Alex Cross is the lead character in the Alex Cross series of novels by novelist James Patterson. The first in the novel series is “Along Came A Spider” published in 1993. The series of books is in the mystery crime and thriller genres.
The Alex Cross series is a series of novels written by the prolific American author James Patterson. The genre of the series of novels is crime fiction, and they are based around the police detective Alex Cross, and his work in Washington DC. The series, for the most part, is written in the first-person, with Detective Cross telling his tale, although it is often interspersed with third-person narratives of the antagonist.
Order of Alex Cross Series
|1||Along Came a Spider||1992|
|2||Kiss the Girls||1995|
|3||Jack & Jill||1996|
|4||Cat and Mouse||1997|
|5||Pop Goes the Weasel||1999|
|6||Roses Are Red||2000|
|7||Violets Are Blue||2001|
|8||Four Blind Mice||2002|
|9||The Big Bad Wolf||2003|
|15||Alex Cross's Trial||2009|
|16||I, Alex Cross||2009|
|18||Kill Alex Cross||2011|
|19||Merry Christmas, Alex Cross||2012|
|20||Alex Cross, Run||2012|
|21||Cross My Heart||2013|
|22||Hope to Die||2014|
|24||Cross Kill (Short Story)||2016|
|25||Cross the Line||2016|
The Alex Cross series is also notable in that several antagonists make recurring appearances in the books, prolonging the story arc over many year. The two most notable antagonists that Alex Cross has had to face are The Mastermind and Gary Soneji. Gary Soneji first appears in Along Came A Spider, and features in a few more of Alex Cross’s stories over time. The Mastermind first appears in Roses Are Red organising a bank robbery, and becomes a mainstay of the series in various guises. If there was a true arch-nemesis to Alex Cross, then The Mastermind is it.
The first book to feature the character of Alex Cross is Along Came A Spider, which was first released in 1993, and made into a film starring Morgan Freeman in the lead role in 2001. It features the aforementioned Soneji and his abduction of several young women. Alex Cross has to work with the Secret Service before time runs out for the young women in captivity.
What is interesting is that although Along Came A Spider is the first book in the Alex Cross series, it is not the first film to be made featuring Cross. That privilege does to Kiss The Girls, the second book in the Alex Cross series. The film was released in 1997 and is the first time Morgan Freeman plays the role of Detective Cross. In the book, Cross must pit his wits against the Casanova, as well as a copycat killer elsewhere in the country. Kiss The Girls brings Cross’s family to the fore and shows how family-oriented he is while trying to balance the pressure of work.
The third film to be made featuring Alex Cross, simply titled Alex Cross, was based on the 12th book in the series, Cross. Morgan Freeman was switched out of the lead role and replaced by Tyler Perry. The book sees Alex Cross retiring from the FBI and going back to work for himself, when and old face makes an appearance who might just hold the clue to the question that has been haunting him all along: who killed his wife?
Alex Cross is an African-American psychologist and detective based in the South East area of Washington D.C. He is a highly rational and intelligent man who ascends from the homicide division to eventually attain the rank of Senior Agent with the FBI (Federal Bureau of Investigations). He quits the Bureau to focus on his private psychology practice but ultimately rejoins as Major Case Squad special consultant.
“Along Came A Spider,” the first book in the series tells the story of Alex Cross after rejoining the MPDC. Cross is at a birthday party with friends and family when he learns that the daughter of Blake, his late brother has been found dead in Virginia. Upon initial investigations, he establishes that Caroline was a high-end escort that lived only a few miles from him, yet never bothered to contact him. Upon further investigation, they find that Caroline is just one of many high-end prostitutes to have been murdered in a cover-up. Cross’s investigation is thwarted by bureaucrats in Washington including the president and the Secret Service who are protecting a man code-named Zeus.
What follows is an amazing story of intrigue and hair-raising investigations and murders that portray the exceptional story telling skills of Patterson that made him top Forbes top-earning fiction writer list for the third year running.
ALEX CROSS AWARDS:
The Alex Cross series particularly the first book has been the recipient of several awards. “Along Came A Spider,” the first novel of the series was awarded the International Thriller of the Year, the BCA Mystery Guild’s Thriller of the Year, and the Edgar Award.
ALEX CROSS BOOKS INTO MOVIES:
Two Alex Cross novels have been adapted into film with a reboot franchise and a fourth film in the works. Two novels “Kiss the Girls” and “Along Came a Spider” were released as loose adaptations of their Alex Cross storylines, with Morgan Freeman playing the role of protagonist. The “Kiss the Girls” adaptation changes nearly the whole plotline and only retains Casanova as the primary antagonist that kidnaps Alex’s niece.
BEST ALEX CROSS BOOKS:
While obviously the most beloved and popular of the Alex Cross series, “Along Came A Spider” has also received critical acclaim and been the recipient of several awards. The book is widely considered the best detective series ever written in the last twenty-five years. The series present a story full of intrigue and mystery following the murder of a family in the Washington DC Projects. It intersperses the smarts of Gary Soneji, the architect of the crime of the century against the wits of Alex Cross. Cross find himself having to juggle between a love affair with Jezzie Flanagan a Secret Service supervisor, and the machinations of a brilliant psychopath.
“Cross the Line” the 24th book in the Alex Cross series is one of the most critically acclaimed of Patterson’s books. After shots ring out in a Washington D.C suburb, the smoke clears to the sight of the body of a promise t police official lying dead on the street. Alex Cross is called in to investigate the mystery of a brutal crime wave in the area. As Cross pursues the perpetrators of the crimes, he finds that he must become judge, jury, and executioner, to prevent the city he is sworn to protect from descending into chaos.
Two other great Cross books are “Cat and Mouse” and “Pop Goes the Weasel”. In “Pop Goes the Weasel,” Alex Cross finds himself needing to work independently to find a brilliant killer who is almost impossible to track and is seemingly someone beyond suspicion or has a perfect cover. In “Cat and Mouse,” Alex is reunited with Gary Soneji the psychopath, who is determined to have Alex Cross witness him going down in a blaze of glory at the Union Station train terminal.
OTHER BOOK SERIES YOU MAY LIKE:
If you liked the Alex Cross Mysteries, you might like the “Lincoln Rhyme Mysteries” a series of novels by Jeffery Deaver. These are hard-edged, fast-paced suspense stories that provide details about criminal psychology and crime solving. Alex Cross fans may also enjoy the “Alex Delaware” series of novels written by Jonathan Kellerman. Both series of books have intelligent protagonist both of whom are criminal psychologists committed to solving disconcerting and gritty crimes, perpetrated by psychopathic villains.
Alex Cross F.A.Q.
Q: Who writes the Alex Cross series?
A: The Alex Cross series is written by James Patterson, who also writes the Michael Bennett and Women’s Murder Club series, amongst others.
Q: Who is the actor that played Alex Cross:
A: Alex Cross was first played on the big screen by Morgan Freeman in Kiss The Girls and Along Came A Spider. Since then, Tyler Perry has taken on the role of Alex Cross in the film Cross.
Q: What is the first book in the Alex Cross series?
A: The first book in the Alex Cross series is Along Came A Spider, followed by Kiss The Girls and Jack & Jill.