Private (Jack Morgan, Book 1)
by James Patterson & Maxine Paetro
Release Date: June 28, 2010 (Hardcover)
2010 Little, Brown and Company
ARC Softcover Edition; 393 Pages
Genre: Mystery / Thriller
Source: Review Copy from Little, Brown and Company
4 / 5 Stars
Former Marine helicopter pilor 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 use the world's most advanced forensic tools to make and break their cases.
Jack is already deep into the investigation of a multimillion-dollar NFL gambling scandal and the unsolved slayings of thirteen schoolgirls when he learns of a horrific murder close to home: his best friend's wife. Jack 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, he also has to navigate a workplace love affair, his own.
I never turn down the chance to read a James Patterson novel and I have always enjoyed them, and Private is no exception. This was a fun and enjoyable read and I was engaged in the story right from the beginning. The chapters were short, the reading was quick, character viewpoints were different in each chapter as they changed back and forth, and the events happened quickly. While some readers may object to this style of writing and prefer a more convoluted form of writing, I actually enjoy this every once in a while as the story does not get bogged down in overly long descriptions and explanations: the story is to the point, quick, telling it like it is. This does not mean that the plot is simple; although it does at times tend to be prescribed and predictable, there were enought twists and turns to make it very enjoyable with some surprises that did catch me unawares.
I always love learning about new characters in a new series and the ones we meet in this novel are quirky and fun. Although we spend more time with Jack and Justine, the ending of the novel certainly indicates there will be future novels and I am hoping we will learn much more about such interesting characters as Sci and Mo, Cruz and Del Rio and Nora in the future. It's such a treat knowing there is so much more to explore about characters and their development and it gives me something to look forward to. And one of the things I have always enjoyed about Patterson's books is the way he lets the reader feel like they are right there in the action, knowing and understanding the character at that moment. I have never felt distanced from his characters emotionally and I usually connect with them. I may not always like what they are doing, but I still have some understanding for them.
I enjoyed this first novel in the new Jack Morgan series and am curious to see what he does with this series. Patterson certainly set things up for some explosive action in future novels and I am looking forward to reading the next book in this series.