Across the country women are being murdered by a killer who leaves no evidence, no fatal wounds, no signs of struggle, and no clues to a motive. They are, truly, perfect crimes. In fact, the only thing that links the victims is the man they all knew: Jack Reacher.
©2005 Lee Child (P)2012 Peunguin Audio
This is the 4th Jack Reacher book....right? Well in my humble opinion if you read/listen to one then you've heard them all. Don't get me wrong I do enjoy "A-Team" like feel that Mr. Child writes but it gets worn out over time.
I have read/listened to every other book in the series prior to this one. It was interesting to see Reacher younger, when he hasn't been out of the Army very long, and the how he tried to live 'normal'.
Dick Hill of course.
Not a fan of portions of the book from the killer's perspective; Child does not do that now and I didn't care for it here. And the narration almost sounded like a cariacature reading; like the narrator identified something negative about the character and played it up. One character sounded like Groucho Marx and Humphrey Bogart mixed together. And don't get me started on how he portrayed the first female FBI agent...unbelievably awful.
Long term book junkie only recently addicted to audio books. Now my iPod and I are inseparable.
When this book first came out, in the UK, it was called "The Visitor", which makes a whole lot of sense to me: it links to the plot, it's ambiguous about the nature and identity of the visitor and it's easy to remember. Then some editor in the US decided that it sounded too much like Science Fiction and came up with "Running Blind". I can't see any relevance to the plot and it's instantly forgettable but perhaps that's why editors don't get to write novels.
Four things dominated this novel for me: a well thought through puzzle-plot, skilfully revealed, piece by grim piece; the malicious misogyny of the killings, Child's contempt for the FBI and the satisfaction I felt when the increasingly eccentric Reacher finally gets a reality-check.
The Reacher reality-check comes at the beginning of the novel when Reacher's impromptu vigilante intervention in a protection racket gets him entangled with the local police and the FBI. In any sane world, Reacher would have finished this encounter either in prison or in a psych ward or both. Reacher sees himself as outside the law. He feels entitled to do violence in whatever he sees as a good cause. He only seems fully engaged with the people around him when he is causing mayhem. This is what makes him such a compelling character in a thriller. It's also what would get put locked up in real life. Of course, in the novel, Reacher is rescued by his lawyer girl-friend and cuts a deal that sets up the rest of the novel.
Still, I don't read Reacher for insights into real life. I read him because the plots are ingenious, because I enjoy his amoral aggression in the cause of right (usually one or more women who need to be rescued or revenged) and because, at least some of the time, I wish there really was a Reacher or two out there making things right.
In this novel, the FBI are depicted as sleazy (a female agent displaying herself to keep Reacher "in hand"), incompetent (profiling techniques that are fundamentally flawed) and more interested in taking care of their own than in getting the job done. As usual, it's lucky for them that Reacher is along to do their job for them.
The puzzle-plot in this one is truly ingenious. No, I'm not going to tell you what it is. I've seldom read a serial killer book where it was so hard to figure out HOW the killing was done. Even when Reacher helps the FBI put most of the pieces together, the answer still isn't clear. For me, this is a real strength in a thriller.
The women being killed in this book have all already been betrayed and abused by men in positions of power while they served in the Army. I was surprised and pleased to see that Child took the time to make at least some of these women real and help see the damage that had been done to them and the lives they were rebuilding. Of course this makes their deaths more poignant but it makes the manner of their deaths truly monstrous.
The prose in this novel isn't go to win any prizes. It often reads more like directions to an actor in a TV script: "He did this. Then he did that. Then he moved to the right. Then he sat down." but somehow the sparse style, written in the third-person, keeps Reacher an enigma.
By the end of the novel, Reacher has nothing left but his folding toothbrush and a desire to be somewhere else. This makes him the perfect catalyst for the next novel where a smart, violent, emotionally unavailable man is needed to thwart evil-doers. I wonder if it also makes him an archetype for a male hunger for a particular type of freedom, based on detached competency and uncompromised integrity?
Single mom of two BEAUTIFUL girls and working full time. Never enough hours in the day for myself. Loving Audible!
The start of the book kinda felt like it was dragging and I was really disinterested for a good while. Reacher always pulls through though so I kept listening. In true Reacher style he pulled you in and you were along for a wild ride. So many things about this book were pure genius! The twist was just amazing, and the fact that Reacher figures it out like he always does is amazing! Do yourself a favor and read this book!
I am a big time Jack Reacher fan. I almost don't recognize him in this book. He is slow, insolent, inconsistent, easily manipulated. Not the Jack Reacher I have come to know and love. The supporting characters are nothing short of idiots. People that stupid could not possibly get themselves dressed in the morning, let alone secure such high level positions. And I miss Dick Hill. From what I can tell, there are 3 or 4 Jack Reacher books narrated by Jonathan McClain. Ne'er shall they reach my library.
Definitely. I have many of the Jack Reacher books in my audible.com library. Loved them all, until this one.
He made them all sound whiny, even Jack Reacher.
Take a pass on this one and go for one of the later Jack Reacher books. You will like both the book and the hero a whole lot better, if you do.
Story was transparent .
Ooh yes voices used for female characters were down write irritatin
I can't think of any.
No wasted enough time already
Yes, I would change the method of the killings to something believable. Hypnotism and swallowing your tongue are NOT viable methods for murder.
As soon as I realized that the killer was using hypnotism to make the victims essentially kill themselves, the rest of the story just fell flat. It was no longer a viable scenario.So as mentioned above, he should have done his research and stuck to something more real instead of relying on popular opinion. Also, in the end, I would have been happier with the killer being caught instead of killed in the end. Her quick death was just not satisfying. We were made to like the last two victims and to dislike the killer even more. Having her not have to face up to her failure and shame just wasn't satisfying. Also not having Blake get the shaft for allowing a killer to exist on his team and in fact enabling her to continue killing... Again, not very satisfying.
I suppose Reacher. Jody and Harper were OK. But some of the other characters were just way over the top. They were too loud or too sharp sounding. They were just a bit to cliche as the characters that we were not supposed to like.
If the above flaws were corrected, yes. It could become a good movie. As for the stars, certainly NOT Tom Cruise. Forget that Reacher is supposed to be nearly a foot taller than Cruise, he is just not a good enough actor to live up to the persona of Jack Reacher. I still can't get the bad taste out of my mouth from seeing him in the first Reacher movie. I won't be seeing him in another.
Ray Stevenson has the size and looks that I would expect of Reacher.
I am a Jack Reacher fan. I have to say that the blatant flaws in this book rather lowered my opinion of Lee Child as an author. But not so much that I'll give up the series.Research Lee, research.
I far prefer Dick Hill to Jonathan McClain. The voices he did for the FBI people were almost unbearable and unrealistic representations. I certainly hope the FBI isn't as corrupt and inept as they were portrayed in this book, far from my favorite so far and I've heard everything released but one.
Killing Floor, Die Trying, Tripwire, Echo Burning, Without Fail, Persuader, and more.
I just don't like the way he delivers, some of the voices, as I said, are so grating I almost didn't finish it.
No, let it die.
Now that I'm almost done with the series I wish they would have been in order according to his age and situation. High Heat, he's a teenager, and it would have been good to have moved from that to his active military days and then in chronological order from there on. That being said, I'm a die hard Reacher fan, can't imagine how Tom Cruise got cast to play him.
I love the Jack Reacher books, and am trying to read them in order from the beginning.
The first half had too much repetitive talking and not enough action. The plot was interesting, but the book didn't really engage me until half way through.
I liked them all.
no. It already has several.
I really like Jonathan McClain's performance. I am listening to the books in order and have enjoyed the narration.
Law enforcement certainly has its share of jerks and power-addled people. There are undoubtedly FBI agents who are as belligerent and full of themselves as these were but, dang, it makes the story annoying! There were times when I didn't think I could see this one through. My need to find out who did it kept me going but, really, did the FBI people need to be THAT obnoxious??? It was a good story line but those FBI people made it a tough listen at times!
The story line was fine but the annoyance of those agents is what made me give this 3 stars.
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