The killer fired only six shots, and five men died; so it's not surprising that lawmen zeroed in on a trained military sniper as the culprit. The only problem is that James Barr is innocent. When he convinces former Army police investigator Jack Reacher to take his case, however, the danger actually escalates….
Mr. Child's idea of heroism has nihilism around the edges but a fierce, fighting spirit at its core. In marked contrast to the brooding figures who otherwise dominate contemporary detective stories, Reacher is not one for self-doubt. His is a two-fisted decency. But Mr. Child also gives him amazing powers of deduction, a serious conscience and the occasional touch of tenderness. It's a wildly improbable mixture, one that can't be beat.
The New York Times
While reader Hill has proven himself to be an all-purpose narrator with a 200-plus audiography, his specialty is interpreting suspense and crime fiction like this bullet-paced thriller. Written lean enough to make Hemingway seem chatty, the ninth novel to feature the resourceful ex-military cop Jack Reacher begins with a bare-bones description of an unemotional sniper prepping for and carrying out a mass slaying in the business area of an unnamed Indiana city. The killer's dispassion is chilling, and Hill, who has narrated the author's previous titles, matches the mood with an objectivity that raises the goose-bump level even higher. When Reacher, one of fiction's more reticent heroes, arrives on the scene, Hill provides him with a brusque, confident, properly manly voice, but adds a note of wariness that subtly suggests the adventurer's cynical nature. This tops a gallery of smart audio portraits, each with his own identifiable accent. Child has purposely designed the novel to move forward unfettered by stylish flourishes, and Hill follows that plan, concentrating mainly on increasing the pace as the story speedballs to its satisfying conclusion. Simultaneous release with the Delacorte hardcover (Reviews, May 23). (July) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Accused of five murders in what looks like an open-and-shut case, the bad guy fires his last shot: he wants to speak to Jack Reacher. Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Reacher's back and Child's got him tracking a complex case, springing surprises and dispatching a nasty crew in a punishing finish. For number nine in the Jack Reacher series, author Child (The Enemy, 2004, etc.) dispatches his singular hero to Indiana, where a sniper has just taken out five victims as they headed home on a Friday afternoon. Evidence at the scene-notably, a shell case and a quarter bearing the same fingerprints-seems to clinch the case against James Barr, a former Army Infantry sniper. He's arrested but insists he's the wrong man: "Get Jack Reacher for me," he says. But the game is not quite afoot. Instead of clearing Barr, Reacher wants to convict him. Years ago, it seems, Reacher was an investigating MP when Barr, in an attack very similar to the Indiana shootout, shot and killed four people in Kuwait City. Twisted military politics, however, intervened in the case and Barr walked free. Reacher vowed revenge. But now Barr's sister Rosemary, convinced of her brother's innocence, entreats lawyer Helen Rodin to take the case-a case that Rodin's father, the district attorney, will prosecute. The suspect, alas, recovering from a prison beating that has left him suffering from amnesia, offers little information to help his plight. Still, Helen and Rosemary grab at straws, and, sifting through their clues in a keen, fascinating analysis, Reacher concludes Barr really is innocent. Who, then, set up Barr as the sniper? And who is trying to get Reacher off the case? Is it the Russian gang that's been shadowing him since he arrived in town? Who's behind the thugs who tried to work over Reacher when he left a local sports bar? Are they also behind the murder of a woman Reacher metthere? Child caps his steadily building narrative with a gonzo action scene that seems a little heavy for Indiana. Par for the series: canny plotting, tight prose, swift tempo.
"Reacher's back ... gonzo action ... canny plotting, tight prose, swift tempo."—Kirkus Reviews
"Nothing is what it seems in the riveting puzzle, as vivid set pieces and rapid-fire dialogue culminate in a slam-bang showdown in the villains' lair."—Publishers Weekly
"Child has a gift for throwing you a curve just when you think you've seen it all."—Rocky Mountain News
"Sparse prose and fast pacing—[One Shot] is sure to be found in many hammocks this summer."—Chicago Tribune
"If you're looking for a new series, this [the Jack Reacher novels] is one of the best in the thriller genre."—Salt Lake Tribune
“Electrifying . . . This series is utterly addictive.”—New York Times