Book Review: Personal by Lee Child (Jack Reacher#19)
Author: Lee Child
Plot: There has been an attack on French President and the suspect is a person who was locked up by Jack Reacher years ago and now he is out.Reacher is roped in to catch him before he strikes again.Now for the first time Jack Reacher will be leaving American Soil in pursuit of this suspect
Rating: 4/5 stars
Where is Reacher?
No matter what Jack Reacher series will always have my blind spot and I will always be partial to it. But how far can it go? My entire reading life practically grew up on this series. Unlike all other alpha male stereotypes prevalent in our book world, I find Reacher more apt for the title. Reacher is physically and mentally strong and at the same time does not hover or cling on to something and has a clear definition of right and wrong and his way of enforcing it is what takes the glory. Reacher=Alpha male personified as simple as that.
That was the past. Let’s talk about what is going on with the book “personal”, the latest Reacher offering. I am seriously starting to come out of my cocoon and seeing things for what it is. Reacher is getting commercialized. He is lost somewhere between publication requirements and business commitments. The Jack reacher you find in Personal is not the same smart ass/kickass Reacher you fell in love in the first book, Killing Floor. Either that or I have seriously OD-ed myself on the Reacher series that my expectations are off the charts
The character seriously lacks every charm that had to him in this book. Part of why I like Reacher is his “in your face” answers, smarty remarks and above all his good old “kiss with the fist” talent. None of these were in this book and just as I had read in a review of the book, this one has gone whole cerebral and too much math and science that I mourned for the dearth of my favorite macho man. Can you imagine a jack reacher book without any valid action scene? Well imagine it because the book was exactly that.
Plot is good but gets vaporized in too much technicalities and analysis. Suddenly Reacher feels more like a scientist than what he really is, a rugged man, a lone ranger. And oddly I find a lot of “He said, I said, she said” kind of narration which is not that effective as it should be and then there are places where there is continuous dialogue flow that you have no clue who is speaking what and when.
The book suddenly reminded me of my reaction to watching a 5”7” soft looking Tom Cruise playing 6’5″ tall (1.96 m) with a 50-inch chest, and weighing between 220 and 250 pounds (100–115 kg) having ice-blue eyes and dirty blond hair Reacher. Which was “somebody get my gun, I need to put a hole in someone’s skull”
The Reacher series is kind of losing on its main charm, the authenticity and attributes of the main character, Jack Reacher , that made the whole series worthwhile. The book has gone more into sci fi mode than the original “fight to survive” and “putting pieces together” thriller ride. It is all technical and too much descriptive .This is not the Reacher I grew up admiring. “You have changed Reacher. You are not the person I met years ago ;(“ but no matter what you will still be my favourite