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Cradle and All Mass Market Paperback – February 1, 2001


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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Vision (February 1, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0446609404
  • ISBN-13: 978-0446609401
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1 x 6.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 2.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (481 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,034,457 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

James Patterson's Cradle and All pits the intensity of faith against the certainties of science within an arena of Millennial tensions. A reworking of his 1980 apocalyptic thriller Virgin, this remodeled version boasts a genuinely unnerving premise, amplified with Patterson's fast-paced, uncluttered prose.

In the midst of a series of unexplained plagues and famines, two teenage girls are heavily pregnant, despite being virgins. According to the sacred prophecies of Fatima, one will bear the child of Christ and the other, the spawn of Satan. Both Anne Fitzgerald, a former nun turned private detective, and the Vatican's Father Rosetti are sent to investigate. But which girl carries which child? The possibility of a miracle will be tainted with great suffering before the awful, unexpected truth is revealed. As the action moves speedily from the hallowed halls of the Vatican to the media frenzy of America to the small-town hysteria of Ireland, Patterson divines considerable suspense from the novel's central premise, tackling issues of faith with admirable aplomb:

"All over the world, after all the years of difficulty, decades of diminishing spirituality, so many people still believed.... Everywhere, people talked of the Apocalypse, perhaps the end of the world. Which explained why so many people were suddenly going to church."

A relentless pace culminating in a superbly twisted ending won't disappoint Patterson's faithful followers, and may even convert some new members. --Danny Graydon --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From Publishers Weekly

His Alex Cross series (Pop Goes the Weasel, etc.) has made Patterson a top-selling author, but his most interesting work lies elsewhere: in his debut mystery, The Thomas Berryman Number; in last year's SF thriller, When the Wind Blows--and in this exciting and moving religious thriller about two pregnant virgins, one of whom may carry the Son of God and the other the Son of the Devil. If that plot line sounds familiar, it should. The novel is a reworking of Virgin, Patterson's second novel, published in 1980 by McGraw-Hill and long out of print. The narrative features the first-person/third-person narrative mix that's Patterson's trademark. The "I" belongs to ex-nun Anne Fitzgerald, now a PI. Her latest case for the Church involves investigating--and guarding--Newport, R.I. (i.e., rich), teenager Kathleen Beavier, who's eight months pregnant but, by expert medical testimony, a virgin. The Church is particularly anxious about Kathleen's condition because the Third Secret of Fatima (a real-life secret guarded by the Church since the Virgin Mary allegedly revealed it in 1917) prophesied two pregnant virgins: one bearing the Savior, the other the Devil's child. Anne eventually learns that indeed there's a poor girl in Ireland who's also pregnant, yet a virgin. Which girl carries which child? For texture, Patterson throws in some romance between Anne and a priest, but the novel's considerable suspense arises from his treatment of the central question as he speeds the action from America to Ireland to the Vatican, complicates it with a media frenzy over Kathleen, sharpens it as supernatural forces come into play and spins it with a wicked twist. While not subtle, this novel tackles issues of faith with admirable gusto. It could be a massive bestseller, appealing not only to Patterson's fans but also to those of the apocalyptic thrillers of LaHaye and Jenkins. 1 million first printing; $1 million ad/promo; Literary Guild main selection; author tour. (May)
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

More About the Author

It is no surprise that in January, 2010, The New York Times Magazine featured James Patterson on its cover and hailed him as having "transformed book publishing," and that Time magazine hailed him as "The Man Who Can't Miss." Recently, NBC's Rock Center with Brian Williams profiled Patterson's prolific career, AARP named him one of the "50 Most Influential People Who Make Our Days a Little Brighter," and Variety featured him in a cover story highlighting his adventures in Hollywood.

In 2013, it was estimated that one-in-five of all hardcover suspense/thriller novels sold was written by James Patterson, his books have sold over 300 million copies worldwide, and he holds the Guinness record for the most #1 New York Times bestsellers of any author. And his success isn't based solely on thrillers like the perennially popular Alex Cross, Women's Murder Club and Michael Bennett series. Patterson is now also the current bestselling author in the young adult and middle grade categories.

He's been called the busiest man in publishing, and that's not just because of his own books. For the past decade, James has been devoting more and more of his time to championing books and reading. From the James Patterson Pageturner Awards, to his website ReadKiddoRead.com, to his College Book Bucks scholarships and his regular donations of hundreds of thousands of books to schools here in the states and troops overseas (see interviews on Fox & Friends, The Dennis Miller Radio Show and CNN.com), Patterson has passed on his passion of books and reading and supported those who do the same. Jim personally funded a major ad campaign re-printing a recent opinion piece on CNN.com about how it is our responsibility to get our kids reading. The ad has run in the New York Times, The New Yorker, and USA Today. Those ads are a call to action to parents to make their kids reading a top priority; and were featured by USA Today here. Patterson believes that we cannot rely on schools, teachers or the government to get our kids reading; only parents can make this crucial change in the reading habits of our kids. Here are links to some interviews on his first-ever dual lay down (two books, one for parents and one for kids, in one day): AOL's You've Got, NBC's "Today Show" with Hoda and Kathie Lee, USA Today and Family Circle, NBC's "Today Show" with Al Roker, as well as an interview with AARP.

Customer Reviews

Time for this chapter to end, too.
Dr. Christopher Coleman
I really loved anything by James Patterson, but this has got to be one of the worst books I have ever read.
Simonetta Cavilli
I didn't think I would actually like or finish this book, but I surprised myself by doing just that.
Jennifer Czeisel

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

29 of 33 people found the following review helpful By mellion108 VINE VOICE on May 29, 2000
Format: Hardcover
I've been hooked on James Patterson since I read KISS THE GIRLS. He typically does a wonderful job with character development and suspense. CRADLE has all of the Patterson elements: notoriously short chapters, quickly defined characters, alternating first and third person narration. All in all this is a decent read.

The storyline revolves around the question of how the world would react to the news of a modern-day immaculate conception. Anne Fitzgerald is called in by the Archdiocese to provide an objective investigation into a reported virgin pregnancy. She walks in expecting an easy assignment and instead ends up testing her own faith. Along the way, we're introduced to Nicholas Rosetti, a strong priest sent in to unravel the mystery of two young women claiming to be virgins despite their pregnancies. He believes one will bear the saviour of man, the other will bear the child of satan. The story moves rather slowly through most of the book; it focuses on outlining the media frenzy building around one of the virgins as well as the scapegoating endured by the other virgin. The last quarter of the book builds to a quick climax with an ending that makes the reading worthwhile. It also leaves the question: when is the sequel? Overall, I enjoyed the book. It's a very quick, easy read (at just over 300 pages, I polished this off in a few hours), it addresses some rather heavy spiritual issues, but it delivers a story without being "preachy". I wouldn't qualify this as one of Patterson's best works; it's more like "Patterson-Lite". The novel exemplifies his earlier abilities, but overall, I enjoyed it.
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71 of 86 people found the following review helpful By Bobbewig TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on May 22, 2000
Format: Hardcover
As you may or may not know, Cradle And All is a rework of Patterson's 2nd novel called Virgin. Most likely if you read Virgin within the past few years and remember the ending you probably won't want to read Cradle And All -- even though there are differences between the two versions. But if you haven't read Virgin or read it like I did(when it first came out in 1980)and don't remember the outcome, you're in for a real treat. After reading an advance reader copy of Cradle And All, I'm sure that most Patterson fans will find many of the qualities that have made them devour his previous books. In typical Patterson fashion the plot moves along at a break-neck pace, the chapters are very brief with each ending on a note that makes you want to quickly turn the page, and the characters--while not developed in great depth--are interesting. While I'm not a particularly fast reader, I read this book in two days. Be prepared to be glued to your favorite reading place until you finish Cradle And All! You'll definitely enjoy this book.
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17 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Jane E. Harkins on May 22, 2000
Format: Audio Cassette
Hearing the title of James Patterson's latest release, "Cradle and All", I expected the story of a missing infant, distraught parents, family secrets and an eventual tearful reunion. I was unprepared for the deception of the benign title; it belies a literal tale of apocalyptic proportions, mixing biblical prophecy, Virgin births, priests and nuns, the Vatican and holy miracles with enough world-wide plague and pestilence to create the ultimate battle of good against evil.
Annie, a former nun turned private investigator, is content with her present limited involvement with the Church, consisting of occasional investigations of sensitive matters. In the midst of an outbreak of "new polio", she is summoned by her old friend, a Cardinal, to handle a secretive and potentially dangerous crisis; she is told little more than it involves a pregnant teenager named Kathleen, who lives in Massachusetts and claims to be a virgin. Meeting and befriending Kathleen is a journey of faith and conscience for Annie, who must venture beyond her own skepticism, particularly when she learns of a second pregnant teen in Ireland, Colleen, who is also believed to be a virgin. Only then does Annie learn the magnitude of her assignment: to investigate whether the prophecy foretold by the Virgin Mother in Fatima in 1917 - that the child of God and the child of Satan would each be born to virgins - is becoming a present-day reality and whether the potential of such an event is behind the crises of sickness, famine and drought suddenly sweeping the earth. The resolution to this mystery shocks Annie (much as it does those of us following her pilgrimage), changes the course of her life and defines its purpose.
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30 of 38 people found the following review helpful By Sarah Eunice on June 15, 2005
Format: Mass Market Paperback
It moved me to do something I have never done before. Write an online review to warn others. Please, please, please do not subject yourself to this book. This book is beyond awful and deserves no stars. Several things in this book trully irritated me. I have read other James Patterson books and found them entertaining and normally I like good vs. evil plot lines. However, this book was so terrible I struggled to finish it and nearly broke my 27 year rule of never leaving a book unfinished, figuring that even the most tiresome and mundane of books may have at least one redeeming quality concealed within it's pages.

First, allow me to comment that I had figured out the two virgin plot line about two chapters after Patterson introduced the second virgin and spent the rest of the book being bored nearly to tears waiting for Patterson to get around to confirming my theory.

Second, Patterson seems to have overlooked simple biology in this one. The medical procedures required to monitor a pregnancy would not leave a hymen intact, even if the hymen had been there to begin with. Ask any woman who has ever had a pelvic exam and they will confirm this for you. In addition, at one point after the birth a doctor mentions that one of the girls is no longer a virgin. How exactly does he know this??? The only possible way that a doctor can tell that woman has not had sex is if the hymen is intact, which actually is far from foolproof. However, allowing that Patterson is not a gynecologist and that popular "wisdom" puts forth that an intact hymen equals a virgin I was willing to accept for the purpose of this book that the doctors were willing to say the intact hymen meant these girls were virgins.
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