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The King

(The Patrick Bowers Files #6)

4.40  ·  Rating details ·  1,852 ratings  ·  150 reviews
FBI Special Agent Patrick Bowers has matched wits with some of the most violent serial killers in history—and one of them has never forgiven him....

Patrick Bowers has pursued the nation’s fiercest serial killers—and now one elusive foe is back for revenge.

Settling into a new post at the FBI academy, Patrick and his fiancée, Lien-hua Jiang, are planning their future
Paperback, 512 pages
Published July 2nd 2013 by Signet
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Average rating 4.40  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,852 ratings  ·  150 reviews

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May 02, 2013 rated it really liked it
Book Review

Steven James is an author that according to my GR friends' reading lists in this genre is not on their radar but should be. Exception being, two avid friends and fans with whom I've shared many comments regarding the Patrick Bowers series of which this is the latest.

The King is the point of chess: the endgame is check mate. Each book is named after a chess piece and as with the game, recurring moves are prominent throughout this series as are recurring characters: villains and law
Kahri Lynn
Aug 14, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Yesyesyesyes! LOVED this book. Got it for my birthday but decided to read through series again before reading it. This last month had been a wild ride hosted by Steven James: my most favorite author EVER!

It is not only an amazing thriller but makes you think at the same time. Loved it!
Apr 20, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Steven James is my favorite mystery/suspense writer. I loved this book and absolutely cannot wait for the final installment- Checkmate- next summer!
Jul 02, 2013 rated it it was amazing
A+ writing. Pulls you in from the first page. Supurb writting.
May 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery-thriller
I enjoyed this book as I've enjoyed every book in this series so far for its fast-paced plot, engaging characters, and well-timed twists. I also really admire the way James naturally weaves Christian themes into the novels in a way that's very natural and authentic to the characters. I wasn't as engaged in the "destroy the world" plot of this book, though (the personal revenge plot was more engaging to me) and given some overly-convenient discoveries in that plot, this wasn't my favorite book in ...more
Jan 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Whew! I don’t know how he does it, but Steven James manages to make each story more and more intense. Sometimes it is a little much and I want to take a break from the story, but at the same time I cannot stop reading! I love the character of Patrick Bowers, but I think I like Tessa just as much if not more. I do highly recommend this series, just be prepared for a nail biting, intense roller coaster ride!
Sep 13, 2013 rated it really liked it
This was another in a series of serial killers' books with FBI protagonist Bowers. Was it good - yeah. Did it seem the material was recycled - yeah - killing off one serial killer from a prior novel - Vilkayrie and almost killing of Basque who has more than a cat's nine lives. Why mentioned these two - they are in prior books and the book really is two long novellas to finish up the plot. Another prior serial killer appears in the next book. I guess, the author is good for a couple of really ...more
Elton Menezes
Aug 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Not an investigative pick, but it mends all the holes left by the previous book and deep Bower’s familiar relationships. Really loved this one. Can’t wait to read the last stallment.
Jun 10, 2013 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this book, but there were a couple of items that were a little too convenient, in my opinion. Typically, I enjoy how James weaves two unrelated stories together using environmental location science, but this time it was too simple. Bowers didn't have a hard time using his own methods to support his theories. He caught all the "bad guys" with ease. And it was way too obvious that the two cases were related from the get-go. Besides that, though, James is a great storyteller who ...more
Steven James has quickly become one of my favorite reads in the christian fiction genre. Whereas other crime novels still have rough edged and broken nihilistic heroes, Patrick Bowers is a logical and faithful man of the law. He uses science as a means and not a ethical crutch to do he wants, that is directed at you Sherlock Holmes. In this novel, we really get to see the emotional and logical connection that law enforcement has to make everyday and it is not done in the stylist Lethal Weapon or ...more
Oct 03, 2013 rated it really liked it
Let's talk about the good stuff first. Steven James knows how to tell a story. (Makes sense as he has a Master's in storytelling) The pacing of this story is perfect. The characters continue to grow - even after six books - in realistic fashion. The plot follows along most detective/criminal thrillers. There is so much to this book, but James knows how to keep you reading.

When I finished this story, it felt satisfying. This is how it feels to finish a Steven James novel. He tells big stories
Tom Tischler
Oct 22, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Special FBI agent Patrick Bowers has tangled with some of
the most violent serial killers in history and now one is
back for revenge. Settling into a new post at the FBI academy
Patrick and his fiancée Lien-hua Jiang are planning their
wedding together with his stepdaughter Tessa. Everything is
normal when a demon from the past appears and draws him down
a dark road that he hoped had closed forever. Patrick is
forced into a desperate hunt to save the two women he loves
most and he is also in a race to
Aug 21, 2017 rated it really liked it
It has been a long time since I picked up the Patrick Bowers series. I got away from the series looking for a different read and unfortunately didn't get back to it.

It was surprising to me, after such a long departure, how quickly I got back to knowing the characters. This is what I believe makes this writing style of Steven James different from a lot of other crime/suspense novels. Centered in everything is a family that is struggling with everyday life. This aspect is featured prominently
Julie Graves
Nov 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2017-reads
Lien Hua is abducted by serial killer Basque. Can Patrick find her in time to save her? Patrick is asked to investigate His boss's brother's death. And Tessa has been asked to make a speech at her high school graduation. On top of all of that Pat and Lien Hua are getting ready to get married.

Whew, a lot goes on in this book! Basque is obviously back and going after Pat and his loved ones. He is evil for sure! There are a lot of suspenseful encounters with him and a lot of gross-out scenes.
Beckie Burnham
Aug 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
The King is the fifth installment in The Bowers Files series, and while some series lose a reader’s interest the longer they go, Steven James manages to keep his readers thrilled, shocked, and on the edge of their seats book after book. This edgy Christian thriller is full of action, suspense, and a deep look into the criminal mind. Another winner by James.

The King has everything that long time fans of James have come to expect — complex characters, suspense-filled drama, and thoughtful insights
Feb 22, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2020
This was about the best of any of the Steven James' Patrick Bowers books I've read to date. With the exception of the prequel novel, "Opening Moves", I've found this series to be somewhat lacking. With all the titles referring to chess pieces, the Patrick Bowers series has been tough to keep reading each additional book. "The King", comes out of the gate very quickly and the plot stays strong throughout. With most of the previous outings the characters who were mostly very stiff and shallow do ...more
I started reading this series due in part to my love for chess growing up [no matter how many times or how badly I was beaten]. So the covers of each book involving chess pieces grabbed my attention. I must confess, though, I have not read these books in the sequence in which they were written. I believe I started with Knight first, then Rook, then Bishop, then Pawn, then Queen, and now King. The first book grabbed my attention - I was bored and picked it off my shelf to read on a whim. So I ...more
Terri ♥ (aka Mrs. Christian Grey)
Dec 26, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: audio
This one was a little too predictable. I knew at the beginning what was going to happen. I mean Patrick not walking her to her car or making an excuse about how she was woman hear her roar.

However, this book took me on a ride I didn't want to get off. I had mixed feelings about the outcome of the beginning and the outcome at the marsh.

But it was the end and no mention between father and daughter in summary or otherwise about what happened at the prom (and not after she left) seemed odd to me. It
Randy Tramp
Dec 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
FBI Special Agent Patrick Bowers is planning his future with his fiancee Lien-hua Jiang. They are planning a marriage. Then something very dark happens to put Bowers on the hunt for an evil man.

I love this series. The characters are unique and interesting. Patrick tries to figure out himself while pursuing a mad-man. Tessa, his daughter is a strong personality, sometimes putting teachers in their place.

The scenes switch between personal life, professional life, and antagonists. The action moves
Jan 20, 2018 rated it liked it
Personally, I am not as impressed with this book as I was with the others. Was there action? Of course, however I don't really feel like there was any suspense. You already know from the beginning of the book who the killers are. I also didn't like how one scenario was left open-ended. I think reading about the same serial killers is becoming quite tiresome, although I'm sure that is parallel to what it's like in the real world of the FBI and criminology. Overall, I had high hopes for this book. ...more
Mar 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2019
So I finally finished The King. I'm always amazed at the caliber of information I find in my reading. Truly amazed!!!

But the novel was no different, I so love reading this author. His flow is on point. The storyline leaves you feeling like it's you in there with them.

Love it!!!

Can't wait for the next novel. I've yet to be disappointed.

Don't sleep on this author, he's in my top 20 for sure!!!

On that note, that's my review.

Until, you already know. Happy Reading!!!!
Garry Thompson
Aug 31, 2017 rated it liked it
Not the best book in the series. At least he got rid on one of the villains, another has more lives than a cat. I posted a three star rating, but would prefer to show a 2.5 rating. One more to read...
Jun 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Patrick Bowers series is my absolute favorite series!!!
Oct 04, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: thriller
Another edge of your seat Bowers book. Love the characters, and how the story progresses from book to book.
Wei Lian
Aug 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Sixth instalment is as gripping as the first I have read at least a decade ago. Gonna finish the final instalment for sure.
Aug 22, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: steven-james
#6 in Patrick Bowles series, published in 2013, in which Bowles continues to chase serial killer Basque and also tangles with counterfeit drug crimes.
Phil Geissler
Dec 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is by far my favorite of the Bower chess series. I still have Checkmate and Opening Moves to read yet. I highly recommend this book!
Oct 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Best so far in the Patrick Bowers series. The ending was a little predictable but satisfying nonetheless. A well crafted suspense that kept me guessing on the other storylines.
maria helena
Jul 02, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: thriller
I like the characters but it felt a bit slow going and very long.

(3-3.5 stars)
Barry Zerangue
Jan 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The saga continues with twists turns, enjoyed.
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Steven James is a national bestselling novelist whose award-winning, pulse-pounding thrillers continue to gain wide critical acclaim and a growing fan base.

His latest novel, SYNAPSE, a near-future thriller, is set to release on October 8, 2019.

Suspense Magazine, who named Steven’s book EVERY WICKED MAN one of their “Best Books of 2018,” says that he “sets the new standard in suspense writing.”

Other books in the series

The Patrick Bowers Files (7 books)
  • The Pawn (The Patrick Bowers Files, #1)
  • The Rook (The Patrick Bowers Files, #2)
  • The Knight (The Patrick Bowers Files, #3)
  • The Bishop (The Patrick Bowers Files, #4)
  • The Queen (Patrick Bowers Files, #5)
  • Checkmate (Patrick Bowers, #7)
“The true nature of man left to himself without restraint is not nobility but savagery.” 8 likes
“It’s deeply disturbing to think about how many people in the world are dying inside, screaming for someone, anyone, to care, reaching out again and again, sometimes to the hand that slaps them, because, all too often, without that hand they have nothing at all.” 2 likes
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