Run for Your Life (Michael Bennett)

by James Patterson

Hardcover, 2009



A calculating killer who calls himself The Teacher is taking on New York City, killing the powerful and the arrogant. Discovering a secret pattern to The Teacher's lessons, Detective Mike Bennett realizes he has just hours to save New York from the greatest disaster in history.


(375 ratings; 3.7)

User reviews

LibraryThing member pattiea
This was a fast-paced story, but required such a leap of faith to gloss over the gaping plot holes and implausibility, that it really detracted from the book for me. If you liked the last several James Patterson novels, you'll enjoy this book more than I did; on the other hand, if his writing seems to sacrifice common sense for thrills and overblown language and poorly-developed characters, you'll wish he'd spent more time crafting this one instead of spewing it out.… (more)
LibraryThing member julyso
There is a new killer in town and he calls himself THE TEACHER. Detective Michael Bennett is on the case and not only is he dealing with a killer, but he is grieving his recently deceased wife, and trying to take care of their ten sick (flu)children. The murders, at first, seem to be random. Mike soon figures out that there is a reason why these people were savagely murdered. Now he just has to find the killer...

This is classic James Patterson; quick, suspenseful, and lots of twists and turns. I love Mike Bennett-I look forward to reading more books with him in them. He is an all-around great guy trying to do his job and take care of his family. The ending was unexpected, but worth the read.
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LibraryThing member KellyBlackwell
There really is nothing like an audiobook for me. I have a few favorite authors who I not only like to read their work, but I also enjoy listening to it. Listening to an audiobook is probably the closest I'll get to having my mom read to me like when I was a little girl. Of course, mom never read the books I enjoy now.

Run For Your Life introduces the reader/listener to Detective Michael Bennet who is really the go-to and never-miss guy. He is a problem solver, and it is a good thing, because there is a huge problem coming to New York and this problem has a mission statement that he intends to follow to the letter. His name is The Teacher.

Taking on the task of saving the city from this villian is not going to be an easy task for Mike. If there is a man for the job, Mike is definitely that man. With a home full of chhildren (10 to be exact) and most of them sick...this widowed police detective has his hands full inside and outside the home.

I enjoyed the readers of this book. I am often a little nervous before I start on a new audiobook because I am afraid that I am not going to enjoy the reader. A good reader can pull you into the world the author created, a bad reader can't pull you in with a chain and a tank. Dallas Roberts and Bobby Cannavale do a great job. Dallas immediately captured the personality of The Teacher. He had me from his first word. He really used his voice to portray exactly what I saw in my mind's eye while listening to Run For Your Life. Cannavale did a nice job as well though it did take me a bit longer to get comfortable with the character voice.

I have come to count on most of James Patterson's work. Nothing will beat the Cross books for me, but Bennet is a good character and I am looking forward to seeing what develops. Listening to Run For Your Life was a great escape from my sick bed experience fo the past two weeks.

If you enjoy a good bad guy just as much as a good hero, I really think you will like Run For Your Life. If you enjoy listening to audiobooks, I highly recommend that you pick this one up. You will be entertained.
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LibraryThing member princesspeaches
More of the same from Patterson. Nothing too fantastic, but pleasing for fans of the genre.
LibraryThing member barras31063
Another great novel by James Patterson, fast read with lots of twist and turns.
LibraryThing member Kanellio
The partnership of James Patterson and Michael Ledwidge once again proves to be an enormous success as they bring back the popular character Michael Bennett, last seen in STEP ON A CRACK, in their new novel RUN FOR YOUR LIFE. Detective Bennett, works for the NYPD, and when we first met him, this devoted husband was agonizing over his wife’s losing battle with cancer while keeping together their family of 10 adopted children. Being a good husband and father, however, doesn’t keep him from also being a top notch detective.In RUN FOR YOUR LIFE, we find Michael Bennett facing two immediate problems-one with work and one with his family. As a well known, successful negotiator, Bennett tries to thwart a hostage negotiation only to have the criminal get shot and all of Michael’s hard work is for nothing. The press is all over Michael and the case, and the resulting mound of paperwork is something Michael thinks he will never dig himself out of, so he heads home for a few hours of rest. Once there, however, he finds his second battle to fight which is against a flu outbreak that has struck his home and the children. Even with an energetic Irish nanny and a brash, but loving and protective priest of a father to help, things at home further exhaust Bennett. The battle against this flu epidemic in his own home persists throughout much of the story in direct competition with a baffling case Detective Bennett is put in charge of.No rest for the weary, as they say, because first thing in the morning, Michael’s superior calls him to handle the biggest, most important case in the city. Does Detective Bennett take on this case while he feels so low from his recent failure with the hostage situation and the potent flu bug running wild at his home? Of course he does, after all, this is a Patterson-Ledwidge thriller!Given a top team of officers to assist him, Bennett takes on the case of a killer that is terrorizing the city. This case is top priority as the arrogant psychopath, who calls himself “Teacher” has decided to make New York high society and top brass his target. He wants them punished for their rude behavior and patronizing attitudes. The Teacher wants these big wigs to learn their manners all because of issues that stem from his childhood, family, and how he feels he was treated unjustly.Starting off with a case that is cold as ice, Michael searches through whatever clues he can find and finally comes up with a code to help him solve this puzzle. As he works through this, and the city’s privileged continue to be terrorized, Michael gets closer to the Teacher and solving the mystery when suddenly a typical Patterson twist in the story comes along unexpectedly. Michael finds that he and his family are now in danger and he must be at the top of his game to outwit this mastermind!With the typical short chapters that keep the reading wanting more, Ledwidge and Patterson have a hit on their hands. There are so many similarities to Michael Bennett and everyone’s favorite Alex Cross---widowed fathers and lawmen who are experts in their fields, that one wonders if perhaps Michael Bennett will be the next huge hit series of James Patterson and one of his favorite writing partners, Michael Ledwidge! Stay tuned fans!… (more)
LibraryThing member skinglist
A good read. Light, just like all of Patterson's, but nice to re-meet Mike Bennett and his family - including Seamus and Mary Catherine. Typical of Patterson, we had the twist as well as the seemingly hero meet his maker - but like Cross, this is a series and our hero must live on. Like the side story of the flu to keep Bennet human.… (more)
LibraryThing member Jthierer
A typical James Patterson entry; entertaining for a few hours but instantly forgettable. Protagonist Mike Bennett has an interesting family life, but he's too flat of a character to make the reader invest much emotion in his fate. The antagonist is standard issue "crazy."
LibraryThing member RelaxedReader
I have had this book on my shelf for a long time just waiting for me to sit down and enjoy. I love most of James Patterson's books and this book did not disappoint me at all. I kept turning pages and read this book in one day.
LibraryThing member VickiLN
I haven't read a James Patterson book in so many years that I can't even remember the ones I've read, so I was excited to read this. There is a little bit of everything in this book. Romance, mystery and suspense. One of the things I thought was a little over the top was that Mike Bennett had 10 children. Not only is it out of character for detectives to have a child, but this one has 10!!. I liked that the author(s) put so many twists and turns in the book. I don't know that I could say I loved this book, but I did like it. My favorite thing about the book was the very short chapters. I hate putting a book down mid chapter and with this one you didn't have to. You can read the chapters in about 30 seconds, so makes it easier to put down when the phone rings, the oven timer goes off etc. After reading this, I know it won't be as long before I read another James Patterson book.… (more)
LibraryThing member SonicQuack
Patterson distances his new character Bennett from his famous Alex Cross by every means possible. Whilst he is careful to create a likeable officer, with family responsibilities, he isn't the straight arrow Cross was initially, Bennett is angry and not at peace with himself. Whilst the character development may consume a third of the Run for Your Life, its main thrust comes from the frenetic antics of serial killer, The Teacher. As usual with Patterson the action is relentless, the pace quick-fire and it presents a few twists for good measure too. Although the biggest twist is similar to a previous Patterson novel, its still enjoyable from start to finish. And what a finish - it'll stretch your disbelief, but you won't see it coming.… (more)
LibraryThing member kariannalysis
I won this book from Vicki over at Reading at the Beach.I have only read one other Patterson book, and it was one of my favorites this year (The Quickie). After I read that, I saw this was up for grabs and signed up.

This book is about homicide detective Mike Bennett. He’s the single father of 10 adopted kids. The book starts with a standoff that doesn’t end very pretty, but that’s the least of Mike’s worries. Just when he takes a personal day to take care of his gaggle of sick kids, there’s a major crisis. A madman is on the loose, killing two people a day. But these aren’t random murders, not all of them. He has this planned out. The murderer, self proclaimed as The Teacher, has a checklist. Now Mike is in charge of catching this guy before he gets too far down the list.

I really liked this book. One of the things that is a shoo- in for a good review is if I can picture it being a movie. And this one I definitely could. I have become a big fan of Patterson’s books, after only reading two. Even though they are 400+ pages, I always get through them in a couple of days. They’re page turners and always have so many twists.

With 100 pages left in this book, I was SURE that I had figured this book out. I was wrong! I hate when that happens

One thing I liked about this book was that while it was very action packed and dramatic, it also had kids. I am a sucker for kids in movies and books. And these kids were hilarious. They may not be hilarious if I had to babysit them, but to read about them and their sick antics made me laugh.

The only thing I didn’t like about this, and it’s not the book’s fault, but I didn’t realize until after I had started this book and already got sucked in that it was part of a series, and this was the second one. I love reading a series, but this is the second time I have started the second book first and it drives me nuts. But, it was written in a way that I didn’t need to read the first book to know what was going on. Much like the Evanovich books, I didn’t feel like I was missing anything. So, I guess that’s something else in the plus category.

I give Run for Your Life 4 bookmarks and can’t wait to get the first one and for the 3rd one to come out.
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LibraryThing member joecflee
I'm a big James Patterson fan, and every one of his books has delivered on the promise of being a great page turner. This one delivered on that promise, although the formula is becoming somewhat stale.
We have a crazy running around New York killing the elite and the rich, and an officer with his own life problems pursuing the killer. There's the usual finding the suspect which turned out to be the wrong guy, the cop's family being in harm's way, etc.
But it's still James Patterson, and a quick read.
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LibraryThing member scoutlee
When I read Step on a Crack, the first novel featuring Michael Bennett, I did not know it was the start of a new series. Michael Bennett is a character that is easy to like. He’s a dedicated police detective, but sometimes fantasizes about a career change. He’s determined to make the streets of NYC safe. At the end of the day, Detective Bennett wants to be a great dad to his ten children. Having just lost his wife to cancer, Mike tries to pick up the pieces and move on while dealing with his grief. He stumbles and sometimes makes mistakes, but his family is his first priority.

While taking care of his sick children, he’s also dealing with a serial killer: the Teacher. At first the string of murderers appear to be random, but soon Mike learns the victims were targeted. The question is why? As Mike races to find the answer to this question, little does he realize the Teacher just added a new name to his list.

True to Mr. Patterson’s style, Run for Your Life is packed with suspense and twists and turns. The chapters are short, so it’s easy to find yourself reading 50 pages before you know it.
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LibraryThing member BethMC90
Overall the novel was good. It was a quick read for me and I had absolutely no trouble getting through it. Was it a book I could not put down? No, I could probably have put it down for hours and come back to it. The novel wasn’t special. I expected more from the novel because I enjoyed the first book in the series a great deal, Step on a Crack. The characters were not developed enough, thus making the side story about his family extremely uninteresting. I ended up liking the serial killer more that the main character, Michael Bennett. The “twist” was unoriginal as well. I figured it out way before the main character did, which I believe I was supposed to, but I didn’t find it as a shocker. The ending was completely and utterly cliché as well. It was a James Bond ending, unrealistic.

I believe if Patterson and Ledwidge spent more time writing the novel it would have come out really great, better than just plain old good. I am going to read the next Bennett book “Worst Case”, because I feel like giving Patterson and Ledwidge a second chance, but now I am not expected much.
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LibraryThing member MrsHillReads
I think I am a shallow reader, because I enjoyed this book. I liked the short chapters (I'll just read one more and then I will get some work done). The home situation was funny and a comic relief to the thinking of The Teacher. The contrast between the detective and the killer was interesting. It was a good, quick read...a vacation for the mind. Did I figure it out before the ending? no, but I was happy to let the detective do the work for me.… (more)
LibraryThing member bribre01
A quick but very good read, probably one of the best James Patterson's I have read. I really like the characters in the Michael Bennett series, and this one actually kept me guessing. Will read more in this series.
LibraryThing member jaypee
Love it! The villain was insane, the hero was great, the supporting characters were memorable. I think this is one of James Patterson's better books. I'm glad he still has it. I thought he was losing his touch after reading a few of his later works. The Michael Bennett series might also be my new fave series after Alex Cross'.… (more)
LibraryThing member loosha
Come on....a widower detective with ten adopted children under 15! Most of them vomitting with 'flu, but hey, there's a killer on the loose and Mike is the only manly man enough to deal with it. Entertaining suspenseful read, but reality is totally suspended.
LibraryThing member terk71
Nothing seems to endear a protagonist to readers more than having a hero with clay feet, or at least a character who has domestic problems added to a strenuous professional life. Nothing can add humor and complexity to an on-duty policeman than having to grapple with mundane household problems with his children—all thirteen of them.

New York detective, Michael Bennett, is placed in charge of the investigation of high-end serial murders targeted by a well-endowed assassin who calls himself The Teacher. Pursuing leads involving widely-disbursed crimes is exhausting enough for any cop, but widower Bennett continually battles a newspaper snoop; his grizzled priest-father, the monsignor next door; and a home full of his flu-stricken, adopted orphans.

The well-planned murders of victims in such places as Ralph Lauren’s Polo haberdashery, the 21 Club, or the Platinum Star Hotel are as vividly detailed as The Teacher’s wardrobe is described in his off-beat process in fulfilling his manifesto against rich snobs. Name brands and exotic labels rifle through these pages as the killer arms himself with a catalog of high-tech instruments.

There are two matters that would have been satisfying to resolve in this story, but they remain undisclosed. What does happen to the poor-box thief that Father Seamus Bennett nabs? And, what becomes of the long-suffering, efficient Irish au pair, Mary Catherine, who helps Bennett so consistently and diligently since his wife, Maeve, died a year previously?

Despite the loss of these two subplot elements, the touching home-bound scenes of near-crisis epidemic resound with such touching, everyday charm that humanize Bennett—very humorous—that readers can ignore the nearly improbable heroics that draw the story’s conclusion.

This is one of the better novels from the Patterson group involving a realistic human detective confounded by everyday family problems with which most readers will be acquainted. Kudos for kiddos.
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LibraryThing member MonicaLynn
Detective Michael Bennett while dealing with a brood of 10 at home being sick a wonderful nanny Mary Catherine helping out along with is Monsignor Seamus Bennett. Manages to take care of his wonderful family and work on a case wth a spree killer. The sick and twisted killer is trying to avenge his brothers death by going on a killing spree and because of the killers lack of being there for his little brother when they were young he feels the need to avenge his death. What another great book in this series.… (more)
LibraryThing member es135
After the death of his wife NY Detective Michael Bennett is left to raise his ten kids alone. As if this isn't bad enough, a serial murderer is going around killing some of the city's more prominent citizens. As he was in the previous novel, Bennett is still an extremely relatable character who audiences can's help but root for. Unfortunately, the end of this, otherwise exceptional, thriller completely derailed the novel through an extremely implausible turn of events. One can only hope that Patterson will regain his footing if the character makes another appearance.… (more)
LibraryThing member motelboss
My first Patterson book don't know what took me so long but I am hooked.
This is a fast paced action pact thriller loved it. On to the next one for sure.
LibraryThing member buffalogr
Another suspenseful Patterson novel. Fun read with twists and turns that entwine family and work life. I wonder if all murder mysteries happen in New York City?
LibraryThing member beearedee
The first 100 pages or show I wasn't sure if I was thrilled with it. I wasn't hooked with it the way I was with the first book. I am glad that I didn't set it aside though. Quickly it sped up and the last 100 pages were intense and gripping. A very good read.


Little Brown anc Company (2009), Edition: First, 373 pages

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