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Tuesday, June 26, 2012

The Lake House (audiobook) by James Patterson


Published in 2003 by Hatchette Audio
Read by Hope Davis and Stephen Lang.
Duration: 7 hours, 35 minutes.

The Lake House is the story of six bird/human hybrids who are created as the result of genetic experiments. They all can fly and all have superhuman strength.

 This book is very poorly paced. Great chunks of action happen with shorthand writing and then Patterson spends nearly an hour of the 7 1/2 hour book describing two of the characters' first sexual experiences. The Lake House skips over scenes and parts of the story moves in fits and starts. For example, the children all "run" away to live in the woods and eat grubs just to get away from regular human society. Next thing you know, they're back at home without any sort of explanation. I listen to a lot of audiobooks and many of them are abridged so I am used to odd fits and starts by poor editing. I checked the packaging several times while listening to this book to see if it was abridged. Sadly, the herky-jerky nature of the book cannot be blamed on poor editing during the process of abridgement because this is an unabridged reading.

Technical things made the book just seem silly like:

-the smoke detector that goes off only after the house is up in flames struck me as stupid. Just this morning 2 smoke detectors went off in my house because a toaster waffle got a bit burned.

-How about the Subaru that holds 8 people, including 6 of them with wings?

-Why does the bad guy want the kids so badly. He keeps mentioning them as a source of money, but how much money does this guy need? He just performed 30 surgeries at the rate of $100 million each. That's $3 billion!

-If you were going to fight a winged person with a 10 foot wingspan and superhuman strength would you bring a gun? a big knife? Well, the genius supervillain brings a scalpel!

-How about the bemoaning of the fact that no one was talking about the Resurrection project in the media but than it is brought out in testimony during the custody trial of the century and no one questions it because they knew all about it?

-Can you measure IQ when someone is asleep? No, but the evil genius does anyway.

-Hey - if you are going to write sci-fi get your terms right! Clones are not robots. Robots are not made of flesh. Cyborg is the term you were looking for. Get the terminology right or don't use it, please!

Oh, how the mighty have fallen. This book is bad, especially when compared to other works by Patterson, such as any of the early Alex Cross books. Patterson needs to have an editor really jump all over him and demand the better quality that he is capable of.

The audiobook was read by Hope Davis and Stephen Lang. Both are veteran readers who did a good job with the reading. But, even the best readers in the world could not have done anything to save this stinker of a book.

Note: This book and When the Wind Blows were re-worked to make the basis for Patterson's Maximum Ride series aimed at young adults.

I rate this book 1 star out of 5.

Reviewed on March 2, 2007 (edited on June 26, 2012).

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