Murder in Paradise
with Doug Alvyn, Connor Hyde
Grand Central Publishing 2018
418 pages paperback
Murder In Paradise by James Patterson and collaborators is the perfect beach mystery. This is a collection of 3 novellas by Doug Alvyn, Connor Hyde, and Duane Swierczynski that are each a quick, enthralling read. These three stories are the paperback equivalent of an hour-long TV mystery. Kindle at Amazon: Murder in Paradise
It should be noted The Lawyer Lifeguard with Doug Allyn and The Shut-In with Duayne Swierczynski have been available as ebooks since 2017
The Lawyer Lifeguard by James Patterson with Doug Allyn is the story of Brian Lord who put himself through law school by being a lifeguard in Vale Beach near Detroit. His wife was killed in a car explosion and he has returned to Port Vale. Circumstances make him the new lifeguard while he licks his wounds but the mystery of his wife’s death (and a couple of minor cases he inherited from his old law firm) keep him busy and all is not what it seems to be.
When the Napa Valley coroner is shot down with a group of tourists while hot air balooning, the authorities give his job to a nice, eager, young coroner named Abi Brenner. Unfortunately, Brenner is not the lightweight, easily manipulable doctor the Napa Valley powers that be thought she was and when other seemingly related murders occur, Brenner gets in way over her head. It is difficult to say more without spoilers. Suffice to say the ending to The Doctor’s Plot by James Patterson and Connor Hyde is a stunner.
Duane Swierczynski borows a bit of Rear Window (which he immediately acknowledges) in The Shut-In. Tricia Celano has solar urticaria which makes her allergic to the sun and cannot go out at night because of her agoraphobia. She lives vicariously through a drone she sends out a drone to keep an eye on the city. She catches a woman kill a vagrant with a device that shoots an arrow. The police do not believe her account. During a second murder the woman spots the drone and now homebound Tricia Celano is in a game of cat and mouse with a very clever and determined killer. This tale is told in collaboration with James Patterson
Perhaps because I am partial to Swierczynski but I found The Shut-In the best of the three. This however by a very, very thin margin as The Doctor’s Plot is really solid as is The Lawyer Lifeguard
Other books by James Patterson we reviewed: