In a Chicago suburb, a dentist is met in his office parking lot by three men and ordered into the trunk of his Lexus. On a downtown sidewalk, Jack Reacher and an unknown woman are abducted in broad daylight by two men – practiced and confident – who stop them at gunpoint and hustle them into the same sedan. Then Reacher and the woman are switched into a second vehicle and hauled away, leaving the dentist bound and gagged inside his car with the woman’s abandoned possessions, two gallons of gasoline. . . and a burning match. The FBI is desperate to rescue the woman, a Special Agent from the Chicago office, because the FBI always – always – takes care of its own, and because this woman is not just another agent. Reacher and the woman join forces, against seemingly hopeless odds, to outwit their captors and escape. But the FBI thinks Jack is one of the kidnappers – and when they close in, the Bureau snipers will be shooting to kill.
Lee Child continues to amaze me with his ability to write stories in settings around the United States as if he has lived here all of his life. The native U.K. author pulled me into his second Jack Reacher book and it was every bit as good as the first (better in some respects). What I liked about it is that it stands alone as a novel, but gives the reader that read the first book little tidbits to satisfy that feeling of having been with the character before.
Once again, Jack Reacher is aligned with a female character that is not exactly in need of rescue and can hold her own. She is an FBI agent who is kidnapped by a militia group and transported to their territory in Montana. Reacher is an innocent bystander that is pulled along for the ride. The kidnappers underestimate him and the Feds think he’s one of the suspects.
There are some great twists and turns in the book and not everyone is exactly what they seem. Child does a masterful job of describing the sights and sounds of the various places where the action takes place through the instinctive insight of his protagonist.
I truly enjoyed this book and highly recommend it. It gets five out of five pizzas.