Private L.A. by James Patterson
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Jacket Blurb: Thom and Jennifer
Harlow are the perfect couple, with three perfect children. They maybe
two of the biggest mega movie stars in the world, but they're also great
parents, philanthropists and just all-around good people.
they disappear without a word from their ranch, facts are hard to find.
They live behind such a high wall of security and image control that
even world-renowned Private Investigator Jack Morgan can't get to the
truth. But as Jack keeps probing, secrets sprout thick and fast--and the
world's golden couple may emerge as hiding behind a world of
desperation and deception that the wildest reality show couldn't begin
to unveil. Murder is only the opening scene.
Read as an audio book.
This was one of the more enjoyable Private books I've "read". In the last several audiobook reviews, I've noted I tend to skip anything with the antagonists. This time, I didn't. In this book, watching the antagonists move the LAPD, Mayor's office and Private around was like watching a chess master deploy his pieces across a board. The reader wasn't sucked into some bad guys sick and twisted mind this time, which I greatly appreciated. Instead, I got to see how sick and twisted this group was and slowly find out the whys.
More of this story was about Justine, which...I wasn't as thrilled about. She's a brilliant psychologist (psychiatrist?) trying to be come a kick-ass strong member of the Private team. But she quickly learns that Akido lessons and CrossFit will only get her so far. I really had mixed thoughts about her reactions, especially the wailing and self flagellation about "seducing" a married man - when she had no idea he was married. Gah. And the "little sister" comments to psych herself up. Seriously? "Little Sister?" (rolling my eyes here).
I'm also officially tired of this yo-yo'ing so-called relationship between Jack and Justine. They can't live together, and they can't live apart, but Jack won't open up to Justine and she can't handle not knowing his feelings and Jack can't handle Justine prying into his mind (can you blame the guy?) Whatever.
Several overlapping plots in this installment - "No Prisoners", where the city of LA is at the mercy of someone setting them up to take a lot of money. The world famous Harlow's and their children have disappeared, and there are some skeletons in locked closets. And lastly, Tommy is back with Carmen Nochia (sp?) and both men have their sights set on taking down Jack. Interestingly, not everything was resolved in this book.
Overall, a solid and entertaining book, great for traveling, a beach read, or, in my case, several days of extra driving.
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