Library Reads: James Patterson’s Kill Alex Cross

The Alex Cross were fast paced, intense, mystery/thriller, novels when they first made their appearance in 1993 with Along Came a Spider, but it’s now 2013 and James Patterson is still writing them. Kill Alex Cross is definitely the weakest so far, and shows that the Alex Cross series is probably only continuing because of the money behind it. Alex Cross didn’t even sound like himself in the usual past books like this one, and why is Nana still alive? She was around 70 when the books first appeared in 1993! Even Patterson makes a joke about her age in this one.

Summary: The President’s children, Ethan and Zoe are abducted at school, leaving the FBI in a frenzy as they search for clues to find them. This leaves them to call in one of the best detectives there is, Alex Cross. Along with the kidnappings a deadly contagion is leaving a trail of dead bodies and has showed in the D.C. water lines. The two seem to be connected, but Cross thinks someone involved is misleading them for one of the hugest cases that Cross has been on.

Characters: Alex Cross has always been one of the better characters in fiction. He’s complex. He loves his family, is committed to his job, has an intriguing personality, and treats the woman he falls for like a queen. He also though seems to have had a tendency to womanize, be a bit quick tempered, and let his arrogance guide him. It makes him interesting. There are also the characters that appear in many other novels that people have come to know like Nana, who is a great character, but gosh she is living way long, and his children, which honestly are just a little too “leave it to Beaver” for me. Sampson also used to be a more intriguing, but I felt he was just making an appearance in this book for appearances sake.

Writing: If there is one major inconsistent thing about Patterson it’s the writing style. It used to be more characteristic, but with this one I could barely tell I was reading his writing. Did he secretly team up with someone on this one? I’m now reading Merry Christmas, Alex Cross, and they read as if two different people wrote them. Regardless though, Patterson has never been known for his writing skills though, but more so his ability to tell a story, which he does well, except in this one even the writer seems bored with the story.

Plot: The plot will be a bit dissatisfying I think to first time readers and long time readers of the series. You have two different tales happening that are not interwoven taking place. One where a terrorist group is plotting a plan to cause chaos in D.C. and the other where the two children have been abducted. With only almost 400 pages and very short chapters to hatch the two out it leaves you feeling a bit underwhelmed. The plot should have just stuck with one, with the more interesting being the children story, and then developed from there. The terrorist one just doesn’t ever feel interesting and it makes so no sense as to what the intent of it being wrote in is.

Kill Alex Cross bodes not too good of things for the Alex Cross series. The series just seems to be slipping further and further from what it once was, which is understandable considering it’s a long running series. Alex Cross even looses his staple personality in this one and becomes very bland unlike he has been. It just felt there was a lack of passion for the story and characters.

Rating 5 of 10.

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