Picks and Pans Review: The Beach House
By James Patterson with Peter de Jonge
Second-year law student Jack Mullen goes to the Hamptons and discovers that stone crabs aren't the only creepy things in the land of sun-kissed celebs. His kid brother dies mysteriously at a swank party attended by such starry couples as New York Knick Latrell Sprewell and his Bentley. (Many real-life figures populate this mystery.) Then Mullen's father dies. The cub barrister suspects the local billionaire and launches a guerrilla quest for justice.
Mullen's name ought to be Murphy since everything that can go wrong does, in almost stupefying style, chapter after cinematic chapter: Bi-coastal flyers will finish this yarn by Kansas City.
Some of the exploits are so knuckleheaded that the uninitiated can only wonder whether this is a spoof. Imagine the resident hit man arriving at the barber's—for the express purpose of whacking the stylist—but first demanding a shave.
The courtroom climax flatlines even before an appearance by, yes, Geraldo Rivera. It's bad enough dealing with this guy in real life; must we put up with him in fiction too? (Little, Brown, $26.95)
Bottom Line: Even the Hamptons deserve better
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