In the last book 9th Judgement I was not a happy bunny. The lead character Lindsay seemed to have had a personality transplant and had become this wimp overnight. Thankfully she seems to have got some of her backbone back in this latest book. Her and her work partner Rich are a good fit and the case they worked on was the main thread of this book in the beginning. Thankfully the story was somewhat better than some of the others in the series although a long way off as good as they could be.
Yuki is the other character I just cannot get my head around. For a start she is an Assistant District Attorney so the true nature of somebody in that position doesn't fit with how she is being written. The main thread for her was again not a bad story, but we keep seeing the insistent `pushing' of her becoming involved with somebody and having to find herself a man. There is something about it that just doesn't sit right with me.
Cindy is the one character that I think has become stronger and her relationship with Rich played a bigger part this time round. The last book I read their relationship felt like an added extra that was dumped in the book at the last minute but thankfully now it all seems to have taken an upward turn and fits her character and the story a lot better. Cindy was by far the best part of this latest read which isn't that positive a sign seeing as the book features Lindsay a lot more.
Medical Examiner Claire was the only character that was missing for the largest part of the book. It felt like they had forgotten her or maybe it was the fact that there were a lot less dead bodies in this one for her to autopsy. Either way I think she should have featured more that she did.
Okay, I feel like I do this every time I read a Patterson nowadays. It's almost like I get a shock if I love the book. The thing with Patterson books is that the writing style is genius. They are short sharp chapters which manage to pique your interest and keep you turning pages. However, the real heart of the stories seems to be somewhat missing. Is this down to Patterson losing his touch or down to the co-authors who some people claim are the real `writers' to these books? Who knows?
The three stories that ran were okay, but just that, okay! They were interesting enough to keep me reading and in truth the only thing that made me that bit more interested were the characters I have grown to understand and know the more I have read.
The pace was as usual pretty good but there were no great surprises and like I mentioned before the body count was low! If this was the first in the series I think there would be less of a following and I think that people go back to these books time and time again because they are `easy readers'.
If you look at the overall rating of these Murder Club books you may be surprised. Amazon ratings show the majority of the series to be `middle of the road' and I can understand why. Love him or loathe him, you won't find many people that haven't heard of or read a James Patterson.
This time I won't try to convince myself that I won't pre-order because (for no obvious reason) I probably will (what a sucker!). I wouldn't say this was awful, but I wouldn't say it was his best.