The Midnight Club – James Patterson

The Midnight Club by James Patterson
Also by this author: 1st to Die, 2nd Chance, 3rd Degree, The Horsewoman, 4th of July, The 5th Horseman, The 6th Target, 7th Heaven, The 8th Confession, The 9th Judgment
Published by Warner Books on January 28, 1989
Genres: Fiction, Suspense, Thriller
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From the bestselling author of Along Came a Spider and Cat and Mouse, a mesmerising tale of non-stop action and suspense. Already a bestseller in paperback -- now reissued in striking new cover style. Nobody knows the underbelly of the city like New York cop John Stefanovitch. He's out to get Alexandre St-Germain, the most powerful member of the Midnight Club -- a secret international society of ruthless crime czars, all of whom are 'respectable' businessmen. And Stef's the ideal man for the job -- until he's levelled by a blast from St-Germain's shotgun and left for dead. Now, Stef is back, wheelchair-bound, yet sworn to destroy St-Germain. With the help of a beautiful journalist and a Harlem cop, Stef is determined to crack the Midnight Club. And he's up against odds that are as unknown as they are deadly!

From 1981-1993, James Patterson published only two novels. For those familiar only with his current prodigious output, that seems impossible to believe. What did Patterson do during those eleven years? He found his voice as an author. While his pre-1980 novels don’t really sound like Patterson at all and never quite feel like the author enjoyed writing what he wrote or felt at home in it, both Black Friday and The Midnight Club feel like James Patterson books. They’re not great novels, but you begin to see Patterson develop his own style and voice, leading to his breakout 1993 hit Along Came a Spider.

The Midnight Club is about John Stefanovitch, a New York cop whose pursuit of a member of the Midnight Club—a secret international society crime lords who have fronts as powerful legitimate businessmen—leaves him in a wheelchair. Stef must figure out how to navigate his new life with a disability, how that affects his role as a cop, and seek vengeance on the guy who shot him. It’s over the top melodramatic at points, wafting between crime thriller and soap opera. Its sensationalized escapist fiction, what Patterson has come to excel at. And while it’s only an average offering, it gives readers a sense of what was to come in Patterson’s career.