Customer Review

Reviewed in the United States on November 30, 2017
I'm coming back to add a single comment about something that bothered me most in this book: ALL the characters sounded like Reacher. Used similar thought processes, language, and responses. When everybody talks and thinks like Reacher, there is no Reacher.

Dear Mister Child, go back and read your own novels where you had the riveting openers and pulse-pounding closers with a coherent plot in the middle, you know, a thriller. You opened with a melodramatic closing from a previous story that had nothing to do with anything the rest of the journey. Reacher is getting soft. Sharing all the action with other good guys and good women, letting them drive the big moments in the story after the delayed opening clash with seven bikers. Reacher is pulling his punches now, too. Early on, he threatens the drug kingpin that he will throw him into a tumble dryer (this is not a spoiler, by the way, because there's nothing dramatic there to spoil) — at the end of the book Reacher delivers the coup de gras off-stage through the hearsay report of a peripheral character.

Most of the action in the middle is consumed by driving dusty roads and watching dozens of dusty cars approach in advance of dusty clouds and usually driving by with the barest glimpses of the dusty occupants. Pretty remarkable that all the main characters did not fall asleep in the middle of the non-action. I did. Fell asleep.

I don't mind a hero that miscalculates and gets beat by a smart villain but I hate it when Reacher goes stupid at a critical point in the story just so a bad guy gets the drop on him for the purpose of letting a woman save his bacon. At this rate Reacher is going to be weeping in the arms of a woman to show his softer side.

I gave this review four stars because I'm such a Reacher fan. Every writer has an off-novel or two. But I did read a good share of the 1- and 2-star reviews, and Mr. Child's fans have called him out very accurately on the goofy stuff in this effort, not the least of which is the premise of a sentimental journey launched on the basis of a class ring.

Look forward to next year's effort.
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