Delacorte, May 2003, 352 pp.
Jack Reacher is minding his business when he sees the cop and others go after Richard Beck in what appears to be an abduction attempt. Deciding in a nanosecond to become involved, Jack kills the cop and the others kill Richard's bodyguards. Jack takes Richard with him as they escape the bloodbath. Richard persuades Jack to take him to his home in Abbot, Maine where he swears his wealthy father, an oriental rug vendor, will reward him. Reluctantly, Reacher agrees only when Richard shows a missing ear sliced off from a previous kidnapping.
However, what is obvious is not always clear when it comes to Reacher. The kidnapping was a ploy staged so that Reacher could infiltrate the impregnable home of Beck, who deals in a lot more than just rugs. Jack knows that Beck is his mark to finding the dead Quinn. Though not one to normally become involved, Reacher has unfinished business with a man reported dead for some time.
The seventh Reacher novel is the usual terrific wild ride along side a macho maniac who fears nothing including a game of Russian Roulette in which he is the only player. The story line is exciting because nothing is what it first seems although Lee Child always clarifies the obvious with a new obvious quite quickly. The audience never fully knows who is doing in whom with Reacher dissecting the middle. This testosterone thriller will persuade the sub-genre throng to reach out for this novel and once readers know Jack the previous works too.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner