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Publisher's Summary

New Year's Day, 1990. The Berlin Wall is coming down. Soon America won't have any enemies left to fight. The army is under pressure to downsize. Jack Reacher is the duty military police officer on a base in North Carolina when he takes a call reporting a dead soldier. The body was found in a sleazy motel used by local hookers. Reacher tells the local cop to handle it, it sounds like the guy just had a heart attack. But the dead man turns out to have been a two-star general on a secret mission. And then, many miles away, when Reacher goes to the general's house to break the sad news, he finds a battered corpse: the general's wife. Lee Child's new stomach-churning, palm-sweating thriller turns back the clock to Jack Reacher's army days. For the first time we meet a younger Reacher, a Reacher not yet disillusioned with military life. A Reacher with family. A Reacher in dogtags and starched uniform who imposes army discipline, if only in his own pragmatic way.

A Reacher as far from the no-credit card, no-last-known-address drifter of the previous eight novels as is possible to imagine.

©2004 Lee Child (P)2005 Random House Audiobooks

Critic Reviews

"Another great book for him, gives us hero Jack Reacher's back-story. Hurrah." ( Daily Telegraph [London])

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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    1 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

1920’s voice

The voice of Teacher was so frustrating
It was as if I was listening to send up of an old 1920’s private eye.
Very annoying!

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Lewis
  • 11-02-2007

Reacher at his best

I love Jack Reacher and will read every book written with him as the character. This book tells you how it all started and you can feel Reacher's frustration with the "military system" and clarifies why he eventually wanted out. Great plot and good reading. Reacher is one of the most interesting characters I've seen in any novel.

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    5 out of 5 stars
  • John
  • 19-03-2007

A good military read.

My first with this author. A great storyline with tension and intrigue without drawing everything out until the end. I particularly liked his style of letting us into the secrets without giving away too much of the coming plot.His correct use of military terminology is appealing. I am hearing a second Child book now and am hooked on his style. Recommended, a 5* for sure.

13 of 13 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Kathryn
  • 31-07-2006

A real page turner

This was my first Jack Reacher and I couldn't put it down. Very exciting and gripping. Sent my heart rate up on several occasions. Great for a holiday read.

10 of 10 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Frances G
  • 11-04-2008

totally absorbing ...

My first introduction to Lee Child, to Jack Reacher and to the multi-talented Kerry Shale and I can't wait to download my next choice. As a recent immigrant to life in the USofA, I needed a crash course in language, style and priorities. I now know the difference between class A's and BDU's and all so inoffensively absorbed, i also now know how to do a u-turn the american way thanks to Somer !!His visits to Paris were poignant and real, this book was well researched, and accurate, I am spoiled for choice to assimilate more, but i know i am hooked !

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Churchill1940
  • 10-12-2017

One of The Best shorter Reacher Books and Stories

A great early insight to Reacher and the work he did in the US Army military police. Taking no BS from anyone and solving a case you're going to love to listen too. Lee Childs, just love your books, keep them coming.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Resigned
  • 07-04-2009

A Happy new discovery

Like other reviewers, I had never heard of Lee Child, and bought "The Enemy" on special offer. I was impressed, I know Child lives in the U.S. but being a Brit myself I don't find the local optput of genres I like so appealing as the American scene always has.
I looked up the Website and have a list in chronological order of the Jack Reacher novels - starting with 1997 "Killing Floor" and then 1998 "Die Trying", 1999 "Tripwire", 2000 "The Visitor", none of which seem available on Audible - I will read these on hardcopy from the local library before going back to audible.
Many thanks nevertheless to Audible for giving me yet more to plan to read/hear.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful