Book Review: Alex Cross’s Trial – James Patterson

Book: Alex Cross’s Trial

Author: James Patterson

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Alex Cross TrialIf you’re a James Patterson fan, throw out all your expectations of Alex Cross.  Because other than the first few pages, Patterson’s book, Alex Cross’s Trial, has nothing to do with Alex Cross.  However, once you get past the misleading title, I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised.  And if you like To Kill a Mockingbird, then this book is perfect for you.

Alex Cross is “writing” the story about his great Uncle Abraham who lived during the high times of the Ku Klux Klan.  Rumors swirl of a resurgence of the Klan, prompting President Roosevelt to ask this famous civil rights lawyer, Ben Corbett, to investigate.  Ben travels to his hometown of Eudora, Mississippi and discovers lynchings are as common as the sun rising.  But as he digs further, the truth may not be as clear as it appears.

History abounds in this book, yet it’s weaved into a captivating tale that explores the issues of racism and discrimination during the worst of times.  Even though the story moves at a good pace, don’t expect any of Patterson’s usual twists and turns.  Well, then again, I haven’t seen those since Kiss the Girls or Along Came a Spider, so we shouldn’t be too surprised.  However, the characters are likable enough and I often found myself turning the pages just to get to know them better.  And Patterson does do a good job of helping the reader envision the south during the 1900’s without overloading the story with too many details.

Although, I enjoyed the book, the title is false advertising plain and simple, which is a bit upsetting when you’re expecting a book about Alex Cross.  Made me feel duped.  Oh, and thriller novel this is not.  More like historical fiction and more false advertising.  With that aside, other than the ending, which I felt was a little flat, I think it’s a good story, just don’t expect too much from it.

p.s. I’d probably have given it three stars, but I like history, especially American history, so… bonus star.


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