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Loathed Authors > Am I the only one who hates James Patterson

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message 1: by ScottK (last edited Aug 25, 2016 01:38PM) (new)

ScottK I have tried (and I mean really really tried) to like his stuff but I just can not get into him , not even the ones with the flying kids,which I thought would be really good.And maybe they are good, I just can't find one that I like.

message 2: by Recynd (last edited Aug 25, 2016 01:38PM) (new)

Recynd No, you're not alone.

I picked up a Patterson book before I'd heard of him. At some point during the first chapter, I found myself nearly breathless as a result of the full-body wince that always follows my reading of particularly ghastly writing.

It doesn't happen often; with the exception of basic grammar errors, I have a fairly high tolerance (at least I think I do) for crap in the form of the written word.

It was only a day or so later that I saw a commercial for Patterson's books: "From the best-selling author and master of suspense..."

Yeah, my ass.

message 3: by Sarah (last edited Aug 25, 2016 01:38PM) (new)

Sarah (songgirl7) I thought Suzanne's Letters to Nicholas was OK, but I don't like his sci-fi-ish mysteries. But I'm just not into that sort of thing anyway.

I can deal with mediocre writing if the story is good. I think Nicholas Sparks is a crappy writer but a pretty good storyteller, for example.

message 4: by Erica (last edited Aug 25, 2016 01:38PM) (new)

Erica Poole | 65 comments I admit, I enjoyed some of his books, until I read an article/interview where he basically belittled his readers. Said especially about his Women's Murder Club series that he basically was writing crap, and he knew it, but that was what sold, and he didn't respect the shmucks that read the crap. I am paraphrasing. So I cannot in good faith ever buy a book of his. Jerk.

message 5: by ScottK (last edited Aug 25, 2016 01:38PM) (new)

ScottK Well, thank you Erica for that impetus to never pick up another one of his books, or for that matter, perhaps I should just "accidentally" spill my Iced Frappachino all over the J. Patterson section of my local Borders. "OOps, I tripped." ( Err .....Does that sound convincing ??)

message 6: by Caroline (last edited Aug 25, 2016 01:38PM) (new)

Caroline I work in a bookstore, and we joke every time a Patterson book comes out that it's been a week...time for a new Patterson. I really doubt he even writes them anymore, since these days there's always a second author listed on the covers--our theory is he gives them the character names and places, and that they plug those names/places into the same plot-line that's been in every single other James Patterson book.

I tolerate some formula writing, but Patterson is something I definitely avoid. It figures he has no respect for his fans with how bad the stuff he churns out is.

message 7: by Erica (last edited Aug 25, 2016 01:38PM) (new)

Erica Poole | 65 comments Nice plan Scottk!

message 8: by Erica (last edited Aug 25, 2016 01:38PM) (new)

Erica Poole | 65 comments Caroline, sounds kinda like the VC Andrews thing...

message 9: by Erica (last edited Aug 25, 2016 01:38PM) (new)

Erica Poole | 65 comments Of The 5th Horseman, he shrugs, saying, "I don't think it's terribly worth reading, honestly. I think it's fine for that kind of series."

This is a quote that James Patterson made, about his own book, in an interview with Time magazine in March 2006. That KIND of series. Pretty insulting to his readers, as far as I am concerned.

message 10: by Meredith (last edited Aug 25, 2016 01:38PM) (new)

Meredith Watson I'm very torn here. I enjoy the Women's Murder Club series and the Cross series. But I agree, they are all the same plot. I also saw somewhere what Caroline suggested; that someone is writing them and he's practically just lending his name to create a bestseller. He does crank them out fast! I'll probably keep reading these 2 series just because I'm kinda OCD about that sort of thing but I wont read anything else of his.

message 11: by Recynd (last edited Aug 25, 2016 01:39PM) (new)

Recynd You know another author guilty of formulaic writing? Jonathan Kellerman.

I liked the early Alex Delaware books (it's a; at some point, though, he just started substituting names, or so it seemed to me. I don't think I could stomach one more...and I stopped reading a fair ways back.

Going on Caroline's post, though, I can hear Kellerman's publisher as clear as day: "Hey, Jon? It's been going on a month now...when can we be expecting the next installment?"

message 12: by ScottK (last edited Aug 25, 2016 01:39PM) (new)

ScottK Yeah, I too used to like the Delaware books but you are right they all sound a bit the same these days, or are just no good. My favorite of his is The Murder Book, but they have been going steadily downhill since that one. To my own chagrin I suggested Gone to a book club I belong to,it was picked and no one (including me) even liked it. Even worse was the fact it was our book club's first pick. :(

message 13: by Karen (new)

Karen I have tried several times to read a James Patterson novel but haven't made it past the first few chapters. I work for the company that publishes his books and he is rumored to be a real jerk.

message 14: by Clare (new)

Clare | 53 comments I like the Alex Cross series though I recognize that it is not great writing. I listened to some of those on CD and the narrator does quite a good job with them. When I actually read some of Patterson's books, I was disappointed. I do think that in some of the books he has co-authored that he basically lent his name to a book someone else had written since they didn't all seem to come from the same "voice" if you know what I mean. I hate it when an author disparages his readers. After all, Patterson has earned a nice chunk of change from his loyal readers.

message 15: by Lori (new)

Lori Anderson (lorianderson) At first I really liked them -- but then I decided I really could use that two hours of reading for something else. I swore never to pick up another one again!

message 16: by Paul (new)

Paul  Perry (pezski) | 14 comments I confess I've only read one Patterson book Roses Are Red - i'd bought that and Violets Are Blue together in a charity shop. it was a quick read, kept me turning the pages, but largely because of the short punchy sentences and chapters (rarely more than three or four pages long).

At the end, despite a massive reveal and cliffhanger, i really couldn't care less about the characters or situation, so both books went straight back to the charity shop.

Life is too short for bad books.

message 17: by stormhawk (new)

stormhawk I read The Angel Experiment free on Kindle. I really like science fiction, but I couldn't bring myself to care enough about the characters, plot, or setting to pay for any of the multitudinous sequels.

message 18: by Paul (new)

Paul  Perry (pezski) | 14 comments Some of the worst books I've read are where writers from other fields try top write sci-fi, and obviously just don't get it. Paul Theroux, whose I'm usually a fan of, writes stuff he considers science fiction, which is utterly painful - derivative, unimaginative, badly written trash. It feels like he's slumming it and doesn't think he needs to try.

message 19: by Shad (new)

Shad (shadrach) | 6 comments I didn't like Dickens until I found a really great audio reading for A Tale of Two Cities and loved it.

I can never get through more than 30 pages of Don Quoixte.

I try to come back to "great books" to see if I'll like them at a different stage in my life. Then again, when I was lamenting to my librarian that I couldn't get through The Heart is a Lonely Hunter she said "there's plenty of other books to read"

message 20: by Randi (new)

Randi (The Artist Formerly known as Guitar Chick) (guitarchick) | 79 comments It's well known that James Patterson is basically a "brand name" now around writers. which basically means he sticks his name on a bunch of stuff with author's permission to make sure it's a top seller.
I myself liked the first three Max Ride books, but the fourth is atrocious (is that how you spell it?)
So no,you're not alone. Although I've never tried to read anything else of his

message 21: by Laura (new)

Laura (Avid7Reader) | 60 comments Guitar Chick-Dolly Dagger wrote: "It's well known that James Patterson is basically a "brand name" now around writers. which basically means he sticks his name on a bunch of stuff with author's permission to make sure it's a top se..."

About the Max Ride series: I felt exactly the same way! Like the first three, after the wading through the fourth, I quit reading the series entirely.

message 22: by Randi (new)

Randi (The Artist Formerly known as Guitar Chick) (guitarchick) | 79 comments he must be ADD. He just keeps sticking stuff on there until it's so dumb nobody can stand it.
Takes one to know one....

message 23: by NancyL (new)

NancyL Luckey | 21 comments Erica wrote: "Of The 5th Horseman, he shrugs, saying, "I don't think it's terribly worth reading, honestly. I think it's fine for that kind of series."

This is a quote that James Patterson made, about his ow..."

Didn't know that. I'm liking the Women's Murder Club series, but when I've read them all , they're going back to the book sale.

message 24: by Nancy (new)

Nancy Vincent | 14 comments It isn't James Patterson you hate. He's an ad hack who quit writing 15 years ago. He puts his name, for a hefty price, on a big pile of schlock written by people who got English degrees from land grant colleges and couldn't find jobs teaching high school English.

message 25: by Sonya (new)

Sonya madden people have even said that Stephen King puts his name on stuff that other people write also. When I heard that, I'm questioning writers, period. Tom Clancy doesn't write his own stuff either. He admitted that somewhere. WTF?

message 26: by Abby (new)

Abby (abbystrykes) | 1 comments I used to love his Maximum Ride series when I was younger, but now? No. No, no, no. I've reread it for a book club at my library, and I just...can't handle it now. Plus, the series is going downhill.

message 27: by Brandon (new)

Brandon | 2 comments A friend of mine asked me (well, recommended, but she's pretty stubborn) to read Max Ride, and I was in my teen-fantasy stage (which lasted perhaps three months) so I tried it and it was awful. Two-page chapters? Rolling action with almost no breaks? It's like he can't write anything other than tension--no mood, no character development, no conversations, just action scenes with occasional breaks for bad jokes.
And who films commercials for books? Not real authors!

message 28: by Daniel (new)

Daniel Gonçalves (danielgoncalves) | 2 comments I hate him as well. The guy doesn't even write his own books. Makes plots or whatever and then a ghost writer writes everything. Scammer

message 29: by Barbara (new)

Barbara (goodreadscombarb-ken) | 3 comments I agree with most of you,Caroline especially. They should come with crayons. I read only part of one but from what I;ve seen and heard, Dannielle Steele has more substance and neither auther writes a character that;s close to a living person. Embarrassing.

message 30: by Bob108819 (new)

Bob108819 | 1 comments I've admittedly read and liked a lot of Patterson books. But it has been a long time since I enjoyed one, and have completely written him off. He is not an author, he is the CEO of the James Patterson franchise, and I don't think he even reads the crap that he puts his name on. Plus I've heard from multiple sources that the guy is a jerk.

message 31: by John (last edited Jan 08, 2014 12:13AM) (new)

John Pierre | 3 comments I thought of the emperor's new clothes when I picked up and started my first, and last, James Patterson.
I was astonished that the dross I was reading - which would shame a 12 year old, was the work of the man whose name I had seen on bestsellers for so many years.
It's no wonder other writers are brought in.
Actually scratch the word 'other'- It's no wonder writers are brought in to write them, I imagine this is the conscience of his publishers in action, happy with the cashflow but worried sleepless about having to inflict another hamfisted monstrously bad Patterson on the public.
No! You are not alone in hating James Patterson.
But if you figure out who's buying his trash and how he does it please let me know. I mean some one is reading it and..and...enJOYing it!

message 32: by John (new)

John Pierre | 3 comments It really rocked my world view that cringe fest writing like his could be so popular so I gave the matter some thought and as I only got through two pages before tearing the offending article in two and disposing of it, I have to assume the book would have gone on to reveal a stunningly addictive plot. That or the man has made a sinister crossroads style pact with Lucifer, because the sentence to sentence writing was the worst I have ever seen in a published and supposedly proofread and edited novel.

message 33: by Mary Ann (new)

Mary Ann | 19 comments I liked the first couple of books he wrote, but grew tired of him quickly.

message 34: by Kate (new)

Kate ✨ is a dreamer I don't really like or dislike his books. I like some, but I think for some he draws them out to much.
Like Alex Cross, I think he's on his 20 something book & with the The Kiss In Witch & Wizard It put a damper on the series. Like, really?

message 35: by Kayris (new)

Kayris (katlovr819) | 2 comments I liked a couple of the early books, and loved Suzanne's Diary For Nicholas. But lost interest pretty quickly. I was super super disappointed by his King Tut book.

message 36: by Allie (new)

Allie Poole (alliepooleparty) I like his ideas for story lines, they seem interesting and intriguing. However, the actual writing... not so much. It's not very gripping, it doesn't captivate me. I have never walked away from a James Patterson book thinking, "Wow! That was amazing!" It's more of a, "hmmm. Okay. Not bad. Neat story. Alright then." Sort of response.

message 37: by Chris (new)

Chris (bibliophile85) | 22 comments, you are definitely not the only one who dislikes this dope. Banal and cliche to the point of it being a caricature. Also, his dialogue and prose strikes me as extremely dumbed down. He and Dan Brown must have taken the same writing workshops.

message 38: by Lily (new)

Lily Marie (lilyvsstar) | 4 comments I thoroughly liked the first three Maximum Ride series, but book 4 was were it began it slowly descend. It had so much promise! I was so disappointed in the series, but I kept reading them because I loved the main character. (I also started reading them in middle school. Nostalgia.)
However, I tried to read his other works like Alex Cross and couldn't do it :(

message 39: by Gloria (new)

Gloria | 4 comments Years and years ago I read a few of the Alex Cross books and I remember enjoying them--for one thing, it was great having an African American detective. So I started reading Patterson again recently, and was stunned at how bad the books were. I did some googling, and came across his boasts about how he "works" at synopses, etc., and lets other writers under his direction finish them--so that he can publish a book a month. God. It shows. Yet it is obviously working for him.

message 40: by John (new)

John | 20 comments I read one of his books years before Patterson was a "brand name" -- and was disappointed. Then I saw him all over the place and I couldn't figure out why. I did read the first Alex Cross book . . . and was again disappointed. The 3 page chapters, the poor writing, the predictable plot. Ugh.

message 41: by Lily (new)

Lily Marie (lilyvsstar) | 4 comments I actually enjoyed the short chapters. Probably because I was in middle school and enjoyed the quick reads. It made the story feel faster and it was easy to stop at a chapter before going to sleep X3
Does anyone else like or dislike the short chapters?

message 42: by John (new)

John Pierre | 3 comments I thought there must be two James Pattersons when I read a bit of 'Along came a Spider', the great writer I had heard all the buzz about and then the namesake who's book I had mistakenly bought. I'm quite serious, the disconnect between the praise and the blurbs and the reality caused me to assume the dross I held could not have been penned by the great man.

To be fair he may be an unmatched master craftsman of plot construction and tenter-hooking but the poverty of sentence to sentence writing ability makes it damn near impossible for me to get past the first chapter.

It's a disappointment because his books LOOK like stuff I want to read.
Ha! Perhaps NO one has ever gor past the first chapter and he's just a genius of the SYNOPSIS.

message 43: by Gloria (new)

Gloria | 4 comments This is the review I wrote on Amazon for Toys: This is absolutely the worst book I have ever read. If I wasn't stuck on a long flight with no other book to read, I would not have finished it. (You can only read the Sky Mall magazine so many times.) It seems to be science fiction by someone who has never read science fiction--whose entire idea of science fiction comes from a couple of bad '40s B movies. For example, the main character's household servant android is named "Metallico." (Multiple chapters later we find out he's made of silicone.) The dialogue contains lines like "Die, human scum!" and "You are doomed!" The main character is an "Elite," part of an "improved" superhuman overclass called Elites. At least he thinks he is. Elites are grown in tanks, so they don't have navels. This man, who is married and the father of two children (grown in tanks, but he and his wife have still had sex), is revealed to be a mere human when he is injured and it is discovered that he has a navel. That he is human is a total shock to him. Seriously. Neither he nor anyone else, in his entire 30 + years of life, have ever noticed that he had a navel before. The book is full of ridiculous situations and people. Scenes include him meeting an underground leader in a limousine--when it stops to pick him up, the leader is a sexy, naked woman soaking in a bubble bath. Yes, in the car. Apparently they do that sort of thing in the future. As is typical with the Patterson factory books, the chapters exceed a hundred. I usually think they are doing that to give an illusion of moving quickly, but in this book, things jump around so erratically that it is clearly a necessity. The characters are flat, the plot is stupid, and the premise is silly and inconsistent. Elites are bad people because they despise and want to kill ordinary humans for being inferior. There are, however, intelligent, self-aware androids with human emotions, and bad guys and good guys alike kill them casually without a moment's reflection. I liked Patterson back in the days when he was creating Alex Cross. Then, when I finished all of the series that has been written at that point, I forgot about him and didn't read him for a decade or so. I started picking up some of these "collaborations" recently. I have found some of the factory books mildly entertaining, but after Toys, I am never going to risk another one. Life is too short, and Toys cost me hours of it that I'll never, ever get back.

message 44: by Jillee (new)

Jillee Sexton (jesexton) So I've been under the impression that James Patterson is one of those quantity over quality writers and that was before I found out that he doesn't write his own books. I attempted to read Maximum Ride and could not get past the first few pages. It was just that bad. I also noticed that he has commercials. Really? You need to be on TV to sell your book?
In addition, I was a little surprised to see him in the only episode of Castle I ever watched. I was like, why is James Patterson here? Why not use an actual quality writer, like J.K. Rowling or Neil Gaiman or Orson Scott Card? I guess they were too busy writing to appear on Castle.

message 45: by Gloria (new)

Gloria | 4 comments At least Castle had Michael Connolly, too.

message 46: by stormhawk (new)

stormhawk reading NYPD Red because a friend i respect said it was great.

It isn't.

message 47: by [deleted user] (new)

So,a friend suggested me to try Patterson's PRIVATE series of novels since i like novels based on private eyes.Read two books in the series.Both are total crap.Worst storylines,slow -paced,boring plots everything sucks.I guess this happens when you become a brand name and want to put your name on every other novel that you can find.Well I am glad that I didnt read any of his Alex Cross,Women's Murder Club or Michael Bennett series.

message 48: by Lady ♥ Belleza (new)

Lady ♥ Belleza (bella_foxx) You have plenty of company.

message 49: by Maxine (new)

Maxine (Booklover Catlady) (booklovercatlady) | 7 comments Can't stand his books. They all follow the same boring formula and are not well written. I heard he gets his plot ideas from people then just applies his formula too it. Some books are cringe worthy amateurish.

message 50: by Mazel (new)

Mazel (mazelseeker) | 1 comments I started collecting books back in 2012 because the first book I've got is Witch and Wizard by James Patterson and I totally love it. When I continue the series (Witch and Wizard series and Daniel X series) the first three books was good but when the 4th book of the Wizard and Wizard came out, it became a downfall. I was so disappointed that he ruined a good story. Especially the 5th book. I was completely disappointed and frustrated. James Patterson was my first favorite author and I grew tired of him. He also ruined the Daniel X series. I fell in love with the series but when the 5th book came out. That's it? That's the ending?! When the 6th book came out and read till the end. I completely waste my time reading it and totally NOT worth it. I was planning to read the Maximum Ride series but I'll pass. I'm sorry James Patterson, you were my favorite author back then but I'm tired of reading your work. The stories were great and enjoyable but I don't want to read anymore.

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