I’ve read all the Women’s Murder Club books by James Patterson and Maxine Paetro, so of course I had to get 10th Anniversary as soon as it came out. Actually, I bought it for my mom for Mother’s Day, because she loves them too, then I borrowed it when she was done.One of my favorite aspects of the Women’s Murder Club books is how easy they are to read in a single night. The chapters are short (which I know is a turn-off to some people, but I like it), the dialogue is quick, and the descriptions aren’t over-whelming.

Although it’s the 10th installment in the series, this book more than any of the others seemed to be about new life and new beginnings. Detective Lindsay Boxer starts a new segment of her life as a married woman, assistant DA Yuki starts a new relationship that causes tension between she and Lindsay, and the sweet girl reporter Cindy begins making plans for her romantic future. Unfortunately, Claire, the sassy, no-nonsense medical examiner, barely plays a role in 10th Anniversary, so I can’t say much about her character development.

As is typical with the Women’s Murder Club series, this book had several different story lines going at the same time. Lindsay’s arc involved a teenage girl that turned up bloody on the streets after giving birth. The baby is missing, the girl claims to have no memory beyond seeing her baby boy for a split second, and Lindsay becomes borderline obsessed with finding the missing infant. Yuki, as usual, is trying a tough case and hoping for a win, especially since she has so few under her belt since leaving criminal law and switching sides. But her case isn’t all it seems, and Lindsay gets dragged into it by the defense, which of course causes friction between the two  friends. In a completely separate arc, Cindy is worried about her job at the crime desk and needs a major story. She stumbles onto a case of women being drugged, sexually assaulted, and left back on their doorstep with no memory of the crime.

As much as I enjoyed this book for what it is- pure escapist fiction- this time the multiple story lines didn’t quite work as well as they usually do. There was no symmetry, no confluence. The four friends barely met up or collaborated like they usually do. Sure, Lindsay met with Claire, Yuki, and Cindy throughout the story, but the four rarely came together as the group that made them the Women’s Murder Club in the first place. I’ll read the next one, just because I really want to know what happens next, but I have to admit, I was slightly disappointed in this installment. I hope they get back to their roots and have the women and the multiple story arcs come together in a more cohesive fashion in the 11th book.

 

 
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