Past Tense: A Jack Reacher Novel

Lee Child. Delacorte, $28.99 (400p) ISBN 978-0-399-59351-2
Early in bestseller Child’s superb 23rd Jack Reacher novel (after 2017’s The Midnight Line), the peripatetic Reacher reaches a fork in a road in rural New Hampshire; he chooses the path heading to Laconia, “his late father’s place of birth.” At the same time, just 30 miles away, a young Canadian couple on their way south have car trouble and stop at a small motel, finding they’re apparently its only guests. Reacher uncovers few traces of his father’s existence, other than a 75-year-old assault case in which Stan Reacher is named. But he does stir up a world of trouble when he steps in to help a woman under attack and gives her assailant—the son of a well-connected underworld figure—a humiliating beating. While Reacher is dealing with a revenge posse, the Canadian couple discover just how strange their motel is. Child neatly interweaves multiple narratives, ratchets up the suspense (the reveal of the motel plot is delicious), and delivers a powerful, satisfying denouement. Fans will enjoy learning more of this enduring character’s roots, and Child’s spare prose continues to set a very high bar. Agent: Darley Anderson, Darley Anderson Literary. (Nov.)
Reviewed on: 09/10/2018
Release date: 11/05/2018
Pre-Recorded Audio Player - 978-1-987147-25-4
Paperback - 544 pages - 978-1-984833-66-2
Compact Disc - 978-1-5247-7431-8
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Audio book sample courtesy of Penguin Random House Audio

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