Monday, May 15, 2006

BEACH ROAD by James Patterson

Beth reviews BEACH ROAD by James Patterson (Little Brown, 2006). [author website] [blog]

Tom Dunleavy, a former professional basketball player, works as a lawyer in East Hampton. His days are spent sitting in his chair tossing wadded up paper “balls” into his trashcan until he is hired to defend a local high school senior, Dante Halleyville, who has been accused of triple murder. Dante, the country’s best high school basketball star and future #1 NBA draft pick, needs more help than Tom can offer. Tom is forced to contact his old love—the well-connected lawyer Kate Costello—to help win over the twelve jurors.

As a long-time fan of James Patterson, and having read everything he’s published, I was initially disappointed with Beach Road. The format is written with each chapter in another character’s voice, which forced me to refer back to the “list of characters” for the first half of the novel. It was a slow start, but once the plot thickens a Patterson page-turner begins. Maybe I was naïve, but I didn’t see the end coming. I plan on re-reading this novel to see if I missed any “clues” along the way.

Beth, Highland Branch Library

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What do you like about James Patterson's books? What has been your favorite so far?


I love the fact that with his novels you are drawn into the characters' lives, you experience their emotions and often you are left amazed at the outcome of the novel (or at least I am).

It's hard to say what my favorite James Patterson novel is.... Each series or book has it's own merits:

The Alex Cross series brings home to the reader the concept of weighing personal/family safety against your job/National safety. While the Women's Murder Club shows that friendship can survive anythings. His newest series which began with Maximum Ride is written for younger readers (although I really enjoyed it too!)is due out for its second installment soon.

I guess you could say my favorite James Patterson novel is his newest--whichever that happens to be at the time!

Have you read Sam's Letters to Jennifer? I heard it was very good.
After Patterson's great success with Suzanne's Diary for Nicholas(2001), he gave the sentimental books another go with Sam's Letters to Jennifer. It was good, but not my favorite. Jennifer has just lost her husband when she gets a call that her grandmother, Sam, has fallen and is in a coma. Jennifer rushes to her side and finds letters addressed to her from her grandmother. As Jennifer reads them she discovers truths about her grandmother, true-love and the fact that you can love again.
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