Having read Killing Floors -I moved onto Die Trying the second in the Jack Reacher series by Lee Child. I was gripped by Die Trying; the writing is excellent and paints a vivid word picture. I could almost smell and taste Montana and the crisp mountain country air. The second Jack Reacher novel has him as an innocent by-stander caught up in the action when an attractive FBI agent is kidnapped by a crazy militia.
Reacher has grown since the first book and developed weaknesses, which is good as before I thought he was a little bit of a super-man. The other characters are all well fleshed out and with few exceptions feel very realistic. I’ve enjoyed this book and am now prepared to label myself a fan of Lee Child.
At times there is a lack of reality and inconsistencies, for example:
- Our heroine has an injured knee which necessitates her using crutches at the beginning of the book; she can barely walk a few paces. Later on when captured, she is subjected to a vicious kicking of the injured limb and we are told that Reacher heard it crunch. Subsequently, however, she seems to be not only not any worse than originally, but a good deal better, managing to climb, descend, walk with Reacher and fight like Bruce Lee, etc, all with no apparent pain.
- Early in the novel we are told that Reacher has hardly been round America; he has spent so much time abroad. This is illustrated by him telling Holly that he hasn’t visited many standard touristy landmarks yet but intends to. However later on, when describing the courthouse building in Yorke, it says that it is similar to hundreds of similar courthouse buildings that Reacher had seen all over the country.
- I do agree that the baddies are also cardboard cutouts, just to be killed off to make up the body count.
Despite all this, I was riveted, especially as the writing was so vivid.