Thursday, July 21, 2005

Lifeguard


I picked this one up last Thursday and read it in a single night when Karthik was recuperating at the hospital (which is why it didn't make it to my usual 'Next Read' post). Ofcourse thats more an indication of my mental stress and my inability to sleep rather than the quality of the book but its still a quick read.

This is James Patterson's third book I have read in the 5 months I have been blogging and there was one(Maximum Ride) that I skipped! That should give you an idea about how prolific the author is. Ofcourse, this has an effect on the quality of his writings. This is another book he has co-authored with Andrew Gross and there are rumours that its the co-author who writes most of such books and that Patterson simply puts his name on there for the publicity his name brings. The simplistic plot and weak twists here do give atleast a little credence to that theory.

The protagonist Ned Kelly is a parttime lifeguard/bartender and also tends to the pool of a rich man. He has agreed to play a small part(but for a big paycheck) in an art heist and quickly sets up plans for the money when he meets a beautiful but troubled woman Tess on the beach. Its love within the first few meetings for both of them. But the heist goes wrong when the paintings are not where they should be and all his partners-in-crime and Tess are found murdered. Naturally Ned's the prime suspect and goes on the run. An FBI agent Ellie is after him but begins to trust him when he kidnaps her and opens up to her.

Instead of Patterson's usual serial killer novels, Lifeguard's plot reads more like a Hitchcock movie with its 'innocent man on the run' theme. It is light on character development, romance and sentiments but thick on action and thrills. The book, like its hero, is always moving and keeps us turning the pages. The romance, though improbable, is kinda sweet and the conversations between Ned and Ellie have a few lines that made me smile. Though there is no jaw-dropping revelation, there are a few surprises. But the book gets too complicated for its own good towards the end and the motives and actions of some of the characters are not clear.

I estimate I have a couple of weeks until I lay my hands on Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. I'm currently # 16 on the Holds queue at our local library. So if readers have any books they highly recommend(and not necessarily in the thriller genre), I'm all ears :-)

11 Comments:

At 1:10 PM, Blogger Munimma said...

That sounds quite "un-Patterson" enough that I might try it out.

As to recos, I still say, buy it at walmart ;-)

Done with Hour game?

Read Eragon? It is on my list, but haven't had a chance yet. It is big bound book :-)

Have you read Shannara, Belagariad and Mallorean series? (fantasy)

Michael Donnelly's Closers was not bad.

And when I have nothing else to read, I revert to classics. Doing O'Henry/Jane Austen currently

Do you like Divakaruni? Queen of Dreams was not too bad, though I like Lahiri better.

Dan Brown is out with his latest.

Have you read Sedaris? It has been highly reco'd. I am planning to sometime.

 
At 1:16 PM, Blogger Balaji said...

no, dan brown cannot be out with his latest!!! i'm sure there'd have been more publicity considering the success of DVC. r u sure?!

yeah, finished 'hour game' a long time back...
been hearing great things about eragon. seems the author's only 15 yrs old!! the sequel's coming out soon...

 
At 2:45 PM, Blogger packer said...

read about this book on new york times best seller list some time back. Once had 1st to die but couldn't proceed much further on that one (may be i didn't liked his naration). My current read is ONE SHOT by Lee Child after 'A Tourist in Yucatan'. The book is good till now(about half). Recently i did some searching to find books based on WWII/cold war i came across this author named Nelson DeMille(I am not sure you already knew) and I instantaly liked his 'The Charm School' after reading excerpt. The other Book is 'Point of Impact' by Stephen Hunter I came across. You can have a look at them if you havn't read already.

 
At 7:55 PM, Anonymous F e r r a r i said...

I have never read a Paterson novel. Good thing to do this weekend I guess :-)

 
At 6:49 AM, Blogger Munimma said...

My bad, Solomon Key is on pre-order online. I am not too keen on Dan Brown and missed that. :-)

Talking about pre-orders Baldacci is coming out with The Camel Club soon.

My husband liked Dean Koontz. (velocity I think). I have read one of his, psych thriller, good read.

 
At 3:52 PM, Blogger Balaji said...

packer, i've heard a lotta good things about 'tourist in yucatan'. its on my to-read list.
i've seen books by nelson demille but havent read any since war/spy novels aren't my favorite genre.

ferrari, if u do u're much better off reading one of his earlier books. if u read his later ones, u'll wonder what i like about them!! i'm still reading him outta habit i think but looks like he's past his best works.

munimma, 'solomon key' is not out until dec and 'camel club' is releasing oct 25 only. patterson'll probably have 3 more books out before those!!! :-)
i've read one dean koontz. didnt finish it. not my type :)

there was a commenter on 1 of the earlier posts who mentioned a book about a teenager investigating a crime. something about a dog in the title think. i was kinda hoping that commenter would mention that again. that book seemed perfect for a quick read.

have any of u read 'darkly dreaming dexter'? short but unique read where the hero(sorta) is a serial killer too. ofcourse he kills only the bad guys :) the 2nd book's out now...

 
At 5:36 AM, Blogger Munimma said...

This book?

 
At 5:02 PM, Blogger Balaji said...

munimma, thanx. thats the one. but the lib queue is moving so fast, i'll probably get my hands on HP this week itself. but this one's going on my to-read list. has great reviews on amazon.

 
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