According to goodreads.com there are 25 Alex Cross books in James Patterson’s detective series. I personally consider the 2 “extra” books (Merry Christmas, Alex Cross and Alex Cross’ Trial) to be a part of the series. So for me there are 27.
I’m obsessed. I reread them. Seriously. I reread the entire series from start to finish in honor of the one goodreads considers to be the 25th. It took me about 4 weeks because I can read one of these badboys in a day.
Today I finished #27, which I got for Christmas. I’m feeling nostalgic. Let me explain why I love Alex Cross.
When I was young (so young that it’s that period of time when I cannot remember how old I was, let’s call it high school adjacent) someone (lets say my parents) bought me a copy of Kiss the Girls. This had to be around the time they decided to make a Kiss the Girls movie, because my cover is the movie-inspired cover. Anyway, I read it. I was WAY into mysteries at the time. I loved books that surprised me and had me trying to solve mysteries. Casanova was HANDS-DOWN the scariest villain I’d ever read. I (stupidly) started reading the book at night. It was quiet in my house, everyone else was sleeping, and I was sitting in bed reading by a book light. I was SHAKING with fear and had to keep reading to see if this detective could bring it all back to safe ground. I read the book in one night. The sun came up and helped light the room to help me finish. It was AMAZING. It was my first all-night read.
I soon found out that Kiss the Girls was part of a series. I bought myself Along Came a Spider (the first book) at a used bookstore. It was equally as good, with an equally scary villain, one who goes down as a personal favorite in the history of villains. This one took a delve into psychological more than I expected and followed our hero for much longer after the arrest, which I loved. This book gave me chills.
I continued hunting down and reading the books in order. By the time Roses are Red was published (2000) I was caught up. I was also in college, so I didn’t buy this one the second it came out. Instead, I bought a book club copy a few months later from my favorite used book store for about $4.
At the time I remember being convinced Roses are Red would be followed by Violets are Blue and it would be the last Alex Cross book because it seemed fitting for these titles to end it. They go so well together! If you’re not up on the series, those were books 6 and 7 (so I was really wrong).
I got my grandmother (an avid reader herself) hooked by book #9 and we developed this great (to struggling college student me) system. She bought the book BRAND NEW when it came out, read it in about 48 hours, and handed it off to me. It was a wonderful system.
Fast-forward to today, when I am still reading all James publishes about Alex. They’re my favorite James Patterson novels, I still read them quickly, and I got my husband hooked on them too.
Alright, a few more quick facts and then I’ll quick geeking on Alex Cross until the next book.
My Original Favorite: Kiss the Girls (first loves, man)
My New Favorite (after rereading entire series): Roses are Red (it’s just great writing)
What About the Movies: Thumbs WAY DOWN, they got it all wrong every single time
Why Alex: He’s a genuinely good guy, like in his core. His family is amazing and I just want to sit down and have family dinner with them.
How do I see it Ending?: I was SO WRONG last time, but here goes. James can’t quit Alex, man. I am not sure he ever will. BUT if he decides to stop writing Alex it’ll be because someone close to Alex dies and Alex can’t continue. Honestly, I’m worried about Nana. I don’t know if I could handle it, Mr. Patterson. Be gentle.
I’ve Never Read One, Should I?: YES. They’re amazing. You don’t need to read them in order to fall in love, I promise. If you’re not an avid reader naturally maybe try one of the bookshots first (they’re shorter). Otherwise I’d suggest one of the first 10 as your first. They have more character development to help you fall in love faster.
Alright, that’s all from me. Thanks for reading about one of my obsessions.
Here’s some links, if you’re interested.
The expert himself, James Patterson and links to the books:
My book review blog, where I’ve reviewed the most recent (and probably most of the others if you scroll around):