Review: Zoo by James Patterson – Pluses Minuses & the Cost of Reading

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Review: Zoo by James Patterson –

Pluses Minuses & the Cost of Reading


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Review Image Icon : Original photo by Felipe Adan Lerma

Photo, Lake Champlain, Off the Burlington Vermont Waterfront.


Original fiction, photo-memoirs, and poetry by Felipe Adan Lerma

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“the intent of this blog is to incrementally build a body of thought that works toward integrating various topics, yoga, fitness, and the arts – it’s a process…”


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Review: Zoo by James Patterson –

Pluses Minuses & the Cost of Reading


Categories : Book Reviews


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Nearly a month ago, I posted a rare book review on Amazon, for James Patterson’s book Zoo. Shortly after, a huge flare-up in the continuing Amazon-Hachette negotiations blew up, with authors and readers and who knows who else taking sides.

I had been intending to post my review on my site, but decided not to til now. Things have cooled, I think 🙂

For the record, as per my review, I definitely feel lower ebook prices are what “I” act on.

But/and/plus/additionally (smiles) I also believe the actual agreement on pricing between these two companies is, exactly that, between those two companies. I don’t think either entity should be allowed to or enabled to force the other to do anything. It must be an agreement between the two.

If I don’t like that agreement, I’ll do business elsewhere.

That’s part of the point of my review.

Beyond that, there is my own experience reading Patterson’s Zoo.

It has been very influential in releasing preferences for my own fiction work, and I’ve listed some posts in regard to that above. Only Matthew Iden’s opening scene in, The Spike, has held its impact in my mind as the first preview chapters of Zoo have, from two years ago. That’s pretty good in my book.


The Review

I purchased this at Half Price Books with a 50% off coupon last week because nearly two years to the date, I read the free sample chapters and was hooked. But hardback and ebook prices were more than I was (and am) willing to pay. Browsing through the store (my wife had already gotten a book for the grandson) I happened past the book among a slew from the author. Immediately I remembered the tension and remarkable clarity of suspense when I had read the sample nearly two years before.

I believe (and yes this might show how little I’ve read todate of thrillers) only Matthew Iden’s opening scene in The Spike has stayed as clearly with me. I had to wait for that one to come also, but thankfully a decently priced ebook was available.

The reasons I give this 4 and not 5 stars are enough that, if the drive of the story was not so strong, this would have been a 3 star.

But the story is that good.

On a minor but occasionally jarring level, some of the similes just didn’t make sense, or clearly didn’t fit the mood or tone of the chapter (and I do love those short chapters).

The rest of this review has some spoiler material.

A bit more bothersome was the repetitiveness of the animal attacks dispersed through-out the length of the book. Not that they didn’t fit as tension builders or the ending of the book, but that they seemed to simply be there to show another exotic locale. Another kind of animal. But felt like there was no heart in the chapter.

Complicating these same chapters (but not all the animal attack-kill scenes) was the easy question, if the world was finally hearing of these attacks, wouldn’t the characters that were killed (policeman, hunters, etc) have (1) been more prepared and (2) had a cell phone to call for help.

And when a mitigating tactic via smoke, or any other air dispersement) was discovered, why weren’t the military and police (especially) and regular folk, not outfitting themselves with smoke bombs, etc?

And at the end, with seemed totally believable to me just watching human behavior right now, why wasn’t the initial corrective measures simply quickly forcibly reinstated? With smoke and air dispersement equipment already in place, in case the experiment had failed?

That said, the parts that worked, with were most, and the thrust of the story, and the similes that worked, were all so extremely powerful and well done, they literally dragged all the above problems, and myself, straight through to the end. I liked it. I really really liked the book.

It was my first from the author, and definitely won’t be my last. But only at a good price. (smiles)


First Impact on my Fiction : Lunch with Grandma and Grandpa :

Story Sample plus Links : Lunch with Grandma and Grandpa – Family Short Story

I’m Experimenting Again : Lunch with Grandma and Grandpa – Short Chapter Shifts


Current Impact on my Fiction, new Novella, “One Night in the Hill Country”

Click to enlarge.
Click to enlarge.

Pre-orders on Amazon (other outlets to follow) :

10% story content sample :


namaste´- con dios – god be with you


Sheila & Adan
Sheila & Adan


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