*spoiler from previous book*
At the end of 61 Hours, the previous in the Jack Reacher series, we don’t know what’s happened to Jack. Last we saw him, he was in a strange bunker with only one way out when there was a huge explosion and, as far as we knew, he was gone. Of course, when there are 20+ books, there’s a fair chance we’ll see him again. And here he turns up in a small town in Nebraksa, walking a bit stiffly but otherwise seeming to be ok. But, then he runs into trouble. Well, of course he does. See, he’s in the bar of a motel when the town alcoholic doctor receives a call to treat a battered woman, and refuses. Reacher is a good citizen and insists on helping the woman. Only she’s the wife of a nasty guy, and by helping, Reacher has started a whole thing. And being a good citizen, he can’t just let things be.
Horrible bad guys, violence, Reacher smashing people’s legs and arms and faces and all kinds. The only thing missing in this is the ‘romance’ – and by romance, Reacher doesn’t get any one-on-one lady time this book. But he’s on his way to Virginia to try to find the woman from the phone in 61 Hours, so I guess he had to stay faithful.
Jack Reacher has, yet again, ended up in trouble. This time, he’s on a bus in the freeing winter of South Dakota. A freak accident and Reacher is stranded. However, things are not as they appear (are they ever?) – the town has a new prison, there’s been a murder and there’s a witness who is in tenuous protection and there are only, you got it, 61 Hours until…
Who is good, who is bad? Who can you trust? How do these people end up dead? And how is Reacher going to survive that extreme cold? Yet another Reacher doozy. I’d wonder how Lee Child does it again and again, but he really just does.
Jack Reacher is on the subway when he spots a woman behaving strangely and all signs point to a suicide bomber. However when she shoots herself, she becomes Reacher’s problem. He’s not prepared to believe that she did this for no reason, and when the authorities aren’t coming up with answers that Reacher likes, he’s not going to let it lie.
I must admit, I didn’t love this one as much as many of the others. It still had all of the classic Reacher tropes, but it didn’t grab me.
Reacher has ended up in Hope but is on his way to Despair. Yup, they are two neighbouring towns in the middle of nowhere. Hope seems to be ok, but Despair is terrible. When Reacher is literally driven out of town, he takes it personally and decides to investigate with the help of an attractive policewoman and a lot of patience.
While I have often stated my love for Jack Reacher books, this one isn’t my favourite. It’s fine, it does its job with the violence and brooding and sex and conspiracy and everything, but I kind of didn’t really care as much. I’m not saying that I didn’t enjoy it because I did. It’s more that I just didn’t love it.
Reacher, the loner who travels America with only a travel toothbrush, the clothes on his back and minimal ID. And who always finds trouble – or trouble finds him. This time, it’s his past catching up with him (Or was that last time? Or next time?) and he needs to get back in contact with some of his old army buddies to figure out what’s going on.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again… I love Jack Reacher novels. They’re a quick, fun read with some sexiness and a fair whack of violence and generally pretty ace times. This is no exception – a group of professional army folks investigating a bad situation and taking control. Right on.
Jack Reacher somehow yet again finds himself in a situation where he needs to mete out justice – and this all started with a cup of coffee. Sitting at a street café for the second day in a row, he witnesses what turns out to have been part of a kidnapping/ransom situation. He ends up working for the man whose wife has been taken – only things are not as they seem. Of course they’re not.
I love Reacher, I love these books. They are ridiculous and wonderful, violent and sexy and such a quick and entertaining read. They also never really sink in – as I got to the end of this book, I realised that I had read it before. It didn’t matter. It was ace.
This is the book that led to the film starring Tom Cruise, one of the greatest mis-castings of all times. (I love Tom Cruise as an action hero, but he’s simply not Lee Child). There has been a sniper shooting killing a handful of people in a mall, and when Reacher hears that ex-army James Barr did it, he needs to get involved. See, the guy who did it did a similar thing years ago in the Middle East, and managed to get away with it, but Reacher, as a Military Policeman, promised that he would ensure that Barr was brought to justice. So why did Barr ask for Reacher?
Having read this years ago, plus seeing the film a few years ago, I knew where this was going. I feel like this is real classic Reacher – things seem to be going one direction, but of course, that’s not where it ends up. And he gets to take out some bad guys.
A man who arrives in Miami to find Jack Reacher but ends up dead, and Reacher is compelled to investigate. He discovers that Jodie Garber, the daughter of his old army commander, hired the man. Only, she’s not a kid anymore, and her father’s just died. Between trying to tie up the ends of Jodie’s father’s investigation and protecting Jodie, Reacher has his hands full. As usual.
By the end, it looks like drifter Reacher may be about to give up his drifting ways – but surely this can’t be the case?
If you love the Reacher books, with their violence, their little, dropped clues and their ridiculous love scenes (and extremely brief sex scenes), this will be another for you. The tension between Jodie and Reacher is blatantly obvious and, thank goodness *spoiler alert* is relieved despite their reservations. One thing I particularly like which happens in most of the series I’ve recently read is the red herring storyline. Reacher thinks one thing, everything points to it being that way but then – no! Reacher is wrong. No, wait, it’s not what it seems. Love it.
Just had to research if there are plans to make another Reacher film. The first was pretty disappointing, but the books really do scream to be dramatized. No further Reachers in production – but Mission Impossible 5 is on its way. Marvelous. That’s what Tom Cruise should be doing, I reckon.
A woman limping with a crutch staggers as she carries many outfits out of a dry cleaners, and luckily for her, Jack Reacher is walking past and assists her. Unluckily for him, they turn and are face two men with guns who bundle them into a van. She is Holly Johnson, FBI officer and daughter of a highly ranked government official. They are taken to the forest hideout of a survivalist group that plans to break free from the United States and form their own nation. But is everything ever as it seems? Reacher uses his bulk and wit to try to figure out how to save the girl; and later, the world.
I’ve probably mentioned it before – Lee Child’s Jack Reacher books are not high literature. One of the reviews I read for his first book, Killing Floor, pointed out that Child writes in short sentences that can read quite stilted, but I don’t care. They are a quick read, a change from deeper and more emotionally intense books. And I love them. I’m sure I must have read this before, but I couldn’t recall as I read it this time. I really liked the character of Holly Johnson. Tough, feisty and never giving up. Frustrated at both her injury and her place in the world, but prepared to risk everything rather than sitting on her rear end. And during one of his exciting escapes, we discover that Reacher has a weakness – confined spaces. Not like a lift; this is a teeny, tiny tunnel inside a huge mountain, and of course, he conquers his weakness in only two or three pages, but they were exciting pages. Where to next, Jack?
What better to move on to from Patricia Cornwell’s Scarpetta novels than Lee Child’s Jack Reacher novels? To go from a female Medical Examiner who follows all of the rules to an ex-army man who is drifting across the country who breaks whatever rules he needs whenever he needs to. Both have a strong sense of right or wrong, both end up in life-threatening situations, but their different approaches lead to very different books.
In this first book in the series, Reacher ends up arrested in a tiny town in Georgia. He is casually looking for the story behind the death of a little-known jazz musician but stumbles into a conspiracy that is bigger than the whole town. It feels like it is a fast-paced book, but that is more because the action sequences of the book are graphic and fast; in-between are long, slow investigations. This is the thing that surprised me in the Jack Reacher film (starring the terribly miscast Tom Cruise) – I expected graphic violence and fast-paced everything, but it was actually mostly very slow-paced.
For me, I love this series. I like a good fast read to clear my brain between more intellectual or literary novels. That is certainly not a criticism; books are entertainment, and if we can’t enjoy them on a variety of levels, what’s the point? Incidentally, the critical reviews of Lee Child’s work are a lot more amusing than that of Cornwell. I think people are genuinely offended by Child’s character and stories. I love it.