The Hard Way:
Starred Review. In bestseller Child's 10th novel to feature ex-army MP Jack Reacher (after 2005's One Shot), a sidewalk cafe encounter in New York City plunges Reacher into one of his most challenging—and thoroughly engrossing—adventures to date. Acting out of "reflex and professional curiosity" (and the promise of a generous fee), Reacher agrees to help sinister ex-army officer Edward Lane, whose posse of six Special Forces veterans are even more ominous than he, track down his kidnapped daughter and trophy wife. Since the kidnapping of wife number one five years earlier ended in her death, Lane cautions Reacher that he will not brook police interference ("You break your word, I'll put your eyes out"). From Lane's quarters in the West Side's venerable Dakota apartment building to the shady sections of SoHo and Greenwich Village, the author's atmospheric descriptions make Manhattan a leading player, with menace lurking at every intersection. The inevitable showdown, on a farm outside a tiny English village, ranks as one of Child's most thrilling finales.
Jack Reacher. Hero. Loner. Soldier. Soldier’s son. An elite military cop, he was one of the army’s brightest stars. But in every cop’s life there is a turning point. One case. One messy, tangled case that can shatter a career. Turn a lawman into a renegade. And make him question words like honor, valor, and duty. For Jack Reacher, this is that case.
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.
Jack Reacher, the taciturn ex-MP whose adventures in Lee Child's six previous solidly plotted, expertly paced thrillers have won a devoted fan base, returns in this explosive tale of an undercover operation set up by the FBI to rescue an agent investigating Zachary Beck, a reclusive tycoon believed to be a kingpin in the drug trade. The novel begins with a bang as Reacher rescues Beck's son from a staged kidnapping in order to get close to his father--and trace the connection between Beck and Quinn, a former army intelligence officer who tried to sell blueprints of a secret weapon to Iraq but was murdered before he could pull it off. Or so Reacher thinks, until he spots Quinn in the crowd at a concert in Boston. As usual, Child ratchets up the tension and keeps the reader in suspense until the last page, although his enigmatic hero hardly ever seems to break a sweat. In the tough guy tradition, Reacher and his creator are overdue for a breakout, and this muscular, well-written mystery might be the one.
What better way to test the security surrounding a U.S. vice president-elect than to hire someone skilled in the killing arts to penetrate his protection? Assassination strategy, though, is only part of the assignment facing Jack Reacher in Without Fail. This restive, blunt-edged ex-military cop must also determine whether recent threats against VP-to-be Senator Brook Armstrong are legitimate or are primarily intended to embarrass the perfectionist head of Armstrong's new Secret Service detail, M.E. Froelich, who happens to have been a girlfriend of Reacher's late brother.
Jack Reacher is Spenser before Robert Parker domesticated his Boston PI--in fact, Reacher's even tougher than Hawk. He can inhale and exhale a few times and pump up his muscles so they make a bad character think twice about tangling with him. And he's spent enough time on the right side of the law to know how to operate in the gray zone if that's what it takes to save the fair maiden, punish the bad guys, and right any other wrongs he happens to encounter in the course of his wanderings. Echo Burning is vintage Lee Child, a smartly paced, intricately plotted, and masterfully characterized thriller starring Reacher, the ex-military cop who's so concerned about commitment to anything--a woman, possessions, a permanent address--that he only owns the clothes on his back. But he's the kind of justice-seeking guy you'd want on your side, especially if you were an abused wife trapped in a marriage you can't get out of until, and unless, somebody bumps off your old man.
Bad Luck and Trouble:
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.