Friday 3 July 2020

Book ~ "The 20th Victim" (2020) James Patterson and Maxine Paetro

From Goodreads ~ Some people like to shoot. Some people like to kill.

Three victims, three bullets, three cities.

The first of these simultaneous serial killings occurs in San Francisco, Sergeant Lindsay Boxer's jurisdiction and reporter Cindy Thomas's beat. The shooters are precise, as is their target selection. Each one of the men and women down excels at an illegal and deadly activity that is dominating public debate. As the casualty list expands, the fear and fascination with this shooting gallery galvanises the county.

Are the shooter villains or heroes? And who will be next?

This is the twentieth in the Women's Murder Club series (I've read them all). Though it is part of a series, it works as a stand alone.  There are four members of the Women's Murder Club who have been friends for years ... police officer Lindsay, reporter Cindy, medical examiner Claire and prosecutor Yuki.  As in past books, though, the four aren't solving a murder together so what kind of a murder club is that?!  The only time the four women got together was at the end to party.

There are killers murdering people around the country who are selling drugs and Lindsay and her partner, Rich (who is living with Cindy), are part of the San Francisco team investigating.  Cindy was especially annoying ... she got mad at Lindsay because Lindsay wouldn't reveal confidential information pertaining the case so Cindy couldn't get the scoop ahead of everyone else.  Claire was basically non-existent because she has lung cancer (huh??!!) and has surgery to remove half a lung.  Yuki is prosecuting a young man who happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time ... he was driving a car for a drug dealer who shot a police officer and took off.  The young man isn't talking so is charged with everything and Yuki doesn't think this is right.

As in previous books, I wondered if the two authors had written different chapters and hadn't read each other's.  Or the editor(s) slacked off.  For example, we learn in detail that Brady, who is Lindsay's boss, is married to Yuki.  Then a couple chapters later, basically the same paragraph appears.  Yep, I know ... I didn't forget who he is.  It's like they were introducing a new character but weren't.  This happened a couple times.  Or we learned that Joe's university buddy, Dave, gave Joe and Lindsay a safe ... and a couple chapters later we're told about it like we'd never heard the backstory.

I liked the short choppy chapters.  The point of view shifted ... it was first person perspective when the focus was on Lindsay and third person perspective when the focus was on others such as Cindy, Yuki, etc.  But at one point, Claire and Lindsay are talking and Lindsay's voice shifted from first person to third person back to first person again.  As a head's up, there is swearing.  The end came very quickly and was pretty lame.

The book could have been more focused ... there were some side stories that had nothing to do with anything.  Joe goes off to help Dave whose father had just passed away.  Dave suspects his father's doctor had murdered his dad and doesn't hide his suspicions.  Joe's not sure whether Dave is delusional because he's grieving or if the father was, in fact, murdered and is determined to find out and help his friend.  The ending to that side story was really lame.  Cindy is stuck working with a sleazeball named Jeb and the ending to that was really lame too.  Within a week of having half a lung removed because of cancer, Claire is out eating and boozing it up with her friends.  Seriously?!

I'm so glad I borrowed this ebook from the library rather than paying for it.

1 comment:

Julie said...

Hey Teena! I don't know if you remember me or not, but I'm back at blogging. Glad to see that you've kept it up :)