Lee Child
Die Trying

Television writer Lee Child's otherwise riveting first thriller, Killing Floor, was criticized by some reviewers because of an unconvincing coincidence at its center. Child addresses that problem in his second book--and thumbs his nose at those reviewers--by having his hero, ex-military policeman Jack Reacher, just happen to be walking by a Chicago dry cleaner when an attractive young FBI agent named Holly Johnson comes out carrying nine expensive outfits and a crutch to support her soccer-injured knee. As Holly stumbles, Reacher grabs her and her garments--which gets him kidnapped along with her by a trio of very determined badguys. "He had no problem with how he had gotten grabbed up in the first place," Child writes. "Just a freak of chance had put him alongside Holly Johnson at the exact time the snatch was going down. He was comfortable with that. He understood freak chances. Life was built out of freak chances, however much people would like to pretend otherwise." Lucky for Holly--whose father just happens to be an Army general and current head of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, thus making her a tempting target for a bunch of Montana-based extremists--Reacher still has all the skills and strengths associated with his former occupation. And Child still knows how to write scenes of violent action better than virtually anyone else around. --Dick Adler

Pages: 557

Published: 1 April 1999

Price: 180THB