Jim's Books

Better Off Dead

Lee Child & Andrew Child

Better Off Dead
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ISBN: 9781787633735

Description

Reacher never backs down from a problem. And he's about to find a big one, on a deserted Arizona road, where a Jeep has crashed into the only tree for miles around. Under the merciless desert sun, nothing is as it seems.

Reviewed on 23rd February 2022

Andrew Child’s second Reacher novel shows a lot of the same traits as the first. The writing style feels different - this time we’re in first person, which we’ve seen before in the series, but the tone feels almost smoother than in the novels written by his older brother Lee.

Reacher’s lack of knowledge of modern technology is demonstrated again. It adds quite a nice light and realistic touch to the character, and I feel like it might come from a gentle ribbing from younger brother to older on the authorship team.

Plotwise though I found this one a bit confusing. Part of the idea I know is a sense of mystery - the first person narrative always giving the sense that the reader can only know as much as the character - but even after finishing the story and hearing the explanation at the end, it doesn’t feel like everything adds up in my head. Possibly I read the end too fast so couldn’t take the information in and digest it before more came along.

Overall though, still a solid Reacher novel for the 2020s, and I will doubtless keep reading.

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