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Lunch » Tags » Books » Reviews » The Bishop (The Patrick Bowers Files, Book 4) » User review

James Has Once Again Set An Impossibly High Standard

  • Aug 2, 2010
The sinister `game' began with the brutal murder of a prominent Congressman's daughter. Two killers, both desperately wicked, who torment others in a game of conquest and power. They're smart and they know how to leave no evidence, but plenty of misdirection keeping the authorities off balance and unable to discern what clues point to their true intent. The puzzle pieces are many but few fit into place. Are Patrick and his colleagues overlooking the key or is the key what's not there? As the mystery deepens, a pattern begins to form--one that's familiar to Patrick, but it requires believing the impossible to be possible. In an absolutely amazing book, Steven James once again proves when it comes to serial killer novels, he is the master.

I loved The Knight. Those who know me are probably tired of hearing me say that, but it was the best book I read last year. It was amazing and I simply could not imagine James writing anything better. Well, believe it or not, he topped it. The Bishop is all I hoped for and more. Not only is the serial killer aspect amazing and virtually impossible to figure out, the themes are spectacular. This book has it all--an excellent blend of themes, story, characters, dialogue, and suspense. I loved it, from the first page to the last I could hardly set it down. James is a brilliant storyteller and once again set an impossibly high standard.

As with the previous books in the Patrick Bowers Series, the plot is incredibly well developed, protecting the multilayered mystery. Each book has been wonderfully researched and once again, James presented a story that was believable on all levels. Every angle of the story made sense and each plot point was presented with realism. The detail in his books has separated his work from other writers and has made him one of my favorite authors.

James included some amazing themes in this book, some almost as frightening as the killers themselves. Preemptive justice has been explored in prior books, but it's taken further in this one, and leaves the reader with something huge to contemplate. Additionally, The Bishop explored questions of what separates humans from animals and the struggle with the evil inside. Every bit as good as the main story is the dialogue and subplots that explored these themes. It'd be nice if the scenarios that James proposed were simple fiction, but the truth that runs through them is real and the natural conclusions unsettling.

It was nice to spend some more time with Tessa as she reconnected with her biological father. Throughout this series, James has done a brilliant job of developing this story line and I was once again impressed with how he handled this portion. Even in this part of the story, there were plenty of surprises. This has been a great part of the Patrick Bowers Series and I look forward to seeing how future books develop it.

At only 520 pages, The Bishop was too short. Okay, maybe not too short, but I was not ready for it to end. I love this series and am once again in awe of James' amazing talents. I'm grateful for the time and effort he puts into these books to make them the incredible masterpieces they are. It's a privilege to read them and I can't wait for The Queen. It can't get here soon enough.

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More The Bishop (The Patrick Bowers... reviews
review by . August 05, 2010
I am a HUGE Steven James fan. When I picked up his first book, THE PAWN, I could not put it down. It was literally one of the best suspense/thriller books I have ever read in my life. Seriously, he knows how to write and grab a reader. This may be due to him having a master's degree in storytelling (something all writers would definitely benefit from) and how he knows the craft of keeping a reader's attention.    This book is a huge psychological ride. If you have read the other …
review by . August 02, 2010
"The Bishop" is a fast-paced forensic/detective suspense novel. This is the fourth book in the series. Though you can follow what's going on without reading the others first, you'll probably understand it better if you start with the first novel, "The Pawn." Also, reading this novel spoils the "who-done-it" mystery in several previous novels, so you'll want to read the others first if you plan to at all.      The novel had a somewhat …
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Melissa Willis ()
Ranked #209
A little bit about me. I read primarily Christian fiction. My favorites are suspense, with supernatural elements always being a plus. I most enjoy books that will keep me thinking well after I'm done … more
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About this book


James, critically acclaimed author of the series the Bowers Files, sends new chills down the spine in his newest suspense thriller, told from various points of view and centering on FBI Special Agent Patrick Bowers's criminology and geospatial tracking of serial killers. When a prominent congressman's daughter is murdered, seemingly unconnected crimes become evidence of a heinous game played by two people who have the same things coursing through their veins as their victims and the cops trying to catch them: love and hate. James packs the narrative with ethical dilemmas and subplots involving abortion and medical research ("It would have saved us all a lot of trouble if your mother had just gone ahead with the abortion"). The novel moves swiftly, with punchy dialogue but gruesome scenes. Readers must be ready to stomach the darkest side of humanity and get into the minds of serial killers to enjoy this master storyteller at the peak of his game.
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ISBN-10: 0800733029
ISBN-13: 978-0800733025
Author: Steven James
Genre: Mystery & Thrillers
Publisher: Revell
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