Aliya DalRae's Reviews > Private Games

Private Games by James Patterson
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's review
Mar 16, 2012

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bookshelves: mystery

"Private Games" is the latest novel from the literary machine known as James Patterson; the latest in the Private/Jack Morgan series, although Jack plays a very minor roll in this installment. This one focuses on Peter Knight, an investigator in Private's London office during the 2012 Summer Olympics. Bad guy wants to ruin the Olympic's, Good guy wants to save them, family in get the picture. As most of Patterson's novels go, it's a good story with a great twist, and it's always fun to try and figure out who the bad guy is, even though you get glimpses from his POV throughout the book. It was halfway through before I knew whether it was a man or woman. Classic Patterson style.

However, like most of Patterson's latest novels, it's only as good as the co-author who does the actual writing. In this case, I thought Mark Sullivan did an ok job, but the guy grew up in Boston and lives in Montana, and he wrote British like a guy who grew up in Boston and lives in Montana. Basically, I'm saying he was trying too hard to make his characters British and they came off sounding corny and contrived. I don't know about you, but I don't need a lot of British words (lads, nappies, fanny - which by the way, if he really knew what that meant in Britain, he would NOT have had a three-year-old saying it, etc.) to be able to hear the characters I read about with their proper accent. Not that the Brits don't use those words, only that they were thrown in in such a way to force upon a reader that "hey - remember we're in London here." Yeah, I know. You told me that in the very beginning.

As much as I love James Patterson, I do miss the early days when I knew that when I picked up a Patterson novel, I would get his story in his words, the way he meant for it to be told. He's a master story teller, and though I rarely miss a new release, it still bothers me that he's more about churning out book after book, raking in the almighty dollar, then he is about getting his masterful stories written the way they should be. By him.

Note - There are a couple of Patterson co-authors who are worthy of his stories - Michael Ledwidge and Maxine Paetro for example. However, it is still a crapshoot.
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