|Plot Summary of Without Fail|
When the US Secret Service suspects that one of their own agents may be behind a series of death threats against Vice-President Brook Armstrong, they need an outsider to investigate. So they hire tough former Military Policeman Jack Reacher to do the job. Reacher figures he needs someone to watch his back, so he calls up old army buddy Frances Neagley, now running a security outfit out of Chicago. Neagley is as tough as Reacher and twice as sexy.
This synopsis report prepared by Stephen Coombs
Putnam, May 2002, 24.95, 384 pp.
In charge of providing secret service protection to Vice President elect Brook Armstrong, M.E. Froelich worries about keeping the former North Dakota senator safe. She remembers a discussion with her deceased mentor and lover Joe Reacher that the best way to do a security audit is to use an outsider. She traces Joe's brother Jack, who has no paper trail, through a bank transaction in Atlantic City. M.E. hires Jack to “assassinate” the vice president.
When several days pass with no attempts by Jack, M.E. figures he did not try until he suddenly contacts her. Jack and his cohort Frances Neagley prove to M.E. that they had three definite hits on the VP if they chose to really kill him. M.E. invites Jack and Frances to meet her boss, Stuyvesant as the mock security audit was more than a test as the newly elected Veep has received threats. The Secret Service hires them to uncover if the threats are genuine and to help prevent the killing of the vice president.
Jack Reacher is already a great protagonist, but his latest appearance, WITHOUT FAIL, is his strongest adventure yet because he stays in character yet works inside a great political thriller that reaches into the highest levels of DC. Though the story line is loaded with action, the key cast members are fully developed so that new readers know Jack and long term fans appreciate Frances and M.E. Readers will demand more tales of Jack and Frances perhaps in her own series while placing Lee Child's novel at the top of the year's political thrillers.
This synopsis report prepared by Harriet Klausner
|Chapter Analysis of Without Fail|
Ratings are on a 1-10 scale (Low to High)
Composition of Book
descript. of violence and chases - 10%
Planning/preparing, gather info, debate puzzles/motives - 55%
Feelings, relationships, character bio/development - 15%
How society works & physical descript. (people, objects, places) - 20%
Tone of story
- very upbeat
- suspenseful (sophisticated fear)
Time/era of story:
- 2000+ (Present)
Cloak & Dagger Plotlets:
- preventing/finding assassin
Kid or adult book?
- Adult or Young Adult Book
Who's the terrorist enemy here?
- evil subgroup in own govt
- law enforcement gone bad
- champion of justice
Has special powers?
Magical/mental powers of main character:
- super strength
- is very quick
- New York
Accounts of torture and death?
- generic/vague references to death/punishment
- moderately detailed references to deaths
Explicit sex in book?
What kind of sex:
- descript of kissing
- touching of anatomy
- actual description of sex
- descript. of breasts
- descript. of other female areas
A lot of techno jargon?
Kind of jargon?
- military technology
Unusual forms of death
Unusual form of death?
Amount of dialog
- significantly more dialog than descript
- roughly even amounts of descript and dialog
Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
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