Patterson's murderers are twisted beyond belief, his detective is a
tad unbelievable, and the murders themselves are sick, sick,
But JACK AND JILL is still a thrilling, page-gripping read. I
started it at work, read it walking to the subway, on the train and
while waiting for my friends to show up for dinner. It burned a
hole in my bag through dinner, until I was able to tear it open
again at home --- reading into the wee hours of the night.
Yes, Patterson's bad guys in KISS THE GIRLS and ALONG CAME A SPIDER
are far from nice, but JACK AND JILL is over the top.
The serial killers whose names prompt the title of this thriller
are a man and woman who murder Washington, D.C. glitterati. Their
calling card (besides the executed body) is a nursery rhyme, such
Ah Dannyboy, we knew ya all too well
One useless, thieving, rich bastard down
So many more to go.
Jack and Jill came to The Hill
To hose down all the slime
Was poor Fitzpatrick
Right schmuck, wrong place, wrong time.
Jack and Jill
The culmination of their murderous spree is obvious to the inner
circle of the White House. The Secret Service's nicknames for the
President and the First Lady are also Jack and Jill. Coincidence?
The devastatingly intelligent and caring detective Alex Cross from
earlier Patterson thrillers reappears in JACK AND JILL. He's a bit
too perfect, and a bit too nice, but he does always save the day in
that requisite strong, male adventure hero way. Bad guys are no
match for Alex's ingrained need to protect his mom, his kids and
lovely young women.
Juxtaposed against these murderous nursery rhymers is a killer who
stalks pretty, young children. Lured by a bright, red balloon, the
first little girl is found dead near a grade school. It's the very
school that Alex's daughter attends. Could she be in danger? Could
In JACK AND JILL, James Patterson delivers a slickly satisfying
thriller. The movie of KISS THE GIRLS is currently in production,
with Morgan Freeman playing Alex Cross. Maybe Freeman's portrayal
of the detective will inspire Patterson to add a third dimension to
Cross in his next book.
Reviewed by Jennifer Levitsky on January 22, 2011