The Author’s Acknowledgement "Writer/Reader relationship" earns a 5 Star +. An added bonus following the book. For every author and reader. If you’re seduced by the darker, deeper, grittier side of literature, with vivid descriptions, you will be drawn to the grisly, moody, atmospheric, graphic, disturbing, and unsettling tale, with a clever thought-provoking literary twist. A book within a book. Not for the faint-hearted. A bold powerhouse novel and author. The cover, copy and book description: A "bullseye." Right On. Gripping, taut, sensitive, and astute. Even the inner musings of the characters have a poetic power. A haunting character-driven study of two deeply flawed and troubled men protagonists (alternating narratives). Both solitary men in their own way. DeMarco lived alone, and of course, Huston did not. Both had complicated relationships with others. DeMarco had no center. He ventured out from emptiness and to emptiness he returned. One case of tragedy after another, puzzle after morbid puzzle to solve. What if he had made better choices twelve years ago on that rainy night? Sergeant Ryan DeMarco of the Pennsylvania State Police has seen his share of despair, violence, and malicious acts. From college students to strip clubs, the woods, the streets- there lies a murderer. Hiding. A man, gone mad in the blink of an eye. A man turned into a beast. A murderer is in their midst. A community. One of their own. Someone they all trusted. a bestselling author. The education of sons and daughters. They had seen his smiling face in local bookstores and watched him with Katie on Good Morning America. Claire Huston, one of the prettiest women in town is dead with a slash across her throat. Thomas, Jr, twelve, a sixth grader also dead, same way. Sister, Alyssa, fourth grade, also murdered. Little David Ryan Huston, asleep on his back in his crib. A blade thrust in his heart. A second one. A chef’s knife. The perfect family. The perfect house. The perfect life. All gone. Snap your fingers five times, that’s how long it took. Five steel-edged scrapes across the tender flesh of night. Why was the baby killed differently than the others in the family? Stabbed in the heart twice. The bodies of the Huston family had been discovered. From family, neighbors, and friends. All stunned and grief-stricken. All eyes turned toward the husband, the father, the accomplished writer, the professor. He had fled. DeMarco had met Thomas Huston previously. He had read all his books. A reader. He was a friend. He reminded him of a young Jack Kerouac. Thomas Huston was a professor. A writer. He loved his students. He was working on a new book. A trooper was one of the main characters. They had met on several occasions and connected on several levels. There was Huston’s tragic past. The bungled robbery of the family hardware store. The blast that tore out his mother’s throat. His father’s suicide two weeks later from an overdose. The horrific images still haunted Thomas. The memories overwhelmed him. Now, his own family. Was he the murderer? Or someone else? DeMarco had his demons. A ruined marriage, his son’s death, his anger, his aggressive behavior, and the subsequent demotion. His drinking. The accident that took his son’s life. He and Huston had connected. How could this man have killed his entire family? He loved them. He was a good and decent man. He spoke so fondly of them. He was not a violent man. Did something set him off? Now Huston was out there. He had fled. Maybe he is amnesic? Ryan begins researching Thomas Huston and his parents, his books, his reviews, articles and his latest novel, The Desperate Summer. A book released three and half years after his parent’s death. Other profiles from Poets and Writers. Interviews. Characters. It was clear that Thomas Huston, like his character, suffered some very dark moments. But dark enough to cause him to slaughter his own family? The rage and grief. What would have gone through his mind for him to do this to his family? Huston was a writer, teacher, and student. It was his job to make order out of disorder. To find the meaning in metaphor. DeMarco is on the hunt, digging for each piece of evidence. The woods, his students, and strip clubs (Whispers). Strippers, hookers, an abortion, dancers, bouncers. Research for his books. Did he have enemies? Were all the associations for his book, or personal? Was Hutson’s life idyllic as it had seemed? He was the primary suspect and DeMarco took no pleasure in that discovery. Marco could drink himself into a stupor, but he needed a clear head. He had to figure out who murdered this family. He liked this man. He owes him to find out what happened. He goes back and forth with his suspicions. The more he learns, he wonders if the writer had become the characters in his book? Had the murder and suicide of Huston’s parents loosened something in him or spawned a rage he struggled with, and finally lost? Who was Annabel? Bonnie? Tex? Were these relationships an integral part of the slaughter at the Huston home? After the murder, Huston had been spotted wandering through the dawn in a daze. Where else would he go? Could he have been cheating on his wife? DeMarco had to find him. As he digs deeper, with the homicide investigation, time is of the essence. Four people are dead and three of them are children. If Thomas is running because he is innocent, who is the guilty party? DeMarco wanted Hutson to be better than this. Someone he could admire. Had the equation changed? Was it infidelity, madness, lust, weakness? He had to know! Who could Thomas trust? Who can he turn to for help? Complex characters. It’s the contradictions in a personality that make for conflict. Did he take the qualities for each of these women to build his characters or was it something else? In the meantime, we hear from Thomas hiding out. Like some character out of a Flannery O’Conner story. Hiding in a shed. A misfit. Hunted. Hates. Will his life ever get better? The events leading up to the murder. The book is in his head. Is this all a dream? The lines are blurred. From literary references to Poe, Hemingway, Steinback, Faulkner, Macbeth, Wolfe, O'Connor, Nabokov and Poe’s Annabels, Poe’s poetry. A trinity of troubled men. A kinship. Misery. What parts are made up and what is real? “To the casual observer, Huston’s life would have appeared blessed. But this was the illusion Huston had created and maintained. A man patient and generous with his students, a picture-perfect wife and family, shirts and chinos always neatly pressed, fame and financial success; a man respected envied; a man with a life each of his students longed for. Was it all a construction meant to conceal in himself the same dark urges that drove Huston’s characters? His life had seemed a sunlit lagoon, but what currents made the blue water shimmer. A lifetime of struggle and ambition. Parents, taken away by violence. Professional jealousies. The stresses of fame; the loss of anonymity. The pressure to live up to the hype, to always be better, brighter, more successful, more worthy of praise. Was it as simple as that? The façade as thin and brittle as all facades are, shattered? Had Huston snapped? Was he deliriously happy in his insanity? Weightless and free? No shame, no remorse, no obligations, no sin?" Does the life of novelists show up in fiction, thinly disguised as somebody else’s life? Portions of the journal were totally fiction; others not? Discerning the difference would be the hard part. Were the character’s desires actually Huston’s desires brought to the surface? Did Thomas dream of these events, or did they actually occur? The knife. How could he go home? All is gone. Author Spotlight Join Me, Blog Tour Jan 15, 2017 Giveaways, Excerpt, Author Interviews + More Entries: “If a book is filled with love, it is because the writer longs for love? If the book drips of violence, it is because the writer burns to levy justice, to decimate his enemies? A means of survival. Otherwise, his psyche would unravel. Pitiful or disastrous. Does a guilty man hide his deeds behind his words and hide his thoughts behind his smile? Others behind other deeds? Doesn’t the pedophile hide behind the Little League team he coaches or the school bus he drives or the Masses he conducts? And doesn’t the wife beater hide behind the sidewalks he cleans for the old lady next door, and behind his punctuality and efficiency at work? The pornographer, rapist, the serial killer; .the predatory stockbroker, the ambulance chasers, the Medicare-bilking physician—the congressman, the senator, the president—don’t they all cloak their evil behind silk ties and thousand-dollar suits? The man and woman he is referring to? DeMarco wonders as he is reading-desperate to solve this puzzle. Huston had reached out to him. Will he be so desperate to commit suicide or seek revenge, if, in fact, he was not the killer? He may have nothing to lose. Between pressure at the station to find Huston and his need to help this man, the author keeps the suspense high, while readers slowly learn what went down that fatal tragic horrific night. His family had been butchered. Did helping someone with a simple choice in life - set the stage; putting things in motion, for a string of deadly events to unfold, with devastating consequences? TWO DAYS GONE is like no other book I have ever read and surely it will be at the top of the bestseller list. Silvis grabs you from the first page to the last, with the introduction of this new series, and anxiously awaiting the next! Ferocious storytelling that makes you think, and feel with an array of emotions. From the dark and ugly pit of the human psyche. Sadness, pain, suffering, tragedy, love, and loss, sprinkled with a heavy literary flair. The relationship and narrative between the two men sealed the book. Both equally strong and powerful. The relationship between writer and reader, priceless. Other readers have asked me about a similar author or book to compare. I can honestly say, this work is unique. In regards to the crime thriller genre, comes to mind is possibly Paul Cleave (New Zealand), Of course, his Trust No One is a book within a book, as well. Cleave's crime writing is also gritty and dark, with twisted humor, and his cop leads, tend to become emotionally connected. Fans of David Bell and Dennis Lehane will also enjoy. With Silvis, you receive the crime + the literary fiction in one package, a rare find. "The poet's, the writer's, duty is to write about these things. It is his privilege to help man endure by lifting his heart, by reminding him of the courage and honor and hope and pride and compassion and pity and sacrifice which have been the glory of his past." -William Faulkner This one will stay with you. Chilling. A murder mystery, both absorbing and entertaining, from an experienced author drawing from his own experience as a writer and academic. Connecting with readers and writers: My favorite part: (Acknowledgements) this is only a small portion: “A writer’s job is to love his readers and to want nothing more than to pilot them from experience to experience, emotion to emotion. The best fiction is a voyage of feeling, and the writer’s job is to generate sentipensante for his readers, those feelings that give rise, not to an intellectual kind of knowledge but an emotional knowledge, a deeper connection with what Faulkner called “the old verities and truths of the heart.” (love William Faulkner: Nobel Prize Speech Stockholm, Sweden 12/10/50). “Another way of looking at this relationship between writer and readers is through its intimacy; the reader comes, to a story wanting to be wooed, desirous of seduction. If the writer’s inducements are successful, the voice sufficiently tempting, the promises sufficiently alluring, the reader gives herself over to the story not for minutes but hours, and for days at a time, melding her own imagination with the writer’s while falling into step with the characters, hoping for the best, giving them her heart. What greater gift can a writer receive than this. A special thank you to Sourcebooks Landmark and NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for an honest review. Also purchased the audiobook, performed by Graham Winton; currently listening. (great) "Next time someone asks you how you’re feeling, dig a little deeper, find that emotion, that story behind it." JDCMustReadBooks Be sure and add #2 Ryan DeMarco Mystery Series Walking the Bones to your reading list, Coming Jan 23, 2018. **Bloggers:** NetGalley ARC available for request. Currently reading Only the Rain and Loving it! (Jan 1, 2018) At 65% and unputdownable!

  27. 5 out of 5

    Lisa

    A Haunting, Tension-filled, Heartbreaker of a Mystery. SUMMARY Thomas Huston, a beloved professor and bestselling author, is a local hero in the small Pennsylvania college town where he lives and teaches. When Huston’s wife and three children are found brutally murdered in their home, the community reacts with shock and anger. Huston has mysteriously disappeared, and suddenly, the town celebrity is the primary suspect. Sergeant Ryan DeMarco had recently lost his he own son in a terrible car accide A Haunting, Tension-filled, Heartbreaker of a Mystery. SUMMARY Thomas Huston, a beloved professor and bestselling author, is a local hero in the small Pennsylvania college town where he lives and teaches. When Huston’s wife and three children are found brutally murdered in their home, the community reacts with shock and anger. Huston has mysteriously disappeared, and suddenly, the town celebrity is the primary suspect. Sergeant Ryan DeMarco had recently lost his he own son in a terrible car accident and is still reeling from the aftermath. He can’t believe that a man he admired, a man he had considered a friend, could be capable of such a grisly murder of his own perfect family. Hoping to glean clues about Huston’s mind-set, DeMarco with the help of one of Huston students, delves into the professor’s notes on the novel he was writing. Soon, DeMarco doesn’t know who to trust—and the more he uncovers about Huston’s life, the more perilous his search becomes. Could Huston really be responsible for killing his entire family? REVIEW TWO DAY GONE is a expertly delivered portrait of a man consumed with grief over the loss of his family. The book tells a touching chronicle of a man in shock, and on the run. The unrelenting tension of the chase effortlessly blends Huston’s life with DeMarco’s. You can help but feel empathy for the immense grief and pain of both men. The writing is immediately compelling and smartly structured from both men’s perspective. TWO DAYS GONE is a haunting, tension-filled, heartbreaker of a novel. References to Poe (Annabelle Lee) and Nabokov (Lolita) famous works add the perfect atmosphere to this well-executed plot aided by the vivid imagery of the setting in the dark woods of northwestern Pennsylvania. Author Randall Silvis is the internationally acclaimed author of more than a dozen novels. His essays, articles, poems, and short stories have appeared in various online and print magazines. His work has been translated into ten languages. He lives in Pennsylvania. Publisher Poisoned Pen Press/Recorded Books Published January 10, 2017 Narrated Graham Winton Review www.bluestockingreviews.com

  28. 5 out of 5

    Stephanie Nicholas

    This thriller was a little bit slow burning for me to give it more than three stars. The storyline itself was quite intriguing, about a professor/author whose wife and children are brutally murdered and he appears to be the prime suspect. The downtrodden and mentally wounded detective was a character worth rooting for, and the author did a good job of making him relatable. Told from alternating perspectives it was well done, but a bit too slow moving to be putting me at the edge of my seat.

  29. 4 out of 5

    LenaRibka

    Can we always trust our instincts? Is a human nature that we see on the surface the same as deeply inside? How far would you go to find the truth? How far would you go to protect the truth? Two Days Gone is one of the best psychological thriller I’ve read since a long time. A small town in Pennsylvania is shocked: a whole family of Thomas Huston, a local college teacher and bestseller’s author is brutally murdered in their house. His wife and three children are literally slaughtered. All evidenc Can we always trust our instincts? Is a human nature that we see on the surface the same as deeply inside? How far would you go to find the truth? How far would you go to protect the truth? Two Days Gone is one of the best psychological thriller I’ve read since a long time. A small town in Pennsylvania is shocked: a whole family of Thomas Huston, a local college teacher and bestseller’s author is brutally murdered in their house. His wife and three children are literally slaughtered. All evidence suggests that a murderer is Huston himself. His disappearance only supports this theory. But if it is true then what forced a family man and loving husband, a popular citizen and a famous writer at the height of his career to kill his family? And if he is innocent, then WHO DID and why is Huston on the run? Sergeant Ryan DeMarco, who considered himself as Thomas Huston’s friend takes over this difficult case. He himself lost his son in a car accident over ten years ago, that broke down his life. Is he the right man for this investigation? Can he found the answers on the questions that plague everyone? I LITERALLY couldn’t put this book down. The writing is magnificent, the plot is excellent, and the way the author tells this story, giving bit by bit the missing pieces of a jigsaw, is addictive. I love EVERYTHING in this book, but my absolute HIGHLIGHT is the character Ryan DeMarco with such charisma!..The plot is dark but deeply philosophical and even if it's difficult to say it, considering the subject, stunningly beautifully written. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!!! **Copy provided by the Publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review**

  30. 5 out of 5

    Ms.pegasus

    Every writer of fiction confronts the problem of integrating reality and imagination. Ann Patchett, in her semi-autobiographical novel COMMONWEALTH, drew from her own life in a blended family. Karin Fossum in BROKEN adopts a more distanced approach. She creates and then inhabits a fictional character, the Author. This alter-ego claims to be merely giving voice to the characters in her book. They must make their own choices within the situations she creates. She does not control them, she insists Every writer of fiction confronts the problem of integrating reality and imagination. Ann Patchett, in her semi-autobiographical novel COMMONWEALTH, drew from her own life in a blended family. Karin Fossum in BROKEN adopts a more distanced approach. She creates and then inhabits a fictional character, the Author. This alter-ego claims to be merely giving voice to the characters in her book. They must make their own choices within the situations she creates. She does not control them, she insists. The Author suffers for her compulsion, living a life of uncertain success and isolation. Here, author Randall Silvis plays with even darker questions about this mingling of real and imagined persona. Does an author indulge his own forbidden fantasies through his characters? Is he exposing secret thoughts about those around him or merely reworking realistic mannerisms? Does his self-imposed solitude weaken defenses and release personal demons? Speculations about creativity rising from the crucible of suffering, about the idea of the mad genius, fuel the mythology of the artist. Numerous examples of alcoholism, depression, mental instability and suicide haunt the histories of many prominent authors. Silvis draws on these pre-conceptions with extraordinary skill. At times, the reader will find himself nodding in agreement as Pennsylvania state trooper Ryan DeMarco investigates the horrific murder of an author's family. The author, Thomas Huston, is the primary suspect, but was also DeMarco's friend. DeMarco, however, is not merely meant to channel the reader's thinking. He is a sensitive troubled person with his own tragic burden. Tragedy, in fact, was the commonality shared by the two men. Huston's bestseller was gestated in the nine months following the murder of his mother, and the suicide of his father. DeMarco and his wife separated after the death of their infant son in an automobile accident. The relationship between DeMarco and Huston is expressed poignantly by the silences in their conversations. These caesura-like pauses reinforce the rhythm of their mutual empathy. DeMarco had met Huston's family, a beautiful wife, a preteen son, an elementary-school aged daughter, and a toddler son. Their refuge of love seemed inviolable. So what could have happened? DeMarco doesn't want to believe Huston murdered his family. Neither does the reader. But authors don't always give us what we want, do they? The police have tracked Huston to the edge of a freezing bog before losing the trail. DeMarco asks a colleague, Jayne Matson, about the mindset of someone like Huston, someone who has just butchered his entire family. Matson, just shy of a masters degree in psychology, protests she has too little information. She ventures the fugitive might be in shock from the horror, dissociated, perhaps even an amnesiac. Those conclusions are reinforced by glimpses of Huston, wading through the icy bog. Huston chants corrupted phrases from Robert Frost, while lapsing into detached musings, as if he were writing the thoughts of a fictional character. “With a little effort, Huston was able to achieve the split point of view that allowed him to do his best work. Usually, he was aware first of himself at his desk, blue ink moving across a yellow legal pad, but also aware of himself as the character in the story unrolling in his imagination. This time, the perspectives were reversed. He was the character first, cold and tired and hungry, and then, removed to the background, the writer watching and directing the action.” (Location 666) From this starting point, fragments of reality gradually infiltrate Huston's inchoate thoughts. His resolve coalesces around a new puzzle. He is obsessed with the idea that a person named Annabel, of whom we have no other information, can bring clarity to his situation. Silvis introduces other complicated characters when DeMarco interviews Huston's colleagues and students at the university where Huston taught. All of them reveal more about themselves than they do about Huston. DeMarco uncovers hints of professional jealousy, unrequited love, and academic backbiting which only occlude any straight-forward theory. Silvis also demonstrates a talent for procedural narration. With patience and persistence, he interrogates one of Huston's promising graduate students, Nathan Briessen. Briessen is so distracted by his own anguish that DeMarco almost accidentally teases out details relevant to the case: Huston's current project reflected themes from Nabokov's LOLITA; he was doing research at various strip clubs; he wrote his notes and draft in long-hand; the working title of the book was “D” and its four sections were to be called “Desire,” “Deception,” “Despair,” and “Discernment.” Silvis narrates in third person, alternating the viewpoints between DeMarco and Huston. He presents an interesting contrast between the two men. The author, despite the solitude demanded by his vocation, was an able departmental administrator and gracious mentor who often had students over to his house. DeMarco, charged with a responsibility “to serve and protect” the public had lapsed into a surly attitude softened only by abrasive humor after his wife left. DeMarco loves the enveloping solitude of the woods and savors the sounds of nature. The fugitive Huston's brain, however, echoes with the chant: “These woods are ugly, dark and deep....” (Location 653) Silvis is restrained in his writing, applying a poetic voice with judicious effect. Here is a passage early in the book in which he sets the mood. “But here in Pennsylvania's farthest northern reach, Lake Wilhelm stretches like a bony finger down a glacier-scoured valley, its waters dark with pine resin, its shores thick on all sides with two thousand acres of trees and brush and hanging vines, dense with damp shadows and nocturnal things, with bear and wildcat and coyote, with hawks that scream in the night.” (Location 116) Conflicted characters, strategically placed questions, suspenseful scenes, controlled prose and an unpredictable dynamic hold the reader's interst to the very end.

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