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Alex Cross's Trial: (Alex Cross 15) Hardcover – 10 Sep 2009

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Century (10 Sept. 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1846057019
  • ISBN-13: 978-1846057014
  • Product Dimensions: 16.1 x 3.2 x 24.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (251 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 348,619 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

James Patterson is one of the best-known and biggest-selling writers of all time. He is the author of some of the most popular series of the past decade: the Women's Murder Club, the Alex Cross novels and Maximum Ride, and he has written many other number one bestsellers including romance novels and stand-alone thrillers. James is passionate about encouraging both adults and children alike to read. This has led to him forming a partnership with the National Literacy Trust, an independent, UK-based charity that changes lives through literacy. He lives in Florida with his wife and son.

Product Description

Amazon Review

Over the years, James Patterson has consolidated a reputation as one of the most copper-bottomed treasures in the crime genre with his Alex Cross books, and he has perfected a canny (but highly persuasive) economy in his narratives: his clipped, highly charged, pithy chapters possess not an ounce of subcutaneous fat (and frequently move towards some kind of unresolved climax, guaranteeing that we have to turn to the next chapter). Alex Cross’s Trial, the latest outing, is something very different for his quadriplegic investigator, but Patterson (as ever) displays the page-turning skills that are his trademark (assuming, of course, that the bulk of the book is his work – this is another of his many portmanteau efforts; from his army of co-authors, he here utilises Richard Dilallo).

The innovations in Alex Cross’s Trial involve nothing less than Alex himself narrating the story of young Washington lawyer Ben Corbett who lived at the turn of the Nineteenth Century.

Ben is highly adept at his job, but is still regarded by his wife and father as something of a failure, wasting his time (as they see it) by doing unremunerative work for the poor and oppressed. Then, to his amazement, Ben receives a summons to the White House – President Roosevelt, no less, has selected him personally to help look into lynchings performed by a newly emergent Ku Klux Klan.

As an insight into Alex Cross’ background, this is both illuminating and provocative, but James Patterson (and his collaborator) prove quite as adroit at a historical narrative as at a contemporary one. --Barry Forshaw

Book Description

Alex Cross writes his own historical thriller telling a story involving his ancestors

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Customer Reviews

3.7 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

71 of 73 people found the following review helpful By Dr Evil TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 8 Sept. 2009
Format: Hardcover
I knew before I bought this book that it was not a traditional Alex Cross novel, it is a book "written" by Alex Cross, based in 1906 America, telling the story of a man named Ben Corbett who returns to his hometown Eudora, Mississippi after being instructed by the President of the United States Theodore Roosevelt to meet with Abraham Cross (Alex's great-uncle) and write a report on the murderous lynchings and try and stop the racial tension that was very common in the deep south back at the turn of the century.

I am a big fan of James Patterson, having read most of his novels over the years, and despite misleading marketing by putting Washington DC's favourite fictional detective in the title (even though he only appears to write the short 2-page prologue at the beginning) which will no doubt be a big disappointment to anyone who hasn't read the description before buying it, I found this book to be very good and had me gripped from the opening chapters. I don't know a great deal about early 1900s American history but this book (which is apparently close to being non-fiction) has really opened my eyes to how bad things were between black and white people back then, with sickening murders and torture (much of which is in very graphic detail in this book) and abuse. The story itself is told from the perspective of Corbett, a lawyer from Washington who leaves his wife and daughters to do the work the President has given him, seeing his old hometown in a completely different light from when he was a boy.

Overall this was a very interesting and different read that I found to be surprisingly good with decent characters, a fast-paced plot and a good ending. If you read this not expecting it to be an Alex Cross book and you have an interest in historical fiction then you will more than like enjoy this. If you're after the next Alex Cross novel in the series however, you'll have to wait until the end of October.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By A. M. Leverett on 29 Sept. 2009
Format: Hardcover
I have read all the Alex Cross novels and thoroughly enjoyed them, so much so that I didn't bother to see what this book was about before ordering it. When I did actually read the cover I must admit I was a bit unsure that it was going to be as actioned packed as the rest of the books in the series, however it was! I read the book over 2 days and couldn't put it down once I had started, it is different to the other books and for Alex Cross fans, it doesn't really have any connection to the ongoing story of the detective or his family. It's more realistic than his usual novels and is based largely on fact, it's centred around racism in the south of America in the early 1900's and has some very poignant parts, there are highs and lows in the story and it is really interesting. It's similar to John Grisham's 'The Street Lawyer' or 'The Chamber' so if you liked those then you will really enjoy this one.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Je Salter on 12 Feb. 2010
Format: Hardcover
Once you realise that this isnt an Alex Cross story and settle in to the heat and racism of turn of the century America, this is a really good read. As with most JP books, I'd devoured its pages within a couple of days. This wasn't because of the 'as per usual' short chapters but because its a decent story.

After reports of lynchings by the klu klux klan in a back water town in Mississippi, President Roosevelt sends one of his old soldier colleagues to investigate the murders where coincidentally, his friend, Ben Corbett comes from. Corbett is now a successful lawyer, married with two children and is put in a difficult position by a clingy wife who doesnt want him to leave. Needless to say, he does and in no time at all you are transported down south to the land of gumbo, catfish and the horrors of racsism.

Ben Corbetts father it turns out, is a Judge in the town and the two dont get along at all, primarily because Judge Dad thinks that Ben believes he is superior with his Washington ways, which couldnt be farther from the truth. Ben soon meets up with his contact 'Abraham' an ageing black man who turns out to be the father of Alex Cross's Aunty, 'Moody Cross' (are you keeping up?).

Within no time at all the inbred rednecks are stringing people up left right and centre and arent too partial about their colour, even a white jewish man and Ben have a go, the latter unsuccessfully (just). Mostly its the poor, downtrodden black residents of hickville USA though that get the brunt of their medeival sickness.

Needless to say Ben has no prejudices despite coming from a hick town, mainly because a black boy came to his mothers aid when years before she and Ben had entered a shop in the town and she suffered a stroke.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By TraceyAnn on 17 Nov. 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Unfortunatley, I hadnt read the current reviews on Amazon about the book before I bought it, so I didnt know its not actually a Alex Cross novel. Im an avid Alex Cross fan and settled down to read what I thought was the latest installment of the Alex Cross story only to feel very disappointed with and cheated by James Patterson and his publishers. This is definately false advertising! Even the 'praise' on the back cover is for another book, not this one! It seems James Patterson is now only out to make money and no longer a friend to his readers....
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Miss Sessions on 13 Jan. 2011
Format: Kindle Edition
As others, I have been a loyal fan of James Patterson for many, many years, avidly following the Alex Cross series in particular.

Despite 'Swimsuit' being a collaborative piece (which I've found aren't as good as his own books), I had to buy it. As soon as I got home I started reading, ready to be up until after midnight. After getting over the initial shock of the violence (which isn't like JP), I started to enjoy it. This lasted for only a few chapters (which, if you've read one of his books before, you'll know they only last for 4 or 5 pages!) and then it became an absolute chore to read.

I'm not going to write up a plot summary as there are a few reviews with it already. What I will say is I found that the storyline quickly plummeted and became disengaging. I found the characters forgettable and half way through I started wishing everyone would die so we could get it over with.

The violence was unnecessary and therefore felt forced, as though it had to keep up with other crime thrillers available today. Nothing about it, to me, said James Patterson.

Despite being glad that it was finished, the abrupt ending left me even more disappointed and confused. I even wondered if it picked back up again after a few pages because it just didn't seem to make sense.

To say I am disappointed is an understatement. I would've thrown it in the bin but ended up giving it to a friend, apologising as I did so.

To anyone considering buying this book, don't. James Patterson has so many other fantastic books that are engaging, thrilling reads that you will not be able to put down. This sadly, is not one of them.

I really hope JP will be back to top form soon and will stop putting out books that are honestly a waste of paper and ink!
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