In a nameless city, two rival criminal gangs are competing for control. But they hadn’t counted on Jack Reacher arriving on their patch. He’s on a Greyhound bus, watching an elderly man sleeping in his seat, with a fat envelope of cash hanging out of his pocket. Another passenger is watching too, hoping to get rich quick.
Reviewed on 9th February 2020
In what it turns out might be one of Lee Child’s last novels about his hero Jack Reacher (not a spoiler - he has announced he’s handing over authorial duties to his brother), we visit a small town run by two rival gangs, between whom a turf war is triggered based on something of a misunderstanding.
It’s a good story, with some interesting guest characters and a lot of action. It’s also something of a tragedy in places, and a comedy in many. However it’s come a long way I think from the early Reacher novels.
Back in the day, the writing style was distinctive in its use of short, punchy sentences. Now the narrative has more of a flow, more like other novels. The character of Reacher seems to have lost some of his old characteristics, or at least toned them down. He’s become friendlier, and he’s clearly becoming older. And yet maybe that feels right - maybe age and experience has changed the character, and the books have changed along to suit that.