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Nothing to Lose (Jack Reacher, #12)
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Nothing to Lose (Jack Reacher #12)

3.9  ·  Rating Details ·  37,450 Ratings  ·  1,955 Reviews
Two lonely towns in Colorado: Hope and Despair. Between them, twelve miles of empty road. Jack Reacher never turns back. It's not in his nature. All he wants is a cup of coffee. What he gets is big trouble. So in Lee Child’s electrifying new novel, Reacher—a man with no fear, no illusions, and nothing to lose—goes to war against a town that not only wants him gone, it want ...more
Audio CD, 0 pages
Published June 3rd 2008 by Random House Audio (first published March 24th 2008)
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Rudolph Sry I read the condensed RD only. BTW I didn't enjoy the reading. Much unreflected violence, it hurt my sense of justice a lot. But not amateurish…moreSry I read the condensed RD only. BTW I didn't enjoy the reading. Much unreflected violence, it hurt my sense of justice a lot. But not amateurish writing to me. The style was good enough but the story was unbearable.(less)
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Community Reviews

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Jun 22, 2008 JoAnn/QuAppelle rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: almost no one
After reading about 8 of Child's Jack Reacher books, I finally found a dud. It started out thrilling, as expected, but quickly became almost boring. I can not believe I am typing those words.

Reacher's repeatedly doing the same thing, over and over (returning to a bad place) was tedious and so unlike our hero's usual behavior. The plot wandered all over the place and the book was too long.

I found it impossible to buy into the far-fetched "conspiracy theory" with its pathetic "villains" and was
Joe Moley
Mar 25, 2008 Joe Moley rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I'm done with Child after this latest installment. The last few Reacher novels have really dragged and I was hoping this one might revive the series. Unfortunately, this was not the case.

Furthermore, the writer decides to jump on a soap box towards the end and throw in random anti-bush/anti-war diatribe. Obviously, this is his right as the creater of the novel but I found it completely ridiculous and hypocritical of his main character. It would be one thing if Child had done this in previous boo
Jane Stewart
The least fun Reacher book. Read the others first. Only die hard fans will want to do this one.

Reacher is hitchhiking west to California. He happens to be let off in Despair, a small town in Colorado. He stops in the town’s only diner for coffee. The waitress and owner refuse to serve him. The local police arrive and put Reacher in jail. Later he sees the judge who orders him to leave town. The police drive him five miles to the town limit. The nearest town is Hope, another ten miles
Anne  (Booklady) Molinarolo
Feb 22, 2012 Anne (Booklady) Molinarolo rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: only hard core Lee Child fans
I can always depend on Lee Child to keep me up all night to finish Jack Reacher’s latest “mission” to help in a desperate situation. But, not this time! After a thrilling, mysterious prologue, Child has Reacher in Colorado where he finds that there is little distance between the fictional towns of Hope and Despair – both in the physicality and allegorical senses. All Reacher wanted was a cup of coffee. He is ignored, beaten up, thrown in jail, and driven back toward Hope after being convicted of ...more
Jun 24, 2010 Jake rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I shoulda effin' known better.

On the recommendation of quite a few (formerly) reliable folks, I finally cranked through a 500+ Jack Reacher novel.

Short version: Fucking terrible.

Longer and angrier version:
It seems to me that Lee Child really wants to write Robert B. Parker novels, but doesn't have the balls to actually go through with it. There are entire pages that could have been ripped out of a Spenser novel. Shit like this (paraphrasing because I don't want to open the goddamn book ever agai
Not the best of Reacher's books. I thought the "villains" were not in his league at all and the action wasn't as exciting. He kicked their asses right and left and it was amazing how much he got by with. I never got the explanation of why the whole town was into the craziness. Nothing was a big surprise to me.

The best part of the book was getting an inkling of the reasons why Reacher left a job he was so good at. There had been some allusions in past books but I think this was the strongest: Rea
Teri Simonis
My 2nd Jack Reacher book. I don't like his vigilante attitude. Funny when the same "take no prisoners" attitude is on the big screen, I'm cheering for the cowboy but in the slower medium of the printed word, I find it distasteful. And really, what woman would really fall into bed with a man who has no job and rarely changes his clothes?
Mungo James
Jan 09, 2013 Mungo James rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
apparently when you edit a review everything is deleted first.

As Reacher would say, OK.

And that is the problem, Child writes in short sentences with small words. Frequently just in phrases.

Apparently Child frequently/always puts Reacher into impossible situations that he fights out of. Child includes many details, most of which are wrong.

1) there is no such thing as a 4 cyl el Camino
2) it isn't a truck & you can't take it offroad anymore than
the Chevelle it is based on
3) quit calling an e
Ana  Vlădescu
Yeah, we can be sure my Lee Child spree in the Jack Reacher series ends with this one. I was curious to his writing and I'm happy I got to borrow the three books in this series, in order to see what it's all about. The main character doesn't impress me at all, he could very well be the Van Damme of literature, working the same scheme, employing the same tricks, being as static as it's possible, from a developmental point of view. Once in a while, reading this kind of books, I remember why I have ...more
Jun 13, 2008 S.D. rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery-thriller
Jack Reacher finds himself between Hope and Despair, actually two cities. Despair is a desolate place where everyone wants to see him out of town. Everything is owned by one man which immediately makes Reacher suspicious. He enlists the aid of a cop in Hope and having a knack for finding trouble, Reacher gets plenty of it. I have always liked Reacher but for some reason this year it seems as though publishers told their writers, "give me a plot involving trashing the government, the military, th ...more
Aug 25, 2008 Gary rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Holy conspiracy theories, Batman! Did somebody take James Lee Burke and tuck his liberal rants between the covers of a Lee Child novel?

Don't get me wrong - Burke and Child are two of my favorite authors - but the venerable Burke started a fast descent when his politics began to irrationally overpower the gripping atmospheric prose of the Mississippi delta and Dave Robicheaux's hard-hitting tales of southern noir. But if one were to judge Child solely on the basis of "Nothing to Lose", they migh
Feb 18, 2013 Tom rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: school yard bullies
My first and maybe last Jack Reacher novel. My main problem is that Jack Reacher is basically a school yard bully. I guess I expected threats, intimidation and brute force as his chosen tools; but it would have been nice to see him backed into a corner, instead of "getting your retaliation in first." Maybe I'm just an old western romantic in that sense. Seems like the good guy in the story should show some restraint until there's no other choice.

Beyond that, I'm guessing you only need to read on
Rupali Rotti
This book maybe my last in the Lee Child series, but my decision isn't solely based on this book alone. The main reasons are that the gory scenes are too gory for my taste, and there is too much of detail in every book which makes me skip many sentences at a time.
This book didn't appeal to me because of the following reasons:
[1] I don't see a 'drive' or reason for Reacher to go back to a town time and again where he isn't welcome.
[2] Reacher pokes his nose in all the private places, and yet, the
b00k r3vi3ws
Jan 21, 2016 b00k r3vi3ws rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: books-i-own
There are two neighbouring towns by the name of Hope and Despair with nothing but miles of empty roadways between them. Intrigued by their names, Jack Reacher decides to check out the towns for himself and find ay reasons for the curious naming behind them. But this is Reacher we are talking about and not everything is about to be smooth and easy. While he was at Despair and sipping on the much-needed cup of coffee, he is asked to leave the town and the police officer cites ‘vagrancy’ as the cau ...more
Feb 16, 2008 Jon rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery-series
Disappointing but effective installment in Child's Jack Reacher series. This but seemed long for a Reacher thriller and might have been strengthed by cutting one of the three main plot strands. I felt that Child made it more confusing than necessary and could have shored up the suspense with tipping his hand a little more. Starts off great, but we've seen some of the same elements in Killing Floor, Die Trying and Echo Burning. But still, nobody does hardcore, bad-ass loner fiction like Child. Th ...more
Ahmad Sharabiani
Nothing to Lose (Jack Reacher #12), Lee Child
May 13, 2012 Aaron rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, mystery, thriller
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kathy Davie
Oct 29, 2012 Kathy Davie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: horror, thriller
Fourteenth chronologically in the Jack Reacher thriller series (and twelfth publication-wise) about an ex-M.P. roaming the world on his own terms and protecting the innocent.

It's been ten years since he left the army.

My Take
I think this was one of the scarier Reacher novels. To think that a town would exist that was so far out of the norm. And how easy it was for its "rulers" to govern! Part of that "easiness" depended upon how the majority of us were brought up: Keep out of your neighbors' busi
Scott Rhee
May 28, 2013 Scott Rhee rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: action-adventure
Jack Reacher, the ex-Army MP protagonist in Lee Child's long-running series, knows what duty means. He understands a soldier's duty to his country, but he also knows that duty runs two ways. One's country---and its leaders, politicians, and citizens---has a duty to its soldier. More often than not, Reacher believes, that duty is forgotten, and when that happens---when a soldier feels that he has nothing to gain from serving a corrupt country with a corrupt ideology---he starts to feel that he ha ...more
Oct 02, 2014 Joe rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I've read a few Jack Reacher novels now, and this one was the last straw.

What in the world? How are we supposed to relate to the plots Child comes up with? Are we supposed to take them seriously? I don't understand how such absurd plots are supposed to be processed. **SPOILERS BELOW**

Okay, so some people are deserting from the US military, and would like to go to Canada. Okay, say you're in America and you want to go to Canada. What do you do? Well, it's pretty simple -- you can just drive there
Jan 23, 2013 Matt rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobook
It all began with a false accusation. Reacher is back West, sipping coffee at a diner in Despair, Colorado. He's asked to leave by local police, cited for vagrancy, but the argument is weak at best and Reacher has done nothing but enjoy his caffeinated beverage. Crossing into the next town, aptly named Hope, Reacher tries to decipher what reason the Despair PD could have for wanting him gone and so quickly after he's entered the town limits. When he teams up with Hope's limited police force and ...more
Jan 18, 2016 Steve rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Alas, my least favorite Reacher to date. That's not the end of the world. Twelve books into a mass market formulaic series, there's going to be some mis-steps and, in my opinion, that's what happened here. I don't think I'm completely bored with the series, premise, or protagonist, just yet - and I don't read them back to back (only reading a few a year) - but this one, well, it just didn't speak to me.

This installment just felt (far) too long, surprisingly predictable (even though there were a
Patrick Gray
Feb 20, 2014 Patrick Gray rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Okay, I have been reading the Jack Reach series in order. My intent was to read the entire series and then see the movie based on "One Shot". I have just finished "Nothing to Lose" and I must say I'm becoming more and more disappointed with each subsequent book.

I served in the US Military as both enlisted, and then a commissioned officer. It is painfully obvious that Jim Grant (Lee Child)built a persona of a military officer based on fairy tales. Jack Reacher in no way way resembles any militar
Mar 03, 2009 Ed rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ex-MP Jack Reacher is the kind of guy you want on your side in any fight. That's a cliche to say, but he's just reliable and steady and tough. This adventure finds him in Colorado, investigating trouble in two small towns, Despair and Hope. Great adventure like Indiana Jones but a much better developed protag.
Sep 08, 2016 Bibi rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
In my mind, Jack Reacher is mine - though arguably the worst commitment phobe, ever- whatever! Bless Paramount for casting Tinny Tom.... who woulda thunk it. Gargantuan Jack and Tinny Tom. Match made only in Hollywood
Sep 28, 2015 Steve rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: re-read, read-in-2015
No great revelations about Reacher in this volume, but the adventure is fast-paxed, intriguing, and makes you want to read more.
Jack Reacher novels are usually a fun read. In my experience never believable and shouldn't be taken seriously. Just enjoy the story. In this outing Reacher is hitchhiking from Maine to San Diego. Why? He wants to go from the northeast corner of the country to the southwest. He is not attempting to follow a straight line from one corner of the country to the other. In Colorado he stops in the town of Hope. After a few days he is ready to move on but decides to take a small detour.He has seen Hop ...more
Eddie Dobiecki
May 14, 2013 Eddie Dobiecki rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is the kind of book where you can read 500 pages in a day. And there's nothing wrong with that.

If you don't know the basics of who this "Reacher" character is by now, I'm genuinely surprised, but I'll give a quick rundown:

Ex-MP Reacher lives by wandering the country. No fixed address. Buys a new set of clothes every time he changes, and throws away the old ones, because having clothes means needing to do laundry, with all that entails. He quit smoking because he didn't want to carry aroun
Nothing to Lose is a typical Lee Child/Jack Reacher novel. Reacher is pulled into a situation not of his making and now he will be the one to settle it. His personal code deems it must be so.
Reacher is passing from the town of Hope, CO into the town of Dispair when he decides to stop at the hardscrabble diner in the main part of Dispair. No one is inclined to serve him and the rest of the diners look aghast at him like he's grown a second head. When what passes for local law enforcement arrests
Mar 03, 2009 Ed rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Reacher and thriller fans
Not one of Child's best but still better than what many others are writing.

At first I thought the story was going to be a bit corny. The towns of Hope and Despair? Give me a break. Walking diagonally across the U.S.? You must be kidding. But, that's how Reacher is. That's the Persona that Child has created so if I suspend my disbelief and buy into the fantasy, as I have in all the previous books, then I can relax and enjoy.

The fact that Reacher would go back to a town that had arrested and depo
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Jack Reacher does it again 15 138 Apr 02, 2014 06:02AM  
  • Stalking the Angel (Elvis Cole, #2)
  • Time to Hunt (Bob Lee Swagger, #3)
  • Crossfire (Nick Stone, #10)
  • The Narrows (Harry Bosch, #10; Harry Bosch Universe, #12)
  • Agent X (Steve Vail, #2)
  • Rough Country (Virgil Flowers, #3)
  • The Third Option (Mitch Rapp, #4)
  • Fault Line (Ben Treven, #1)
  • Saving Faith
Lee Child was born October 29th, 1954 in Coventry, England, but spent his formative years in the nearby city of Birmingham. By coincidence he won a scholarship to the same high school that JRR Tolkien had attended. He went to law school in Sheffield, England, and after part-time work in the theater he joined Granada Television in Manchester for what turned out to be an eighteen-year career as a pr ...more
More about Lee Child...

Other Books in the Series

Jack Reacher (1 - 10 of 22 books)
  • Killing Floor (Jack Reacher, #1)
  • Die Trying (Jack Reacher, #2)
  • Tripwire  (Jack Reacher, #3)
  • Running Blind (Jack Reacher, #4)
  • Echo Burning (Jack Reacher, #5)
  • Without Fail (Jack Reacher, #6)
  • Persuader (Jack Reacher, #7)
  • The Enemy (Jack Reacher, #8)
  • One Shot (Jack Reacher, #9)
  • The Hard Way (Jack Reacher, #10)

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“No, I'm a man with a rule. People leave me alone, I leave them alone. If they don't, I don't.” 85 likes
“A person less fortunate than yourself deserves the best you can give. Because of duty, and honor, and service. You understand those words? You should do your job right, and you should do it well, simply because you can, without looking for notice or reward.” 78 likes
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