Book Reviews: James Patterson’s ‘Haunted (Michael Bennett)’ And ‘The Store’ Are Great Reads

James Patterson puts out so many books it’s somethings hard to keep up with him. He usually has co-writers on some of his titles. I’ve read two of his new books Haunted (Michael Bennett series) written by him and James O. Born (Little Brown; in stores Tuesday, September 18). And The Store (Little Brown; in stores now) written by him and Richard DiLallo.

Haunted finds Michael Bennett in a state of crisis. His oldest son Brian is in jail on drug charges and Michael wants to try and clear him. He begs him to tell him who gave him the drugs and Brian refuses. He’s afraid for his family if he talks. Michael hits the streets and asks all his sources who it might be. He’s also part of an investigation into a brutal murder of a student. Drugs are hitting the streets at record levels in New York. After a bust goes wrong Michael is suspended pending an investigation. He soon returns to work and continues his search for Brian’s drug dealer. Mary Catherine finds out information at school and passes it on to Michael, which leads to the death of a high school student who was the killer of the student.

Michael soon questions his job and if he still wants to be a cop. On the home front his grandfather Seamus suffers a heart attack and barely survives. Brian is convicted and sentenced. When Michael gets a call from his old partner Sandy about a house for rent on the water in Maine, it’s family vacation time. It soon turns into work as Sandy asks Michael for help with a parade and soon helps out dealing with a local drug dealer and a bunch of murders. What is suppose to be a family vacation turns into work for Michael until the case is solved. Putting his priorities into focus, Michael makes a decision that will effect the whole family.

Another thrilling Michael Bennett novel. I love catching up with him once a year it’s like visiting old friends. The book is so easy to read and the characters are well written. Even if you’ve never written one of the stories before it’s not a problem, as enough back story is given that you know what is going on.

The Store is the story of a major corporation that has basically taken over the country. Think a souped up Amazon on steroids. They seem to know everything about everyone. Their business is very successful. Anything you might possibly need they have. And working for them is like joining a cult. They provide good pay, living arraignments and basically control your life. You can’t do anything without them knowing. For writers Jacob and Megan Brandeis an expose on them would jump start their stalled writing career. They go to work for them and start their secret book. The family soon learns working for The Store is not a good thing. Their lives are taken over and soon the stress of everything becomes too much. They don’t know who they can trust or how to get away from The Store. Soon they come for Jacob and he takes his book and hits the road trying to get to the one person he hopes he can trust to expose The Store once and for all.

This is an exciting thriller. It’s one of those books you can’t put down until the very end wanting to see how it will turn out. And it feels like something that could truly happen at some point in our lives. We already see how the government and businesses already seem to know most everything we do. This magnifies it by 100 percent and it’s scary to think about.

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