I pre-warn you, I am on a serious case of getting on my soap box here so if you don't want to listen to 50% opinion and a 50% rant to the author then please feel free to read no further.
The fact that I read this in a day and a half, and then spent a 20 minute walk moaning about it to my sister speaks volumes. You read the jacket and find yourself thinking "it sounds pretty good". How wrong could I have been?
The story is the most important part of a book closely followed by the writing style and talent of the author. Clearly James Patterson though both these things were irrelevant. There has been a lot of hype over the deal between JP and his co-authors with some people claiming that JP contributes very little to these books, however nothing has ever been confirmed or denied from the Publishers.
This story was just awful and to be truthful so far fetched and ridiculous it made the plot from the film Crank look realistic! I have to mention in particular the fist major scene which is the murder of a mob lawyer. Now you have to bear in mind that this scene is set in one of New York's most `happening' restaurants which is full to the brim. This `assassin' manages to walk in (obviously he knew the Maitre De) walk past all the packed tables and manages to approach the table and cut this mans eyeballs out. I have no knowledge, but I am guessing that this sort of killing in real life takes a little more than a minute or so. But still this killer manages to do all of this in an exceedingly short space of time. Once the task is complete, the whole restaurant is screaming but luckily there are two off duty police officers who `draw their weapons'. However, the killer manages (with two guns pointed at him remember) to produce two guns of his own. Not only does the killer manage to retrieve his two guns before the police discharge their weapons, he also manages to kill them both with a single bullet to the middle of the forehead. Following his miraculous shots he exits the building through the kitchen and vanishes!
Now do you see what I mean about the ridiculous storyline?
Aside from the major flaws of the story being so far fetched it's ridiculous it also lacked any real oomph. The characters are one dimensional and the dialogue between them is laughable. The only good thing about this whole book is the fact that the chapter layout and style is the typical Patterson special. Short and sharp, it's just unfortunate that it's the only positive I can find. The ending was predictable and everything wrapped up like a perfect Christmas gift.
Never before have I read a Patterson and hated the characters as much as I did in this one. The main character Nick Daniels is like a modern day Indiana Jones but even Indiana doesn't get as unlucky as this guy. nearly every chapter produces a scene where the guy is 'nearly killed'. His so called relationship with another character in the book Courtney was like something out of a teen flick and made me cringe. Never one to give up I read the book from cover to cover and found that the nearer to the end I got the happier I felt. The sooner I finished this mess of a book the better. If this was a debut novel with no authors name on the front I would be surprised if many readers bothered finishing it, let alone reading another.
This may seem ridiculous to people that I feel so strongly about a book, but I just feel.....well robbed would be the best description. I have personally contributed a lot of my hard earned cash to a man that is an excellent writer with an extreme talent, who insists on producing far too many books. In turn I feel like he is cheating his fans into buying anything with his name on it.
I still believe that James Patterson is a very talented man that can produce books that all his readers would love. However, I am beginning to think that JP maybe doesn't care what his readers/fans think. I mean he is hardly doing this for the money now so why his continues to co-write such a vast number of books is beyond me. I would rather have to wait a year for one book that would be his work and his work alone. Mr Patterson, your readers deserve a refund!