Drop Shot (Myron Bolitar Series #2)

Drop Shot (Myron Bolitar Series #2)

by Harlan Coben

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In the second Myron Bolitar novel from Edgar Award–winner Harlan Coben, a young woman’s tragic death spirals into a shattering drama of menace, secrets, and rage. Suddenly Myron is in over his head—and playing the most dangerous game of all.
“Engaging . . . hilarious.”—Los Angeles Times Book Review
Once, Valerie Simpson’s tennis career skyrocketed; now, the headlines belong to a player from the wrong side of the tracks. But when Valerie is shot dead in cold blood and dropped outside the stadium at the U.S. Open, sports agent Myron Bolitar investigates the killing and uncovers a connection between the two players and a six-year-old murder at an exclusive mainline club. As Myron is drawn into the case—along with a dirty U.S. senator, a jealous mother, and the mob—he finds himself caught between a killer and the truth.
“Harlan Coben is the modern master of the hook-and-twist.”—Dan Brown

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780345542229
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Publication date: 04/30/2013
Series: Myron Bolitar Series , #2
Pages: 368
Sales rank: 27,036
Product dimensions: 4.10(w) x 7.30(h) x 1.10(d)

About the Author

Harlan Coben is the winner of the Edgar, Shamus, and Anthony awards. His critically acclaimed novels have been published in forty-one languages around the world and have been number one bestsellers in more than half a dozen countries. In addition to the Myron Bolitar series (Deal Breaker, Drop Shot, Fade Away, Back Spin, One False Move, The Final Detail, Darkest Fear, Promise Me, Long Lost, and Live Wire), Coben is also the author of the young adult Mickey Bolitar series including Shelter and Seconds Away, and of Miracle Cure, Play Dead, Tell No One, Gone for Good, No Second Chance, Just One Look, The Innocent, The Woods, Hold Tight, Caught, and Stay Close.


Ridgewood, New Jersey

Date of Birth:

January 4, 1962

Place of Birth:

Newark, New Jersey


B.A. in political science, Amherst College, 1984

Read an Excerpt

Chapter One

Cesar Romero," Myron said.

Win looked at him. "You'renot serious."

"I'm starting off with aneasy one."

On Stadium Court the players were changing sides. Myron's client,Duane Richwood, was shellacking the number-fifteen seed IvanSomething-okov, leading 5-0 in the third set after winning the firsttwo sets 6-0, 6-2. An impressive U.S. Open debut for the unseededtwenty-one-year-old upstart from the streets (literally) of New York. "

Cesar Romero," Myron repeated. "Unless you don't know."

Win sighed. "The Joker."

"Frank Gorshin."

"The Riddler." Ninety-second commercial break. Myron and Win were keeping themselvesbusy with a scintillating game of Name the Batman Criminal. The TVBatman. The Batman starring Adam West and Burt Ward and all those Pow,Bam, Slam balloons. The real Batman.

"Who played the second one?" Myron asked.

"The second Riddler?" Myron nodded.

From across the court Duane Richwood flashed them a cocky smile. Hesported garish aviator sunglasses with loud fluorescent green frames.The latest style from Ray*Ban. Duane was never without them. He hadbecome not only identified by the shades but defined by them.Ray*Ban was rather pleased.

Myron and Win sat in one of the two players' boxes reserved forcelebrities and players' entourages. For most matches every seat inthe box was filled. When Agassi played the night before, the box hadoverflowed with his family, friends, suck-ups, young lasses,environmentally correct movie stars, hair weaves-like an Aerosmithbackstage party. But Duane had only three people in the box: agentMyron, financial consultant Win, and Duane's coach, Henry Hobman.Wanda, the love of Duane's life, got too nervous and preferred tostay home. "

John Astin," Win answered.

Myron nodded. "How about Shelley Winters."

"Ma Parker."

"Milton Berle."

"Louie theLilac."


"Chandell theGreat."


Win looked puzzled. "And what?"

"What other criminal did Liberace play?"

"What are you talking about? Liberace only appeared in that oneepisode."

Myron leaned back and smiled. "Are you sure?" In his seat next to the umpire's chair Duane happily chugged down abottle of Evian. He held the bottle so that the sponsor's name couldbe clearly seen by the television cameras. Smart kid. Knew how toplease the sponsor. Myron had recently signed Duane to a simple dealwith the natural water giant: during the U.S. Open Duane drank Evianin marked bottles. In return Evian paid him ten grand. That was waterrights. Myron was negotiating Duane's soda rights with Pepsi and hiselectrolyte rights with Gatorade.

Ah, tennis.

"Liberace only appeared in that one episode," Win announced .

"Is that your final answer?"

"Yes. Liberace only appeared in that one episode."

Henry Hobman continued to study the court, scrutinizing with intenseconcentration, his line of vision swinging back and forth. Too bad noone was playing.

"Henry, you want to take a guess?"

Henry ignored them. Nothing new there.

"Liberace only appeared in that one episode," Win repeated, hisnose in the air.

Myron made a soft buzzing sound. "Sorry, that answer is incorrect.What do we have for our player, Don? Well, Myron, Windsor gets thehome version of our game plus a year's supply of Turtle Wax. Andthank you for playing our game!"

Win was unmoved. "Liberace only appeared in that oneepisode."

"That your new mantra?"

"Until you prove otherwise."

Win-full name: Windsor Horne Lockwood III-steepled his manicuredfingers. He did that a lot, steepling. Steepling fit him. Win lookedliked his name. The poster boy for the quintessential WASP. Everythingabout his appearance reeked arrogance, elitism, Town and CountryParties Page, debutantes dressed in monogrammed sweaters and pearlswith names like Babs, dry martinis at the clubhouse, stuffy oldmoney-his fine blond hair, his pretty-boy patrician face, hislily-white complexion, his snotty Exeter accent. Except in Win'scase some sort of chromosomal abnormality had slipped through thegenerations of careful breeding. In some ways Win was exactly what he appeared to be. But in many more ways-sometimes very frighteningways-Win was not.

"I'm waiting," Win said.

"You remember Liberace playing Chandell the Great?" Myronasked.

"Of course."

"But you forgot that Liberace also played Chandell's evil twinbrother, Harry. In the same episode."

Win made a face. "You cannot be serious."


"That doesn't count. Evil twin brothers."

"Where in the rule book does it say that?"

Win set his jutting jaw in that certain way.

The humidity was thick enough towear as undergarments, especially in Flushing Meadows's windlessstadium court. The stadium, named strangely enough for LouisArmstrong, was basically a giant billboard that also happened to havea tennis court in the middle. IBM had a sign above the speedometerthat clocked the velocity of each player's serve. Citizen kept boththe real time and how long the match had been going on. Visa had itsname printed behind the service line. Reebok, Infiniti, Fuji Film,Clairol had their names plastered wherever there was a free spot. Sodid Heineken.

Heineken, the official beer of the U.S. Open.

The crowd was a complete mix. Down low-in the good seats-peoplehad money. But anything went in the dress department. Some wore fullsuits and ties (like Win), some wore more casual BananaRepublic-type clothes (like Myron), some wore jeans, some wore shorts.But Myron's personal favorite were the fans who came in full tennisgear-shirt, shorts, socks, tennis shoes, warm-up jacket, sweatbands,and tennis racket. Tennis racket. Like they might get called on toplay. Like Sampras or Steffi or someone might suddenly point into thestands and say, "Hey, you with the racket. I need a doublespartner."

Win's turn. "Roddy McDowall," he began.

"The Bookworm."

"Vincent Price."


"Joan Collins." Myron hesitated. "Joan Collins? As in Dynasty?"

"I refuse to offer hints."

Myron ran episodes through his mind. On the court the umpireannounced, "Time." The ninety-second commercial break was over.The players rose. Myron couldn't swear to it, but he thought he sawHenry blink.

"Give up?" Win asked.

"Shhh. They're about to play."

"And you call yourself a Batman fan."

The players took the court. They too were billboards, only smaller.Duane wore Nike sneakers and clothes. He used a Head tennis racket.Logos for McDonald's and Sony adorned his sleeves. His opponent woreReebok. His logos featured Sharp electronics and Bic. Bic. The pen andrazor company. Like someone was going to watch a tennis match, see thelogo, and buy a pen.

Myron leaned toward Win. "Okay, I give," he whispered. "Whatcriminal did Joan Collins play?"

Win shrugged. "I don't remember."


"I know she was in an episode. But I don't remember hercharacter's name."

"You can't do that." Win smiled with perfect white teeth. "Where in the rule book does it say that?"

"You have to know the answer."

"Why?" Win countered. "Does Pat Sajak have to know every puzzleon Wheel of Fortune? Does Alex Trebeck have to know every question onJeopardy!"


"Nice analogy, Win. Really."

"Thank you."

Then another voice said, "TheSiren."

Myron and Win looked around. Itseemed to have come from Henry.

"Did you say something?" Henry's mouth did not appear to be moving. "The Siren," herepeated, his eyes still pasted to the court. "Joan Collins playedthe Siren. On Batman."

Myron and Win exchanged a glance.

"Nobody likes a know-it-all, Henry."

Henry's mouth might have moved. Might have been asmile. On the court Duane opened the game with an ace that nearly bore a holethrough a ball boy. The IBM speedometer clocked it at 128 mph. Myronshook his head in disbelief. So did Ivan What's-his-name. Duane waslining up for the second point when Myron's cell phone rang.

Myron quickly picked it up. He was not the only person in the standswho was talking on a cell phone. He was, however, the only one in afront row. Myron was about to disconnect the power when he realized itmight be Jessica. Jessica. Just the thought quickened his pulse a little.


"It's not Jessica." It was Esperanza, hisassociate.

"I didn't think it was."

"Right," she said. "You always sound like a whimpering puppywhen you answer the phone."

Myron gripped the receiver. The match continued without interruption,but sour faces spun to seek out the origin of the offending ring."What do you want?" he whispered. "I'm in thestadium."

"I know. Bet you look like a pretentious asshole. Talking on a cellphone at the match."

Now that she mentioned it . . .

The sour faces were glaring daggers now. In their eyes Myron hadcommitted an unpardonable sin. Like molesting a child. Or using thesalad fork on the entree. "What do you want?"

"They're showing you on TV right now. Jesus, it'strue."


"The TV does make you look heavier."

"What do you want?"

"Nothing much. I thought you might want to know I got you a meetingwith Eddie Crane."

"You're kidding." Eddie Crane, one of the hottest tennis juniorsin the country. He was seeing only the big-four agencies. ICM, TruPro,Advantage International, ProServ.

"No joke. Meet him and his parents by court sixteen after Duane'smatch."

"I love you, you know."

"Then pay me more," she said.

Duane hit a cross-court forehandwinner. Thirty-love.

"Anything else?" Myronasked. "Nothing important. Valerie Simpson. She's called three times."

"What did she want?"

"She wouldn't say. But the Ice Queen sounded ruffled."

"Don't call her that."

"Yeah, whatever."

Myron hung up. Win looked at him. "Problem?"

Valerie Simpson. A weird, albeit sad case. The former tenniswunderkind had visited Myron's office two days ago looking forsomeone-anyone-to represent her. "Don't think so."

Duane was up forty-love. Triple match point. Bud Collins, tenniscolumnist extraordinaire, was already waiting in the gangway for thepostmatch interview. Bud's pants, always a Technicolor fashion risk,were particularly hideous today.

Duane took two balls from the ball boy and approached the line. Duanewas a rare commodity in tennis. A black man. Not from India or Africaor even France. Duane was from New York City. Unlike just about everyother player on the tour, Duane had not spent his life preparing forthis moment. He hadn't been pushed by ambitious, carpooling parents.He hadn't worked with the world's top coaches in Florida orCalifornia since he was old enough to hold a racket. Duane was on theopposite end of the spectrum: a street kid who had run away at agefifteen and somehow survived on his own. He had learned tennis fromthe public courts, hanging around all day and challenging anyone who could hold a racket.

He was on the verge of winning his first Grand Slam match when the gunshot sounded.

The sound had been muffled, coming from outside the stadium. Mostpeople did not panic, assuming the sound had come from a firecrackeror car backfire. But Myron and Win had heard the sound too often. Theywere up and moving before the screams. Inside the stadium the crowdbegan to mumble. More screams ensued. Loud, hysterical screams. Thecourt umpire in his infinite wisdom impatiently shouted "Quiet,please!" into his microphone.

Myron and Win sprinted up the metallic stairway. They leaped over thewhite chain, put out by the ushers so that no one could enter or leavethe court until the players switched sides, and ran outside. A smallcrowd was beginning to gather in what was generously dubbed the"Food Court." With a lot of work and patience the Food Court hopedto one day reach the gastronomic levels of, say, its mall brethren.

They pushed through the crowd. Some people were indeed hysterical butothers hadn't moved at all. This was, after all, New York. The linesfor refreshments were long. No one wanted to lose their place.

The girl was lying facedown in front of a stand serving Moëtchampagne at $7.50 a glass. Myron recognized her immediately, evenbefore he bent down and turned her over. But when he saw her face,when he saw the icy blue eyes stare back at him in a final,unbreakable death gaze, his heart plummeted. He looked back at Win.Win, as usual, had no expression on his face.

"So much," Win said, "for her comeback."

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Drop Shot (Myron Bolitar Series #2) 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 172 reviews.
Ejaygirl More than 1 year ago
This second installment in the Myron Bolitar series is another solid entry, though not as riveting as the first book. Myron's dry wit makes the story more interesting and continues to be the draw for me. I didn't think Win could get scarier but he pulls out the stops in this story. There are some tense moments but for the most part, this was more of a puzzler than suspense. There were several subplots that converged at the end, which kept my interest level high. I was able to figure out most of the main plot but admit I was caught off guard with one of the other diversions. I'm hooked on Myron and this series and will be continuing. My rating for this story is 3.5 stars.
AdamLehner4 More than 1 year ago
The novel Drop Shot, by Harlan Coben was an action-packed page-turner. Coben's sense of humor was present throughout the story as he portrayed protaganist Myron Bolitar, who, with best friend and partner in crime Windsor Horne Lockwood III, attempts to solve another mystery. In this story, Bolitar leads the reader through an adventurous search for the murderer of former female tennis star Valerie Simpson. Through many twists and turns, the reader is lead back to a six-year old murder case involving a senator's son, which connects to the recent catastrophe. Will Bolitar find the answer to the mystery, or will he fall victim to the intimidation of the mob, who play an important role in the murder case? Drop Shot keeps the readers eyes glued to the page, as mine were this summer. Highly recommended.
SandyD09 More than 1 year ago
Highly recommend
SlapShot62 More than 1 year ago
The second in the Bolitar series continues with the development of the lead character, as well as his cohorts Win and Esperanza. Good story telling by Coben, well-crafted intrigue and twists and turns, and participants who jump off the pages. I'm not new to Coben, but am new to the Bolitar series - will definitely keep reading them!
Daniel Ballard 4 days ago
Six down and 5 to go in the Myron Bolitar series - all have been easy good reads.
Laura Weiss 5 months ago
Excellent.... a lot of twists and turns.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
miyurose on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Myron Bolitar is a pretty interesting guy ¿ a sarcastic ex-athlete-law-school-grad-turned-sports-agent who used to work with the government, has a sociopathic best friend (who I always picture as the young James Spader playing Steff in Pretty in Pink), and now lives in his parents¿ basement and plays basketball with the neighborhood kids (when his on-again/off-again girlfriend is out of town). Who comes up with this stuff? Apparently, Harlan Coben does. This series has a lighter edge that his stand-alone novels do not, and Coben does his usual great job of weaving an interesting tale. I did have a key piece of the mystery figured out about 3/4 of the way through, but the final whodunnit was definitely a surprise. This is a series I¿ll stick with.
msf59 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Tough, funny crime thriller, with vivid memorable characters. This is the 2nd in the Myron Bolitar series and it's another winner!
she_climber on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This was entertaining. Story takes place surrounding the US Open Tennis Championships. This one I had the ending pretty much figured out early on, but I still enjoyed the story and finding out exactly the details of the ending. Already waiting for the next in the series to come in for me from the library. I just can't get enough sarcasm nor enough Win.
dspoon on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Valerie Simpson is a young female tennis star with a troubled past who's now on the verge of a comeback and wants Myron as her agent. Myron, who's also got the hottest young male tennis star, Duane Richwood, primed to take his first grand slam tournament, couldn't be happier. That is, until Valerie is murdered in broad daylight at the U.S. Open and Myron's number one client becomes the number one suspect.Clearing Duane's name should be easy enough. Duane was playing in a match at the time of Valerie's death. But why is his phone number in Valerie's black book when he claims only to have known her in passing? Why was she calling him from a phone booth on the street? The police stop caring once they pin the murder on a man known for having stalked Valerie and seen talking to her moments before the murder. But Myron isn't satisfied. It seems too clean for him.Myron pries a bit and finds himself prying open the past where six years before, Valerie's fiancee, the son of a senator, was brutally murdered by a juvenile delinquent and a straight-A student was subsequently gunned down on the street in retaliation, his death squandered in bureaucratic files. And everyone from the Senator to the mob want Myron to stop digging.The truth beneath the truth is not only dangerous, it's deadly. And Myron may be the next victim.
kd9 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Fluffy.I was considering a one word review, but I decided I really had more to say about this mess of a book. This is the guy's equivalent of a chick flick -- sports, beautiful women, sex, fast cars, fine restaurants, and casual violence. That might be good enough for a quick read, but for one small problem. The ending makes no sense whatsoever. Yes, the protagonist has solved two murders (that the reader solved in the first third of the book), but now what? He certainly isn't going to report these solutions to the police. Will other innocent people be blamed? Will the police (shown mostly as bumbling fools) find the killers anyway? Did the author expect his readers to be satisfied with this ending? This is the only Coben book I have read and likely to be the only one I will ever read.
dyarington on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Great tennis thriller
irinka87 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
2nd book was even better than the first! Has all the old characters and introduces you to new ones! Myron never lets you down with his detective "sleuth" skills! A MUST read!
Joycepa on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
#2 in the Myron Bolitar series. Not as crack-up funny as Deal Breaker, there is still plenty of humor. Good plot set against pro tennis this time, with Myron and hiis sports agency representing a hot young tennis start who is somehow involved in one and possibly two murders. Believable characters. There are those from the first book:, Jessica, Myron's lover;Win, his partner, who is just as psychotic as ever; Esperanza the ex wrestler turned secretary/associate, Myron's utterly out-of-it parents; Jake Coulter, a sheriff; and some mobsters who will not be making return appearances in later books.A very enjoyable series. Highly recommended.
porchsitter55 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
What a great book! Harlan Coben is one of my favorite writers, and Drop Shot is all I expected it to be, and more. The main character, Myron Bolitar, is a sports agent and has a quick wit and sarcastic tongue. His best pal, Win, is a slightly psychotic, totally loyal guy who watches Myron's back as they find themselves trying to solve a murder. This book is one in a series of Myron Bolitar novels. I would highly recommend any of them.
Fantasma on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
A great book, as usual, definitly I'm a big fan of Harlan Coben.This was the first one I read in the Myron Bolitar series and it was very good and soooo funny sometimes, the writing style keeps us going and going.Even though I figured out one of the great mysteries of the story by the middle of the book, I had to get to the end to check if I was right ;)I want to know more about Myron and Win!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
For me anyway. ?
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Just started reading Coben! I am enjoying the Myron Bolitar series. I look forward to the next
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