The Quickie by James Patterson and Michael Ledwidge

December 4, 2012

Plot summary (from the publisher): When she sees her husband with another woman, Lauren Stillwell’s heart nearly stops beating. Her marriage was perfect, she has a great job, she loves her life. But his betrayal turns her into someone she never imagined she could be–a woman lusting for revenge.

Determined to even the score, Lauren seeks to have her own affair. It was supposed to be a quickie, but Lauren’s night of passion takes a shocking turn when she witnesses an unexpected, unbelievable, and deadly crime. Now her horrifying secret threatens to tear her life apart, pitting her need to uncover the truth against her fear that the truth may be too horrible to bear. And whichever choice she makes may cost her dearly-her job, her marriage.or even her life.

Warning: Spoilers below!

Liked:

  • The most basic premise of the book, that even something as simple as a “quickie” can lead to drastic, far-flung consequences, was something worth exploring.
  • At least Lauren’s lies and deceits didn’t go completely undetected. Her partner Mike discovered the doctored phone records, as did someone in the DA’s office. Fat lot of good that did in the end, but it would have been far too absurd (even for a Patterson) book if her cover-up fooled everyone.

Disliked:

  • Were readers supposed to root for Lauren Stillwell? This was a homicide detective who manipulated evidence to cover her husband’s ass as well as her own, and whose actions directly led to other people getting killed. The authors tried to soften that blow by making the victims drug dealers, but that doesn’t change the fact that Lauren’s acted selfishly and reprehensibly from beginning to end.
  • I absolutely HATE it when bad things happen simply because characters DON’T TALK TO EACH OTHER!!! As far as I can tell, this only occurs in books, movies, and TV shows, never in real life. What kind of wife, after seeing her husband enter a hotel with a good-looking woman, would let him off the hook when he lies and says he just had lunch at his desk that day??? All NORMAL women would immediately confront him about the hotel sighting. Then again, if Lauren had done that, there would be no story to tell, right?
  • Another strike against Lauren as a character: her response to thinking her husband cheated on her was to go out and have a quickie herself? Nice.
  • If Paul turned out to be such a “psycho” in the end, what with his second family in DC, the bribes he was paying to Scott, his decision to murder Scott to end the blackmail, and his willingness to murder Lauren, wouldn’t she have noticed something amiss well before that time? Psychos aren’t that good at hiding everything. Some tendencies should have slipped out now and then, don’t you think?
  • I hated that Lauren got away with everything in the end. Sometimes it’s okay for these antihero type protagonists to win, but not in this case. There was nothing about Lauren that made me believe she deserved this happiness.

Rating:

Despite knowing that a majority of James Patterson & [Co-Author] books are utter crap, I keep checking them out of the library for some reason (probably because they’re always available). So it’s my own fault that I get stuck with a story that is full of implausibilities, ludicrous coincidences, and unlikable characters. I give this one just 1 star out of 5.

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