My Review of The Affair (A Jack Reacher Novel) by Lee Child
I liked this book. It had a little different formula than the usual Reacher books, i.e., Reacher wanders into a town, someone with a sympathetic background gets in trouble, Reacher comes to the rescue using methods that are sometimes underhanded, Reacher gets the bad guy who is usually a cop or someone of authority who has turned to the dark side, Reacher sails off into the sunset after sleeping with the prettiest woman in town.
Unlike other Reacher stories, this one focuses on the case Reacher was assigned while in the Army which leads to his taking an involuntary separation. It begins at the end, and then goes back to the beginning to fill in the back story and bring the reader up to current time as presented in the first three chapters. At first I was confused because Reacher kept talking about how things were back in 1997 prior to the 9/11 attacks, and there was mention that this was only a few days after he was first assigned to the case. But once the story got going, everything smoothed out and I found that it was a quick read with good character building and story substance.
Working undercover, Reacher travels to a small, middle-of-nowhere town, Carter Crossing with ties to the military housed in Fort Pelham to investigate the murder of a young girl. After getting to town and meeting some of the locals, including the sheriff, he finds there were three murders with the same MO and another two outside of the U.S. What follows is an investigation with several leads, some dead ends, and quite a bit of danger from both the local folks, as well as enlisted. Reacher must play his hunches and use himself as bait to resolve the crime.
As always, he gets the beautiful woman and sails off into the sunset at the end, but it is well worth the read. I finished the book in two and a half days. I could have finished it sooner, it was that fast. There’s action, intrigue, and smart dialog. Two thumbs up for this Lee Child story.