He’s b-a-a-a-c-k. James Patterson, that is, with another adventure which, consistent with his expansive list of previous bestsellers, is an emotional page-turning rollercoaster from start to finish. This time, in Cross, we are immediately brought back to the seemingly senseless murder of Maria, the beloved wife of Alex Cross, and reminded that this murder was never solved.
This lack of finality haunts Cross as he struggles to put the pieces of his life back together by focusing his time and energy on raising his children and building a private counseling practice to distance himself from the dangers associated with working for the FBI. Cross seems to be handling his grief through commitment to his family and new career, helping his clients work through their problems as he simultaneously works through his own guilt about Maria’s death and tries to accept the fact that so many of the questions surrounding her murder might remain unanswered.
It is only after Cross’s former partner, John Sampson, seeks his assistance to track down a serial rapist and killer who is brutalizing D.C. women that Cross is reluctantly pulled back into the turmoil of the world he thought he had left far behind. As Cross joins the hunt to bring Michael Sullivan (“The Butcher”) to justice, he uncovers a connection between The Butcher and his wife’s murder years ago. This reality forces Cross to re-enter the tumultuous FBI world, re-open old wounds, and work to solve the one crime that matters to him most.
The cat-and-mouse game played by Cross and his colleagues, The Butcher, and the mob associates who were formerly his allies makes for a quick and gripping read. As The Butcher begins to take risks to avenge those who crossed him, it is Cross who is waiting in the wings to bring Maria’s killer to justice and finally be at peace. With Cross, James Patterson continues his tradition of bringing simple but engaging stories to his legion of fans with the knowledge that perhaps a multitude of others will join him for the ride.