Summary and book reviews of Four Blind Mice by James Patterson

Four Blind Mice

An Alex Cross Thriller

by James Patterson

Four Blind Mice
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  • First Published:
    Nov 2002, 400 pages
    Oct 2003, 416 pages

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Book Summary

Alex Cross returns in the most harrowing case of his career—one that risks the life of his closest friend and partner, John Sampson.

Detective Alex Cross is on his way to resign from the Washington, D.C., Police Force when his partner shows up at his door with a case he can't refuse. One of John Sampson's oldest friends, from their days together in Vietnam, has been arrested for murder. Worse yet, he is subject to the iron hand of the United States Army. The evidence against him is strong enough to send him to the gas chamber.

Sampson is certain his friend has been framed, and Alex's investigation turns up evidence overlooked-or concealed-by the military authorities. Drawing on their years of street training and an almost telepathic mutual trust, Cross and Sampson go deep behind military lines to confront the most terrifying-and deadly-killers they have ever encountered. Behind these three highly skilled killing machines there appears to be an even more threatening controller. Discovering the identity of this lethal genius will prove to be Cross's most terrifying challenge ever.

On his visits home, Alex must confront another, more harrowing mystery: what's the matter with Nana Mama? As he explores the possibility of a new relationship with a woman who offers him new hope, Alex must also confront the fact that his beloved grandmother is only human.

The return of Alex Cross in Four Blind Mice also marks James Patterson's arrival at dazzling new heights of mind-bending suspense, explosive action, and lightning-fast plot twists. It is sure to be acclaimed as the best novel yet from the author the Associated Press says "writes thrillers as if he were building roller coasters."

Part One

THE DISTRICT ATTORNEY for Cumberland County, North Carolina, Marc Sherman, pushed the old wooden captain's chair away from the prosecution table, and it made a harsh, scraping eeek in the nearly silent courtroom. Then Sherman rose and slowly approached the jury box, where nine women and three men — six white, six African American — waited with anticipation to hear what he had to say. They liked Sherman. He knew that, even expected it. He also knew that he had already won this dramatic murder case, even without the stirring summation he was about to give.

But he was going to give this closing anyway. He felt the need to see Sergeant Ellis Cooper held accountable for his crimes. The soldier had committed the most heinous and cowardly murders in the history of Cumberland County, North Carolina. The so-called Bluelady Murders. The people in this county expected Sherman to punish Ellis Cooper, who happened to be a black man, and he ...

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Media Reviews

Kirkus Reviews

Short chapters, paragraphs, and sentences; stilted dialogue; facile plotting; a few feeble passes at description; a Patterson blue-plate special.

Library Journal - Jeff Ayers

This time around, Patterson's story is more personal than plot-driven, and there are a lot fewer plot twists than one usually finds in a Patterson novel. Still, Four Blind Mice is a vast improvement over the previous two Alex Cross thrillers (Roses Are Red, Violets Are Blue), which were both poorly written and unnecessarily gruesome, with a number of unrealistic passages.

Publishers Weekly

With Patterson continuing to move in unexpected directions (his next novel, The Jester, due out in March 2003, is a medieval adventure), it's a pleasure to see him touch home base with another Alex Cross thriller - this one the best Cross yet....Everything clicks in this novel, from Patterson's patented short chapters to the whiplash plotting. This may not be high lit, but it sure is entertainment.

Booklist - Kristine Huntley

Patterson delivers another exciting thriller, with some intriguing new developments for Cross.

Reader Reviews


The book was very interesting and has amazing plot twists. I could not put the book down and ended up reading it in a day. That's alot from someone who is 15!


This novel was very excellent!!! If you haven't read this book, it's time to start!! :)


the book was thrilling and i loved it i read the book within one week and i could not put it down the suspence of who the fourth of the mice was killing me but i loved it and for me being a teenager that is quite unusual but if all of James ...   Read More

The Press

Four Blind Mice
Patterson delivers another exciting thriller, with an intriguing new plot lines. Four Blind Mice well deserved the no. 1 international best seller title. Patterson has made a fantastic job.

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