James Patterson has had more New York Times bestsellers than
any other writer, ever, according to Guinness World Records.
Since his first novel won the Edgar Award in 1977 James Patterson's
books have sold more than 300 million copies. He is the author of
the Alex Cross novels, the most popular detective series of
the past twenty-five years, including Kiss the Girls and
Along Came a Spider. He writes full-time and lives in
Florida with his family.
Patterson dedicates his latest (after 1998's When the Wind Blows) to "the millions of Alex Cross readers who so frequently ask `Can't you write faster?'" Those readers won't be disappointed: the successful formula is in high gear, with the Washington, D.C., psychologist/homicide detective up to his ears in unsolved murders. This tale features a duplicitous villain, a glut of dirty office politics and the inevitable threat to someone Cross just can't live without. A highly moral character, Cross is now firmly rooted in many imaginations as Morgan Freeman, who played him in the film version of Kiss the Girls. When he's not caring for Damon and Jannie, his two young children, Cross takes boys to visit their fathers in prison and works in a soup kitchen. After his boss, Chief Pittman, refuses to believe that a serial killer is striking in the neglected Southeast section, Cross and four other officers work extra hours on their own, the only ones who really care. Readers learn early on that the killer is a British diplomat, Geoffrey Shafer, a chilling madman ostensibly holding his sanity together with drugs. Shafer is obsessed with a real-life version of a computer game called the Four Horsemen, during which he masquerades as a taxi driver who kills his unsuspecting passengers. If Shafer is almost too good to be trueÄanother fictional psychopath with infinite resourcesÄPatterson is shrewd enough to show him making mistakes (like forgetting to wash) as he comes apart at the seams. The killer is caught in the middle of the narrative, setting the scene for a bold courtroom drama. Even the disappearance of Cross's new lady love (his wife was killed in a previous book) is less of a clich‚d device than a ritual sacrifice as Patterson's well-oiled suspense machine grinds away with solid precision. 1 million first printing; $1 million ad/promo; 14-city author tour; Time Warner audio. (Oct.) Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
Alex Cross, last seen in Cat & Mouse, returns in Patterson's best book to date. With his fianc‚e, Christine, by his side, Alex has regained the happiness he lost. He can't stay happy for long, of course, and his nemesis this time is Geoffrey Shafer, the Weasel. Shafer is a British diplomat who lives a secret life; he murders people during a fantasy game he plays with three other men around the globe. Alex doesn't know it, but he and the people he cares about are the newest pawns in the game. Even with implausible situations and an absurdly evil villain, the book is impossible to put down. Patterson has another guaranteed best seller on his hands, and fans will be clamoring for the next Alex Cross adventure.ÄJeff Ayers, Seattle P.L. Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.