New Year's Day, 1990. The Berlin Wall is coming down. The world is changing. And in a North Carolina "hot-sheets" motel, a two-star general is found dead. His briefcase is missing. Nobody knows what was in it. Within minutes Jack Reacher has his orders: Control the situation. But this situation can't be controlled. Within hours the general's wife is murdered hundreds of miles away. Then the dominoes really start to fall.
Two Special Forces soldiers - the toughest of the tough - are taken down, one at a time. Top military commanders are moved from place to place in a bizarre game of chess. And somewhere inside the vast worldwide fortress that is the U.S. Army, Jack Reacher - an ordinarily untouchable investigator for the 110th Special Unit - is being set up as a fall guy with the worst enemies a man can have.
But Reacher won't quit. He's fighting a new kind of war. And he's taking a young female lieutenant with him on a deadly hunt that leads them from the ragged edges of a rural army post to the winding streets of Paris to a confrontation with an enemy he didn't know he had. With his French-born mother dying - and divulging to her son one last, stunning secret - Reacher is forced to question everything he once believed...about his family, his career, his loyalties - and himself. Because this soldier's son is on his way into the darkness, where he finds a tangled drama of desperate desires and violent death - and a conspiracy more chilling, ingenious, and treacherous than anyone could have guessed.
Don't miss any of Jack Reacher's adventures.
©2004 Lee Child; (P)2004 Brilliance Audio
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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.
This novel is set back in the past, when Reacher is still in the military police. The story is loaded with suspense and action, all of it well-crafted and skillfully written. It is a complex and satisfying book.
The Enemy is Lee Child's 8th Jack Reacher novel. This time out, is a look back at Jack during his army days. What begins as an unexplained transfer followed quickly by the sudden death of a general, a missing briefcase, and a non-existent agenda evolves into a convoluted plot cobbled together by co-conspirators on the fly. At the same time, Jack must also deal with a serious illness with his mother and learns a family secret.
All the attributes associated with Reacher are in evidence, his fighting skills, but mostly his deductive reasoning to piece together a complex web of seemingly unconnected details. There is also a good bit of high level warfare strategy directly relevant to the time period which encompasses the collapse of the former USSR which provides ample context for the substance of the mystery. Jack's penchant for doing what's right rather than caring about the law is also ably demonstrated. Child continues to provide fresh situations for this engaging, relate-able character.
Dick Hill provides another superb rendition with an excellent range of voices and great pacing. This is another quick listen as both the story and narration move the action along quickly.
Listening to good books from around the world, in the comfort of home....
This was the best J Reacher book to date. It gives great insight to what drives the author and main character in this series. It's not complex, it's just about making the right choice at the right time, but sometimes justice requires violent action
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.
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