Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Affair (Jack Reacher, #16)” as Want to Read:
The Affair (Jack Reacher, #16)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Read Excerpt* *Different edition

The Affair

(Jack Reacher #16)

4.13  ·  Rating details ·  65,691 ratings  ·  3,667 reviews
March 1997. A woman has her throat cut behind a bar in Carter Crossing, Mississippi. Just down the road is a big army base. Is the murderer a local guy - or is he a soldier?

Jack Reacher, still a major in the military police, is sent in undercover. The county sheriff is a former US Marine - and a stunningly beautiful woman. Her investigation is going nowhere. Is the Pentago
Hardcover, 427 pages
Published September 29th 2011 by Bantam Press (first published September 27th 2011)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Affair, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions
Sally Sloane I am working my way through the whole series, so even though the beginning was tediously slow, I persevered for the sake of the "timeline" in the life…moreI am working my way through the whole series, so even though the beginning was tediously slow, I persevered for the sake of the "timeline" in the life of Jack Reacher. It does get much better.

And frankly, I would listen to Dick Hill recite the alphabet. Love his narration!(less)
Susan Grebe
This answer contains spoilers… (view spoiler)

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Rating details
Sort: Default
Susan Johnson
Dec 09, 2011 rated it liked it
LEE Child Sells Out

I love Jack Reacher so much and I feel like Lee Child has just sold him out for money. It is so offensive that Child sold the screen rights to Tom Cruise so he could play Reacher. It didn't seem to matter that Reacher is a foot taller and a hundred pounds heavier just to name two obvious reasons he's so obviously miscast. And now it seems like Child is writing the book to support Cruise's portrayal. He usually mentions Reacher size frequently but in this book it's just so casu
Sep 02, 2011 rated it really liked it
Recommended to Mike by:
I should give The Affair zero stars just on principle. Lee Child apparently agrees with the casting of that little dickhead Tom Cruise as Jack Reacher. Really? YGBSM!! There is no freaking way that Cruise can remotely approach the kick-ass power of Reacher in a fight with a group of bad guys. Here is one fight in the book that would be epic fail if little Tommy C tries to fill the part:

(view spoiler)
Oct 07, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Let me say first that I will always choose to listen to a Jack Reacher novel instead of reading it simply because I am so impressed with the talent of Dick Hill in bringing the series to life.

The Reacher series is a favorite of mine, and I'm not sure exactly why, since I am not a fan of vigilante justice. I suppose, though, that the lone, mysterious stranger who rights wrongs and stands up for those who cannot stand up for themselves is something of an archetype. Unlike many characters of this t
 Danielle The Book Huntress (Back to the Books)
As my second book in the Jack Reacher series (although #16 in publication and a prequel in sequence), The Affair wasn't a shabby audio read at all. The narrator Dick Hill has a terse, noirish delivery that adds to the story. He sounds a bit older than I would associate with Reacher, but he definitely has Reacher's 'you ain't the boss of me' attitude and conveys his ruthless, efficient approach to solving injustices. I think he is a good choice to narrate for the Jack Reacher books. I do have to ...more
James Thane
Apr 18, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: suspense, lee-child
This is the sixteenth Jack Reacher novel and it's among the best of them all. For the second time, Lee Child goes back to tell a story from earlier in Reacher's life and this is the Jack Reacher origin story. It takes place back in 1997, when Reacher was still in the Army. Reacher loves the Army and it's the only home he's ever known, even as a child, when he grew up a military brat. But the Army is now in trouble. The Cold War has ended; the war on terror is yet to begin, and budget cutters are ...more
Jane Stewart
Jan 19, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery-suspense
Mostly solving a mystery. It’s fun because it’s Reacher.

Books 1 to 15 in the Jack Reacher series flow in chronological order. All of them are set after Reacher left the army in March 1997 except for Book 8 (The Enemy) and this one. This book 16 goes back in time and is set in March 1997. It describes Reacher’s last investigation as an MP before he left the army.

A woman is murdered in a small town in Mississippi. The Kellum army base is nearby. They army is hoping that the murderer is
Sep 02, 2015 rated it liked it

3.5 stars

This 16th book in the series goes back to 1997, when Jack Reacher was an army MP (military police). A young woman named Janice Chapman has been raped and viciously murdered in the town of Carter Crossing, Mississippi - just outside Fort Kelham Army Base. The army brass, fearing a soldier may be blamed, sends two military cops to look into the case. One is sent to Fort Kelham, presumably to discover if a soldier committed the crime. At the same time Jack Reacher is sent to Carter Cros
S.L. Pierce
I pre-ordered this book and am dying to start but I promised myself I would get all my work done first. Don't worry, I'm sure I will be reviewing by this weekend!
Warning - I love all his books and can't imagine this one being any different!

Update: Well, I finished reading this book and had to think hard about what to write for a review. I love Jack Reacher and I love all of Lee Child's Books but is this the beginning of the end? Is Child tired? Yes, Reacher was Reacher in this book but it all f
Oct 08, 2011 rated it it was amazing
After reading 61 Hours, I thought the Jack Reacher series had sagged a bit. Then I finished The Affair, and I'm happy to report the series is back in full stride, at least for this reader. Jack goes back in time (1997) to his last days as an Army MP major. He's dispatched to Mississippi to work undercover to investigate three murders committed in the small town next to an Army training base. I won't rehash the plot. Jack is a hard ass when he needs to be, and he does at several points here. In s ...more
Mike (the Paladin)
Aug 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: thriller
Here we are again, setting off with Jack Reacher on/in another adventure. Here we are involved in a series of murders in a small town near a military base. "Like" with most small town near military bases this town depends HUGELY on the base for...well, commerce. Jack (I mean "Reacher") is called in (as this is an "I'm still an MP story) to find out if the killings (of young women) were committed by a soldier or a civilian.

Of course this is Jack Reacher so THIS small town is home the 4 most beaut
Book Addict Shaun
Just stunning. Books rarely get much better than The Affair. This is by far and away the best Reacher novel that I have read so far. I love seeing the early Reacher but this story in particular is the one that leads up to his leaving the army and wow is it action-packed, emotional and unforgettable.

I know some readers don’t like reading about Reacher in the past but I love it and as he’s now approaching 60 I hope we get to see more of his time in the army. The Affair deals with one hell of a co
Apr 10, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2012-reads, tops
SETTING: Mississippi

THE AFFAIR is the sixteenth book in the extremely successful Jack Reacher series. Most of those books deal with Reacher’s life after leaving the military. He is basically a drifter who travels around the US, encounters trouble and deals with it. Back in 2004, Lee Child wrote a prequel (THE ENEMY) which was set during the time that Reacher was still in the military. THE AFFAIR is also a prequel book, which follows him during the t
Ahmad Sharabiani
The Affair (Jack Reacher, #16), Lee Child

While I've been aware of Lee Child's best-selling Jack Reacher novels for a while, I hadn't really cracked the cover of one until I heard there was a movie based on the series headed our way. Being the guy who has to read the book first, I headed out to the local library and picked up the first novel, Killing Floor, assuming that the movie series would start with the first novel in the series.

That's what I get for assuming. Turns out that Reacher, like the Bond movies, has decided not to start w

Oct 29, 2011 rated it it was ok
This one was just okay.

It's the long ballyhooed story that explains why Reacher left the Army. Reacher is dispatched to Mississippi to investigate a murder, with the understanding that what he finds out may be so sensitive that the Army may want to keep a lid on it. What seems like a single murder becomes a case of serial killing. Adding to the confusion are cover-ups which lead to other killings.

Novels about serial killers often rely on salacious examinations of the abnormal psychology of the p
✰ Bianca ✰ BJ's Book Blog ✰
Another amazing Reacher story.
We go back in time to 1997 - to the beginning of the end of Reacher's military career.
He has to unofficially find a killer in a little Military Base Town in Mississippi and while doing that he's having an adorable affair with the Police Chief!
All very exciting and mysterious and typical Reacher-ish!
Tessa Nadir
Aug 16, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Cel mai bun roman al autorului, dupa parerea mea. Jack Reacher este trimis in Carter Crossing sa ancheteze moartea unei fete violate si omorate. Seriful locului, fermecatoarea si isteata Elizabeth Deveraux nu este deloc fericita de amestecul lui in treburile politiei locale. Romanul este plin de descrieri privind armata, Pentagonul, tipurile de arme etc. Ofera si o serie de detalii uimitoare privind modul in care trebuie sa se desfasoare o ancheta, stabilirea orei decesului, examinarea cadavrulu ...more
Darlene Quinn
Mar 16, 2017 rated it liked it
While the story was good and well told, I found the abundance of "I said nothing" very irritating. Perhaps I would not have noticed it as much had I read the book in print rather than audio, but it seemed when Child was not saying "I said nothing" he substituted. "He said nothing" or "She said nothing." A lot of unneeded extra words.
Oct 13, 2011 rated it really liked it
I usually get the new Jack Reacher novel as soon as it comes out but I was so ticked off about Tom Cruise being cast as Jack in the soon to be filmed "One Shot" that I held off for awhile. This is the worst casting since Peter Weir screwed up Master and Commander by casting Russell Crowe as Jack Aubrey and Paul Bettany as Stephen Maturin. Cruise isn't a good enough actor to play the 6' 5", 250 lb. specimen that is Lee Child's creation—Jack Reacher. It used to be fun to think about who might play ...more
Nov 26, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Although I was late to the party, I finally took the advice of others and started working my way through the Jack Reacher series. Sixteen books in, and I'll keep reading because the books continue to entertain. I won't be nominating Lee Child for the Booker or the Pulitzer Prizes - these books aren't intended to be uniquely memorable literature - but there's a reason they enjoy prominent shelf space in airport book stores....

And, for me, that's the whole point. I watched the first movie on a pla
Sep 30, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
As a long time fan I loved the context and idea of this book. Having some of the back story, the events that have been hinted at that lead to Reacher sticking his thumb out and setting off wandering around America

But there things bugged the hell out of me
1. How many times do we need to hear that it's 1997; do we really need the constant reminder that this is set prior to 9/11?!
2. Mindless killing. Up until recent books Reacher has killed, but pretty much only in self defense. He certainly didn'
I've been a Jack Reacher fan for years and usually enjoy Child's novels, always finding some basic humanity in the themes of the lone MP against great odds and a corrupt system.

While this novel is well-crafted and has a complex plot narrated in Child's terse style, I did not care for Jack Reacher in this story. Too much unwarranted killing and too little compassion make the main character seem as malevolent as the bad guys he is after.

This version is an audio book narrated by Dick Hill, another
Jun 15, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Unquestionably one of the better Reacher novels and a sorely needed satisfying Child experience after The Enemy, which I found to be one of the weaker novels of the author’s thus far. I really don’t know why Child insists on not writing all of his books from the first person. The third person entries are less riveting and tend to wander into painfully boring territory. When you’re in Reacher’s head, even when the story is not at one of its several extremely tense or riveting moments, it’s still ...more
Nov 15, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I admire the fact that Lee Child is comfortable writing books set in different parts of Reacher's life. In his latest, he dials time back to Reacher's last case as an MP and walks us through the events that, ultimately, pointed Reacher towards the nomadic life that he embraces after leaving the military. Child drops a few bits that connect to the book that launched the series, "Killing Floor," and each elicited a little "yippee" of delight when I came across it. It's a trick, for sure, but Child ...more
Richard Starks
Sep 07, 2012 rated it it was ok
This is the third Reacher book I've read, and I think it will be my last. Lee Child is still a very good writer, but Reacher has evolved into something akin to a brutal psychopath - not someone you'd like, ever want to meet, or aspire to emulate. Stock characters are introduced solely to allow Reacher to beat them into submission; and he keeps killing people in the presence of, or with the connivance of, law-enforcement officers who are made by the author to think that Reacher's concept of justi ...more
Dec 05, 2016 rated it really liked it
I really enjoy the Jack Reacher books - they are good as a stand alone story, but also a great series. This one was particularly interesting as it goes back in time, to when Reacher is still in the army. Throughout the series, there are hints that something big went down, and Reacher left in some sort of scandal - and this is the story about it.

4.5 stars. Now I want to read the first book in the series, which is apparently set 6 months after this one finishes!
Cathy DuPont
Dec 13, 2014 rated it really liked it
I read this earlier and forgot to post it. It was better than others and I think I like Reacher more in the Army than as a civilian.

I'm giving four stars...more 3 1/2...because the others I read were clearly three stars. Two stars for a couple.

Needless to say I'm not a Reacher fan but many of my friends are and they still like me, I think. I hope.
Paula Kalin
I'm a big fan of the Jack Reacher series. This is a reread for me and I loved every minute of it!
Jun 03, 2011 rated it really liked it
This is a prequel of sorts. It is the story of Reacher's decision to leave the army and start his cross country wanderings. It takes place in 1997 and in places Reacher seems to be talking directly to the reader which is not a device that I typically like. It is in first person POV.

In general I enjoyed it. There were a few things that I found odd. There are way more sex scenes than in any other Reacher novel. I know Reacher sleeps with a lot of women but they were longer and more fully describe
Nov 01, 2011 rated it liked it
Awww Jack Reacher, I swore that if you ended up in another small town walking this way and that way, that we would have to break up for good. I mean Boyfriend, we know that it would be a cheaper movie to make, but can't you just go to a city every now and again? The only saving grace that you went to this small town in 1997, and you were still in uniform, sort of, and so I enjoyed that little distraction. Your author kept mentioning in the last two books about the incidence in your past that end ...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Goodreads Librari...: Jack Reacher #16 incorrect orig pub date 8 22 Nov 05, 2015 02:19PM  
Back in the military, really... 14 193 Aug 13, 2014 07:10AM  
Should Reacher retire? 25 232 Aug 11, 2014 02:32PM  
The Reader's Bar: April Book Discussion-The Affair 53 31 Apr 29, 2014 05:01AM  
Bloggers/Book Lov...: EIGHT Book(s) Giveaway(s)! 1 28 Aug 13, 2012 08:20AM  
Indian Readers: The Affair (Jack Reacher, #16) by Lee Child Giveaway. 1 14 Aug 11, 2012 02:08AM  
  • The Sentry (Elvis Cole, #14; Joe Pike, #3)
  • Buried Secrets (Nick Heller, #2)
  • The Drop (Harry Bosch, #15; Harry Bosch Universe, #23)
  • Shock Wave (Virgil Flowers, #5)
  • Dead Zero (Bob Lee Swagger, #7; Ray Cruz, #1)
  • Damage (Abe Glitsky, #3)
  • Painted Ladies (Spenser, #38)
  • The Vigilantes (Badge of Honor, #10)
  • Executive Power (Mitch Rapp, #6)
  • Shadow of Betrayal (Jonathan Quinn, #3)
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

Other books in the series

Jack Reacher (1 - 10 of 23 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)
“The best fights are the ones you don't have", a wise man once said to me.” 41 likes
“I said nothing. I’m good at saying nothing. I don’t like talking. I could go the rest of my life without saying another word, if I had to.” 38 likes
More quotes…