Tuesday, December 6, 2016

James Patterson - Private

Former Marine helicopter pilot Jack Morgan runs Private, a renowned investigation company with branches around the globe. It is where you go when you need maximum force and maximum discretion. The secrets of the most influential men and women on the planet come to Jack daily - and his staff of investigators uses the world's most advanced forensic tools to make and break their cases.
Jack is already deep into the investigation of a multi-million dollar NFL gambling scandal and the unsolved slayings of 18 schoolgirls when he learns of a horrific murder close to home: his best friend's wife, Jack's former lover, has been killed. It nearly pushes him over the edge. Instead, Jack pushes back and devotes all of Private's resources to tracking down her killer.
But Jack doesn't have to play by the rules. As he closes in on the killer and chooses between revenge and justice, Morgan has to navigate a workplace love affair that threatens to blow the roof off his plans. With a plot that moves at death-defying speeds, Private is James Patterson's sleekest, most exciting thriller ever.

Comment: I was given this book for my birthday and it has been in the pile since then. Well, it hasn't been that long to be truthful but I admit I was not expecting this book, as I'm not overly desperate for the genre but since it was a gift, of course I'd try it.

Here we have the beginning of the story of Jack Morgan, an ex marine who inherited his father's Investigation Agency and now has a specialized team working their best to solve several cases, alone or along the police.
This first book combines three main cases, one of them pretty personal to Jack, as it focuses on the murder of one of his ex girlfriends, then there's the NFL situation and also the serial killing of many teenagers. While describing the investigations, the steps and clues taken to get closer to the solution of the cases, Jack and his team have to deal with many people in between, some help, others don't but all add a little something to the end game.

It's a bit difficult to grade this story truthfully. I liked the plot but the writing style and the main character's behavior and personalities weren't always that interesting to me.
The best thing about this book is probably the fast pace in which everything happens and, graphically, the fact we have so many small chapters helps in giving the reader the notion we're reading a lot, even if some chapters don't seem to have enough in them to be called chapters but whatever.

The plot, like I said, it's interesting, I liked how they got to the clues they needed to keep the investigations going. However, if the point is to highlight the cleverness used to reach the steps they needed to discover the truth, I think everything is done too much with the tactic of between the lines, meaning some situations were more alluded to and quickly demonstrated. I missed more explanations for so many details and why were they necessary or important.

The characters aren't too strong, in my opinion. Everything about them is too superficial, too easy to explain but the interactions between them are, again, things we need to sort out between the lines, apart from something here and there. We know about their relationships, not as much because we see them happen but because we are told and they do one or two things to demonstrate. In a way, it does make the plot move along but it makes the story feel a little too superficially presented.

Jack Morgan is the main character and I get many ideas of how and who he is but do we really get to know him? I suppose, as the series moves along we might but I don't think he is as amazing as he can and I don't feel all that desperate to learn more about him. Some of his interactions with others is what truly allows us to make an idea of his intellect and relationships and for someone as clever he still sort of plays a bit with others' feelings. At least he did with Colleen and even Andy and Justine, in a way.

I think the story has interesting parts but there too many details that instead of making it look like the characters had a busy and personal life, only made everything seem a mess.
Anyway, this wasn't totally bad, I was quite engaged at some moments but the characters  - which is what many readers enjoyed the most - disappointed me a bit. I doubt I'll keep reading the series, at least I won't in the near future.
Oh, and apparently this book was written by two authors. I totally missed that but at the end of things, it's not really important...
Grade: (a very weak) 7/10

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