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Publisher's Summary

Detective Billy Harney’s reputation as a dirty cop may be the only thing keeping Chicago clean in James Patterson’s most critically acclaimed thriller since The Black Book.

For Detective Billy Harney, getting shot in the head, stalked by a state’s attorney, and accused of murder by his fellow cops is a normal week on the job. So when a drive-by shooting on the Chicago's west side turns political, he leads the way to a quick solve. But Harney's instincts - his father was once chief of detectives and his twin sister, Patti, is also on the force - run deep. As a population hungry for justice threatens to riot, he realizes that the three known victims are hardly the only casualties. When Harney starts asking questions about who's to blame, the easy answers prove to be the wrong ones. On the flip side, the less he seems to know, the longer he can keep his clandestine investigation going ... until Harney's quest to expose the evil that's rotting the city from the inside out takes him to the one place he vowed never to return: his own troubled past.

"Crisply written...a fine thriller." (Booklist)  

©2021 James Patterson and David Ellis (P)2021 Little, Brown & Company

Featured Article: The Best James Patterson Audiobooks and Series According to Fans


James Patterson is one of the most prolific contemporary American writers working today—from children's and YA books to thrillers, mysteries, and even romance, it's hard to keep up with such a massive number of best sellers. Whether you’re just discovering James Patterson or you’re an avid, longtime fan of his wide-ranging work, you can't go wrong with any of these excellent listens. Here are a few different entry points into his impressive catalog.

What listeners say about The Red Book

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  • Overall
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    4 out of 5 stars

There’s always a book, a dirty cop & some stand-up

That’s not a bad thing though; it gives me confidence these cop procedurals will be consistently solid. And this was a solid listen, starting off with a standard gang homicide, but then devolving into a larger mystery and expanding the tangled politics of the Chicago cop, crime, and court systems.

There are several recurring themes from book 1: poor Billy can’t get a break and is pulled into yet another mystery with links to his past, the sordid business of drugs, prostitution and violence (trigger warning should be obvious at this point, but this book cuts deeper than the previous ones), and of course, there’s a dirty cop and another book. No worries, these aren’t spoilers; you’ll know who the dirty cop is within the first hour or so.

I do like how the dark is balanced with cop humor, the trash talking banter of the Harney cop family, and especially Billy Harney’s ba-dum-bump one liners and bad jokes that endear him to his fellow cops. Sadly missing is the humor connected to techie Edgar, who I was hoping would become a series regular. I am enjoying getting to know Billy, who reminds me of cop brother Frankie from Rizzoli & Isles. Also, narrator Ballerini’s accents are on full display as Chicahgo chawm is joined by Ukrainian smarm. Eventually, I bet these books could be heard in any order. But, I recommend you listen to book 1 first because this one not only picks up a few months after, but it tells you the whodunnits from book 1’s mystery. In fact, start with the currently free, scripted novella The Coldest Case, then book 1 Black Book, then dive in and enjoy this one.

21 people found this helpful

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Maybe a 4.25 or 4.5 star, but definitely the best James Patterson books I have read in a while.

It took me a little bit to get into it, but it actually turned into the best JP book I’ve read in awhile. Not high brow literature, but an entertaining read with interesting and compelling characters. I liked it!

7 people found this helpful

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You had me at Edoardo Ballerini!!

I am really loving this series. I especially love that it's narrated by Edoardo Ballerini!
He's one of my favorites!
This series is really good and I am looking forward to future books!
Highly recommended!
Start with The Coldest Case #0.5
And then The Black Book#1

7 people found this helpful

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Great Twist

Just love the character Billy Harney keeps you guessing until the end. Patty Harney is another great character you want to hate her but she’s so loyal to Billy you just can’t.

5 people found this helpful

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great

loved it James Patterson is my favorite author he keeps me guessing until the end

5 people found this helpful

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james Patterson is a favorite.

i enjoyed the story very much. i enjoy the twists and turns and character's relationships.

4 people found this helpful

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Another one in the series.

So, what happens to Billy next? that is what this book explores and it also ties up loose ends from the first book "little black book". I can't wait for the third in the series. these books move very fast and there is a lot to take in.

But the performance is what has me hooked. The voice talent is what really makes this a great audiobook.

3 people found this helpful

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Poor Billy. Can't catch a break.

New partner's a spy of some sort, finding Ukrainian KGB types might have killed his wife. What else can go wrong? Another excellent narration by what's-his-name.

3 people found this helpful

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Loved it!

Loved it it was entertaining. . The narrating was perfect to me. However the Black Book is still my favorite.

2 people found this helpful

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Everything you would expect and more!

Really enjoyed this book. I couldn’t get enough of it, actually. You enjoyed the Black Book, then this one is a must. Very different plot, but the character development helps understand their actions and thoughts better. Would highly recommend to James Patterson fans. The narrator was also excellent, probably one of the best I’ve listened to.

2 people found this helpful