BOOK REVIEW: Along Came A Spider – by James Patterson

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Title: Along Came A Spider
(Alex Cross Series #1)

Author: James Patterson
Genre: Mystery, Thriller, Crime
First published: 1993
Finished reading: February 4th 2014
Pages: 435
Rating 3

“It’s a common enough psych term,” I told him. “All of us shrinks talk about VFC when we get together. Very fucking crazy, Gerry.”

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Ok, so I said to myself I wouldn’t read another Patterson for a while. But I guess I just couldn’t resist in the end… I was looking for some easy reading before chewing on some classics, and there is nothing better than a novel written by James Patterson. I chose  to read the first of the Alex Cross series, partly because I couldn’t remember reading it before. It didn’t wow me, but it did the job: easy entertaining and a brain now ready for some real literature.

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In this first of a long row of books in this series, the world is introduced to African-American Detective Alex Cross. He is trying to get over the violent death of his wife (although nothing is explained about how that happened), and lives with Nana Mama and his two children. Then the world is shocked by the kidnapping of two children with famous parents. The kidnapper is Gary Soneji, the math teacher at their school, and soon a man hunt starts… But Gary is a true psychopath and a serial killer and hard to catch. And things are not as they seem… It is a real challenge for Cross and his parter Sampson to catch the kidnapper, who is leaving a trail of deaths behind him. And it becomes even complicated when he starts an affair with Jezzie Flanagan, who was in charge of the two Secret Service agents employed to protect the two children…

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Not a bad read, I guess it serves its purpose. As long as you don’t expect the next Nobel prize for literature and don’t mind the sometimes tacky references to the whole racism theme, you won’t have problems with this novel.

Pop Goes The Weasel – by James Patterson

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Title: Pop Goes The Weasel
(Alex Cross Series #5)

Author: James Patterson
First published: 1999
Finished reading: August 8th 2013
Pages: 486

James Patterson is one of my favorite writers in the sense that his books give a garantuee for entertainment and easy reading. Pop Goes The Weasel didn’t let me down. Although the storyline is intriguing, there is only one which is strange for Patterson. Still, since it’s quite a complicated storyline, it didn’t bother me. The story centers around a fantasy game called The Four Horsemen, where four British agents are involved. This book questions the morality of diplomatic immunity where British agents go bad and their immunity makes it almost impossible for Alex Cross and the police to catch them. The most import character, Death or Geoffrey Shafer, lives an double life; behind his happy family image he leads an irresponsible life full of drugs, adulterly and murder. No one can stop him, or at least he thinks so… Until he kidnaps Alex Cross’ fiancee and things get ugly.

If you are not looking for the next brilliant masterpiece and just want a few hours of easy entertaining, this book might be for you. It’s nothing too complicated, it has action and before you know it you are at the last page already. Not bad at all.

BOOK REVIEW: Cross – by James Patterson

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Title: Cross
(Alex Cross Series #12)
Author: James Patterson
First published: 2006
Finished reading: January 11th 2013
Pages: 393

Rating 2,5

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I admit I normally enjoy reading novels written by James Patterson, but unfortunately I’m becoming tired of the Alex Cross series. It almost seems like he doesn’t put any effort into the series anymore, and things tend to become repetitive. It still is a fast read and I guess it does the job of delivering a few hours of easy entertainment. I will probably continue reading this series whenever I need a quick and easy read, but I’ll cross my fingers that James Patterson wakes up and starts writing like before again… I enjoyed his earlier work way better.

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Alex Cross left the FBI to work as a psychologist again. He still isn’t over his wife Maria’s death and wants vengeance, but he tries to get on with his life anyway. Then Cross’s former parter John Sampson asks for help in an investigation. A serial rapist is on the loose, using terrifying photos to threaten his victims. In short he tells them that if they talk to someone about what happened, they end up like those on the pictures: in a horrible death. The women refuse to testify and Cross and Sampson have a difficult job to try and catch the rapist. Things become interesting when they find a connection to Maria’s death. Will Alex Cross finally gets the vengeance he so desperately is searching for?

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Like I said before, if you aren’t looking for the next literary masterpiece and need a few hours of easy entertaining, Cross and the Alex Cross series is a good choice for you. It’s not the best read out there, but it’s a quick one that you can easily finish in one afternoon. Maybe not the best of James Patterson‘s work, but acceptable.