Special thanks to Sasha, Stacy and Stef for sharing the Audible experience with me and being the best of company during my recovery.
After The Persuader, which I considered mediocre; I was ready for a strong bounce back novel. Child definitely delivered with The Enemy which to my surprise was the first non sequential Reacher novel.
In many ways I felt this was a more natural setting for Child's Jack Reacher character. The character's comfort level in the U S Army setting seemed superior to that in his civilian incarnation. I liked the inclusion of his mother's past as well; it took her out of the French June Cleaver on an army base that appeared through the initial seven books as well as the three Reacher novellas. Furthermore Reacher seemed to work better within a system where he had well qualified subordinates assisting him. In my opinion this was an excellent comeback work for Child.
Tell us about yourself!
Reacher's history is released in pieces in short stories and at least one other book. His mother, brother, and some military background are given more depth here.
He is an Army MP so he is not the anonymous wanderer that we usually follow. He is expected to follow rules. He breaks protocol to tie together seemingly disparate crimes, but manages to tie everything together and uncover a conspiracy. There are relatively few hand-to-hand, bone crushing encounters in this book, but one has serious consequences for his future in the Army.
Dick Hill, again, does an excellent job of narrating.
Overall, this is another enjoyable Reacher adventure.
My interests run to psychology, popular science, history, world literature, and occasionally something fun like Jasper Fforde. It seems like the only free time I have for reading these days is when I'm in the car so I am extremely grateful for audio books. I started off reading just the contemporary stuff that I was determined not to clutter up my already stuffed bookcases with. And now audio is probably 90% of my "reading" matter.
Probably thriller is a poor choice of words. It's a police procedural with the twist that it's within the military. The Jack Reacher series was well under way when Child decided to do a prequel. Origin stories are all the rage these days but I'm not sure it wouldn't have been better to leave this one a bit of a mystery. Not being a diehard fan, I'll leave it to those who are to weigh in on this issue. Having had the series recommended to me, this book came up and I gave it a try not knowing it was a bit of an outlier. Honestly, I'm not a regular reader of this genre, but the themes of the loner in pursuit of the truth against all odds is an appealing one for me. Being a military brat myself didn't hurt either.
I've listened to four Reacher books at this point. Some, I've thought were better than others, but all were good. Out of all mystery, thriller titles I've ever read, however, this is among the best. I literally couldn't bring myself to turn it off. It's a very good detective story, a great study in what creats human character (good&bad), revealing about how banal the motivation for evil can be and a relentlessly intense adventure. As others have said, it is uniquely revealing about what makes Reacher tick. Even more so, it explains the relentless rage Reacher felt at the death of his brother in "The Killing Floor". A great read!
It's no wonder so many folks are talking about the Jack Reacher books. They start fast and keep you hanging. If you want slow paced deep novels read Tolstoy. If you want some fast paced fun and a good murder mystery read Lee Child.
Yes, absolutely. The police procedural writing and Dick Hill's narrating make this an excellent listen. Once I get through a few more, I'd be thrilled to go back and listen again.
I don't have any useful comparisons
I've only listened to Dick Hill as Jack Reacher and I love it. He is fast becoming one of my favorite narrators because of the different voices for each character. That being said, none of them are ever over the top.
Only extreme excitement and satisfaction.
I'm thoroughly enjoying Dick Hill's Reacher narration in random order, I suggest everyone do the same.
Yes, if the friend likes suspense and action novels.
I liked this one as it gives background to some of the other Reacher novels. You learn about what kind of man and soldier Reacher is. Characterization is a lot more real than in some of the later ones where he's just an indestructible machine, completely alone in the world and a lot more hardened.
Dick Hill is *perfect* as Reacher.
Now I understand a lot more about what makes Reacher tick. As you learn background about Reacher, he is learning background about himself. A case during his active duty service days that keeps you listening when you should be doing something else.
he used "nothing" so many times it became quite irritating and took away from the experience.
I have listened to a number of Lee Child's books, most of which were quite good. This was the worst of the lot.
I felt he was a good narrator but was punished by repetition.
It was a decent plot.
After reading a number of "Reacher" books this was a disappointment.
Once again Lee Child makes Jack Reacher a super hero-
I have enjoyed previous Reacher novels, on the edge of the seat action, gripping adventure, and hard-to guess mystery. This one takes us back to Jack's days as a Major in the Army MP force. We get a sense of what made Jack who is in the other books in the series.
I so enjoy this series that I am going back through and listening to them in chronological order although I have already listened to most of them, as they were purchased.
Reacher is a man's man, who doesn't worry about other's feelings toward him. He has a strong sense of right, wrong, and justice that doesn't always follow the letter of the law. But I find myself agreeing with the choices he makes when it comes to dealing with the bad, the evil, or the just plain stupid.
Another aspect of this series that I find refreshing, is that for the most part, the language is clean. The reader gets great descriptions of situations without some of the crassness we have come to accept in today’s world. The love scenes are the same. The reader gets a sense of serious and erotic passion without the raunchy description that is usually found in modern novels.
Dick Hill is an excellent narrator. In fact, I have listened to another series, simply because Hill was the narrator... I was not disappointed. He is able to use intonations and various voices so that the reader knows which character is speaking. With Child's writing style and Hill's narration there is not a lot of "he said" and "she said" in the narration, which I thinks makes a story more difficult to listen to. Hill's female voices sound a tad funny coming in his deep expressive voice but you get used to it.
I highly recommend this if you are looking for action, mystery and adventure.