Monday, January 07, 2013

The Lake House, by James Patterson

The Lake HouseThe Lake House by James Patterson
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Despite Patterson being one of the biggest, as in most books sold, authors in the land, I hadn't heard of him until recently. I thought I'd try something of his, and found this at my local library. The edition I listened to is actually from Time Warner, and features Stephen Lang and Hope Davis as narrators. My assessment? If this is representative of Patterson's typical work, then I'm not sure what all the hoopla is about.

This is a thriller dealing with genetic modification and the consequences thereof, but to me it reads like a Young Adult supernatural thriller. The main characters consist of a small animal Veterinarian, an FBI agent, and a handful of genetically altered kids who have escaped from a horrific "research center". In the hands of Michael Crichton or Dean Koontz, this would have been a page-turner. All I found was a lot of melodramatic dialogue and internal monologues, with very little attention to detail regarding the nefarious plan of the Evil Mastermind behind all of the mayhem.



*spoilers* (sort of...it won't ruin the story for you)




The escaped children are marvels of successful recombined DNA: physically fit and super-intelligent...and yet they are constantly endangering each other and the adults trying to help them by flying around like nincompoops, yelling at each other, and generally demonstrating tactical imbecility while they know they're being actively hunted by assassins.

At one point I caught myself comparing all of the exclamations over the "magnificent, beautiful children" to Bella's constant gushing over Eward in the "Twilight" books, and that's where I threw in the towel.

I finally lost patience about 2/3 of the way through, and skipped to the end, where I was left feeling nothing for the characters and still unsure who the protagonist was supposed to be. Maybe I just picked one of his lesser efforts.

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