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Jack Reacher - Wow!


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Well, I have now read 3 of Lee Child's Reacher books, (see, I don't do things by halves), and have formed an opinion. I thought after reading two that they were formulaic, typical of the Tough Guy helps rid the world of corruption genre, with professional women totally committed to their work, and dressed for the part, (in silk shirts!) The descriptions of the merits of individual guns bored me, and the situations Reacher finds himself in seemed so beyond the realms of possibility that I shook my head before buying another one.

'Cos that Lee Child can tell a story! They're an easy read, leaving you eager for more. It was a surprise when one book was written in the first person. I had thought that maybe I'd get an insight into his character, but I think Child missed an opportunity there. Reacher was as unreachable as ever.

I haven't read them in any order, and am intrigued to read the one that comes after 61 Hours where Reacher doesn't surface after a huge explosion. Please tell me he's ok.

 Lee Child may not be American, but his books are written in Americanese, where he makes up verbs from their noun forms. I've put my 3 books upstairs on my bookshelf and can't be bothered going up there to find an example, but you'll probably know what I mean.

And some good news: whilst I wouldn't buy any more of his books, I've asked my son-in-law to get his ones down from the loft to lend me. Think I could be engaged for a while

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I agree about the way Lee Child keeps you hanging. Just read "Killing floor", which sees the introduction of  Jack Reacher (1998!) and it was truly gripping. I was quite intrigued to discover that Lee Child is not American, but British, as he has the American thriller genre to a tee.

Killing Floor: "In a small town in Georgia, the former military policeman gets off a bus and is thrown into the county jail. For a murder he didn't commit."

Excellent airport read, now I can look forward to the other Jack Reachers (I will probably find them on the secondhand stall at the English book Fair for 1 euro each, yipppeeeee!)

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 They are an easy read, but I suspect many books of this genre are - of course Reacher is fairly unbelievable, but its fiction......

I like it when characters come back into his life.......

Yes Reacher does survive.....and apparently there is another book expected to be published in the Autumn, for the moment titled 'The Affair'

I'm currently into the Bosch books of Micheal Connelly, which have some similarities too, but they are good easy reading.

After this one I'm going to read Andrea Levys new book The Long Song, just for a change of genre

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I thoroughly enjoyed all the Harry Bosch books. The only one which disappointed me was Nine Dragons because i found it just too far fetched. I think i like Bosch on his own too, without Micky Haller involved in the same book.

Rebus, Bosch and Reacher... I'd give a lot to have three new titles drop into my lap this afternoon! This rugby is too difficult to watch!!
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Agreed about Michael Connelly's Harry Bosch - discovered  about 10 years ago, for me it was the first of its genre! I have enjoyed the last few a little less, though.

And how about author Robert Crais with his Elvis Cole character?

And James Lee Burke?

And has anyone mentioned the Millenium Trilogy yet? Such a shame that author Larsson died so early, so it will remain just a trilogy.

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[quote user="virginia.c"]I thoroughly enjoyed all the Harry Bosch books. The only one which disappointed me was Nine Dragons because i found it just too far fetched. I think i like Bosch on his own too, without Micky Haller involved in the same book. Rebus, Bosch and Reacher... I'd give a lot to have three new titles drop into my lap this afternoon! This rugby is too difficult to watch!![/quote]

I was sent 9 Dragons and The Reversal first, so I have kind of gone in the wrong order - so far only read one with Haller in, The Brass Verdict, but I liked it. Just on the last 100 pages of Trunk Music......

 

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But i can't remember most of what i've read, regardless of author. My excuse is that I've read so much!! Well done with your list by the way! But, i know i enjoyed most of them. Moving on in my random author vein, have you read Colm Toibin's Blackwater Lightship? Beautiful writing.
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Colm Toibin is a familiar name, but would I remember anything I read by him? No.[:D] although I am sure I have. Trouble is, I keep very few books, put them back into circulation after I (or we) have read them.

Virginia, no merit for the Patrick Gale list, just copied and pasted[;-)]

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[quote user="5-element"]And has anyone mentioned the Millenium Trilogy yet? Such a shame that author Larsson died so early, so it will remain just a trilogy.[/quote]

I really enjoyed the books, 5-E. Along with millions of other people. [;-)] And unusually (I think) the each book got better. Normally, the plotting / premise in a third book is stretched out and often hardly worth the effort but the third book in the trilogy was the best. I couldn't put it down. Fortunately OH bought them for me for Christmas so work was not beckoning as I sat in front of the fire with a box of choccies and read. Bliss.

One of the best Michael Connolly books is Blood Work. Or maybe I think that because it was one of the first I read years ago - pre-movie.

I've been re-reading a few of Sue Grafton's Kinsey Millhone books recently and enjoying those. She writes the alphabet series of books and she manages to keep each story fresh and interesting.

And I like Lee Childs too. However, a writer I don't bother with nowadays is James Patterson. I'm not surprised he heads the "most borrowed" lists at libraries... I wouldn't bother buying his more recent books.

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I agree too re. Richard Patterson. "Along Came a Spider" was great, and after that it started to go downhill.

For sheer suspense I really enjoy Dennis Lehane's books.

Have also liked the earlier Jonathan Kellerman's books, (psycho-thrillers are my favourites) - but less so the ones he wrote with his wife Fay. To stay in the Kellerman family, I was impressed with the one  (which was it?) written by their son Jesse Kellerman. http://www.jessekellerman.com/new/books/ 

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Thanks for that list, 5e. I'll give Richard Patterson a try. It's interesting that you say some of the later books in a series are less good. I certainly found that with the Scarpetta books by Patricia Cornwell, for me they became just farcical and I stopped reading them. It's not true of many other series though, to my mind the Brunetti books of Donna Leon are maybe getting darker but are just as absorbing.

I'm afraid I forget what I've read too, in fact it's a disgrace how many books I've bought in duplicate, not realising that I've already got them. I've been known to double up before I've even read the first copy. It's those 3 for 2 offers in Waterstones, or 2 for £8 in Tesco and Sainsbury. Greed!                              

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I know i've made the comment before on a different thread, but Ian Rankin's Rebus series peaked in his penultimate book for me. He really did buck the trend. Again, only my opinion, but i think Frederick Forsyth and John Le Carre have only churned out pot boilers recently. I loved Forsyth's early stuff and George Smiley because i was (and still am) intrigued by that period of history.

As a child i adored Victor Canning and Gavin Lyall, 'Venus with Pistol' anyone??
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I am with those who enjoy Michael Connolly’s Harry Bosch (do read Void Moon) and Robert Crais’s Elvis Cole. Where these books have an edge on Lee Childs's Jack Reacher is that Reacher just plods through whatever situation never moved emotionally or hurt.

Sue Grafton's Kinsey Millhone book are written beautifully. I like the way she is trapped in a time bubble but it would be interesting to see her in 2011. Would she be running a bureau with a couple of investigators? Would she have taken over (the late?) Harry's house as an office?

I agree that the Scarpetta books by Patricia Cornwell took a real nosedive. I have just finished Jonathan Kellerman's True Detectives which like all his books is hard to put down and has good new protagonists but it has all got a tad mechanical.

Like Virginia C I grew up with Gavin Lyall and think the Smiley books the best of Le Carré's work.

Recently I have found Catriona McPherson's 1920's books with the heroine Dandy Guiver to be very enjoyable if a bit long and convoluted.

Also Tony Hillerman's Navaho detectives have a wonderful sense of Place.

I would like to know what those of you who live in France make of the Bruno Courreges books by Martin Walker.

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Renaud, you're right about the lack of emotion of Reacher. He's less real because of it.

Le Carre is surely the Master of the spy book. To be read again and again, and savoured. The Smiley series is excellent, and engages our emotions. Page turner even now. Actually there's a new thriller by Alan Furst soon  to be reviewed by the TV book club, and apparently if you like Le Carre, you'll like Furst! The book is called Spies of the Balkans and is set in 1940. The same book club reviewed Bleed for Me by Michael Robotham last night. It's a psychological thriller and got the thumbs up from everyone. Two to try, along with some of the suggestions made on this thread?

Thought I'd mention that next Saturday 5th March is World Book Day. I signed up for the great British book give-away, so I'll be collecting 48 copies of Dissolution by CJ Sansom and giving them free to all my friends and neighbours. Can't wait. Might celebrate the day by going on Amazon and ordering a few of the books you've recommended here.

Happy reading!

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But..... He always makes sure the bad guys get what's coming to them! And in the times we live in where even the most terrible crimes seem to go (relatively) unpunished, I for one enjoy the triumph of good over not so good!

Some good tips for future reading on this thread, i will be trying some of those mentioned.

And wasn't Alec Guiness perfect in the role of George Smiley??
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