You have reached your limit of free articles this month.

Enjoy unlimited access to SpringfieldNewsSun.com

Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks.

GREAT REASONS TO SUBSCRIBE TODAY!

  • IN-DEPTH REPORTING
  • INTERACTIVE STORYTELLING
  • NEW TOPICS & COVERAGE
  • ePAPER
X

You have read of premium articles.

Get unlimited access to all of our breaking news, in-depth coverage and interactive features. Starting at just 99c for 8 weeks.

X

Welcome to SpringfieldNewsSun.com

Your source for Clark and Champaign counties’ hometown news. All readers have free access to a limited number of stories every month.

If you are a News-Sun subscriber, please take a moment to login for unlimited access.

Jack Reacher on the road again


“Never Go Back” by Lee Child (Delacorte Press, 400 pages, $28; audiobook, Random House Audio, 11 compact discs, $45).

In 2003 a somewhat unknown writer came out to Yellow Springs. His name is Lee Child. He had just published his novel “Persuader,” the seventh book in his series featuring Jack Reacher, a former military policeman who wanders America like some avenging angel. Or demon.

I interviewed him on my WYSO radio show. I was intrigued. I have been a Lee Child fan ever since, a real Reacher Creature. He recently published the 18th Reacher. “Never Go Back” is an international bestseller. This author is no longer an unknown.

To thoroughly immerse myself in a particular book I will read it while listening to the audiobook version simultaneously. That’s what I did for “Never Go Back.” The audiobook is performed by the veteran reader Dick Hill. The magazine Audiofile has named him a “Voice of Century.”

He’s the consummate pro.

Fans of this series will expect Reacher to be on the road again. His luggage consists of a toothbrush, an ATM card and just the clothes he’s wearing. When he needs a change of apparel, he’ll buy a new outfit then discard what he had on. That’s the Reacher way.

When Reacher was an MP he was based in northern Virginia across the Potomac from Washington, D.C. In Child’s 2010 book “61 Hours” Reacher was battling bad guys in South Dakota. In that story he spent a lot of time on the telephone talking to Major Susan Turner back in Virginia.

Major Turner is the Commanding Officer now of Reacher’s former MP unit.

She has Reacher’s old job. In some subsequent books Reacher has been making his circuitous way back to Virginia. He had only heard her voice. He wanted to meet her in person. As “Never Go Back” begins Reacher has finally arrived in Virginia.

He is not welcomed when he arrive at Turner’s headquarters. He quickly becomes enmeshed in a confused and complicated conspiracy. Suffice it to say without dealing out any spoilers that Reacher and Turner are incarcerated, separately. Then they escape together.

Our fugitives spend the rest of the book attempting to solve a deadly mystery and rehabilitate their reputations. They get to know each other. He reveals himself to her: “I think 99 of us grow up to love the campfire, and one grows up to hate it. Ninety-nine of us grow up to fear the howling wolf, and one grows up to envy it. And I’m that guy.”

While Turner isn’t feral like Reacher, she does have much in common with him. Our secretive lone wolf admits to her that “I don’t care what people think.” He does seem to care what she thinks, at least a little bit. Warning: If gratuitous violence offends you please skip the section in which Reacher deals with a couple of bad guys on a cross-country flight. He can be very unkind.

Last year Child’s 2005 novel “One Shot” transitioned to the big screen as “Jack Reacher” with the diminutive Tom Cruise portraying the massive Jack Reacher. That was bizarre. The books sell like crazy. “Never Go Back” rocketed to No. 1 on the best-selling fiction charts in Australia, New Zealand and Ireland. This week the book will be No. 1 on the New York Times list. Lee Child is unstoppable. But then, so is Reacher.


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Springfield Entertainment

Celebrities show solidarity with Women's March
Celebrities show solidarity with Women's March

Scores of celebrities attended marches in Washington and other cities Saturday joining millions of people across the country in a show of solidarity with the movement bringing attention to women’s rights the day following President Donald Trump’s inauguration.
'House of Cards' will 'Bring the Terror' in Season 5
'House of Cards' will 'Bring the Terror' in Season 5

As the nation watched Donald Trump being sworn in as the 45th president, Frank Underwood already was planning ahead. Netflix released a teaser Friday for the fifth season of its presidential drama, "House of Cards." Underwood, the crafty politician played by Kevin Spacey, will return to action on May 30, Netflix announced.   The teaser...
Wright State illuminates Modern Art
Wright State illuminates Modern Art

One of the terrific ongoing arts collaborations in the Miami Valley is known as CELIA. The innovative Wright State University program — the acronym stands for Collaborative Education, Leadership and Innovation in the Arts — benefits both our community and the school’s students by bringing top-notch artists to town to interact with...
Wright State expects fewer foreign students because of ‘Trump effect’
Wright State expects fewer foreign students because of ‘Trump effect’

Wright State expects to enroll fewer international students in the short term because of what provost Tom Sudkamp referred to in a trustees meeting on Friday as “the Trump effect.” Sudkamp made the comment, which he said is “commonly used” in higher education, just hours after the inauguration of Donald Trump as the nation&rsquo...
'NCIS: Los Angeles,' 'Crossing Jordan' actor Miguel Ferrer dead at 61
'NCIS: Los Angeles,' 'Crossing Jordan' actor Miguel Ferrer dead at 61

Actor Miguel Ferrer, who starred in the TV shows "NCIS: Los Angeles” and "Crossing Jordan," in addition to the film "RoboCop" and doing voiceover work in "Mulan," has died at age 61 Thursday, Variety reported. Ferrer had been battling cancer. "Today, 'NCIS: Los Angeles' lost a beloved family member...
More Stories