Review of 61 Hours (Jack Reacher #14) by Lee Child
Rating 5/5 (and then some)
Lee Child became one of my favourite authors as soon as I’d finished Killing Floor, the first Jack Reacher book. And Reacher became one of my favourite characters in fiction. He’s one of the few characters who I look up to.
There are many guarantees going into a Reacher book.
One. You can be sure it’ll be addictive.
Two. You can be sure it’ll be entertaining.
Three. You can be sure to be cheering Reacher on as he beats the hell out of the bad guys.
Four. You can be sure you won’t ever read just one Reacher book.
Lee Child doesn’t mess around. His writing style is as sharp and punchy as Reacher himself. There’s no room for pointless, flowery descriptions. Each sentence has a point. It’s what makes these books so addictive.
61 Hours is one of my favourite of the series (in September there’ll be twenty volumes). The writing is as good as, if not better than, the previous sequels. The plot is gripping, even if it’s more of a slow-burner plot than some of the other novels. Slow burner, that is, until the final hundred pages when the action and pace race along to a (literally) explosive finish.
Reacher is incomparable. Unrelenting. A character I look up to at the same time as being a character you want to be. Like Child, he doesn’t mess around. “I don’t want to put the world to rights,” he says at one point. “I just don’t like people who put the world to wrongs.”
Child delivers an all fronts. The small town, harsh winter setting provides bucket-loads of atmosphere and despite the sparse description, Child manages to make us feel the cold and snow along with Reacher. The plot doesn’t move like a freight train, but the pace never flags. Some books you count pages because you want to know when it’s going to finish. Not a Reacher book. And not this book. You count the pages because you want to know how much is left—because you want it to keep on going. Everything speeds along in the final hundred pages and the questions left unanswered when the final sentence comes leaves a nice cliff-hanger for the next instalment.
Overall, this is classic Child and classic Reacher. Both are on top form.
Highly, highly recommended.
And if you haven’t started this series yet, man, you’re missing out.