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Killing Floor ()

Amy Reilly just read Lee Child's third Jack Reacher mystery and she recommended it, but our library only had the first, so I'll start at the beginning.

Jack Reacher was an Army brat turned military policeman until the end of the Cold War brought on a peace dividend that included Pentagon downsizing.  Now he's taking some time to drift around the United States, checking out the haunts of old time blues greats, before he decides what to do next.  But the decision is made for him when he's arrested for murder in Margrave, Georgia.  He quickly proves to the black, Boston-transplant, chief of detectives that he's not guilty and prepares to move on, until it turns out that the murder victim was Reacher's brother, Joe, a Treasury agent.   Intent on revenge, Reacher starts digging, with the help of the Chief and a friendly woman police officer, and quickly uncovers a mammoth conspiracy as the corpses start piling up.

Take equal parts In the Heat of the Night, The Postman Always Rings Twice, Point of Impact and Rambo, give them a good shake and you've pretty much got this interesting, though flawed, debut thriller by a British author.  I saw flawed because the plot is simply driven by too many coincidences and epiphanies; Reacher makes so many intuitive leaps that it starts to become somewhat annoying.  On the other hand, Reacher is a likable hero and Child is clearly trying to hit a home run with this modern noir.  He started out in British television and his writing has a sort of cinematic quality to it, the book reads like a movie.  I'll give him credit for a decent first effort and assume the subsequent installments will be even better.  In fact, I've already bought the second book.


Grade: (B-)


See also:

Book-related and General Links:
    -BIO: (Sun Sentinel)
    -INTERVIEW: Lee Child (Partners & Crime)
    -INTERVIEW: (Barry Forshaw , Crime Time)
    -REVIEW: of Killing Floor (Mystery Guide)
    -REVIEW: of Die Trying (The Mystery Reader)
    -Tripwire by Lee Child: bio, reviews and excerpt (Book Browse)
    -REVIEW: of Tripwire (Book Browser)
    -REVIEW: of Tripwire (The Mystery Reader)

    -African American Mystery Page
    -Black Street Fiction
    -Crime Writers (David King)
    -Dangerous Dames: A Timeline of Some of the Major Female Eyes (Thrilling Detectives)
    -Edgar Award: Best First Novel
    -Film Noir and Pulp Fiction
    -A Guide to Classic Mystery and Detection
    -Gumshoe Site
    -Hardboiled : online reference site for all things noir
    -Hardboiled Heaven
    -Hard Boiled Noir Webring
    -Martin's Film Noir Page
    -Mysterious Home Page The Online Mystery Network
    -Mystery Net Awards Page
    -No Night Sweats
    -RARA-AVIS : mailing list devoted to the discussion of hardboiled (and noir) fiction
    -The Reader's Corner presents  Female Sleuths
    -Thrilling Detective Website
    -Twists, Slugs and Roscoes: A Glossary of Hardboiled Slang
    -Women of Mystery (Bookaholic)