Sunday, September 15, 2013

Second honeymoon by James Patterson and Howard Roughan

It starts with the murder of a couple on their honeymoon - a murder that seems isolated, the motive possibly linked to a father with money and power and a son and daughter-in-law that may be the perfect vehicle for revenge.  Suspended with no pay from his job at the FBI, John O'Hara is offered the job of finding the killer - the pay check is a temptation, and the bonus if he succeeds is even better.  It should be a relatively straight forward case of finding the bad guy and passing the information along to the client, but Agent O'Hara soon finds that Ethan and Abby are not the only targets and not the only victims - someone out there is targeting newlyweds.

At the same time Special Agent Sarah Brubaker is working on a case that would lift the hair on the back of Agent O'Hara's neck - if only he knew about it.  Someone is working their way through John O'Hara's, killing them with brutal efficiency and leaving little breadcrumbs along the way to help Sarah find him, but the clues may be leading her into a trap more than anything else.  Someone out there really wants to reach a particular John O'Hara, and anyone with the same name is at risk, including the brother-in-law of the President.

When their two cases collide John and Sarah find themselves racing against time to solve not one crime spree but two, and time is running out for both of them.  They are tracking two serial killers with very different means and motives, but both killers are deadly serious about their plans.  Dark times are on the horizon for Sarah and John, they are hunting not one but two blood thirsty killers who will stop at nothing to get what they want - no matter who gets in their way.

Some people are dismissive of James Patterson and his writing because they consider genre fiction to be pulp writing where the "same" novel is written again and again following the same formula with little changing except for the characters names and locations.  James Patterson may be a prolific writer (on his own and with co-authors) but he has a knack for creating believable and relatable characters (usually working against the clock) who have a very short time to solve a mystery or stop a murderer.  I can't remember if I read Honeymoon, but I had no problems picking up Second honeymoon and diving right into the story.

Unlike most of his other novels Second honeymoon blends together two distinct crime arcs and two distinct lead characters, bringing them together over the course of the novel with neither character losing ground or being consumed by the story arc.  I really enjoyed Second honeymoon, enjoying the complexity and rapid pace, which was very similar to the Michael Bennett books than some of his other series.  I devoured this book in a matter of hours and was left feeling very satisfied and looking forward to reading Mistress (the teaser in the back of the novel).  If you like strong characters and absorbing storylines then try Second honeymoon and just about anything else by James Patterson.

If you like this book then try:
  • Step on a crack by James Patterson and Michael Ledwidge
  • The basement: A novel  by Stephen Leather
  • Swimsuit by James Patterson
  • Kill switch by Neal Baer and Jonathan Greene
  • Private by James Patterson and Maxine Paetro
  • Private # 1 suspect by James Patterson and Maxine Paetro
  • The silent girl by Tess Gerritsen
  • The postcard killers by James Patterson and Liza Marklund
  • Now you see her by James Patterson and Michael Ledwidge
  • Hide by Lisa Gardner
  • Vodka doesn't freeze by Leah Giarratano
  • The surgeon by Tess Gerritsen
  • Darkly dreaming Dexter by Jeffry P. Lindsay
  • Kiss the girls by James Patterson
  • Kill me if you can by James Patterson and Marshall Kamp

Reviewed by Brilla

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