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Bad Luck and Trouble (Jack Reacher) Mass Market Paperback – May 19, 2009
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Ex-military cop Jack Reacher is the perfect antihero--tough as nails, but with a brain and a conscience to match. He's able to see what most miss and is willing to do whatever it takes to get the job done. Each book in Lee Child's smart, addictive series (The New York Times has referred to it as "pure escapist gold") follows the wandering warrior on a new adventure, making it easy to start with any book, including his latest gem, Bad Luck and Trouble. However, be forewarned...once you meet Jack Reacher, you'll be hooked, so be prepared to stock up on the series. --Daphne Durham
Who Is Jack Reacher? A Video from Lee Child
Watch the video
A Note from Lee Child
Two years ago I was on a book tour, promoting that year's new Jack Reacher novel, One Shot. One particular night, the event was held in a small town outside of Chicago. The date was June 21st. As I was giving my talk and answering questions and signing books, that date was nagging away at the back of my mind. I knew it had some significance. I started panicking--had I forgotten my anniversary? No, that's in August. My wife's birthday? No, that's in January. My own birthday? No, that's in October.
Then suddenly I remembered--it was ten years to the day since I had been fired from my previous job. That was why and how I had become a writer. That night in Illinois was a ten-year anniversary of a different sort, somewhat bittersweet.
And ten is a nice round number. So I started thinking about my old colleagues. My workmates, my buddies. We had been through a lot together. I started to wonder where they all were now. What were they doing? Were they doing well, or struggling? Were they happy? What did they look like now? Pretty soon I was into full-on nostalgia mode. Ten-year anniversaries can do that to a person. I think we all share those kind of feelings, about high school, or college, or old jobs we've quit, or old towns we've moved away from.
So I decided to make this year's Jack Reacher book about a reunion. I decided to throw him back among a bunch of old colleagues that he hadn't seen for ten years, people that he loved fiercely and respected deeply. Regular Reacher readers will know that he's a pretty self-confident guy, but I wanted him to wobble just a little this time, to compare his choices with theirs, to measure himself against them.
The renewed get-together isn't Reacher's own choice, though. And it's not a standard-issue reunion, either. Something very bad has happened, and one of his old team-members from the army contacts him, by an ingenious method (it's hard to track Reacher down). She gives him the bad news, and asks him to do something about it. He says, "Of course I'll do something about it."
"No," his friend says. "I mean, I want you to put the old unit back together."
It's an irresistible invitation. Wouldn't we all like to do that, sometimes? --Lee Child
Secrets of the Series: A Q&A with Lee Child
Q: Why do you think readers keep coming back to your novels?
A: Two words: Jack Reacher. Reacher is a drifter and a loner with a strong sense of justice. He shows up, he acts, he moves on. He's the type of hero who has a long literary history. Robin Hood, the Lone Ranger, Aragorn from The Lord of the Rings, Jack Reacher--they're all part of the same heroic family. Reacher just ratchets it up a notch. Maybe more than a notch. Why is he so appealing? Most often people say to me it's his sense of justice; he will do the right thing. Even though there is no reward in it for him, even though there is often a high cost to be paid by him, he will always try to do the right thing and people find that reassuring in todays world when not too many people are doing the right thing.
Q: Jack Reacher gets compared to James Bond, Jack Bauer and Jason Bourne, each of whom now has a "face." In a movie, which actor do you think could fill Reacher's shoes?
A: That's the toughest question. The thing about Reacher is he's huge; hes 6'5" tall and about 250 pounds. There arent any actors that size--actors tend to be small. So we aren't going to find a physical facsimile for Reacher because there aren't any. We have to find someone who is capable of looking big on the screen. Many people have said to me a young Clint Eastwood would have been perfect--we need someone like that who has the vibe of a big intimidating man. Hopefully there will be somebody available like that. It's also a question of finding somebody ready to sign up for more than one movie. They want to make a franchise, minimum of three, and that makes it a little bit harder.
Q: What research is involved in writing one of your stories?
A: My research is all kind of backwards. I don't go to the public library for three months and take notes in advance; instead my best research is by remembering and adapting. I read, travel, and talk to people just for the fun of it, filing away these interesting little snippets to the back of my mind and eventually they float to the surface and get used. The problem is, I approach writing the book with the same excitement and impatience that I hope the reader is going to feel about reading it. But even so, I need a certain measure of technical intrigue in the story. There is specific research I have to do as I go along, anything that's a small detail; a car, a gun, a type of bullet. I will check that out at the time. But, that's what I call the detail--the broad stuff is the stuff I already know.
Meet Jack Reacher
The Killing Floor
The Hard Way
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From Publishers Weekly
At the start of bestseller Child's winning 11th Jack Reacher adventure (after The Hard Way), the bad guys unceremoniously dump Calvin Franz, a former MP, from a Bell 222 helicopter "[t]hree thousand feet above the [California] desert floor." Trouble is, Franz was a member of the army's special investigation unit headed by Reacher—a one-time military cop who left the service to become a solitary drifter par excellence. A former colleague sends Reacher a coded SOS; the two rendezvous in L.A. and the game's afoot. More members of the band get back together, only to discover that Franz isn't the group's only casualty. As usual in Reacher's capers, practically nothing is what it seems, and the meticulously detailed route to the truth proves especially engrossing thanks to the joint efforts of this band of brothers (and two sisters). The author carefully delineates Reacher's erstwhile colleagues, their smart-ass banter masking an unspoken affection. The villains' comeuppance, a riveting eye-for-an-eye battle scene (hint: helicopter), is one of Child's more satisfying finales. (May)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
The former special investigators get together, learning of the gruesome deaths of four of their former teammates. How did this happen to well-trained, intelligent, and capable former captains and majors? There is comfortable camaraderie between the team, and it is easy to see how well they had worked together in the past as MPs.
They slowly put together what happened, and why. Then they find themselves in a life and death situation and they understand how their friends became victims.
Bad Luck and Trouble is a reunion book of sorts for Jack Reacher. While most of the series is about his solo cross country vigilante actions, this time we see him as a member of a unit as he works with the former members of his special investigation team in the army. The book opens with a tortured man being thrown out of a helicopter 3,000 feet into the air above the desert. We come to find out that the man was a member of Reacher's old MP investigation team.
Reacher's former teammate Frances Neagley tracks him down through his bank account and informs him of the death. Immediately Reacher decides that the perpetrators are dead man walking and he will find them. Neagley convinces him that they need to get the old band back together as they wouldn't want to miss out on a chance to reunite to avenge their former teammate. When they begin to have trouble locating the rest of the group they begin to discover that their deceased teammate wasn't the only member of the team to be taken out. Now as the surviving members of the team slowly join them they begin to work to figure out who was able to get the jump on his old teammates and take out the people that Reacher held in such high regard, who he considered even better investigators than he.
You also get to go with Reacher as he explores the lives that his teammates, dead and alive, have gone onto live since leaving the army like he did. You actually get to see Reacher embarrassed and uncomfortable for once about his lifestyle as he feels like little more than a bum next the rest, especially Neagley, who have mostly gone onto successful careers and appear to live comfortable and domesticated lives, everything Reacher has tried to avoid. They pity him so much that they even pay for Reacher's meals because they don't think he has a lot of money (and he doesn't).
Its a very entertaining, one of the best Reacher books that I've ever seen. You get an adversary who is a real match for the special investigators. Someone who was already able to defeat the special investigators before Reacher was even involved. Its a mystery that challenges even Jack Reacher's abilities and he comes up lacking more than once in the book, for this case he needs Neagley and co. to help him solve the case.
Its a great novel and you finally get a taste of the way life was for Reacher when he was an MP, moreso than you do when you read a prequel book like The Affair. One of the best Jack Reacher books I've ever read.
Despite what I don't like about the novels, what I do like is the way clues and motives are discovered, how crimes are solved and what schemes lie at the heart of the problems Jack Reacher encounters. The stories are fun to read.
I use Amazon for most of my purchases and update my reviews if anything changes with the products. I do this so other Amazon users can get a real feel for the life of the product. You can look at my review which will be close to my purchase date and tell how the product is doing as time passes. I am not associated with any company and all opinions are my very own.
The beginning chapter sets the stage for the entire book, when a Calvin Franz, a former member of Jack Reacher’s Army criminal investigators, is found in the desert after he had been dropped out of a helicopter. When Jack notices more than $1000, 00 had been deposited in his diminishing back account by some unknown person; the story begins to move along at a quick pace. Jack Reacher and some of his old Army criminal investigation team work together to solve a mystery of why one of their own people had been murdered. A good read.
I never give away too much when reviewing novels because it spoils it for those who want to read the book. If you like Jack Reacher novels you should check out “Bad Luck & Trouble.”
Rating: 4 Stars. Joseph J. Truncale (Author: The Samurai Soul: An old warrior’s poetic tribute).
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is the best Jack Reacher book I have read. I couldn't put it down. I highly recommend it.