Books by James Patterson

James Patterson is one of the top-selling novelists in the world today. His debut novel, The Thomas Berryman Number, won the Edgar Award for the best first mystery novel. It was published by Little, Brown in 1976 when he was just twenty-seven years old, a

Released: Jan. 22, 2018

"There is a reason why true crime sells, of course, especially when it involves famous people: A blend of gore, fame, and voyeurism is a compelling mixture in our violent, fame-obsessed society. There is also a reason why the genre has a reputation for gratuitousness. A middling true-crime saga that fails to answer a significant question: Why?"
The rapid-fire tale of one of the most infamous true-crime stories of the past decade. Read full book review >
LAUGH OUT LOUD by James Patterson
Released: Aug. 28, 2017

"This zany romp through venture capitalism and self-promotion self-identifies as a story 'that kids will love'—but readers will be better served by any of the titles named throughout. (Fiction 7-10)"
Industry juggernaut Patterson invents this fanciful origin story for his kid-lit imprint. Read full book review >
Released: June 12, 2017

"An entertaining—but not particularly original—addition to the perennially relevant genre. (Fiction. 8-12)"
Sludgepuggle! Pottymouth and Stoopid take on relentless bullies, terrible teachers, and a dastardly Ex-Dad. Read full book review >
CRAZY HOUSE by James Patterson
Released: May 22, 2017

"Yet another bland, half-baked dystopian exercise. (Dystopian adventure. 14-17)"
A teen girl goes looking for her missing twin sister. Read full book review >
THE BLACK BOOK by James Patterson
Released: March 27, 2017

"Most readers will be ahead of the twin investigators in identifying the guilty party. But the mystery is authentic, the lead-up genuinely suspenseful, and the leading characters and situations more memorable than Patterson's managed in quite a while. Co-author Ellis is definitely a keeper."
Peerless networker Patterson (Woman of God, 2016, etc.), who's become as ubiquitous as Betty Crocker, latches on to a co-author who ups his game in several welcome ways. Read full book review >
WORD OF MOUSE by James Patterson
Released: Dec. 12, 2016

"With smart witticisms to launch each quick-paced chapter, Isaiah is truly a mouse that roars. (Fantasy. 8-12)"
Prolific Patterson and frequent collaborator Grabenstein offer this charming tale of Isaiah, a blue (yes—bright blue!) mouse, and his effort to break his family out of a very bad place. Read full book review >
WOMAN OF GOD by James Patterson
Released: Sept. 26, 2016

"A high-concept pitch, a potboiler on the page, and a protagonist to cheer for, but the authors do not quite tie it all together."
Chronicling the life of physician-turned-priest Brigid Fitzgerald, Patterson (The Christmas Wedding, 2011, etc.) and Paetro hurry through a tale where angels fear to tread. Read full book review >
JACKY HA-HA by James Patterson
Released: March 21, 2016

"A typical Patterson plot significantly elevated by its title character. (Historical fiction. 10-12)"
A precocious seventh-grader tries to turn over a new leaf and end her term as the class clown. Read full book review >
Released: Oct. 6, 2015

"These edgy tales strike hard and fast but leave vivid memories behind."
These short stories lean more toward horror than whodunits, casting long shadows despite their brevity. Read full book review >
Released: March 16, 2015

"A smart and kind story topped with just the right amount of social justice. (Fiction. 9-12)"
Kenny's dreams of superpowered heroics provide a respite from his tough school. Read full book review >
HOUSE OF ROBOTS by James Patterson
Released: Nov. 24, 2014

"A perfectly acceptable and predictable trifle. (Science fiction. 9-12)"
Sammy is less than thrilled when his genius inventor mother creates a robot brother for him. Read full book review >
DANGER DOWN THE NILE by James Patterson
Released: Sept. 1, 2014

"It's hard to imagine the adventure-loving reader who wouldn't be hooked by this series. (Adventure. 8-12)"
Determined to find their missing father and to secure the release of their kidnapped mother, the four Kidd kids travel to Africa seeking King Solomon's Mines and any clues that might help reunite their family. Read full book review >
TREASURE HUNTERS by James Patterson
Released: Sept. 16, 2013

"A high-seas adventure that will entice even the most confirmed of landlubbers. (Adventure. 8-12)"
The disappearance of their parents inspires four children to take over the family business: treasure hunting. Read full book review >
PRIVATE BERLIN by James Patterson
Released: Jan. 21, 2013

"Call it cut-rate Bourne, then, with enough action to keep the story moving and enough verisimilitude to belay having to suspend disbelief too often."
Another industrial thriller from the Patterson (Private Games, 2012, etc.) factory. Read full book review >
I FUNNY by James Patterson
Released: Dec. 12, 2012

"The affecting ending, which reveals a more vulnerable Jamie behind the guise of his humor, celebrates Jamie's resilient spirit. (Fiction. 10-13)"
Middle school student Jamie is an aspiring comic. Read full book review >
NYPD RED by James Patterson
Released: Oct. 8, 2012

"Characters shoot their way through an entertaining script right to a conclusion with a hole in it."
Patterson (Kill Alex Cross, 2011, etc.), here with co-writer Karp, moves to the posh confines of the Big Apple's Upper East Side as he delves into crimes against the tabloid-dwelling rich and famous. Read full book review >
Released: Sept. 24, 2012

"An unsatisfying ending and an unlikable cast make this thriller anything but. (Mystery. 12 & up)"
When a wealthy and powerful New York couple is discovered dead in their bed, the prime suspects are their four overachieving children. Read full book review >
Released: July 9, 2012

"Will Bennett's loyal nanny-and-more, Mary Catherine, abandon her charges in their darkest hour? Will Perrine escape from custody in a made-for-the-movies sequence? Will Bennett finally close his case for good? Or will Patterson and Ledwidge ring down the curtain leaving the conflict unresolved and paving the way for a sequel? Stay tuned."
Patterson's partnership with Ledwidge is already up to the fifth installment in the perilous adventures of NYPD Detective Michael Bennett (Tick Tock, 2011, etc.). Read full book review >
GUILTY WIVES by David Ellis
Released: March 26, 2012

"Patterson (The Christmas Wedding, 2011, etc.) and Ellis (Breach of Trust, 2011, etc.) make the pages fly without creating a single memorable character or asking you to take any of their variously glossy or gritty menace seriously."
A girls-only weekend turns deadly for four friends who find that what happens in Monte Carlo definitely doesn't stay in Monte Carlo. Read full book review >
PRIVATE GAMES by Mark Sullivan
Released: Feb. 13, 2012

"A pleasant romp all the same; as lightweight as a whiffleball—but fun."
Zingy formula—emphasis on formula—fiction from the literary maquiladora that is James Patterson. Read full book review >
Released: Oct. 17, 2011

"A perfect plot for a Meryl Streep or Diane Lane happily-ever-after movie."
A lighthearted novel about a widow who suddenly decides to re-marry on Christmas Day. Read full book review >
Released: June 27, 2011

"A satisfying and progressive tale with real sweetness at its center. (Fiction. 8-12)"
In order to cope with the terrors of middle school, Rafe Khatchadorian teams up with his imaginary friend, Leo, to become a troublemaking legend. Read full book review >
THE GIFT by James Patterson
Released: Dec. 13, 2010

"A new low in children's publishing. (Fantasy. 9-12)"
Whit and Wisty Allgood, sibling magic-users with amazingly unreliable powers, return to fight with their utterly expendable teen comrades against The One Who Is The One, dread master of the New Order, who hates the young and those with imagination (Witch & Wizard, 2009). Read full book review >
Released: April 1, 2010

"A perfect prescription for misery-memoir maniacs. (Memoir. YA)"
From five to 18, Cory Friedman was prescribed over 30 different medications to control obsessive-compulsive disorder and Tourette's syndrome. Read full book review >
WITCH & WIZARD by James Patterson
Released: Dec. 14, 2009

"You'll have to purchase it due to the ad campaign and author-branding, just don't invest too heavily—save your dollars for better. (Fantasy. 10-14)"
In a parallel world, a new political party, the New Order, has come to power. Read full book review >
DANIEL X by James Patterson
Released: Dec. 1, 2008

"It's anyone's guess. (Graphic fiction. 12 & up)"
Patterson's latest teen franchise robustly bursts through its prose boundaries into this splashy graphic-novel adaptation. Read full book review >
Released: May 1, 2007

"Adrenaline galore, but seriously compromised by the unsatisfying wrap-up. (Science fiction. YA)"
Patterson wraps up his sci-fi thriller series with consistent excitement but too few explanations. Read full book review >
CROSS by James Patterson
Released: Nov. 13, 2006

"The biggest disappointment, though, is an ending that makes you realize you should have skipped this installment and waited for the sequel."
Dr. Alex Cross goes up against the psychopath who killed his wife, with eminently predictable results. Read full book review >
MAXIMUM RIDE by James Patterson
Released: May 23, 2006

"These questions are yet unanswered, leaving readers breathless for the follow-up to this action-packed page-turner. (Science fiction. YA)"
Readers are in for another exciting wild ride of fights (bloody) and flights (in the sky) as Max and her flock struggle to stay alive. 98% human with 2% avian genes grafted on, these six winged, scrappy kids soar powerfully through the air. Read full book review >
MARY MARY by James Patterson
Released: Nov. 14, 2005

"Certainly not the worst of Patterson's clueless mysteries, but still another likely candidate to be filmed as 'a big, dopey thriller based on a dopey bestseller.'"
Superstar psychologist Alex Cross's quality time with his kids is interrupted by…another serial killer! Read full book review >
MAXIMUM RIDE by James Patterson
Released: April 11, 2005

"Speed, suspense, excitement. (Science fiction. YA)"
Nonstop action carries this page-turner breathlessly from start to finish. Read full book review >
Released: June 28, 2004

"Love, like, totally conquers all."
Patterson, a former ad man turned megaselling author (The Lake House, 2003, etc.), makes a calculated and obvious appeal to the widest possible reader demographic. Read full book review >
THE BIG BAD WOLF by James Patterson
Released: Nov. 5, 2003

"As in summer movies, a triple dose of violence conceals the absence of real menace when neither victims nor avengers stir the slightest sympathy."
Dr. Alex Cross has left Metro DC Homicide for the FBI, but it's business as usual in this laughably rough-hewn fairy tale of modern-day white slavery. Read full book review >
THE LAKE HOUSE by James Patterson
Released: June 9, 2003

"Patterson's sensibility dovetails perfectly with that of his prodigies, whose tender feelings and pitch-perfect teenage dialogue are the best things here. It's only when human grownups have to talk and act that this overblown saga sags."
This sequel to Patterson's bestselling, and best, novel (When the Wind Blows, 1998) soars, like its appealing cast, only intermittently. Read full book review >
FOUR BLIND MICE by James Patterson
Released: Nov. 18, 2002

"Short chapters, paragraphs, and sentences; stilted dialogue; facile plotting; a few feeble passes at description: a Patterson blue-plate special."
Schematic and pedestrian, Patterson's latest (after The Beach House, p. 519) pits Alex Cross against a trio of serial killers. Read full book review >
THE BEACH HOUSE by James Patterson
Released: June 10, 2002

"A vigilante pipe-dream topped off by toothlessly shocking revelations about characters even less substantial than the celebrity cameos: Dominick Dunne, Latrell Sprewell, Geraldo Rivera, and Billy 'Mudman' Simon."
Not to fear: Just because megaselling Patterson has teamed up once more with journalist collaborator de Jonge (Miracle on the 17th Green, 1996) doesn't make the pace of this slick, ludicrous thriller any slower, the puppets any more complex, or the sentences any longer. Read full book review >
2ND CHANCE by James Patterson
Released: March 4, 2002

"Lots of slam-bang action, though, except for Lindsay, the alleged action heroines mostly have it happen to them instead of dishing it out."
A murder outside San Francisco's La Salle Heights Church brings back the Women's Murder Club, extending a series (1st to Die, 2001) that could rival Kinsey Millhone for sales, if not for ingenuity, warmth, or humanity. Read full book review >
VIOLETS ARE BLUE by James Patterson
Released: Nov. 19, 2001

"A real test for Patterson's huge audience: If they buy this, they'll buy anything."
Only a writer of Patterson's star-wattage could have hoodwinked his publisher into bringing out this unlovely mess, which pits forensic psychologist Alex Cross against two separate serial killers. Read full book review >
Released: July 1, 2001

For sheer genre-crossing audacity, you might think nothing could outdo John Grisham's season on a Mississippi farm (A Painted House, p. 128) until you read this relentlessly throat-clutching love story from thrillermeister Patterson. Read full book review >
1ST TO DIE by James Patterson
Released: April 1, 2001

"Bargain-basement plotting, fewer thrills than a tax audit, and cardboard sleuths poised to return for a sequel. But the relentless velocity is guaranteed to hook fans of the bestselling Patterson, who'll presumably be hearing from the police the next time somebody declares war on young love."
Four women band together to catch the forgettable fiend who's murdering newlyweds. Read full book review >
ROSES ARE RED by James Patterson
Released: Nov. 20, 2000

"As usual, Patterson (Cradle and All, p. 262, etc.) provides a nonstop alternation of felonies and righteous retribution unclouded by texture, thought, or moral complexity, to produce the speediest tosh on the planet. "
Who's robbing all those banks and kidnapping all those people and killing all those accomplices? It's somebody calling himself the Mastermind—a comic-book sobriquet that represents everything that's wrong with the latest installment in Patterson's Alex Cross franchise. Read full book review >
CRADLE AND ALL by James Patterson
Released: May 22, 2000

"Post-Exorcist horror clichés, updated with a handful of contemporary references."
Warn the fans: this isn't a new Alex Cross psychokiller foray (Pop Goes the Weasel, 1999, etc.), but instead a rewritten and retitled version of Virgin, Patterson's apocalyptic 1980 horror novel. Read full book review >
POP GOES THE WEASEL by James Patterson
Released: Oct. 19, 1999

"Kinky mayhem, a cartoonish villain, regular glimpses of the kindly Cross caring for his loved ones, and an ending that spells a sequel: Patterson's fans couldn't ask for more."
After a flight in fantasy with When the Wind Blows (1998), Patterson goes to ground with another slash-and-squirm psychokiller page-turner, this one dedicated to "the millions of Alex Cross readers, who so frequently ask, can't you write faster?" Read full book review >
WHEN THE WIND BLOWS by James Patterson
Released: Nov. 4, 1998

"Reads like a dream."
This time out, Patterson (Jack and Jill, 1996, etc.) summons some brio and does a magic hat trick with the million-dollar—promo thriller genre. Read full book review >
CAT AND MOUSE by James Patterson
Released: Nov. 1, 1997

"Having reached the peak of his popularity, Patterson is spinning his wheels."
Archly improbable multiple psychokiller tale featuring Patterson's dignified Washington, D.C., detective, Alex Cross (Jack and Jill, 1996, etc.). Read full book review >
MIRACLE ON THE 17TH GREEN by James Patterson
Released: Nov. 4, 1996

"Quite entertaining but too vulgar for kids."
Preceded by the release of the Kevin Costner film Tin Cup, and by the literary flourishes of John Updike's Golf Dreams, thriller-writer Patterson (Jack and Jill, p. 998, etc.) and journalist de Jonge's Christmas fantasy about a poor-in-spirit advertising copywriter becoming a finalist at the PGA Senior Open looks like a sales shoo-in. Read full book review >
JACK AND JILL by James Patterson
Released: Sept. 1, 1996

"Even Patterson's most ardent admirers should beware of this dog."
Can D.C. deputy chief Alex Cross (Hide & Seek, 1995, etc.) stop a demented duo thinning the ranks of the Washington elite en route to assassinating the President? Read full book review >
HIDE & SEEK by James Patterson
Released: Jan. 3, 1996

"Fit only for those who find Sidney Sheldon too sophisticated."
Another chill-free thriller from Patterson (Kiss the Girls, 1995, etc.), this one pitting a chanteuse with a past against one of recent history's more improbable psychopaths. Read full book review >
KISS THE GIRLS by James Patterson
Released: Jan. 11, 1995

"As a storyteller, Patterson is a great ad copywriter."
Advertising executive Patterson doubles neither our pleasure nor our fun by giving us two intense, Hannibal Lecter-type murderers for the price of one in an improbable and hopelessly derivative mess of a thriller. Read full book review >
Released: Sept. 1, 1994

"Colin Powell, Texas govenor Ann Richards, or any of 15 other 'candidates."
Imagine this: The American People (whoever they are) require the assistance and good will of a couple of advertising honchos to tell them how to take back the government. Read full book review >
ALONG CAME A SPIDER by James Patterson
Released: Feb. 1, 1993

"Cross is a likable hero, but with a watery plot and weak villain—Hannibal Lecter would eat Soneji for breakfast—he doesn't have much to work with here."
Catchy title; too bad the psychothriller behind it—despite the publisher's big push—is a mostly routine tale of cop vs. serial-killer. Read full book review >
THE MIDNIGHT CLUB by James Patterson
Released: Jan. 23, 1988

"Ironsides with a badge and a lobotomy."
Patterson's thrillers (Virgin, 1980; Black Market, 1986) have plummeted in quality since his promising debut in The Thomas Berryman Number (1976)—with this latest being the sorriest yet: a clanky and witless policer about a criminal mastermind and the cop sworn to take him down. Read full book review >
BLACK MARKET by James Patterson
Released: June 1, 1986

"Deserves drowning."
Abysmally dumb terrorist novel whose plot would embarrass a Superman movie. Read full book review >
VIRGIN by James Patterson
Released: June 1, 1980

"Patterson doesn't really care—and neither will you; but the pages fly by professionally enough, churned along by a writer who once wrote a good book (The Thomas Berryman Number) before turning to exploitative concoctions like The Jericho Commandment and this."
It's 1987, and only Pope Pius XIII knows that the Apocalypse is at hand and that two virgins will give birth simultaneously this very year. Read full book review >
Released: April 9, 1979

"Dachau Two' indeed, because, though hero David does ultimately prevent total carnage, the author clearly panders to paranoia and revenge-lust throughout; and this sort of junk hysteria can only be bad news for those with genuine, serious concern about today's anti-Semitism."
The latest, and surely the most confused, in a recent flurry of novels that seem to be competing for selection by the Jewish Defense League (JDL) Read full book review >
Released: March 31, 1976

"You'll find that all the crisscrossing flashbacks diminish the immediacy; still, this is a neat first number by a promising new author."
The true story behind the assassination of Nashville's Senate-aspiring black Mayor, Jimmie Lee Horn, as recounted by investigative reporter Ochs Jones. Read full book review >