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What could a missing reformed call girl, a small town beauty queen and the reclusive owner of a pornographic magazine empire possibly have in common? It wouldn't take a great stretch of the imagination to leap to the obvious conclusion but you'd be wrong. Very wrong in fact. This particular book is full of red herrings, dubious links and random irrelevant detail.
Alex Delaware is a child psychiatrist who no longer treats children instead specialising as a police liaison. His links to the local police force allow him a degree of freedom and access to information that no other civilian could possibly obtain and so when a former patient goes missing and her mother gets fobbed off by the police its Alex to whom she turns for help. Clearly Alex is bored. I mean why else would you try to locate a patient with whom you've had no contact for a dozen plus years nor a patient whom you saw on only three occasions without any success. Still it's a dubious enough link to allow Alex to pretend to be a private detective tailing suspected bad guys whom he happens to come across by accident when the police fail to manage to find them.
The story isn't particularly interesting, there are far too many ridiculous assumptions and propositions to make it a fun read. Half the time you're wondering just how desperate the author was to churn out yet another novel. Very desperate me thinks although perhaps he was attempting to out do his wife but this is clearly negated by including the first chapter of her latest novel at the end of his.
As who dunnits go this is a pretty poor example and would not entice me to seek out any other books by the very prolific Mr Kellerman.
How connected do you feel to someone having only met them twice? If it were a troubled teenage girl who years later went missing, would you care? Alex Delaware does, you see one of his ex-patients has disappeared and he can't help thinking that it's somehow his fault. With his usual single mindedness he seeks out the truth with the help of his cop friend Milo. Their investigations uncover a truth of international adult magazine moguls and a Hollywood Madams.
The characters of Alex and Milo are now well known to fans so Kellerman adds little to the mix in this book. The story itself is reasonable but once again around 100-150 pages too long. Kellerman does not seem to be able to create a story that will last as long as he wants the book to be. Elements are boring and there is often little going on - less is sometimes more.
Saying that when the action does take place it is good, the story has some nice twists to it but it still feels like a thriller by numbers and a bit lazy by the author. An average book by someone who is soon becoming a very average
I first stumbled upon Jonathan Kellerman?s books when I was browsing at my local bargain books shop. I?m a big James Patterson fan. That day however I was just in the mood for trying out a different author, to see if anyone else out there had the same effortless style and engrossing storylines that I could enjoy as much, and I did. Jonathan Kellerman?s Flesh and Blood immediately caught my eye and as I skimmed the back cover, I immediately got filled with excitement. Kellerman?s novels centre around a small group of main characters such as Alex Delaware, a child psychologist who is occasionally is asked to work with the police as a consultant. Detective Milo Sturgis, Delaware?s close friend, whom he often relies upon for back up and help. Robin Castagna, Delaware?s long suffering girl friend. Some of his other books centre on other characters too with the key ones, as I mentioned above, in the background instead. He tends to rotate the importance of his well-developed characters, which I personally think makes his books very interesting to follow. He is another excellent crime thriller writer, which (as you?ve probably guessed) is my preferred genre. Kellerman?s other books include Doctor Death, Billy Straight, Monster, Bad love and many more. The author used to be a child psychologist himself, so he brings in an altogether different feel to his books (as opposed to those who write from a detective point of view)?.more emotional, and you find yourself really connecting to the main characters. Flesh and Blood Plot Shortly after the celebrations of a New Year had settled, Alex Delaware is sat in his office on a perfectly normal (forgettable even) Saturday morning. Then, the phone rang?. The call was from a Mrs Jane Abbot. He didn?t recognise the name at all, but she seemed to know him. She tells him that it was her daughter, Lauren Teague that he once knew. He had treated her nearly ten years ago. A
lex instantly remembers the name, and is filled with a sense of overwhelming guilt and confusion. Lauren may have only been his patient for two sessions (the third one was cancelled), but she sticks in his mind due to the circumstances of their chance meeting six years later. The story then briefly flashes back to the chance meeting, some four years previous. Alex is celebrating a colleague?s impending marriage with a traditional bachelor party. Not his idea of a good time, and he felt uneasy with the whole thing. Along comes the stripper, as always appear in these parties, and he sees AND feels a spark of recognition. It was Lauren Teague. Nothing was said by either, and Alex made his excuse and left early after the shock encounter. Later that night, Lauren looks up Delaware?s number and calls him unexpectedly to belatedly re-appoint their third session. She informs him that she is now studying psychology at college herself, and is paying her own way through the stripping. Conversation turns to her family and their faults. After a much-heated discussion, Lauren storms out of Alex?s office, leaving Alex somewhat bewildered. Back to the present day and the phone call from Mrs Abbot. It is a desperate call asking for his services to try and locate Lauren? She?s missing. Alex is a little reluctant to begin with, but after he does some delving into Lauren?s past he finds some astonishing discoveries, connections within L.A?s seedy underworld, and a possible link to another girl?s disappearance. Will Alex find Lauren in time to save her? Will Robin?s love for Alex withstand his obsession for this case? I shan?t say any more as I do not want to give away any vital parts of the story. I know it?s a cliché, but I have to say it?this book is a true rollercoaster ride, full of twists and unexpected plot diversions. To top it off, the ending will blow you away! MY OPINION This book
was simply brilliant. There is plenty in this book to keep you guessing and leaves you literally sitting (or rather clinging!) on the edge of your seat. Like James Patterson?s books, the chapters are fairly short and very addictive. They are written in such a way that it makes you want to keep on reading into the early hours, simply to find out what could possibly happen next! Since reading this book, with it?s subtle style and engrossing characters, I have gone on to read most of Kellerman?s other books and they are all written in the same effortless, and engrossing style. The characters are extremely believable and, as I have said, because these particular series of books were written more from a psychologist?s point of view, the characters had a great deal of depth to them, and I really did feel emotionally attached to them. By the time that I had finished reading this book, I knew a great deal about the characters previous encounters, characteristics and personal involvement, as with each of his other books. So much so, I even knew a little of their previous involvement in his earlier books. Jonathan Kellerman?s brilliant structuring and characterisation made it very easy to understand each of the characters and situations. Each book gives a good insight into the characters themselves, so if you haven?t read any of the previous ones, you will not be left in the dark as far as characterisation goes. I really enjoyed reading this book (I must have done because I went straight back to the same bookshop the next day and got two more) and I think you will too. I got my copy from a Bargain Bookshop in our local shopping centre in a two for £5.00 deal, but the recommended price on the back cover says £6.99. Many thanks for reading, and I hope I have spurred a few of you on to trying this great novel. XX Sarah.
Alex Delaware first saw Lauren Teague as a sullen teenager with the usual problems, but now, years later, Lauren's mother is pleading for help again. Lauren has vanished. Alex soon finds himself in the shadowy worlds of psychological experimentation and the LA sex industry, and risking everything.