Posted on 06/04/2018 at 09:49 AM by Sadye Scott-Hainchek

Former President Bill Clinton’s debut novel, co-written by James Patterson, seems to be meeting reviewers’ middling expectations.

Ron Charles of The Washington Post describes the political thriller as an “awkward duet,” noting the parallels between The President Is Missing’s titular character and Clinton himself (as well as their differences):

The President Is Missing reveals as many secrets about the U.S. government as The Pink Panther reveals about the French government. And yet it provides plenty of insight on the former president’s ego.


USA TODAY was a bit kinder, though reviewer Jocelyn McClurg found it a bit too long, particularly when it digressed into policy-wonk lectures.

The novel is fascinating in its own weird way, and patient thriller fans who like their assassins creepily sexy (yes, there’s a female assassin), their plots thick with duplicity and their time-ticking countdown stakes high are likely to find this a diverting-enough beach read.

And across the pond, The Telegraph’s Ed Power calls it “more Jack Bauer than John Le Carré.”

He cautions that if you're seeking an insider’s take on Washington, head elsewhere — but for a can’t-put-it-down beach read, look no further than The President Is Missing.

It’s full-proof hooey – by turns silly and overwrought. But Patterson, whose signatures include two-page chapters and rat-tat-tat dialogue, has perfected the art of the irresistible read and, in the end, the addictive qualities are undeniable. 

As of Monday morning, The President Is Missing was an Amazon bestseller in international mystery/crime, and it averaged 3.4 stars out of 5 on Goodreads. Patterson and Clinton discuss their collaboration here.

Click the image to purchase it on Amazon.


Book Cover