The Reflection
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The Reflection

Author Hugo Wilcken's first novel, The Execution --- a taut, psychological mystery about an average person who commits an accidental murder --- got the kind of rave reviews authors dream of: He was compared to Camus and Hitchcock.

Now, in his third novel, The Reflection, the comparisons seem even more appropriate: It's a smart, creepy, steadily absorbing mystery about an average law-abiding citizen who finds himself inexplicably caught up in a case of mistaken identity --- with one of his own patients.

When psychiatrist David Manne is asked by a friend who's a New York City Police detective to consult on an unusual case, he finds himself being asked to do a mental evaluation of a criminal who's the exact opposite of himself -- an uneducated laborer from the Midwest who seems overwhelmed by modern day Manhattan circa 1948. But when that laborer tells David that he's not who the police say he is, David slowly begins to believe it may be true

Unable to stop himself, David begins to look into how the hospital where the police take his new patient ... and begins to suspect that the man is caught up in some kind of secret governmental medical testing. Realizing he's got to rescue his patient, David quickly finds himself battling forces that seem to be even bigger than he suspected, and that now have him in their sights.

When he suddenly finds himself caught with a patient's i.d. papers on him, he decides on a risky course that seems his only way out: To change his identity, and enter even deeper into the conspiracy, in order to find out how to escape it.

Written in relentlessly probing prose with a delicious plot complication seemingly on every page, this is one of the most though-provoking, chilling, and suspenseful novels you'll ever read.

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