I have been a big fan of James Pattersons' work for a while now, especially the Womens Murder Club novels, and have read most of his books to date. I cannot put his books down once I start reading them., real page turners. But I have found that over the last few novels his writing has not been as good, particularly when he writes books with other authors, why does he do that? .
Although I love the Alex Cross novels, they are beginning to be like cookie-cutter material. The books follow a standard formula. The whole stories about Cross and his various lovers. We've seen it before? The stuff about the killers' motives in each new novel sounds slightly re-hashed from previous attempts. Although the twists and turns are great, and do leave you guessing right until the very last page. The murders and villans are superbly crafted and it is almost impossible to second guess where Patterson is going with each one. The supporting characters are very weak (a flawed and very realistic Alex and his family aside). There does seem to be a lack of character definition and more emphasis on the action and bloodshed.
If you have not read James Patterson before, dont just start with any book, especailly in the Cross series.. Read them as they were written starting with Kiss the Girls. That way you get to understand Cross's relationships better with his family, friends, lovers and serial killers who appear through out all his books.
I am not very keen on Pattersons' attempts at love stories (Sams letters to Jennifer, Suzannes diary for Nicholas) and think he should stick to his tried and tested genre. I have not read his teenage novels( Maximum Ride, about the angel experiment kids) and am unable to comment on those
I've included the order in which the books were written below, as James Patterson writes nearly 5 novels a year, its almost impossible to keep up with him! I am sure that they are all listed, but no doubt other Ebayers will tell me if I'm wrong. Also included are the books which have been turned into films.
Kiss the Girls. Starring Morgan Freeman and a very good Ashley Judd
Along Came a Spider, Morgan Freeman
First to Die, Starring Sean Young
Honeymoon (currently only a TV movie in US)
Alex Cross Novels
Kiss the Girls, Along Came a spider, Cat and Mouse, See how they run, Pop goes the Weasel, Jack and Jill, Roses are Red, Violets are Blue, Four Blind Mice, Big Bad Wolf, London Bridges, Mary Mary, Cross.
Womens Murder Club Novels.
1st to Die, 2nd Chance, 3rd Degree, 4th July, 5th Horseman
Stand Alone Books.
When the Wind Blows, Cradle and All, Season of the Machete, Miracle on the 17th Green,. Midnight club, Suzannes Diary for Nicholas, Beach House, The Jester, Black Market, The Lakehouse, Sams Letters to Jennifer, Santa Kid, Beach Road, Honeymoon, Maximum Ride (Angel experiment) The Beach House, Judge and Jury, The Lifeguard, Maximum Ride (Schools out forever)