3RD Degree by James Patterson with Andrew Gross
I almost didn’t read this book because I’ve been so disappointed with James Patterson lately. I just couldn’t handle The Lake House and was disappointed with The Jester. But 3rd Degree is a good, fast read. It is the third of the Women’s Murder Club series, following 1st to Die and Second Chance. The Women’s Murder Club, consisting of a cop, a medical examiner, a district attorney and a reporter, put their heads together to solve a series of murders which seem to be caused by a radical anti-establishment group with possible ties to Berkley. The action is fast-paced and surprising, the dialogue is good, the characters are believable and compelling. 3rd Degree is just a great summer read. This is not as hard core as some of James Patterson’s earlier novels like Kiss the Girls or Along Came a Spider, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. 3rd Degree is compelling enough without the sadistic torture sequences, which I can personally do without. Patterson does a good job with sub-plot too in 3rd Degree. The prosecutor, Jill Barnhardt, is having troubles with her husband – troubles which may be endangering her life. That plus the series of murders unfolding in San Francisco just days before the World Trade Organization is due to meet makes for great suspense. I’ve heard Patterson described as clever but manipulative of his audience almost akin to Hitchcock – in other words – in a way his readers will love. My first thumbs up for James Patterson in several novels. I liked his latest hardback bestseller – 3rd Degree. On the Book Beat for KSL Newsradio 1160, I’m Amanda Dickson.