A BOOK REVIEW BY ALEX GRANT
Author / James Patterson /
Little, Brown & Company
Pub: April 2003 /
Hard Covers @ $41.95 CAN.
Pattersons latest thriller THE LAKE HOUSE is a sequel to his 11th
book WHEN THE W IND BLOWS resuming the agonising ordeal of a group of
winged children, mutants who have been adopted by veterinarian Dr.Frannie
ONeill and Thomas Kit Brennan a lawyer and former
FBI agent. The six junior birdmen are led my Max a beautiful
young girl and in the opening pages ONeill and Brennan lose custody
of the unorthodox flock to the childrens natural parents. The
media hound these freaks who lives are constantly at risk
and who are bullied by normal kids whilst their birth parents
fail entirely to understand the true nature and origin of their curious
offspring. For behind the scenes lurks a callous murderous modern-day
The evil genius who is responsible for this dizzying circus is Dr.Ethan
Kane, Chief of Surgery at Liberty General Hospital and a monster in
keeping with H.G.Wells Dr. Moreau pursuing his appalling Resurrection
Project. A madman who will stop at nothing to realise his demented lifework.
He wants to kidnap the flock but is frustrated by Max their leader.
As usual with such larger-than-life villains Dr. Kane never invites
suspicion as he slaughters the innocent in his operating theatre with
A Steven Spielberg type update of James Barries classic PETER
PAN Pattersons new novel is far too strenuous in its unconvincing
efforts to tune into the teen zeitgeist of modern America wanting desperately
to humanise these feisty mutants and bring their curious
co-existence with humans into a recognizable day-to-day perspective.
But the adults surrounding them are all paper-thin stock figures in
the most dumbed-down Stephen King- Dean Koontz manner of storytelling
and they fail to convince the reader of either their goodwill or their
malice. Author Patterson suggests that these fictional events he depicts
so prosaically could actually take place in our own lifetimes. His narrative
and dialogue would have to be a great deal more eloquent and his characters
a great deal more articulate to persuade me for a single second that
this could be plausible in the slightest degree.
© Alex Grant May 2003
all rights reserved