"Lifeguard" or "Zomer van verraad" by James Patterson - review

My local library was selling "old" books for 50 cents and I picked up what according to the bookcover had been the "Summerhit of 2006. It was the Dutch translation of this novel "Zomer van verraad" (translated as "the summer of treason") what I think is a better title as the original as only the first pages are about the main character's job as a lifeguard.

Ned Kelly is working as a lifeguard after his career suffered from a scandal. Coming from a crime family he had managed to get himself a university degree but is now biding his time.

His cousin and some friends from Boston ask him to help them steal a couple of valuable paintings. The only thing he has to do is to make sure some burglar alarms across town go off and distract the police.

Around the time the heist is planned he meets a lovely girl on the beach who seems to be wealthy.  They dream of going away together.

But then things all turn to dust and with bodies everywhere he has to prove himself innocent and find out who was behind all this.

It is a typical Patterson. A good thrilling story and easy read. Sometimes you have to reread to see the clues. The chapters switch between Ned which are narrated in the first person and the others whch are narrated in the third person. This creates a closeness to Ned while you still can witness what the others are doing. That results in a gripping death scene.

The only fault I saw was that Ned is very enamoured with Tess but as easily turns his affections elsewhere. Ok he knew Tess only a few days but this seems a bit fast.

5 star thriller


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