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Librarian’s note: This is a previously-published edition of
Kindle ASIN: B001FXK8XU.

Jack Reacher, ex-military policeman relaxed in Key West until Costello turned up dead. The amiable PI was hired in New York by the daughter of Reacher's mentor and former commanding officer, General Garber. Garber's investigation into a Vietnam MIA sets Reacher on collision with hand-less "Hook" Hobie, hours away from his biggest score.

417 pages, Kindle Edition

First published June 28, 1999

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About the author

Lee Child

284 books29.3k followers
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 presentation director during British TV's "golden age." During his tenure his company made Brideshead Revisited, The Jewel in the Crown, Prime Suspect, and Cracker. But he was fired in 1995 at the age of 40 as a result of corporate restructuring. Always a voracious reader, he decided to see an opportunity where others might have seen a crisis and bought six dollars' worth of paper and pencils and sat down to write a book, Killing Floor, the first in the Jack Reacher series.

Killing Floor was an immediate success and launched the series which has grown in sales and impact with every new installment. The first Jack Reacher movie, based on the novel One Shot and starring Tom Cruise and Rosamund Pike, was released in December 2012.

Lee has three homes—an apartment in Manhattan, a country house in the south of France, and whatever airplane cabin he happens to be in while traveling between the two. In the US he drives a supercharged Jaguar, which was built in Jaguar's Browns Lane plant, thirty yards from the hospital in which he was born.

Lee spends his spare time reading, listening to music, and watching the Yankees, Aston Villa, or Marseilles soccer. He is married with a grown-up daughter. He is tall and slim, despite an appalling diet and a refusal to exercise.

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 4,654 reviews
Profile Image for Adam.
253 reviews212 followers
June 19, 2010
This isn't a review, because I just started reading this book, but I couldn't help sharing my irritation.

I like Lee Child's storytelling skills, and Jack Reacher is a fun character to read about.

Unfortunately, his prose is like fingernails on a chalkboard. Most irritating of all, it's not irredeemably bad, it just needs a good editor. Who is Lee Child's editor? Does he even have one?

For instance:

"Are you Jack Reacher?" the guy asked for the third time.
Reacher set his bottle on the table and shook his head.
"No," he lied.

We, the readers, are fully aware this man is Reacher, because we've been told so at least a dozen times in the past three pages. "He lied" is unnecessary and stupid. It would have had more impact had Child simply written "No," he said."

"Who wants him?" Reacher asked.
"My client," Costello said. "Lady called Mrs. Jacob."
Reacher sipped water. The name meant nothing to him. Jacob? Never heard of any such person.

The line "Jacob? Never heard of any such person," should be deleted from the page, burned, and flushed down the toilet.

A few pages later, Reacher enjoys a "steak that hung off both sides of the plate at once."

Is there any way for a steak to hang off both sides of a plate not at once? Are these two, irritating little words there to ensure we know that this isn't one of those steaks that hangs off both sides of the plate, but not at the same time, because it has legs and walks back and forth?

I could go on and on, but I won't. Tough guy characters need tough-guy prose. To properly craft terse, tough-guy prose, Child needs a good editor. He doesn't have one.


OK, I finished. Of the first three novels about Jack Reacher, this was far and away my least favorite. Besides the poorly edited, hackneyed prose, the story takes forever to get going. The first two Reacher books both have slam-bang openings that carry the reader through some of the more boring bits, but this one doesn't, which makes all the repeated verbs and interminably long descriptions of people doing things harder to get through. The first 200 pages could have been edited down to 75, and pages 200-400 could have been edited down to 100. The climactic 150 pages are pretty good, but it takes too long to get there. The first two Reacher books weren't great, but they weren't boring. Unfortunately this one is. It could have been a tight 325-page thriller, but it's a bloated 550-page snoozer. Comparisons to Hammett and Chandler are way off. If anything, Lee Child is a higher quality Don Pendleton.
Profile Image for Lyn.
1,882 reviews16.6k followers
July 19, 2019
Somewhere on Lee Child’s desk there is a formula that looks something like this:

1. Remind the reader that Jack Reacher is an ex-MP drifter; he’s tall and strong and dangerous – a tough guy’s tough guy, damn near bullet proof.

2. Through no fault of his own, and without looking for trouble, Reacher gets in trouble.

3. There will be a pretty woman and she will be attracted to Reacher.

4. Create a sadistic bastard as an antagonist.

5. Construct a thriller with mystery elements to keep the pages turning.

6. Reacher kicks ass.

7. Submit to publisher.

8. Pick up royalties check.

9. Repeat steps 1 through 8.

And I’m not complaining. It works and is fun to read. This time around we find Reacher doing some manual labor in the Keys, getting tanned and even more Hulk-like when an investigator comes looking for him. He follows the trouble up to New York, kicks ass, does some good, works on solving problems, gets the girl, kicks some more ass and then the denouement. The villain in Tripwire is an especially nasty and unlikeable cretin - with a hook for a hand! - and we get to see some military intrigue and some Vietnam secrets revealed.

As in other Reacher novels, there is a fair amount of unbelievability, but we’re having fun so where’s the harm? In this one, most veterans will have a few eye roiling moments and there was one military scene that was almost laughable and made me consider that maybe British writer Child was confusing English bureaucracy with ours.

One of the joys of reading fiction is discovering new characters and one of the even greater joys is finding a character who steals the show. In film parlance, this is usually a supporting actor or actress but can even be a scene stealing bit player with only a few lines. Estelle Reiner in When Harry Met Sally did just that when she famously stated, “I’ll have what she’s having.” Supporting actor Christian Bale took over “The Fighter” and I actually had to look up the star of that film – Mark Wahlberg – because Bale’s performance was all I could remember. Likewise, Joe Pesci’s performance stands out in Goodfellas, more so than De Niro or Ray Liotta. And I cannot forget John Goodman’s portrayal of Walter Sobchak in The Big Lebowski, nor the actor who won the Academy that same year in the best supporting actor category for his role in Good Will Hunting – Robin Williams.

So we come to this show stealer, Marilyn Stone. With enough lines to garner her a nod from the Academy, she did more than steal a scene or two; I began to look forward to her scenes as Child drew her as tough and resourceful as a certain 6’5 former MP. Child’s characterization and dialogue are usually good and with Mrs. Stone, he outdid himself.

Another fun outing and Reacher fans will enjoy.

Profile Image for Kemper.
1,390 reviews6,974 followers
September 25, 2018
“What kind of book is this?” he asked.

I thought about the answer to that a moment.

“What kind of book is this?” he asked again.

There are many ways to respond to that question. I should think about this for a second longer.

“What kind of book is this?” he asked a third time.

It’s the kind of book that has somebody repeating questions a whole bunch of times while other characters ponder things so if you’re already irritated you should probably avoid it.

Ex-military policeman Jack Reacher has been living in Key West where he’s earning a living digging swimming pools, and his idea of a good time is drinking a bunch of mineral water. (No, seriously.) Reacher has no interest in disrupting his quiet routine, but when a private investigator comes around looking for him it kicks off a chain of events which eventually lead Reacher into digging up the secrets of a murderous man in New York City with a dark history that leads back to the Vietnam War.

My experience with this series is weird. I hated the first book, but people I trust told me the series gets much better. Then I saw the Jack Reacher movie and enjoyed it quite a bit so I tried the second book, and it was OK but still didn’t blow my hair back. So here I am trying the third one, and it had about two dozen things that made me roll my eyes. Yet I didn’t absolutely hate it.

I get the appeal of these. The idea of the manliest man to ever walk the face of the earth randomly stumbling into adventures is fun if you like a certain style of action thriller. Child has made big improvements in these early books already like moving from first person to third means that I don’t have Reacher himself telling me how awesome he is on every page. Plus, he’s scaled back the idea that Reacher is a Sherlock Holmes level of detective genius who can make incredible leaps based on the slimmest of clues.

The core story here is pretty good, but as with the first couple of books there’s a constant parade of things that are just so ridiculous or outright stupid that they take me out of the story. One of the biggies is that the main villain in this is a complete cartoon sadist straight out of James Bond with a burned and scarred face as well as a hook used in place of an amputated hand, and it’s so far over the top that it’s hard to take him or the book seriously.

There’s also a very icky subplot where Reacher reconnects with the daughter of his old Army mentor who has recently died. Jodie was a teenage girl, and Reacher was in his mid- twenties when they were around each other back in the day. Yet it becomes very clear that they both had that the hots for each other, and they both still have these old feelings. Child spends a lot of time justifying and rationalizing this plot, and yeah, now they’re both adults and nothing physical happened when she was underage. But it’s just so unnecessary to play it this way.

Why couldn’t Jodie have been in college and Reacher only a few years older when they met and were attracted to each other? Then it’s not an issue at all and makes Reacher far less creepy. (The only thing I can think of is that Child had a Hollywood idea of what a couple in this kind of story looks like, and god forbid we have a lady over thirty hooking up with the hero even though he’s pushing forty himself.)

Another thing is that the book constantly contradicts itself and then goes out of its way to underline that it’s doing so in the most forehead slapping way possible. For example, at one point Reacher thought he knew how some thugs would come after him and Jodie. Yet they use a different tactic which takes him by surprise and almost works. Afterword, Reacher calmly notes that he hadn’t thought about them doing that which was almost a fatal mistake. Yet later in the book when it looks like an assumption that he made was wrong Reacher has a complete meltdown about it where he bemoans the loss of his once perfect record at following his hunches and wonders what he’s supposed to do in life now that his skills have so obviously failed him. So Reacher shrugs off making an error that almost gets them killed, and yet when a blue sky guess he made that has no immediate potential impact looks like it might be wrong he falls apart.

There’s lots more like that, but I’m going to spoiler tag these next few. I’m not giving up the ending, just some things that happen along the way.

There’s another factor that made me cringe a few times while reading, but this wasn’t Child's fault. The book was published in 1999, and the main villain has an office in the World Trade Center which is where a lot of the action takes place. Plus, at one point Reacher pays cash an airline ticket to New York using a fake name. Those were big reminders that the world was a very different place back then, and while there’s no way Child could have known what was coming it does give the book an uncomfortable vibe at times.

There are other nitpicks to make, but these are the major ones that took what started out as a very solid action thriller/mystery and turned into a hot mess. Child has storytelling skills, and at their best these books are a hoot. But did no editor every look at this and suggest some changes that would tighten up the story and keep him from highlighting the things that don’t make sense? It would have helped a lot.
Profile Image for Jeff .
912 reviews708 followers
February 17, 2017
My reading record for Lee Child’s Reacher series hasn’t been stellar – The first book in the series, and the second of the two I had read, was a dreadful regurgitation of genre clichés and one of the worst books I’ve ever read. The other book (#7), which comes later in the series was better – entertaining enough, and if the reader gets past the asshat-clever, narrative tomfoolery, not a bad read.

So why continue with the series?

The trailer for the second Reacher movie starring Tom Cruise looked promising, so…

This book, number three in the collection and the third one I’ve read will be closing the chapter on Child’s Reacher books.

Much was made of the size differential between Tiny Tom Cruise and the Reacher character – Reacher is 6’5” or something and Cruise comes in at 3’11” soaking wet, yet with CGI tricks, smoke and mirrors, a well-placed soap box, the casting of midgets, and some acting chops, Cruise does manage to give the character some gravitas, a certain real human being-like quality that Child can’t seem to carry off in the books. The only book that worked for me (#7) was told via first person and Reacher didn’t come across as a walking cardboard sieve. Maybe that narrative device is something Child should employ more.

The story:

Greedy, evil, loan shark villain has a detective killed who had come in search of Reacher, who happened to be keeping a low profile as a shirtless bouncer in a strip club. This evil deed messes with Reacher’s world order and he goes to track down greedy, evil, loan shark dude and runs into a woman he lusted after when he was twenty-four and she was fifteen. Insert sexual tension that drags on for hundreds of pages.

Reacher, as written here, is a character that I simply can’t invest my time in. In another life, he was an army cop, yet his deductive skills seem to come out of nowhere, without reason, logic or a clue as to how a conclusion was drawn. He’s a mannequin that I just hoped would do something – beat on thugs or get in a shootout, instead, I get bogged down in Child’s lifeless prose.

Say what you will about Robert B. Parker’s terse writing style (he could write the Spenser books on the head of a pin), you never failed to get a sense of what the main character was about in fifty words or less. This is the third Reacher book and I still don’t have a clear picture as to what makes the guy tick. He’s handy with his fists, weapons and the ladies, but beyond that….

Bad guy math-Reacher version:

+ more scars

– right hand

+ hook

+/- sinisterish bad guy patter

- Nehru jacket

– pussycat = Child's cheesy villain

If you’re a Reacher fan and believe that there’s a four star book (or another three star book) out there, I don’t want to know about it and maybe we shouldn’t have lunch. ;)
Profile Image for James Thane.
Author 9 books6,943 followers
August 19, 2019
After tangling with an extremist militia group in far northwestern Montana in his last outing, the third Jack Reacher novel finds the ex-MP digging swimming pools in Key West--about as far away from Northwestern Montana as one can get without leaving the United States. When a private investigator from New York named Costello shows up in Key West looking for him, Reacher has no idea who might have sent the guy looking for him or for what purpose, and so he tells Costello that he never heard of Jack Reacher.

Reacher is also working as security at a strip club and that same night two extremely unpleasant-looking guys come in looking for Jack Reacher. Again, Reacher denies knowing the guy. But then Costello, the P.I., turns up murdered with his fingertips cut off, and Reacher decides he'd better hightail it to New York to figure out what's going on here.

He quickly discovers that the client who hired Costello was none other than Reacher's old Army mentor and close friend, General Leon Garber. But Garber has just died and Reacher arrives as the funeral is underway. Garber's deliciously beautiful daughter, Jodie, tells Reacher that her father had been looking into the case of an MIA from the Vietnam War. The man, Victor Hobie, was piloting a helicopter that crashed in an inaccessible mountain region, and everyone on board was presumed dead, even though their remains were not recovered. For some reason, though, the military refuses to acknowledge Hobie as MIA, and they will not put his name on the memorial wall in Washington, D.C. Hobie's elderly parents are still grieving and Garber was attempting to resolve the mystery for them. Naturally, Reacher will take up the crusade.

Meanwhile, in New York City, a nasty corporate loan shark named "Hook" Hobie has gotten his hooks, literally and figuratively, into a desperate businessman named Chester Stone, who badly needs eleven million bucks on a short-term loan in order to save his company. Stone has no inkling that Hobie has every intention of stripping him of everything he possesses, right down to his boxer shorts.

Inevitably, of course, these two stories will intersect in a massive and very inventive climax. Along the way, there will be lots of action and violence and Reacher will have to be on top of his game all the way along. "Hook" Hobie is truly a deliciously nasty villain and, all in all, Tripwire is a lot of fun.

Profile Image for Alp.
736 reviews374 followers
June 27, 2016

There wasn’t as much action in this book as there was in the previous one, but it was full of suspense which helped move the story right along. The investigation was incredibly intense and thrilling. It kept me wondering and guessing almost up until the end.

The author did it to me again! On the one hand, I really wanted to know the truth after being kept in suspense, but on the other hand, I didn’t want to turn the next page because I was too afraid something very bad would happen to those characters. Oh, my poor nerves!

Although the ending wasn’t an earth-shattering surprise, I can tell that it was a very ingenious plot twist. Tripwire is another one of my favorites in this series. I really did enjoy it!
Profile Image for Ahmad Sharabiani.
9,564 reviews34 followers
May 4, 2019
Tripwire (Jack Reacher #3), Lee Child
Tripwire is the third book in the Jack Reacher series written in the third person, by Lee Child. It was published in 1999 by Putnam in America and Bantam in the United Kingdom.
Jack Reacher, ex-military policeman relaxed in Key West until Costello turned up dead. The amiable PI was hired in New York by the daughter of Reacher's mentor and former commanding officer, General Garber. Garber's investigation into a Vietnam MIA (Missing in action) sets Reacher on collision with hand-less "Hook" Hobie, hours away from his biggest score.
تاریخ نخستین خوانش: روز بیست و دوم ژوئن سال 2016 میلادی
عنوان: قلاب - کتاب 03 - از سری جک ریچر؛ نویسنده: لی چایلد؛ مترجم: محمد عباس آبادی؛ تهران، تندیس، 1393؛ در 551 ص؛ شابک: 9786001821356؛ موضوع: داستانهای نویسندگان بریتانیائی - سده 20 م
در سومین کتاب، از سری: «جک ریچر»، با عنوان: « قلاب»، که در سال 1999 میلادی، به قلم «لی چایلد»، نویسنده ‌ی بریتانیایی نگاشته شده است، «جک ریچر»، در یکی از جزایر «فلوریدا»، به نام: «کی وست»، از گمنامی خود لذت می‌برد، که سر و کله‌ ی مردی غریبه، برای یافتن او پیدا می‌شود. مرد پرسشهای بسیاری دارد. او ساعاتی بعد می‌میرد، و «ریچر»، مجبور می‌شود، رد او را به سمت «نیویورک» دنبال کند، تا افرادی را که او را فرستاده ‌اند پیدا نماید. ا. شربیانی
Profile Image for Adrian.
573 reviews209 followers
August 27, 2017
Ok, so despite all the advice and my own thoughts , I went ahead and read another Jack Reacher, so that's 3 in just over 2 weeks. Did I find it boring and/or formulaic as I worried I might ? No, in fact I actually enjoyed this one the most of the 3 so far. A good story well written. Bring on the next, but maybe in a few weeks eh ???
Profile Image for Julie .
4,079 reviews59k followers
March 27, 2013
This is the third Jack Reacher novel by Lee Child. My husband and I "buddy" read these. My husband loves Jack Reacher. After reading the first two in the series, I can see why the Reacher novels are so appealing to the male population. Lots of details on guns and weapons and lots of action. I enjoyed the first two as well, but not like my husband did. This one though made me a bigger fan. This is one of the third person novels.
Jack is in Florida digging ditches for swimming pools when a private detective shows up asking for a Jack Reacher. At first Jack denies knowledge of anyone by that name, but then the detective turns up dead and Jack decides he better find out who is looking for him.
This leads him sadly to discover the death of an old friend, Leon Garber. Leon was working on something and he had been wanting Jack to help him. As Jack and Garber's daughter start investigating Leon's case, they find themselves being followed, shot at and disturbed by the possibility that a former war vet presumed dead might have turned bad.

This one is still really fast paced, but it's more plot driven than the previous two. The action scenes didn't turn up nearly as often and the suspense was more intense as a result. I suppose that's more my style than non stop action scenes. So, my husband and I disagreed just a little about this one. He complained about the lack of action and I praised the more intelligent plot. Overall we both liked the book very much and are excited about reading the next one in line.
Overall an A.
Profile Image for William.
676 reviews338 followers
May 13, 2018
3-star. My somewhat lacklustre review follows:

This could have been 4 stars, if not for the repetitive and excessively overwritten sections.

Wow, the prose has improved a lot since books 1 and 2. More economical, better rhythm. ... but a different rookie mistake: Changing viewpoint between Reacher and thugs every paragraph. Sucks the tension and pacing right out of it"

And the economical prose doesn't last. The last half of the book has lots of car and plane rides with uber-detail of seats and steering and baloney to fill pages. Ugh.

The climax is badly overwritten.

(The woman blushes only once in this book)

Okay, don't get too excited now. According to Child, Reacher is 6' 5" and about 250 lbs of hard muscle. This is what that might look like.

On Jodie's apartment wall, painting by Piet Mondrian
Composition with Red, Blue and Yellow (1930)

Full size image

I really like how Child presents and develops the character of Marilyn Stone. Very smart and capable. Another strong female character !

Reacher's gun (this book)
Steyr GB

Full size image

Child still has a tendency to slip into excessive detail now and then. I bet he loves to blather on and on at parties.

Hobie looks out the window of an apartment in Manhattan and thinks this UTTERLY RIDICULOUS thought:
The Twin Towers looked shorter than they should, because of the curvature of the earth.
Where did Child get this? OMG stooopid.

Jodie calls a hotel, a new experience for Reacher.
He had never called a hotel. The places he stayed always had a room, no matter when. They were delirious if their occupancy rates ever made it above 50 per cent.

The hotel was a medium-sized old mansion set on a wide quiet street lined with chestnut trees. It had a big door painted shiny black and oak floors the colour of honey. Reception was an antique mahogany desk standing alone in the corner of the hallway. Reacher stared at it. The places he normally stayed, reception was behind a wire grille or boxed in with bulletproof plexiglas.

Lazy writing, plot event failure, stoopid AGAIN...

60% done
The figured out the secret mystery.

Profile Image for Supratim.
233 reviews451 followers
October 28, 2018
Tripwire is the third novel in the Jack Reacher series. For those who are not familiar with this character, Reacher is an-ex major in Military Police of the US Army. After losing his job due to downsizing, he leads the life of a vagabond, never living in the same place for long. In fact, he has gone off the grid.

Now what really makes Reacher someone special? He is Sherlock Holmes – John Rambo combined!!

Reacher is living as a swimming pool digger and minding his own business, when a private detective comes looking for him. And very soon – yes, you have guessed it! – the detective is tortured to death, and thus begins the adventure.

The detective had been hired by Reacher’s old friend and commanding officer’s beautiful daughter Jodie. Garber had been conducting an investigation into a MIA American soldier in Vietnam, and now Reacher and Jodie must continue.

This book is escapist fiction at its very best! The action, mystery, suspense and twists would keep you hooked. There are other sub-plots which are equally entertaining to a thriller lover. You just need to - borrowing the clichéd phrase- suspend your disbelief, that’s all.

I really liked the villain in this novel. He is cunning, psychotic and has extraordinary mental strength and physical prowess. A worthy adversary to our hero!

My recommendation – if you want to while away some time with a action-packed thriller, then you can pick it up.
Profile Image for Samir.
111 reviews177 followers
April 27, 2018
I'll be honest with you..I enjoy reading thriller books but I don't know how to write reviews for them so if you're looking for an extensive analysis of this book I'm sorry to disappoint you.

I've read second half of the book in one sitting so it is suffice to say that it was very interesting. Not much action scenes in this one but it was filled with suspense and intriguing investigations with a very well executed plot twist.
February 13, 2017
A more realistic book, in comparison to all the very unrealistic things he does in this series. It's probably because this plot follows more of a crime show storyline of detective work by Reacher and lady vs the previous books he was in situations without all the info or a way to investigate through normal channels.

The story starts off with some guys finding Jack in the Florida Keys where he's been living and digging swimming pools. One guy is killed by two other guys and Jack investigates it because he feels guilty. It leads him to the home of his former mentor, Garber, and it's his funeral. He reconnects with Garber's daughter, who's the female lead for this book. The mystery is left to Reacher and Jodie by Garber, about a missing Vietnam soldier. The MIA soldier's parents were friends of Garber's and sought his help to finally find out what happened to their son.

Reacher knows there's more going on than meets the eye due to the multiple attacks of violence upon his person and Jodie's. Kind of a giveaway. They set out to finish what Garber started concerning the missing soldier and hopefully figure out who's out for them as well.

I think what I liked best about this book was the more usual format of doing detective work and plotting ahead what you're going to look up next vs reacting to a situation (how the other books were). Maybe it's because I'm a fan of crime shows and like that procedural element or maybe it's due to it being a change of pace.

The second thing that seemed to define this book was Reacher not having full confidence about everything. He seems more human in this and at the same time even more awesome than regular humans. It looks like he's wrong about a lot of things and he still keeps at it, like a sledgehammer.

Very good ending and leaves a lot open for the next book.
Profile Image for Suz.
1,158 reviews606 followers
August 19, 2021
I'm flying through this series, just as Jack is flying from city to city, solving things in his usual foolproof manner. I am listening and this speeds up the process, and again, we are in the very capable hands of narrator Jeff Harding.

Jack drifted to a new town, and is digging swimming pools by hand, of all things! I had to have a giggle at how we are witness to all the physical exercise he is doing with this task and building his body of steel, tweaking and peaking to perfection.

I enjoyed the connection to his beloved mentor and commanding officer, General Garber. It's always great to hear more of the back story. It was nice to see a softer side where he doubted himself, even if it was for only a quick second.

Always capable and ultra smart, quick and smooth, I loved it. He's just so damn cool!

Number four is on loan at the moment, so this may give me a slight reprieve or rest for a couple of days. I probably can't continually listen to Jack no middle name Reacher. Or can I?
Profile Image for Brent Goldstein.
Author 2 books
January 8, 2013
I'm reading the Reacher series in order from 1 to whatever and this is my third. Loved #1. Liked #2. Not happy with #3. On the positive side, I read it pretty quickly and was just interested enough in the story that I didn't quit and throw it back on the shelf. That being said, this story was a pale comparison to the first two.

I have several criticisms of this book, some major and some minor. On the minor side, the prose was suspect, redundant and often lazy. As some other reviewers have pointed out, there were plenty of instances where I would read a sentence twice and say out loud to myself "where the hell was the editor?" I also couldn't understand Child's sudden penchant for describing every scene and every action to exhaustion. I really didn't need to know every facet of Jodie's wardrobe or every detail associated with Marilyn's sale of her home or a full recap of how long it takes Reacher to take a shower. These were run-on paragraphs that added nothing to the story and I found myself simply skipping over them. This happened over and over again and probably added a good 100 pages to the book.

My major issues start with how Child diminished the character of Jack Reacher in this book. Instead of the brilliant and brave investigator hero from the first two novels, the Reacher of Tripwire came across as a bit of an oafish rube . . . clueless about the ways of the world. It was almost laughable. Issue two is that the story just seemed to plod along for no reason. Issue three is that the story itself was absurd and there were a lot of open holes at the end of the book. Now I understand that the Reacher novels require a suspension of disbelief when it comes to the villains and storylines, but this one was just beyond silly and, when I sat and reflected on the book after finishing it, it really made no sense.

I'm going to give #4 a shot, but if the series continues the downward progression, then that will be my last.
Profile Image for Mike (the Paladin).
3,144 reviews1,849 followers
February 9, 2017
Okay, more like it. I have found myself running hot and cold in the Reacher series. There can be a huge eye roll factor in some of them...and there is a bit of that here. However...this one is very well constructed and the story pulled me in and wouldn't let go.

Okay a bit more detail (as I liked this one). So, what's the eye roll factor?

Well, let's look at an example. Reacher has been in Florida when he's drawn into the "mystery" (no spoilers, sorry). He's been making a living hand digging swimming pools. Once he's drawn into said mystery however events demand he leave, at once.

Now see Reacher doesn't carry anything, a pack, an overnight bag...nothing. He doesn't go to laundromats he just buys new clothes when he needs them. So he travels and then shows up at a funeral, not having bathed in 3 or so days, in the clothes he's worn for maybe a week without having shaved or cut his hair in "who knows when".... And the girl from his past whom he meets there practically falls into his arms (well that takes a couple of days but she wants to right away).

The girl? Oh yeah she's lovely...beautiful...described as "achingly beautiful".

Get the picture?

But that said the book itself takes off and the plot is an excellent one. This one (in spite of the logic straining Reacher details) is a great read. I can and do recommend it. You get some multilayered thinking here and we leave a lot of the somewhat formulaic plotting that showed up in the last book in the series behind. Reacher and his "achingly beautiful" co-protagonist have a mystery to solve, a puzzle to unravel and a wrong to right.

Good book.
Profile Image for Michelle.
1,379 reviews139 followers
October 13, 2020
Once again Jack Reacher is the coolest man on earth! Love him.
Profile Image for James.
607 reviews113 followers
November 5, 2015
The best Reacher in the series so far, by a fairly long shot. Reacher is drifting (poorly as he's actually holding down two jobs) in the Florida Keys when he's tracked down by a Private Investigator. Denying that he's the main the man is searching for, he turns up dead pretty quickly. Suddenly Reacher (it's always Reacher, apparently, never Jack) decides he needs to track the killers down and get to the bottom of the whole affair - he feels a level of responsibility for the man's death. Before we know it we're jetting all over the country, hunting down bad guys, hooking up with good girls and generally saving the day...

Obviously, it's a Jack Reacher novel, so some suspension of disbelief is a must. But, it is a relief to see the mystical coincidences that plagued the first two books noted by their absence. The back story is much more believable, the reasons for Jack being just in the right place and time as well (beyond the initial 360 degree turn from not being interested to needing to avenge the death of the investigator) and the carry-over character of General Garber from the previous novel provides a nice piece of continuity. The secondary characters all seem a little more rounded this time as well - Marilyn Stone being a classic example (although do we need to be continually reminded of the fact that she's not wearing any underwear?). Hopefully these improvements bode well for the rest of the series.

Flies in the ointment however (and some spoilers), the 360 degree start and Marilyn's dress/underwear situation aside – how do Jack and Jodie go from fifteen years of unrequited love to an obviously doomed relationship (she's a lawyer and he's a drifter - is that even a real job?) without Jodie asking herself any half-way serious questions about her own state of mind? No loose ends are really tied up at all - what was Tony's relationship with Hobie (he's surprisingly loyal if there isn't one)? And what happens to Marilyn and Chester Stone? Does she ever wear underwear again?
Profile Image for John.
285 reviews11 followers
January 25, 2013
Reacher, Reacher, he's our man! If he can't do it, NO ONE CAN! Move over James Bond and all you other wannabe heroes, old Reacher is the real deal, and he's got your back.

Having spent an inordinate amount of my reading years going back and forth between fluff fiction, non-fiction, thrillers, and history, it was a pleasure to stumble upon Lee Child's "Tripwire." I probably never would have found this series if it were not for all the television hype about the Tom Cruise screen version of Child's central character, Jack Reacher. Typically unimaginative, the Cruise screen version of a multi-book series is entitled "Reacher." But, somehow, after reading Tripwire, I cannot fathom what the casting director of the movie was thinking when they cast Tom Cruise (5'7") as Jack Reacher (6'5")! Reeeeeally?

Oh well, Hollywood aside, Jack Reacher is a star and this book was fantastic. First of all, this is a guy you can ALMOST relate to, because Lee Child is very deft at showing Reacher's human side(s) in this novel. And the development of the antagonist's character in Tripwire is masterful. Several times during the course the read, I just wanted to walk into the pages and stop this Hook Hobie myself. But Reacher is much better at that kind of stuff than I could ever be, so you really have to wait until the end to find out how things all turn out.

This was my first Reacher thriller, but I can assure you it certainly will not be my last. So, go to your library, book store, kindle, nook, IPad or wherever you can, find a Lee Child novel starring Jack Reacher and start reading. Oh, and BTW, fasten your seat belt and keep your hands and legs inside the vehicle at all times before liftoff!
Profile Image for Richard.
452 reviews108 followers
February 20, 2014

This was a disappointment after the solid 2nd novel "Die Trying". The plot was flat and offered no twists or turns for quite a lengthy book. The characters were standard for this type of genre also; the good guys were properly good at avoiding death at every turn and the bad guys were paint by numbers villains failing to get their man. The main bad guy has a hook, that's about as scary as it gets here.

Reacher is dragged across the country trying to help a long lost friend/daughter of his favourite boss from his army days. There was no chemistry between these two and you knew they would hook up before the end as soon as they met. Women seem to swoon at Reacher and it all seems to be following a pattern. One description that made me laugh though was "like a condom stuffed with walnuts" to describe Reacher’s physique.

I will read the next in the series hoping for a bit more of a story but I can guess there will be a bad guy who Reacher doesn't know at first then gets entangled with and defeats whilst bedding a gorgeous female (but not defeating the bad guy whilst bedding the female – just to clear that up). The next book could decide if I continue with the series or not. I will definitely be having a break whatever happens.

If you enjoy this try: "A Prisoner of Birth" by Jeffery Archer

Profile Image for Fred.
571 reviews77 followers
November 19, 2022
The insurmountable & unstoppable Jack Reacher, the “x-military” officer & drifter has a new project in his life.

Merriam Webster - Tripwire definition

From Tampa Bay Times - Oct. 20, 2016

A nice Jack Reacher novel not hard to follow.

Reacher(38) the indestructible, x-military drifter & woman’s dream...
Reacher is digging swimming pools & a night time bouncer in Key West, Florida.
Private Investigator Costello approaches him trying to find information concerning him, ordered by Mrs. Jodie Jacob(30), but Costello is then killed.

After finding Costello’s dead he goes to NY to see why Costello was hired & killed.

He finds the “mysterious” Jodie at Leon Garber’s funeral, his x-military police commanding officer & mentor. Reacher(38) meets Jodie Jacob(30), Leon’s beautiful gorgeous daughter. Jodie is a successful debt lawyer, who hired Costello to find Reacher as a client has pressure to lose monies somewhere with their company.

Jodie has had a “crush” on him since she was 15 & he was 24 reporting to her dad. Hearts & desires are strong. This part of the story’s romance descriptions are strong & can go on....

Victor Hobie’s amputated hand, was replaced with “The Hook” - he’s the villain.

“The Hook” captures Jodie as the legal authority to Chester Stone, being is forced to sign paper to his Stone Optical company.
“The Hook” wants to kill Reacher & makes Jodie call Reacher. She says “Hi Jack” vs. “Hi Reacher”.....

Profile Image for Krbo.
326 reviews41 followers
December 29, 2016
Meni samom je prilično zanimljivo kako mi je lijepo sjela ova knjiga.
Znamo o kakvoj se literaturi radi, skoro pa svemogući junak upada u razne probleme iz kojih se uvijek izvuče manje ili više izbubetan.

Genijalan žanr za potpuni odmor na vreloj plaži ili u toploj sobi.

Ako je inteligentno napisan, a Childu je već u trećoj knjizi sa Reacherom uspjelo znatno podići nivo pisanja od teme do izvedbe tako da mi je planula u samo tri dana aktivnog čitanja.

Ima samo jedan sitan nedostatak, stalno mi pred očima iskače Tomojle Kruzer koji je fizički oko polovice volumena opisanog Jacka Reachera, he
Prvo pročitajte sve knjige pa onda idite u kino (filmovi su gledljivi tu nema problema)
Profile Image for Jo Hurst.
583 reviews3 followers
March 15, 2019
This was a great book. I wasn’t able to read it as fast as I would have liked but maybe savouring it was the best idea. Hook Hobie has been keeping secrets for 30 years and is determined to stay hidden. That is until Jack Reacher and Jodie Garber turn up. Although I pretty much guessed Hobie’s secret very early on, it did not spoil the book at all. I prefer the army based Jack Reachers but this had a bit of both so it was win win.
57 reviews5 followers
June 5, 2013
Child's book 'Tripwire' is an absolutely amazing read!! It seems each of his Jack Reacher novels is so unique all by itself; every time I read one, I think it can't get any better, and yet it does. Contrary to opinions by others about some of his books, I've loved every single one of them. I have nearly completed reading all that he's written, and that makes me sad because 'Reacher' is my hero.

My husband and I also saw the movie 'Jack Reacher' in December and we both enjoyed it.
Profile Image for RM(Alwaysdaddygirl).
456 reviews68 followers
November 16, 2018
I read this a long time ago. This is second time was just as enjoyable. Things I forget. Regardless, it confirms why I love Jack Reacher.
Profile Image for Stuart.
121 reviews51 followers
June 23, 2014
"These boots were made for walking..."

There's two things I've learnt about Jack Reacher;

#1 You don't mess with Jack Reacher.

#2 You don't mess with Jack Reacher.

You'd think the villains would have some kind of handbook warning them not to mess with Jack Reacher. The handbook would go something like this;

#1 Jack Reacher

#2 Jack Bauer

#3 George W Bush

#4 The Brother's Grimm

#5 The Ghostbusters

This is the third book in the Jack Reacher series - Tripwire. There's two reason I'm being optimistic about this series. Firstly I like a good dust up, secondly I hear the novels get better as the series progresses. Good stuff. BOOM.

What's Jack got himself into now? He was happily digging pools out down in Chicago - I know, a actual job. Things were going swimmingly until a private investigator starts asking about if they know where a Jack Reacher is. He denies ever hearing of the guy, 10 minutes later the private investigator is dead and Jack takes it upon himself to find out who his employer was. Lots of running around, then he eventually finds himself in New York chewing on a hoogie and finding out his ex-commanding officer and friend Leon Garber has dead of cardiac complications. Things starts falling into place, Garber was investigating something and Jack takes it upon himself to finish his work - with the help of Garber's daughter (Jodie Garber) and soon to be love interest. Who do you think you are, James Bond? No he always goes for two in the movie.

Faced with problems from his past, Jack begins to unravel a chain of events stemming back to the Vietnam War. One Hook Hobie (who even thinks of these names). Hookie isn't such a nice chap, a lender to corporate businesses who find themselves short of capital. He suckers in Chester Stone, who needs a short term loan. The plot begins to overlap into what Jack is investigating and he finds himself protecting both himself and his lover. With Hookie pulling those Machiavellian strings in the background, making Jack dance to his merry tune. And dance he does. Hook Hobie is a disfigured, hook wielding, devious bugger - possibly the best antagonist so far in the series.

The good thing about Lee Child's writing is that it's fast and very punchy - it's one of those prose styles where you don't want to skip anything, but tend to précis read through the detail, which is over kill at times. Three pages of detail, whereupon the writer is describing Jodie Garber's apartment is too much for my liking - wayyyy to much. We're also back to the weak heroine who is in need of rescue. I'm not going to say this is a issue now as it makes Jack more likeable as the hero.

Tripwire is by the best novel in the series and certainly improves Jack Reacher as a character. He even received serious injuries at the end - I know, the HORROR. Enjoy. Apologies for the short review, tight on time.
Profile Image for Jim.
25 reviews40 followers
December 5, 2017
Tripwire is one of the more interesting of the Reacher thrillers. There are several reasons for this - all having to do with Reacher's history and character. In this story his history goes back to active duty in the army, his former CO Leon Garber, and his daughter who enchanted Reacher for no reason other than her mere luminous existence (so it goes in matters romantic). She was strictly off-limits - not because daddy was his CO, but because she was fifteen.

Flash forward a decade-and-a-half. Garber has died and Jodie is now a stunningly perfect 29 year old attorney who has gotten Reacher mixed up in the mess about which the novel is concerned.

I don't recall if she packs and can shoot, like many of Reacher's women (given her dad, it would be no surprise) - no matter, the important part is that Reacher has fallen hard for her, and she likes him back in the best way.

Reacher attends the funeral and the reception, which is held at the Garber residence. Garber was a widower, with Jodie his only child. He has set her up financially and, anyway, she knocks down the big bucks, because no one important in a Reacher novel is less than ultra-compentent (including pretty much all the villains). Reacher discovers that the Garber house is his as an un-knowing heir. He is therefore presented with a conflict.

The reason why lies with his post-Army lifestyle. He is "homeless", but is the least-homeless homeless-man you will ever see, in that he is homeless by design - at least intermittently.

The novel opens in Florida where for several months he has built up a stake by working as a casual laborer digging swimming pools. He is thus in better shape than he has been in some years. The details have faded, but the presumption is that he has a cheap flop and, as always, he eats at diners so he can put away a little before he catches a bus to resume his long-established See America Plan.

His possessions are few. He has an ATM card (and, I believe,
an Army pension that deposits into the account), a folding toothbrush, the clothes on his back, and so far as I recall - no comb. That's not necessary, since military haircuts require no comb. Every few days he purchases cheap clothes and throws away the old ones. He doesn't "carry". He always requires weapons at some point in the episode and always knows how to get as many as are required. So far as I recall background checks are not involved.

Reacher grew up as the son of a Marine officer so always lived in military housing. This continued when he joined the Army. He started his wandering right after he mustered out, so has never "owned a house" - until now.

He's not so sure that he wants to "own" a house - or to let the house "own him". If he weren't head-over-heels for Jodie Garber this would be a no-brainer. Therein lies an unusual problem.

Meanwhile there's a bad guy - a pretty nasty one, who loan-sharks. He runs a very compentent extortion racket that involves six-figures and up. His debtors always pay - often after brutal persuasion.

That's enough - don't want to spoil after all. The rest of this is a general sketch about Jack Reacher, ex-Army-MP, as sketched over twenty-odd novels.


Jack Reacher was not your garden-variety military policeman. He was a superior detective with nearly superhuman skills - physical, deductive, and intuitive.

Here's a biography that speaks to his consistent, if unconventional, morals.

"Reacher", as his French mother called him because Jack didn't seem to fit, lived at many different Marine bases, mostly overseas. He enlisted in the Army and served on missions only hazily alluded to with hazily alluded killings. During the latter part of his service he was an MP.

To police hard men the cop must be harder. Child does not belabor this bit of exposition because it is plain from Reacher's size (6-6 and variously 230-260 pounds) and superior hand-to-hand dirty-fighting ability. Four-to-one (four ordinary brawlers to one Reacher) only begins to constitute an even fight. He learned to fight dirty as a child, defending his older, not-ruthless brother at the many marine bases where they lived. So far his worst injuries were suffered in prison as he dealt worse injuries to two or three others (and the rest backed off).

In one novel, Reacher recalled that he mostly finished near the top and once won in series of world-wide military long-range shooting competitions. This foreshadowed the rare instance in which hitting targets at 1000-yards was important to the plot. More often he makes do at seemingly "long odds" with pistols. In those cases 4-to-1 is nowhere near an even fight.

Reacher has a chivalrous and deadly ethic. He often endures hardship and mortal risk to avoid hurting the innocent.

A notable example was when he permitted himself to be captured without a fight by the bad guys as they also abducted a blond FBI agent - reason being that if they'd started shooting on that busy Chicago street others might be shot. (view spoiler)

He flouts the law - instead he is guided with his own moral compass - one that is more true, more admirable than legislative bodies and regulators can usually imagine. His ultra-competence and self-control permit him to narrowly focus his aggression. This narrow focus mostly justifies his extra-legal acts. He does not imagine that aggressors need escape injury or death, therefore, he rejects much of the constraints that ruled his MP career - and which rule our police.

Because of this lack-of-constraint some readers regard his morals to be questionable at best. I find them to be consistent - almost to a fault. One critic accused him as “judge, jury, and executioner". This is true, except that most judges and juries have inferior moral judgment by comparison.

Reacher never starts fights. Many times he could walk away, except that his assailants would probably hurt him if he did so. He measures his force (and the injury he exerts) proportionally to the threat. He kills mostly to avoid being killed. Occasionally he kills the bad guys preemptively, usually when imprisoned and his captors would kill him to prevent his escape.

Once or twice he has burglarized drug dealers – taking cash, weapons, and ammunition. Lee Child apparently believes such traffickers to be fair game but stops short of harming them physically using Reacher as his proxy.

I don't read thrillers much (except The Executioner and The Destroyer as a teen), but like those pulps, Reacher often beds an off-the-charts beautiful woman. "Spectacular" seems to be Child's favorite feminine superlative. All are uber-competent. She is often ex-military or has a current career in law enforcement.

Mere beauty does not trip Reacher's trigger. He tips waitresses. He sleeps with women who could drop you in a firefight.

Child nods to police and spycraft excellence in many guises and especially feminine excellence. Frances Neagley served under Reacher as an MP and occasionally appears in a story at his behest (except once she summons him at hers). He commands her loyalty and knows she is one of the few humans on the planet who could take him out one-on-one (with firearms or other deadly means). She's his superior in spycraft. An occasional joke is that he believes he has gone from points A to B to C without being watched/tailed - only to discover later that Neagley has had him surveilled all along.

On balance, since rural settings comprise a majority of venues, the villains are also rural "rednecks". In more than one story, the villains maintain a reign-of-terror with locals. The leaders tend to be competent and shrewd but most of the "muscle" is not.

I have seen self-described conservatives object to Child's "liberal" leanings. This is manifested by Reacher's predilection for competent women in the military and law-enforcement. Other "objections" accrue to Child/Reacher's occasional comment on US foreign policy and perhaps to Child's general critique of the police and the military. I think Child's view, as an Englishman and as expressed through his hero, is more subtle.

Reacher disdains executives both civilian and military - unless they are also competent, with a "proper" disposition to break military law when such violates a higher moral authority - his best commanding officers and underlings honor the law "in the breach" when it would cause unjust results - or just render their efforts ineffective.

He also has disdain for most law-enforcement personnel - not just officers - mostly because they are ruining his day. Exceptions are those he needs and teams with. The kidnapped lady FBI agent is one. Others include the various clerical experts who can tweak databases, call in favors, cajole other police/military clerks, and generally do what it takes to get Reacher his information.

99% of the time Reacher is indeed "the smartest guy in the room". The other 1% is when he's with those competent associates - then they communicate in a kind of shorthand that shows Reacher is with his kind of people.

I'm not enough of a film-student to know if Hitchcock ever respected police enough to show them to be competent. Child shows that competence exists everywhere - especially among the villains.

I can’t claim to be well-read in thriller domain, but can recommend The Jack Reacher series almost without reservation.
Profile Image for Matt.
3,821 reviews12.8k followers
June 12, 2014
It all began with an inquiry. "Are you Jack Reacher?" After denying the question, Reacher soon learns that the man behind it, a private investigator, turns up dead. Living the good life in Florida, Reacher begins digging into the death, an apparent murder, which leads him up to NYC. There, Reacher learns who hired the P.I. and discovers a long ago forbidden love, now grown and seeking to pass along some important news, the death of his former CO. When Reacher learns of an MIA mystery dating back to Vietnam, one his CO tried to crack open, our elusive man of mystery begins digging and piecing it all together. Taking him all the way out to Hawaii, Reacher will stop at nothing to bring a soldier's elderly parents the answer they've been waiting decades to hear. Child keeps things fresh and new, creating a strong narrative and wonderful plot that hooks the reader from the get-go.

Three books into the series and I am soon learning some of the Bond-esque nature of Reacher. Three cities, three cases, three love interests. Is the man the casanova he sounds to be? Not really, at least the way Child portrays him. While some authors try to hide their characters behind this ability to conquer all women who come across their path, Child makes it seem more like a background addition to the character. Reacher is a former Army Major, with great MP qualities and his deductive reasoning is second to none. Great work and there is so much yet to learn and read as it relates to Jack Reacher.

Kudos, Mr. Child for another great book. I will surely be promoting you to anyone looking for a great series.
Profile Image for Ishraque Aornob.
Author 22 books255 followers
April 15, 2021
একটা বইয়ের সফলতা অনেকটাই নিহিত, একজন পাঠক বইটা কতটুকু উপভোগ করল তার ওপর। সেদিক দিয়ে দেখলে এই বইটা পুরোপুরি উপভোগ করেছি আমি। সত্যিকারের পেজ টার্নার বোধহয় এমনই হয়। সেইসাথে যুক্ত হয়েছে সাসপেন্স।
একদিকে ভয়াবহ এক ভিলেনের নৃশংসতা, অত্যাচার অপরদিকে জ্যাক রিচারের ঠাণ্ডা মাথায় ধাপ মেনে তদন্ত করে ভিলেনের কাছে পৌঁছানোর স্পৃহা। মাঝখানে ইঁদুর-বিড়াল দৌড় ও কিছু টার্ন। এসবের সাথে যুক্ত হয়েছে লি চাইল্ডের দুর্দান্ত লেখনশৈলী। তার বর্ণনা-ই পাঠককে ধরে রাখতে সক্ষম। অ্যাকশন, থ্রিল, সাসপেন্স এর সাথে রয়েছে ছোট কিন্তু মজাদার সব হিউমার। শেষে রয়েছে হালকা তবে গুরুত্বপূর্ণ একটা টুইস্ট। প্রায় সাড়ে পাঁচশো পৃষ্টার ঢাউস বইটা পড়তে সপ্তাহখানেক লাগল। কিন্তু বইটা পড়ার প্রত্যেকটা মুহূর্ত-ই ছিল উপভোগ্য। সলিড ফাইভ স্টার।
জ্যাক রিচারকে এ বছর থেকে সিরিয়াসলি নিতে হবে।
Profile Image for Kris (My Novelesque Life).
4,660 reviews189 followers
December 4, 2019
(Review Not on Blog)

I really enjoyed the first book, and thought the second book was not as good, but still a decent read. This one just dragged for me. I did finish the book but it was bit of a slog. I am in the minority, so check other reviews.
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