Book Review: Cross My Heart by James Patterson

Cross my HeartBook: Cross My Heart

Author: James Patterson

Rating: 2 out of 5 stars

Are you kidding me?  Where is the damn ending?  Who does that??  That’s what all the reviews said before I read James Patterson’s Cross My Heart.  So I’m going into this thinking, great this book is gonna suck… yet I’ll torture myself anyway, why not?  Not like I have nine-million other things on my to-do list.  But you know what?  The ending wasn’t that bad.  Sure, I might not have ended it quite like James Patterson did, but then again I’m not James Patterson selling a million novels a year (I wish!  Maybe someday, haha).  I still have a beef with the book, but we’ll get to that.  First a little background…

Patterson’s main character, Alex Cross, finds himself the target of genius maniac who wants to prove that he is the ultimate criminal; the one who will beat Alex Cross.  But Cross’s case-load is too busy for him to notice.  Too busy to notice that his family, the ones he cares most about and would do anything for, may be the real targets.  And the ones in the most danger.

Okay, so I could have summed up that blurb with just the first sentence.  Boom.  Done.  Because everything else that is happening in the book feels like filler.  An after-thought even.  Like, oh shit I missed my word count… time to pile in some other stuff to please the publishers.  And let me tell you, there’s A LOT of other stuff going on.  Too much.  It’s a tilt-a-whirl of different characters, actions, thoughts, criminal activity, issues… all mixing together in the nighttime lights and boy did I feel dizzy.  Every time I would flip the page I wondered who would be speaking next.  Don’t get me wrong, I like hearing the story from different character point-of-views, but please try to limit it to two or three.  When you’re getting input from everyone it’s hard to hear the story.  Not that there is much to tell.  There’s so many events happening that you don’t get a chance to really sink your teeth in and enjoy it, feel it, imagine it and become a part of the book.  One of the very reasons I read in the first place.

At least in Cross My Heart, Patterson is getting back to his serial killer roots.  Thank goodness he’s laid off that political terrorist angle.  If I wanted to read that I would read the news.  But it’s so disappointing how quickly the serial killer part of the story wraps up.  Just as it’s getting good, bam.  It’s over.  That’s all folks.  Even as I sit here writing this, I still want to know more about the killer.  But when you have so much going on there’s only a certain amount of time each issue can have.  Unfortunately, the best part got cheated.

And I get that this is Patterson’s twenty-first Cross novel.  (Twenty-one, crazy!)  Which makes me think the series might be getting a little rusty, dusty, so he’s probably trying to spruce it up a bit.  There’s only so many times your hero can be in danger and come out unscathed before it starts getting old.  I think the author George R.R. Martin (Game of Thrones) said it best, “I want my readers, and I want viewers to be afraid when my characters are in danger,” he adds. “I want them to be afraid to turn the next page because the next character may not survive it.”  In other words, “all men must die”.  Maybe Patterson should take some notes.

Oh and another thing about the ending… Sure it kinda feels like a ploy to get the reader to buy the next book, but I guess I look at it as a cliffhanger.  Something that makes you want to buy the next book, not feel like you’re obligated to, which if that’s the case then I think there’s a bigger issue with your writing then just the “lack of an ending”.  If anything, I think Patterson should keep one thing in mind…

“In writing, you must kill all your darlings” ~ William Faulkner

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2 thoughts on “Book Review: Cross My Heart by James Patterson

  1. OMG Stephanie, I laughed all the way through this review. I love your sense of humor! Sorry the book didn’t meet your expectations – I hate when that happens. There are so many good books on the shelves I could have been reading.
    How have you been? I’ve missed you. I haven’t seen any posts from you lately. Are you ready for winter to be over? The rain washed the last of our snow away yesterday.
    Oh, oh. Good news! My son who is stationed in Oregon, as in a trillion miles away from Ohio, is getting out of the Coast Guard this summer and is concentrating his job search East of the Mississippi. Anywhere closer to home. YAY!!! I am so excited. My granddaughter will be closer and so will my granddog! And, of course my son and daughter-in-law too! Ryan will get out of the CG in July, but my daughter-in-law and granddaughter will come back to Ohio sometime in April before Ryan’s next deployment. They are going to put their things in storage in the meantime. Hopefully before he leaves again, he will have a job lined up and Megan can find a house for them.
    So, let me know what’s been going on with you. Hugs, my friend.

    1. Hi Michelle so good to hear from you! I’ve missed you!! And thank you so much for the compliments 🙂 Made my day! I know what you mean and I think I’m a sucker for punishment because I just picked up the continuation for Cross my Heart. I hope it ends better than it started! He used to be my favorite author, but I’m losing faith in him. Feels like he only cares about quantity now instead of quality. So disappointing.

      I’ve been good, sometimes wondering where the time’s going. Last I thought we were still in December. I think it speeds up as you get older haha. And I’ve just been working hard on my books… just feels like there’s never enough time for it. Plus, I’m so close to publishing them, it’s getting hard to stay patient. Other than that, not much is new. My husband and I are trying to figure out where to go for our five year anniversary in August. We’re calling it a second honeymoon because our first one didn’t go so well. We went to the Dominican where our first day was gorgeous. Then… a hurricane hit. No power half the time, rained almost constantly, winds that would blow you over… at least we have a good story to tell haha. We’re trying to think of somewhere not terribly expensive. My husband’s mentioned Maine in October, but I don’t know much about it. If you have any ideas let me know 🙂 Oh you are so lucky! We still have quite a bit of snow on the ground. Tomorrow’s supposed to be a high of fifty, so I’m hoping it’ll do a good job melting it. Fingers crossed 🙂

      Omg that’s wonderful news!! I’m so happy for you! You’ll have to take lots of pictures when they come to visit. I’m sure that adorable grandbaby is so big by now! And I just love your granddog too. You have such a beautiful family and it’s such a blessing they’re moving closer. Many well wishes and good luck to them (and you!) on their new journey 🙂

      Thanks so much again for dropping by; I really love hearing from you! Absolutely made my day 🙂 Many hugs!!

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