From Publishers Weekly Pop a bowl of popcorn, settle into a comfy chair and you might finish this combination thriller and tearjerker before the popcorn. Bestseller Patterson (Cross) and Ledwidge (The Narrowback) spin a fantastic tale of an audacious mass kidnapping and the unlikely detective thrust into the primary role of negotiator, sleuth and hero. Michael Bennett, a senior NYPD homicide detective, has a wife dying of cancer and 10 adopted children of various ethnic origins. When St. Patrick's Cathedral, site of the celebrity-packed funeral of a former first lady, is seized by a dozen ruthless men, Bennett ends up as point man for the hastily assembled negotiating team. From then on, the tale requires the reader to go with the flow as Bennett alternates visits to his wife's hospital bedside, brief trips to check on how his kids are managing and tense dealings with the well-prepared kidnappers. Short on credibility on the crime front, long on sentimentality on the home front, this book would be a good candidate for adaptation as a one-hour TV movie. (Feb.) Copyright ? Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. Read more From Booklist Patterson and Ledwidge introduce a new hero in an exciting thriller set in the heart of Manhattan. NYPD detective Michael Bennett is concentrating on getting his family through a particularly difficult Christmas: he and his 10 adopted children are facing the loss to cancer of his brave wife, Maeve. But a major crisis calls him away: the funeral of a former First Lady at St. Patrick's Cathedral goes horribly awry when men storm the church and take hundreds of attendees hostage. Michael is asked to try to reason with a sinister man named Jack. Jack releases all but the most famous people, and makes his demands: he wants several million dollars from each celebrity hostage, including the mayor, a popular comedic actor, a beloved talk show host, and a pop starlet. Once Jack starts killing, Michael realizes he's up against a truly diabolical foe. Patterson has a knack for creating genuinely likable heroes, and Michael fits the bill. As readers rapidly turn the pages to learn how the tense hostage drama plays out, they will also be sympathizing with Michael as he faces the agonizing loss of his wife. Totally gripping and downright impossible to put down, this is a promising start to a potential new series. Kristine HuntleyCopyright ? American Library Association. All rights reserved Read more See all Editorial Reviews
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