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Along Came a Spider - James Patterson
Member Name: jpegington
Along Came a Spider - James Patterson
Advantages: Well Written, Great Story, Gripping
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
James Patterson was born in 1947. He grew up in Newburgh, New York and graduated summa cum laude with a B.A. in English from Manhattan College and summa cum laude with an M.A. in English from Vanderbilt University. He began his advertising career as a junior copywriter with J. Walter Thompson, North America in 1971 and went on to become the executive creative director and chief executive office. Patterson currently lives in Palm Beach County, Florida, with his wife and their young son.
BOOK DETAILS: ALONG CAME A SPIDER:
Paperback: 448 pages
Catagories: Fiction, Crime, Murder Mystery, Thriller
First Published: 1992
ORDER OF ALEX CROSS BOOKS:
Along came a Spider (1992)
Kiss the Girls (1994)
Jack and Jill (1996)
Cat and Mouse (1997)
Pop goes the Weasal (1999)
Roses are Red (2000)
Violets are Blue (2001)
Four Blind Mice (2002)
The Big Bad Wolf (2003)
London Bridges (2004)
MAIN CHARACTERS OF ALONG CAME A SPIDER:
Dr Alex Cross
ABOUT MYSELF (READING HABITS):
I am a very keen reader and love nothing better except to sit and read a great book. As such I have read quite a number of Authors and Books, but must admit that in regards to Crime / Thriller Books James Patterson is one of my favourites. Since I first discovered his books (I think my Mum actually first introduced me to them) I have read all of his books published as they have come out in paperback, although still not read London Bridges for some reason!
ABOUT THE BOOK:
OK, where do I start:
Lets start with some background to help you understand the book. Alex Cross is a Washington DC cop with a doctorate in psychology. Detective Sampson is his partner. Alex Cross is officially a Deputy Chief of Detectives but is still very much on the frontline of detective work. Due to his background in Psychology he is very good in getting into the mind of killers to work out what they are doing so he can catch them. He is very much your typical hero, widowed father of 2 children, whose wife was killed, living with his Grandmother (who is an excellent character in the books) and working hard. Gary Soneji is the killer / kidnapper in this book. He is a complete nutter to put it simply, intelligent and cunning and excellent at disguises.
Now about this book specifically:
Jezzie Flannigan is a secret service agent stationed at a private school to guard a number of children, among them Megan Rose, a Senators daughter. After her kidnapping by Gary Soneji, he contacts Alex Cross and challenges him to find him. Now Cross gets involved in the kidnapping and takes Jezzie Flannigan along as his partner.
Now to say much more really will give away the plot and say too much and spoil this excellent book which I really do not want to do. Sufficient to say that you follow the kidnapping of Megan Rose as well as other cases that Alex Cross is working on.
I have therefore put below a short extract of the start of the book, which will give you an idea of his writing style.
SAMPLE OF BOOK: START OF CHAPTER 1 OF THE BOOK:
EARLY ON THE MORNING of December 21, 1992, I was the picture of contentment on the sun porch of our house on 5th Street in Washington, D.C. The small, narrow room was cluttered with mildewing winter coats, work boots, and wounded children's toys. I couldn't have cared less. This was home.
I was playing Gershwin on our slightly out-of-tune, formerly grand piano. It was just past 5 A.M., and cold as a meat locker on the porch. I was prepared to sacrifice a little for "An American in Paris."
The phone jangled in the kitchen. Maybe I'd won the D.C., or Virginia, or Maryland lottery and they'd forgotten to call the night before. I play all three games of misfortune regularly.
"Nana? Can you get that?" I called from the porch.
"It's for you. You might as well get it yourself," my testy grandmother called back. "No sense me gettin' up, too. No sense means nonsense in my dictionary."
OPINION ON BOOK:
I find that James Patterson books are simply irresistible and this book is excellent. The Authors style is very much one for short chapters (sometimes only 2 or 3 pages) as he finds this makes the books easier to read. I must admit that sometimes I like this and other times it can really irritate me, really depends on my mood. It can be good as you can finish a chapter and reflect for a moment, other times I just wish he would get on with it and get a little more in depth in a chapter. You will have to make your own mind up whether you like this or not.
The Story in this book is absolutely excellent. The way that James Patterson writes really lets you get into the story and imagine the characters really well. Gary Soneji is a scary killer and the image of Cross as the loving father coping as a single parent is excellent.
I personally like the Cross stories a lot, they all follow on from each other in some way ( i.e. Gary Soneji reappears in later books, the story always follows Alex Cross, and the Author does draw on things that happened in earlier books, although he does explain what happens) and this allows you to really get into the books. You also follow the story of Cross and his family and this book really gives you the start for the whole series.
I would say that you can follow any of the Cross books, even if you have not read any of the earlier books. However I much prefer to read books in order and I do still recommend this, although it is not necessary in order to understand or follow the stories.
If you like Crime &Thriller books then this is definitely for you. James Patterson is absolutely excellent and I completely recommend his books.
Summary: Excellent Story