"Even when the rainbow seems to pass right by me....I'm still finding Gold in the clouds....."

13 February 2014

2014 Book Review #8: Cross My Heart

Have you ever screamed and then cried while reading a novel?

I did.  This morning.  This book shocked me and stunned me.

It is the 21st book in the Alex Cross detective series...one of my very favorite series of mysteries and Patterson is one of my very favorite contemporary authors.  He is brilliant.


Everyone who knows Alex Cross knows he is a family man....he loves his 91 year old grandmother, Nana Mama with his whole heart....after all, it was she who raised him! His first wife, Maria, we all know was killed before the first Cross book (Along Came a Spider) took place, leaving him with his son Damon, and his daughter Jannie.  Fast forward a few years and he has a relationship with a woman who gives birth to his son Ali. Alex is awarded custody after Ali's mom decides to take a job and move away from Washington D.C.  Fast forward a few more years and Alex again falls in love. Deeply.  With Bree. They get married. They have no children together. Yet.  But....he loves each and every person in his family. He also loves his work partner Sampson and Sampson's wife Billie.  Life is good!!

  Bree and Alex are continuing to look for the foster girl they had in their home in the previous novel.  She ran away and they know she is still in the nation's capital but they aren't sure where she is exactly nor what she is doing. She is only 14. Her name is Ava.  Ali is now 7 and Damon is 18 and attends a private prep school in the Berkshires.  Jannie is a track star and in 9th grade at the local public school.  Life is good and everyone is getting ready for Easter Sunday.

However, Alex is trying to solve a string of murders that appear to be related...there seems to be a serial killer on the loose in the nation's capital. 

Meanwhile, Bree is trying to solve the kidnapping cases of 2 local babies.  One baby was snatched by his babysitter and the other baby was snatched by a woman posing as a social worker right out of her daycare center!  Are these kidnappings related??

While all of this is going on, someone is stalking Alex and his family. This man is using Alex's strength (his love of family which helps him get through the day to day evilness of his job) as a weapon against him.  When everyone in his family is in danger, Alex will do anything to protect them.  But this time, if he tries, they will all die.  Damon is on his way home from the Berkshires for the holiday weekend...and disappears. Jannie is on her way home from her track meet...and disappears.  Ali is on his way to the church to meet Nana Mama and they both disappear.  Bree is taken from the house.....and Alex has no idea where she is. He has no idea where any of them are.  Until he gets a text message with a photo attached.  Of Nana Mama.  Lying in a pool of blood.  Life just became a nightmare.


I loved this latest Cross book.  Patterson is a genius at keeping a reader turning the page long after midnight!  It is part thriller, part mystery, part suspense, part tragedy.  I had tears rolling down my face at one point in the story and then I let out a scream when I read a certain part. I was shocked at what Patterson did in this book......it was very unexpected!!  

This book is full of the psychological trauma that happens to people when they face deep emotional abuse as children.  There are parts of the story that tend to be unbelievable unless you have studied psychology.  The Abnormal Psych course I took before grad school described some of the traits that Patterson weaves through his "bad guy" characters...and you realize that our actions as parents really do have consequences for our little children and certain actions can leave major emotional scars and deep-rooted mental illness or personality disorders.

The author leaves us hanging in regards to this plot.  He does say in the author's note that another Alex Cross book will happen.  I'm definitely looking forward to it.

If you are new to the Alex Cross series, I recommend that you start at the beginning with Book 1 and read them in order.  Each book builds on the other one. 

In my opinion, this book is appropriate for ages 17 and older (due to some content).

On a scale of 1-10, with 10 being the highest, I rate this a 10.

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