on January 7, 2004
'Hide and Seek' is a different type of novel than what most of Patterson's readers will be accustomed to. For instance, many readers, like myself, have read the entire Alex Cross series. In that series, the action follows a brilliant psychologist-detective. Those books are suspenseful, and usually contain a big twist.
'Hide and Seek,' on the other hand, follows the life of Maggie Bradford. The prologue introduces the reader to Maggie as she hides from her husband, who she is forced to kill in self-defense and in defense of her daughter.
From there, Maggie rises to stardom as a singer-songwriter and loses a life partner to a heart attack and another husband, an internationally famous soccer star, to a murder. The question is, who killed Will Shepherd, the soccer star?
Maggie isn't like Alex Cross. She has no training in police work and has no detective skills. In fact, she has to rely on the actions of others to solve this case. As is usual in a Patterson novel, a couple of great plot twists stand in the way of figuring out just what happened.
The majority of the novel is told from Maggie's point of view using a first person narrative style. Occassionally, actually frequently, Patterson switches to a third person narrative to tell the story of Will Shepherd. This can be confusing and disorienting at times, but then again, maybe that was the intent. It does help build the suspense.
I recommend this novel because it is a bit of a mystery, but it contains a wonderful narrative of an abused woman that has made a life for herself and overcome all obstacles. No knowledge of any of Patterson's prior work is needed. If you are looking for a good whodunit, you might be frustrated because the real mystery isn't introduced until the final fourth of the book. Its a quick read, and highly enjoyable.
First off, I LOVE JAMES PATTERSON novels...however as long as 'Hide & Seek' is mixed in, then all bets are off. Patterson has an incredible talent for writing, and one of the best things about his novels are how he can get you involved in the lives of his characters, and how you even develop a liking for the bad guys as well...however in 'Hide & Seek' I just didn't care one whit about ANY character in this novel at ALL. It wasn't because I gave up on the story, either--nope, I read this entire story thinking that beyond the next page it was going to get better like his other brilliant Alex Cross novels. Now let me say one other thing, I DO NOT judge this or ANY other novel by Patterson based upon his previous novels, other than he has written so many great books, I figured even a poor book by Patterson was better than some other author's BEST work...not so here, unfortunately.
'Hide & Seek' cannot be compared to ANYTHING else that I had read by Patterson simply because it seemed as though it was written by another person altogether. Maybe I am so much of a fan of Alex Cross that I can't read anything that DOESN'T have him in it...but I discounted that theory because I have many other favorite authors who sometimes stray from their main carry-over characters and it has never presented a problem for me in the past, so I was just stumped here. Well maybe, just MAYBE it was because 'Hide & Seek' was simply not Pattersons best work...? I would like to think otherwise, but I think that this is the ONLY explanation that seems to make any sense to me. For those who liked this novel, not only do I envy you (because I really WANTED to...) I wonder why you actually DID? But in any case, I STILL think that Patterson is one 1st rate author (despite this book).`
on January 29, 2004
Maggie Bradford is a rich, beautiful, charismatic, famous songwriter and singer. She is a loving mother of two, and is accused of killing not one, but two of her husbands.
Yes. You read that right.
Maggie Bradford, adored by her fans, killed her first husband in self-defense, and, in 'Hide and Seek', is being accused of killing soccer-star Will Shepherd.
After reading 'Roses Are Red' and 'Violets Are Blue', I have to admit that I thought that James Patterson could surprise me no more. The Alex Cross mysteries have twists and suspense that only Patterson could think up, and only Patterson could surprise his readers once more with 'Hide and Seek'. I especially love how Patterson writes as Maggie Bradford in first person. The tone is carefree, and he carries Maggie's voice throughout the whole book beautifully. Maggie's voice seems to be talking to readers, the audience. Will Shepherd, however, is written about in a detached version of first person, with less emotions, feelings, and thoughts mentioned. The book, however, is still filled with emotion and romance. Ending with the trial (with an incredible twist), 'Hide and Seek' is another one of Patterson's eminent books--the kind of book that you start reading and just can't put down, the kind of book you get paper cuts from by being in a hurry to turn to the next page, the kind of book that NO ONE should miss out on.
on August 22, 2006
Okay, some of the other reviewers are a bit harsh, but this book wasn't THAT bad. Then again, it wasn't that great either. It's not very original or unpredictable, but it gets three stars because yours truly wasn't bored. You can't really give a book a bad review if it wasn't boring or truly horrible. That said, I'll sum it up for those of you who haven't read it:
Maggie Bradford is, more or less, an overly dramatic version of Carly Simon--you know--the kind of singer/songwriter they'd put in a Lifetime storyline, and Will Shepherd is an English soccer playing psycho version of one of her former flames...let's pick Warren Beatty. Will's a demonic, lecherous, bad tempered creep with homocidal tendencies who thinks Maggie and her music can save him. In other words, he's so vain he probably thinks her songs are about him. Okay, joke aside, I'm surprised this wasn't turned into a Lifetime movie at some point. Pass, and give me the Women's Murder Club instead.
on October 17, 2001
I am a huge fan of James Patterson...I am now trying to read some of his earlier books. I picked up Hide and Seek expecting great things - after all, his Alex Cross series is great; I loved 1st to Die; and thought Suzanne's Diary for Nicolas was a brave move into general fiction. Well, I was disappointed!
The book is about Maggie Bradford and her past loves. Within several chapters you find out she has 'murdered' several past husbands and lovers. The book flips between her in jail, her past husbands and their background, her past, and what has happened to get her arrested for murder.
This book is not written well. It jumps back and forth so much between current day and past as well as various characters that it is hard to keep up with what's going on. The characters are not well developed - they are one dimensional and flat. The story is predictable and boring. I only stuck with the book hoping it would get better - it didn't. Since this is an early James Patterson, perhaps we can chalk this book up to inexperience. Luckily he has learned from his mistakes and is now producing great books....
Bottom line, I wouldn't recommend this book to others...unless you want to compare his earlier work to his current masterpieces of mystery/suspense.
on May 26, 2002
Peekaboo! I killed you...or did I? This was the question in James Patterson�s novel, Hide and Seek. Did Maggie Bradford kill her second husband, Will Shepherd? Even the suspect herself doesn�t know. The answer isn�t revealed until the end of the story, which makes for a suspense-filled page-turner. Similar to Patterson�s other novels, he keeps the audience guessing until the end with surprise twists all throughout that throw off any conclusions the reader may have made.
The story starts out with the heroine hiding with her young daughter from her crazed husband, Phillip. As it turns out, Maggie Bradford does kill her first husband, but in self-defense. Then the novel jumps to the present time where Maggie is being held in a prison cell for the supposed murder of her second husband. She wonders, �Am I a murderer? Did I kill not one, but two of my husbands?�
Suddenly, the reader is taken back to the past. Maggie has becomes an in-demand songwriter for popular singers, and a singer herself. Will Shepherd, an ex-soccer star turned actor, insinuates himself in her life, and soon, they are married. As Maggie narrates from the present about her life with Will, the reader is slowly exposed to the other side of Will. The side not shown to the rest of the world: �the werewolf.� Gradually, her story of the past merges with the present time, her trial for the murder of Will Shepherd.
Hide and Seek is a skillfully written novel with an exciting plot. Patterson�s style of excerpts from Maggie in the present-day commenting on the past allows for a unique perspective of the story. His vivid descriptions and colorful vocabulary bring the characters to life. The reader is pulled into the story as if you are watching the action happen. Once you start reading, you won�t want to put the book down until you are finished. Anyone with a taste for an action-filled thriller will enjoy this novel immensely.
on December 24, 1999
This book was terrible. The plot was like a soap from TV, completely unbelievable. Why waste your time reading this book when there are so many other great ones out there. If you don't want to think when you read this is for you. If you like trashy novels, this is for you. But if you really like to read, try something else or you will be very disapointed.
on May 30, 1998
I flew through Hide and Seek. Patterson's writing style is so swift and fast-paced that reading his books are like watching action movies, exciting and action-packed. However, this book reads more like a weak Sidney Sheldon book (not to knock Sidney Sheldon, he's cool too), than a James Patterson novel. I would have liked it better if he didn't just skim the trial, and if he had made this story a bit more plausible. I did like the characters, but I think his Alex Cross novels are far more superior. They have good characters and an excellent plot.
on July 16, 2001
I have read a few of James Patterson's books but his was the first one I listened to on tape. I must say that had I read the book instead of listened to two professional actors read the book to me I might not have liked the story as much. This was not the best Patterson book I have read. Kiss the Girls and Along Came a Spider were very suspenseful stories. I really didn't like When the Wind Blows.
Since others have written reviews on the story itself, I will comment on the tape experience, with some reference to the story. What I liked most about the tape was the use of two actors. A female actress read the chapters that came from Maggie Bradford's perspective (the unfortunate superstar) while a male actor reads Will's side (the evil soccer star). As a result, the notion that you are in the character's head is further felt. I have listen to other books where the actor actually takes away from the story. In this case, both actors do a great job.
As for the story, I enjoyed this book very much but I do have two complaints. First of all, the Will character is just too much. Does he have to be the greatest soccer player in the world? Couldn't he have an ounce of goodness in him? The story would have been better if Will wasn't so evil. I like a suspense story better if I have just a little compassion for the bad guy. Second, the story was a bit predictable. I certainly didn't predict the whole ending but you have a pretty good idea where the story is going by page 50 (or in my case: cassette one, side one).
All in all, I liked Hide and Seek. I liked the Maggie Bradford character. While the suspense level was not up to some of Patterson's other books, it'll keep you up at night.
on December 7, 2014
I'm a James Patterson fan. This book did not measure up to his prior talent. The story line felt fragmented. The evolution of the characters felt like it jumped around. It took 6-8 chapters before I was sure what the storyline even was. Love reading his books but this one was disappointing. I finished only because I kept hoping my experience would change.