Sunday, 22 December 2019

Holiday Gift Guide 2019: The 19th Christmas




The 19th Christmas
by James Patterson & Maxine Paetro


As the holidays approach, Detective Lindsay Boxer and her friends in the Women's Murder Club have much to celebrate. Crime is down. The medical examiner's office is quiet. Even the courts are showing some Christmas spirit. And the news cycle is so slow that journalist Cindy Thomas is on assignment to tell a story about the true meaning of the season for San Francisco.

Then a fearsome criminal known only as "Loman" seizes control of the headlines. Solving crimes never happens on schedule, but as this criminal mastermind unleashes credible threats by the hour, the month of December is upended for the Women's Murder Club. Avoiding tragedy is the only holiday miracle they seek.



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2019 marked the year readers got two new entries in the Women's Murder Club series by author James Patterson - The 18th Abduction and The 19th Christmas. While James Patterson isn't the best writer in the universe, I still enjoy reading his books — good or bad — and there's been a lot of the bad in recent years. If you're also a fan of Patterson's works, then you would know he brings out a new title (or two) per month. Typically, these books have a coauthor, such as Maxine Paetro helped penned The 19th Christmas.

Personally, I'm a little bit behind in the Women's Murder Club series. I don't even remember the title I had read in the series. Nevertheless, since the newest entry has "Christmas" in the title, I thought it would a good read for this year's Holiday Gift Guide.

Unfortunately, The 19th Christmas is mixed bag for me. The story is all over the place with an out of placed side-plot involving an illegal immigrant in prison awaiting a murder trial. There only needs to be one plot in a crime novel unless the other plot intertwines with the main plot. However, that doesn't happen in this story. I actually did like the "Loman" story; though I do wish it was better written. Mr. Patterson's editor need to do a better job as there are many typos and factually errors all through the novel.

Overall, The 19th Christmas has an intriguing premise but it's held down by rushed writing and questionable editing. It's not a bad read but if you're expectations are high then you're going to be disappointed with it. Let's hope next year's The 20th Victim will be better written.

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