Plum Island  - Nelson DeMille John Corey is a NYPD homicide detective who was shot three times in the line of duty and is staying at his uncle's old Victorian on the North Shore of Long Island while he convalesces. While there, though, he becomes involved in the double murder of a couple that he has socialized with a few times.

Thus starts this thriller by Nelson DeMille. I have to say, I had to put more thought into this review than most because I both liked and didn't like this book.

Mostly what I didn't like was the main character, John Corey. Usually I love characters with a sarcastic bent, but I felt his sarcasm was a little too much. Instead of making him endearing, as in the case of a Harry Dresden for example, he just came off as an obnoxious asshole trying to annoy the people around him, regardless of who they were. Another of his character traits was supposed to be an ability to "think outside the box" and therefore solve crimes that others couldn't, but in reality it was just a ploy to be able to break the rules and not follow directions, again with the effect of annoying those around him. Then there was his constant demoralizing way of seeing every female as a sexual conquest, which only added to the annoyance. In truth, I think DeMille intended for this character to be annoying, but as a result I just couldn't quite connect with him. He needed some other redeeming characteristics, besides his tenacity when solving a problem.

As for his tenacity, while it was supposed to show loyalty and focus, it was hard to believe that anyone would be so emotionally invested in the deaths of people that were such casual acquaintances. Especially when that person is a long-time, hardboiled, NYPD homicide detective that has "seen it all". In fact, this guy tried so hard to piss people off, I had a really hard time believing he could care about anyone, much less a couple that he had just met, or a woman that he had slept with a couple of times.

So - what did I like about this book? I really liked the last half of the book when the story line became interesting and the pace picked up. Unfortunately, it took DeMille too long to get to this point. The whole first half of the book was spent building a story line that the author just dropped half-way through, and never finished. It was almost like he got halfway through the book and decided, "I don't like how this is going, I think I will switch gears." Unfortunately, the second story line was much more interesting.

In additon, DeMille can really turn a phrase when he wants to. Some of my favorite lines that I have read came from this book. Sometimes John Corey's sarcastic observations were right on the mark. I think one of my favorite lines that I have ever read came when John says, "It occurred to me that the problem with doing nothing is not knowing when you are finished." If the book had been filled with gems like that, I would have loved it. Or Emma's astute observation that, "A lot of our perception of history is influenced by inaccurate movies." These gems were too few and far between, though.

In conclusion, of the 511 pages of this book, I think 200 of them could have been deleted and the story would have been much more captivating. The book was just too long and annoying, but since there were things I really liked, I am giving it a 2.75