Title: Die Trying
Author: Lee Child
Hi guys, so following on from my review of the first Jack Reacher novel, Killing Floor – I decided to continue reading the series with the second novel, Die Trying so let’s jump right in.
The story starts with Jack Reacher walking down a Chicago street, still drifting since his previous adventure in Arizona when a young woman on crutches accidentally drops her laundry right in front of him. Reacher goes to assist her when suddenly three men appear out of nowhere and kidnap them at gunpoint.
Meanwhile, three carpenters are at work on a new room within an existing room in an old building, one where no one can escape and they are gradually picked off, one by one…
In the truck, Reacher learns more about the mysterious woman, who is FBI agent Holly Johnson and daughter of a high ranking general in the US Army. but as they near closer to their journey’s end they find themselves descending into a nightmarish world of milita forces and extremism right on their doorstep…
I absolutely loved reading this novel – there is really no other way I can describe it. The book was brilliantly readable and I found myself devouring it in two-three hour reading sessions at a time.
Jack Reacher continues to be an extremely fascinating character and I loved the leading lady character, Holly Johnson. Though it is typical for these types of novels to have a man and woman dynamic (similar to the James Bond novels
) I really liked how Child has written Holly’s character in this novel – she really does hold her own and is in many ways Jack’s equal and in comparison to Roscoe in the first novel, Holly is for me a much more interesting and rounded character.
I also really liked the political themes in this novel compared to the previous one – Beau Borken is an evil villain and some of the views expressed in the novel, that Borken doesn’t like Mexicans taking jobs from Americans could just as easily be applied today in the tumultuous times America and Britain find themselves in. The fact it all takes place in America however, rather than some far flung country, or in a fantasy setting, makes this even more disturbing to read.
The book moves along at a rip-roaring pace and though most of the events in the novel are your typical action movie tropes, I really like how Child slows down these moments and really breaks them down into the finest detail without ever losing tension e.g. when Reacher shoots a sniper’s rifle at one point you can almost picture ever minute movement and blow of the wind.
The book also has several twists throughout the story and the book did manage to fool me on a couple of occasions which I won’t spoil here but as I have mentioned in previous reviews if a thriller can do this then it will always live for a long time in my memory.
A fantastic thriller and sequel to Killing Floor which takes the original and makes it 10x faster, slicker and more interesting – clear some space in the diary and enjoy this rip-roaring thriller.