Reacher teams up with some of his old buddies from his MP unit to find out who did one of their friends in. Since these people are Reacher’s buddies they’re all as messed up as he is – only in different ways.
Reacher still thinks that he is the Procurator of Justice and he Knows what is Best. He still knows how to finish any fight he gets into. He’s still a drifter with little money and no possessions except a toothbrush. But he’s also tempered by the appearance of his former associates – each of whom is probably equally as crazy but in different enough ways that they seem to add up to one whole person.
For a Reacher book on revenge it is surprisingly light on violence. This one reminds me of why I liked the first book I read in the series. It has a group of people who are competent and talented figuring out what happened to their friend.
Some of the usual weaknesses are still there, like Reacher’s ability to always know exactly how long everything will take simply by running a statistical analysis – in his head. Lee Child is very repetitive at times. Certain phrases become poignant when repeated but after awhile they are just annoying.
The really grating problems are mostly hidden, like surviving improbable fights and gangs of football players who all have the same first name and Reacher’s seeming inability to resolve any conversation without seriously injuring somebody.
In this book, despite the revenge he is mellower and actually seems like a real person, like he was in The Enemy. We get to see that there are people that he actually cares about.
This book is perfect for one of those days when you’ve spent all your time trying to wrap your head around quantum physics, only to realize that by its very nature it is actually not head-wrap-aroundable and you really just need to listen to some people figure out who the bad guys are, outsmart them, beat them up and make them cry – it’s okay if they inadvertently thwart a terrorist attack against the United States as well.