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The Affair: A Jack Reacher Novel Paperback – August 4, 2020
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“A veritable tour de force . . . brilliantly executed and deliciously plotted.”—The Washington Times
Everything starts somewhere. For elite military cop Jack Reacher, that somewhere was Carter Crossing, Mississippi, way back in 1997.
Reacher is ordered undercover to investigate the murder of a young woman. Evidence points to a U.S. soldier with powerful friends. Once in Carter Crossing, Reacher meets local sheriff Elizabeth Deveraux, who has a thirst for justice and an appetite for secrets. Uncertain they can trust each other, they reluctantly join forces. Reacher works to uncover the truth, while others try to bury it forever. The conspiracy threatens to shatter his faith in his mission— and turn him into a man to be feared.
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A #1 Wall Street Journal, Amazon Charts, USA Today, and Washington Post bestseller.| Learn more
From the Publisher
“Child is a superb craftsman of suspense.”—Entertainment Weekly
“The truth about Reacher gets better and better.”—Janet Maslin, The New York Times
“Implausible, irresistible Reacher remains just about the best butt-kicker in thriller-lit.”—Kirkus Reviews
“Like his hero Jack Reacher, Lee Child seems to make no wrong steps.”—Associated Press
“Lee Child [is] the current poster-boy of American crime fiction.”—Los Angeles Times
“Indisputably the best escape artist in this escapist genre.”—Marilyn Stasio, The New York Times
“Jack Reacher is much more like the heir to the Op and Marlowe than Spenser ever was.”—Esquire
About the Author
Lee Child is the author of more than two dozen New York Times bestselling Jack Reacher thrillers, with most having reached the #1 position, and the #1 bestselling complete Jack Reacher story collection, No Middle Name. Foreign rights in the Reacher series have sold in one hundred territories. A native of England and a former television director, Lee Child lives in New York City and Wyoming.
- Publisher : Bantam; Reprint edition (August 4, 2020)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 432 pages
- ISBN-10 : 0593355466
- ISBN-13 : 978-0593355466
- Item Weight : 12 ounces
- Dimensions : 5.5 x 0.9 x 8.25 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #48,531 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Top reviews from the United States
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Some common themes running through the "Lone Wolf," "Lone Ranger," "Billy Jack" "Bronson" Reacher series of novels, by Lee Child, including The Affair, which was published in 2011, include those pertaining to the aforementioned volunteer army, the rules of engagement, military down-sizing during peacetime, uniformity and other strict military standards, upward mobility and promotion potential, opportunity to travel and see the world, exotic overseas tours of duty, military values in general, and my personal favorites, civil affairs and total control.
The local Sheriff in a small Mississippi town becomes completely perplexed, baffled and bamboozled by the main character, Major Reacher, and his undercover activities, when the mysterious stranger shows up unexpectedly in town. She cannot help but wonder, "How does he keep his composure in times of such crises?" and "How does he manage and react to the prolonged intervals of intense stress he endures time and time again?"
Whatever some individuals, many of them prior service members, may think about military values, they naturally begin to reflect on abstract, ideological terms like "honor, duty, country." Patriotism. The Stars and Stripes. Or, they simply remember the commercials on television. For instance, the one with the gallant soldier in the field who says with great candor and in all modesty, brimming with pride, "We do more before 9 a.m. than most people do all day long." It drives home a point.
Whenever I pause to reflect on "attention to detail," I remember the grass drills in particular, the extracurricular impromptu exercises performed by a targeted group of selected aspiring soldiers, who for whatever reason had neglected to pack a pair of leather gloves with their warm woolen liners into their field-packs for an upcoming road march. Or, in some cases, were too lazy or defiant to pull them out of their back-packs to show the drill sergeants in charge of the exercise as proof of their readiness. Or, because they were curious and just wanted to be able to participate in grass drills, for the sheer thrill of it all. Who knows what goes on in the minds of soldiers on the sub-conscious level?
Total control? That just meant your platoon was confined to post, for the duration of training or the latest mission. There would be no passes or leave or absenteeism anytime soon.
Civil affairs? That's the letter you received at boot camp or in the theater of operations from your girlfriend. Upon reading and reciting the letter word for word, you reflect on the contents and ponder. "End of story. That's all she wrote."
Rules of engagement in actual hand-to-hand combat between opposing forces in war-time? Kill or be killed. There are no two ways about it. For most other real-world scenarios, deescalation of hostilities is probably the best policy. The threat of imminent danger being the predominant factor. Determent is always a practical expedient.
I saw an old classmate whom I hadn't seen or thought much about since high school. He dropped by my cousin's house the other day to pay his respects, since a member of the family had recently passed away. I was cheered by the sudden remembrance of my youth and vitality upon his arrival, and by the advice he had once given us way back then, when we wanted to run away and join the Marines. He had long ago proclaimed, "Eat the apple and forget the Corps!" On this particular day, however, he had to admit, "I made a pretty good living in the Marines." One thing about it, he obviously knew the importance of staying in shape as you grow older. He didn't appear too flabby or too shabby either. He had taken care of himself over the long haul. There was the issue of the neck-brace he wore, but then we all knew that he liked to spend time on the wild west and reckless side of town on occasion. Must have been due to an altercation, attitude adjustment, or accident.
R. Royce sat squarely on the cushioned seat of a BMW motorcycle in the recreational vehicle show-room. They have quick acceleration you know, and they have quiet, reliable, smooth-running engines. You can't beat the German engineering and metallurgy that goes into the manufacture of one of those things. They boast economical gasoline consumption. Plus, they represent freedom and pure escapism. What more could you want?
By way of comparison, Royce couldn't understand why anyone would want to buy a Harley Davidson motorcycle, without having a major muffler modification kit installed first. They're too loud, belligerent, and obnoxious sounding. Plus, motorcycles need constant maintenance, care, and upkeep. It must be brand loyalty. Or the adrenaline rush you get while driving one. They are built in America. The company is coming out with an electric-powered version of the motorbike in the next few years. It might be worth a second look for someone wanting to purchase in the near future. Speedy, stealthy travel is now possible for those relaxing vacation getaways to paradise. They hardly make any sound at all as you drive along the highway. You are hurling silently through space in peaceful harmony with the universe. How exhilarating! You are riding smoothly, effortlessly along on a soft pillow-cushion cloud of warm air, enjoying the fine scenery as you go, gliding along without a care in the world. Up, up to the mountain peak you ride, high above the clouds until you finally make it over the hump. You've entered a blissful altered state of consciousness.
Meghan began tapping him on the shoulder, then. She said gently, "Earth to Major Royce! Your precious cargo ship on its way to Mars is about to smack into a big asteroid. You'd better change course."
At that point he stopped the show and removed the virtual reality goggles he had been wearing. He was almost sold on the idea.
"We were going to the mall and you were tagging along to help me pick out a new dress for the Spring Fling Formal garden party," she said. "Remember?"
"Your cheap skate prom date has arrived to escort you to the dance." Royce replied, grandiosely.
"I knew it," said Meghan. "An officer and a gentleman."
Here's some of the strong points about this book: (1) the plot is very clever, even though some important facts (as with most Reacher books) are not revealed until the end; and (2) damn, I couldn't put this book (or its audio version by the great narrator, Dick Hill) down. Normally, I can reserve readings for slow and relaxing times of a day, when I don't have work or other activities that I need or want to do. Instead, once this book got going--especially the second half of the book--I had to put everything else aside and spend the day and evening on this book. If I had to drive anywhere alone, I had the audio version synced and playing.
This book is important for Reacher fans, because it describes why and how Reacher left the army, and how he got started on his itinerant lifestyle. So it's not one of Lee Child's greatest books, but its a good book, and if you like the Reacher series, you will enjoy this one. Also, like the other Jack Reacher books, it can be read and enjoyed as a stand-alone book by readers who have not gotten into the Jack Reacher series.
Top reviews from other countries
Although this is book number 16 in the Reacher series, the plot a little bit different to the other books, as the hero hasn’t yet made up his mind to leave the armed forces. This one is set a few months before the first book, Killing Floor, when Reacher is still a major in the army – it also hints at the story concerning Reacher’s brother, Joe, and his links to the treasury department. The story is intriguing and sets up a murder mystery that leads Reacher (and the reader) in different directions as he tries to uncover the truth.
An enjoyable read that kept me wondering all the way through.