Book: Cat & Mouse | Author: James Patterson | Started: 3/29/14 | Finished: 3/31/14 | Rating: 5 stars
Synopsis: In Cat & Mouse, things get too close to home. Two killers, one operating in America-one in Europe-believe Alex Cross is the only worthy opponent in the deadly game each has planned. Villian Gary Soneji is back. He vows his last act on earth will be taking the life of Alex Cross. But first he wants to have some fun. Union Station, Washington, and Penn Station in New York are scenes of chaos as Soneji creates a train ride to hell. With time running out, Cross must predict Soneji’s next move: the lives of thousands of innocent commuters hang in the balance. Meanwhile, a second game of cat and mouse is being played. Thomas Augustine Pierce is referred to by the FBI and Interpol as “St. Augustine” for his uncanny ability to catch killers. He has been chasing his demon, Mr. Smith, since his fiancee was brutally murdered, her heart cut out. Panic spreads through Europe when Mr. Smith strikes in London…then Paris… But when the Soneji case takes a baffling new twist, Pierce must put the Mr. Smith case on hold to assist in a special investigation. Will Cross-or Pierce-figure out in time who is the cat, and who is the mouse?
My review: Alex Cross’s (and mine) worst nightmare is back. Gary Soneji is back with a vengeance and will stop at nothing to get back at Alex Cross for “ruining his life.” Can he be stopped this time? While Alex is trying to stop Gary a second time, there is another killer on the loose, Mr. Smith.
I lied about Soneji being my worst nightmare. Mr. Smith is my worst nightmare. And it’s not particularly close.
I could talk for hours about how much I like Alex Cross. He’s has been one of my favourite characters since I started this series in January. In every book it seems that I find a new thing that I like about him. This book is his humour. I don’t think I realized it before, but he’s funny. And not just in a way where I am cracking up and tears are streaming down my face, but in a way where I’m rolling my eyes and thinking “seriously? A dad joke?” or “you’re such a dweeb, Alex”
“Can I see [Rosie, the cat]?”
“Sure can. She’s been asking for you all morning. I don’t know why, but she seems to like you.”
“She knows I’m a cool cat, too.”
Seriously, that’s the best dad joke I’ve heard all month.
Not only is he funny, but he’s a great dad, partner, friend, and basically every relationship he has. Patterson makes Alex’s relationships with his kids so healthy and refreshing. I can tell that Alex loves his kids more than anything and I can tell that they love him. Jannie and Damon are so smart and I love parts of the book that they are in because their dialogue with Alex is witty and fun. Every book I feel like I’m getting closer to Alex’s family because Patterson portrays them so well.
I loved this book because it was fast paced. When I say fast-paced, I mean that I literally could not put this book down because I needed to know what was happening. One thing that was big in this book was the “cat and mouse” effect (now the title makes sense). During the book, Alex is trying to find Soneji and at times he’s not sure if he’s the cat or if he’s the mouse. I think at times he was the cat and at times he was the mouse. It seemed that Soneji knew exactly what Alex was going to do, making Alex the mouse but at times Alex was sure he had a line on Soneji making Alex the cat.
There was another aspect of this book that was… creepy and scary. Mr. Smith was the scariest killer anyone had ever seen. He’s been over America and into Europe and they don’t know how to stop him. Alex, Sampson, and Thomas Pierce were trying to catch him and were definitely the Mouse. They had no idea what Mr. Smith’s next move was going to be until it was too late. They were always the mouse until they simply weren’t and then it was just the fact of finding him which was no easy task. Mr. Smith will probably be showing up in my nightmares during the next few weeks.
Thomas Pierce is an FBI agent who has a special tie with Mr. Smith. Mr. Smith killed Pierce’s girlfriend. He took the case personally and wanted nothing more than to find her killer. I don’t know how I felt about Pierce but that’s because I’m so used to everyone else that I felt weird about a new character. Patterson made him likable and unlikable at different times, and I still haven’t decided how I feel about him.
I do know that I hated Mr. Smith. When I found out who he was, I was shocked. I wasn’t expecting it at all. Maybe my detective skills are not up to par, but I couldn’t believe it. I never would have thought that the killer was who it was and I think Patterson made it known perfectly. There was no better way to do it and I think that’s why it was so shocking.
This book has more romance than the others and surprisingly I liked that portion. Him and Christine are finally going on a date! I love them together and I haven’t quite put my finger on why. Patterson writes them in a way where you just fall in love with them as a couple and want them to run off and get married (or maybe that’s just me?) I can’t wait to see how their relationship grows in the next few books.
If there was one thing that I didn’t think about this book was that it changed POV halfway through. All the other books are through Alex Cross’s eyes, but for some of the book, Thomas Pierce was the eyes and ears of the book and it was a strange transition. It was weird hearing “Alex Cross said” instead of “I said” but after a while, I got more used to it and saw why it was important in the book.
Easily a 5 star rating and I won’t be surprised if it’s at the top of my monthly favourite list for April. I would recommend this to everyone that read the first three books of the series. This is not a series to read out of order and this book will only makes sense (at times) if the first three were read. It also gives away other aspects of the previous books, so it’s very important to read the first three before diving into this one.