©1993 by James Patterson; All Rights Reserved; (P)2001 by Time Warner AudioBooks
"James Patterson does everything but stick our finger in a light socket to give us a buzz." (The New York Times)
"Cross is one of the great creations of thriller fiction." (Dallas Morning News)
Yes, this was my first James Patterson book. I've heard all the hype about him but was not sure what to expect. Along Came a Spider was a real thriller. Serial killer Sineji is diabolical and you really don't know until the end is he for real or not. The ending also has another unexpected twist.
The plot was intricate and took some effort to keep straight at times. I had a little difficulty getting into it at first but then got hooked.
I liked the courtroom hypnosis scene and the MacDonalds shooting scene was downright terrifying.
I really liked Alex Cross. He is a delightful, caring family man who is intelligent and a great detective. Nana-Momma is the solid foundation of the family. I look forward to seeing the children's personalities develop as they get older.
In this book the relationship between Alex and Jesse is interesting. This book was written in the late 90's and inter-racial relationships were less tolerated then. I think things would be quite different today.
Charles Turner was an excellent narrator. His voice fit my impression of Alex Cross to a T. I am disappointed he is not doing future books.
Interesting and plenty of twists. Maybe a bit too long; too many end of story twists. I'm the type that likes my endings clean and final. Even though there is an ambiguous suggestion at the end concerning one bad guy, it is okay and appropriate. But the final actions taken against some other contributors to the mayhem were a bit extreme. Not that the actions weren't warranted -- in real life it would have "made sense" and all, but it was unnecessary to the plot -- I think.
There was a kindness shown one of the victims that I am not sure I quite buy. I think that the prime victim in the book, the one the reader is rooting for, would have suffered a more terrible end than this book offers. It's as if the author felt like the whole mess was so bad, so grisly and so horrific, he needed to add a little relief, to the detriment of the story's believability.
I am not sure I liked the volley between first person and third person. There was something off for me, watching the action through Alex's eyes and mind and then being omniscient and knowing what everyone in the world is thinking, though Alex isn't even present. I never lost consciousness of that switch. I don't think it was done well enough.
Another thing that was "wrong" with it for me was my lack of connecting to the characters. I didn't give a hoot about any of them. The single victim Alex is seeking throughout the book is the only one I cared about -- and I didn't care except that I wanted closure about what happened to that person. It wasn't emotional.
There are some well-handled sex scenes between Alex and a "white woman," and I appreciated the subtlety of the romantic encounters. But I didn't believe that either. Alex was so "into" her and she was so cool and disconnected. But smart, psychologist Alex missed the cues? Also, Alex was very much aware of the social differences between blacks and whites, and he was vocal about the inequality between black and white victims. No matter how gorgeous Jezzy might have been, I think Alex would have been less easily enticed into this dangerous pairing. Not too convincing. Not that it couldn't and doesn't happen; it's just that Alex is drawn to be very much a racial-centric kind of guy. It would take more than blonde hair and blue eyes to get his juices flowing -- and to bring her home to meet his kids -- not likely so quickly. Alex's grandmother came up short too. She was drawn as the wise old g'ma, but she was a walking cliché who never really raised a lather about the things she confronted in this story.
About the main perpetrator. Very bad guy whose beginnings are clearly laid out so that we understand (sympathize with?) his tragic trajectory. By the way, it's pretty cool that some of the ancillary bad guys also had some kind of parent issues (not abuse but neglect and ignorance).
The apparent split-personality that is suggested as a foundation of the killer's actions felt wrong too. I don't know except from other books and movies, but this guy, even if he is a dual personality, was so manipulative, so over the top, so successful, that I'm more inclined to think he suffers from one of the personality disorders which gives him a believable omnipotence. But Alex is supposed to be a shrink and he's not sure either. In the end, we don't really know if the killer was motivated by his previous (psychological) abuse. There is a nice juxtaposition between "Gary's childhood" and the missing child's situation.
It was better than "ok" but not "really good." It does not deter me from continuing the Alex Cross series.
The narrator was very good, and he smoothly handled the switches in point-of-view.
I have worked so hard for so long that I've had very little time to read. Enter iPhone4; now an earbud has cut driving time while I enjoy!!!
All the way through this book I kept thinking, " Wow! Truth is MUCH more strange than fiction!" Imagine my total SHOCK! at the end! And you, too, will be sitting on the edge of your seat, wondering about the whys and the wherefores of this story, and this sick, sick man. Gary Soneji was one of the most brilliant sick minds imaginable. I was even ready to forgive him 3/4 of the way through the book! The ending was way too much for me; I could not even comprehend how Alex could survive!
If you are tired of the every day run-of-the-mill book, no matter what your genre`, you MUST listen to this one! Charles Turner gives a top-notch narration. You'll be drawn in, like me, into the web of the madman as he twists and turns as he weaves his madness and catches into it unsuspected others.
Do not open this book unless you are prepared to listen through the night, on the edge of your bed, fingernails to the quick, heart pounding, eyelids stuck open and unforgiving. Be prepared to try to pull yourself from the web, as its stickiness holds on to you, even as you weep, and cannot forget...,
...cannot forget the base nature of us humans, even as the best are also caught in the web.
One of my favorites so far!
The performance was fantastic - wanted me to continue listening and I finished this much faster than originally anticipated because I just couldn't shut it off!
Do the games ever end?
So many twists and turns in the plot with unexpected surprises - Awesome!!
The character development was excellent. You grew to love them as the minutes passed
The twist at the end of who died.
The parts where Alex snapped, it was good to hear him defend the truth.
Yes, and I did on a long drive.
Worth a listen, and a second.
I enjoyed this book way more than the movie...the movie was lacking, but the book is very descriptive and my imagination got carried away, I could see the charactors, very detailed and easy to follow story line. Highly recommend this book!
Love audiobooks. Mystery and suspense novels are the ones I enjoy the most.
This was my first Audiobook and would tell everyone to get it. Looking forward to listening all of the books in this series.
I don't have time to sit and read, but I have plenty of time to sit and listen! :)
I think when we all see the cover for this book and we hope Morgan Freeman is the narrator. But he is not, so I am not sure anybody can narrate this book and make us all happy. The narration was not bad, just didn't fit the character in my head.
The book is good and if your like me, all I have time for is to listen and not actually read books, then any narrator will do as long as I can get through it.
I wanted to hear Kiss the Girls, but it's not on Audible at this time. It's hard to go on with the series when the 2nd and 3rd book are missing from this site.
The story had a rambling plot and went from bad to worse.
I liked the beginning of the book and thought that it would be a good listen. The author ran out of good ideas and every other chapter became a bad sex scene. I forced myself to finish the book. But the ending was terrible.
It must have some because others have liked the book.
Good story, but it should move along at a better pace. The narrator is tedious, and unpleasant to listen to. He sounds like he has a horrible head cold, and his reading style is mediocre.
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