It is a straight-forward action adventure that would have made for a tight little 300-page thriller, and I can’t help but wonder if the super-sized story is a side product of having two authors ... That lack of tension is a problem, but the plot rattles along entertainingly enough and the introduction of a minor character - a Chinese spy playing both sides against each other - brings a few complications to a story that is otherwise just a little too straightforward ... Bizarrely, given Clinton’s input, there is precious little politics in the book - and what there is never really rises above the cliché of the Washington insider playing political games with life or death decisions in the White House ... Cynics would say Patterson has only taken on the former President to boost his sales, but given he can happily shift millions of books on his own I’m not sure he needs him. Maybe he should dump his running mate and get back to working solo?
... offers tantalizing clues into the unconscious of Clinton ... Written in the breathless present tense, with typical Pattersonian staccato exposition expressed in short paragraph bursts ... Let us stipulate that we are not reading this book to gain valuable insights into the inner workings of United States foreign policy. No, we are reading for as many references to military hardware as possible, a formidable alphanumeric arsenal ... The terrorists seem hired from central casting, as does Jiang Lijun, a Chinese spy whose job is to represent Bond-movie stereotypes about inscrutability and arrogance ... silly but highly entertaining.
... isn’t as accomplished as the 2018 bestseller from Bill Clinton and James Patterson, The President is Missing, but faithful Patterson fans should enjoy it ... The plot is all action, with a lot of coincidences and less-than-satisfying character development. Matt Keating is a cliche good guy, more believable as a Navy SEAL than a political animal who made it to the White House. Not much time is spent fleshing out Samantha Keating but Mel Keating is nicely developed, evolving from a prickly teen into a resourceful young woman who remembers and employs some of the things she learned from her father ... a tightly paced, sometimes brutal and rather routine thriller. The book is out on whether or not Patterson and Clinton will team up for a third novel and, if so, whether they will revisit either of their first two American presidents or create a new one.
Readers expecting a sequel, though, will discover that this new novel offers an entirely different cast of characters. The President Is Missing gave us President Jonathan Lincoln Duncan, a former Gulf War hero who battles a dastardly terrorist. But The President’s Daughter gives us President Matthew Keating, a former Navy SEAL hero who battles a dastardly terrorist. It’s a change as startling as the shift from tan to beige ... With this brave and monogamous hero, Clinton has once again revealed such a naked fantasy version of himself that you almost feel embarrassed for the man. And that’s pretty much where the revelations peter out. The publishers claim that Clinton has contributed information that could be provided only by a former president — or, I would add, by somebody who’s watched an episode of Homeland ... it would be unfair to say that there’s no suspense in The President’s Daughter. Again and again, I was on the edge of my seat, wondering, 'Can this story get any sillier?' In that respect, this is a novel that continually defies expectations — all presented in chapters so short you could read one during a yawn ... Drawing inspiration from America’s most advanced missiles, the text of The President’s Daughter is capable of hitting multiple stereotypes simultaneously ... Save yourself.
... disappointing ... The authors don’t sweat the details (when Melanie’s kidnapped, Keating and Samantha, who are in different places, don’t try to contact each other), and too many convenient coincidences propel the plot. Die-hard Patterson fans will best appreciate this one.
There’s scarcely a moment here that can’t be seen from afar: The bad guys sneer and stab, the good guys come riding in to save the day, the sitting president fumes at having been left out of the fun, and the authors throw in genre tropes like so many grenades ... Written by the numbers, but undemanding entertainment.