Mel's Reviews > The Jester

The Jester by James Patterson
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's review
Oct 14, 2007

did not like it
Read in October, 2007

I'm only reading this because I haven't gone to the library recently and it was one of the few fiction books on the shelves that I hadn't read. It's terrible, but yet I keep reading. Morbid curiousity, I guess. It's supposed to take place in France during the Crusades, but the writing style is all wrong for historical fiction and is full of anachronisms and unconvincing slang. There's no emotional depth to any of the characters, and no intricacy to the plot. Patterson has clearly written way too many serial killer novels, because he keeps trying to top himself with the brutality of the bad guys, which is all described in loving detail.

Why am I still reading? I guess because I'm a compulsive reader, and if text appears in front of me, I have to read it, and if I start a book, I have to finish it. And at this point, the library won't be open again until mid-day Monday, so there's nothing good to distract me from this train wreck of a book.


I've now finished it, and the last hundred pages did not redeem it. Of course the noble girl that's been helping the jester out is the king's daughter. I saw that coming pretty much as soon as the character was introduced.

Structurally, the novel is a mess. Most of the chapters are 1st person, from the point of view of the jester. Sprinkled throughout, there are 3rd person objective chapters following various characters (a few of these chapters edge into 3rd person limited with shallow penetration). Then there's the framing story, which only appears in the beginning. The first chapter (or was it prologue?) was set in modern times, with an archeologist finding a holy relic. The rest of the book tells the story of how the relic ended up where it was. I thought that the frame was completely pointless, but if they were going to use it, they should have at least made it a real frame and had a chapter at the end also set in modern times. It just feels lopsided the way it is.
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Reading Progress

10/22/2016 marked as: read

Comments (showing 1-6 of 6) (6 new)

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Brittany Couldn't have said it better myself. After looking over some other people's ratings, I'm completely baffled...although one person said she felt dumber after reading it. That sounds about right to me.

How did this book ever even go to print?!

message 2: by Dan (last edited Jun 12, 2008 06:51AM) (new) - rated it 1 star

Dan Mathews Both right. This site's far too lenient, because this book is the worst I've ever read. Patterson was completely out of his depth.

message 3: by Kyle (new) - rated it 1 star

Kyle Agreed. I can't imagine any writer being proud of having written this book.

Agnieszka I wholeheartedly agree. This was awful.

message 5: by Shan (new) - rated it 1 star

Shan I'm on page 420 of this book now. After I finish it I'm going to put it in recycle - that's all I'm saying about this book. So boring. The only reason I'm finishing is because I started it.

Katherine Wow. You put it perfectly! I thought the storyline was good (a little far-fetched, but good), but the diction was atrocious.

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