RogerBW's Blog

Personal, Lee Child 31 January 2015

2014; 19th book of Jack Reacher. Some bad man has had a long range shot at the chief man of France, but few men are good enough to have a go, and Jack put one of them in clink some years back. So some spies bring him on board to help catch the bad man, and be bait.

This is not a hard book to read. The words are short and they are put in short groups. These books are not good, but they can be fun. The last few had a theme, as Jack goes from place to place to meet a lass he's heard on the phone. But that is no more, and this book has no links to those.

So a man Jack knew back in the day calls him in, and they think the bad man will take a shot at a big meet of head men in the chief town of the U K. Most of the book is set in that town. And it feels just a bit wrong. Child grew up in the U K though not in the chief town, but he lives in New York now, and this is like a town from the U S A where they drive on the left and don't have lots of guns. It's a town from the films of gangs, tarts, drugs, the East End and "oi you slag", not from the true place.

And Jack is part of a team here, not just a lone man who fights for what is right as is his wont. He has help from lots of folk, and does not have to work too hard on his own to solve the crime. There are fights, but Jack is a man who wins all fights, so we do not fret for him. This is not the good stuff for Jack. He does not do much, and he is not cast out on his own to fight the world, which is where Jack is most fun to read.

(There is one good bit, where Jack who is big has to fight a man who is still more big, but up to then we have not heard that Jack is big; we had to have read the books in the past to know that.)

His team mate is a young girl who is trained as a spy, and for a change Jack does not sleep with her. But there is not much to her; the good mates from the books in the past have seen a bit more of life and not just said that Jack is right each time. (But of course he is.)

I liked the last book for it seemed to start to make a good change from the long line of books all the same, but that is not what goes on here. More cash for Child, I'm sure, but not much fun for me.

Make Me is to come next but I will be in no rush to read it. I think Child writes too much and should slow down a bit and get it right.

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