Since I started reviewing Lee Child’s books on World’s Strongest Librarian I have heard a lot of complaints about Persuader by Lee Child, even from diehard fans of the Jack Reacher books. I actually enjoyed it a lot. While I would agree that it’s not the most glowing example of well-developed characters and the literary high-style, I think it’s a great action story and I liked Reacher in this book as much as I ever have.
When the book starts, Reacher is suddenly plunged into the middle of a bad situation, like usual. Within a few pages he has shot a police officer and rescued a 20 year old kid from bad guys. Or so we think. It is revealed that the whole thing was an elaborate ruse to get Jack Reacher into the kid’s house. The boy’s father is in the middle of some very nasty business involving highly illegal activities.
Now Jack is locked inside a fortress of a mansion on the coast of Maine. The place is crawling with armed guards and suspicious people. Most notable is the massive Paulie, a guy who makes Reacher look like a dwarf. If you’ve read any of the other books by Lee Child, you know that Reacher dwarfs most people. Not this time. His inevitable showdown with Paulie was one of the better fights he has been in, in this librarian’s professional opinion.
Of course, things get more and more complicated, and it looks like the bad guys in the house are actually not the worst guys involved. They’re being run by someone else. That someone else is someone Jack thought he had killed ten years earlier. Now that the guy is actually alive, Jack has the chance to settle a very old score.
In conclusion, I was never bored with Persuader. I thought it was a fast read, even though it was substantially longer than many of the Reacher books. Fans of Lee Child should definitely pick it up.