Tag Archives: Jack Reacher

Why do publishers not advertise that books are part of a series?

Ok, I admit it does sometime happen, but not often enough. The last 2 books I have read have both been part of series (& unfortunately for me, they were not the 1st book in each of these series) but neither book was marked to indicate that it was part of a series. The first one I read was Kisscut by Karin Slaughter & the second was The Leopard by Jo Nesbo. Kisscut was a great book, but it ruined the book that comes before it, if you hadn’t already read it. I now pretty much know what happened, so why bother reading it? The Leopard was also a great book, but unlike Kisscut, it doesn’t ruin what happens in the book before it. I have a vague idea what happened in The Snowman after having read The Leopard, but Nesbo didn’t really give anything away & I am going to run out & get the rest of Nesbo’s books, because I loved The Leopard.

So, my question is – to all the publishers out there – if you represent an author who writes a series of books about the same central characters, why can’t you tell us that? Is it really so difficult? It surely makes sense to put something like: “An Inspector Hole novel” or “A Jack Reacher Story”, like are on Lee Child’s books. Doing so would alert potential readers to the fact that the book they have in their hands might not be the one they want to read just yet & would save people from doing what I did – reading a book out of order & having that ruin the book that came directly before it.

Just a thought!

Advertisements

1 Comment

Filed under Life

Worth Dying For by Lee Child

Spoiler Alert – Do not read this post if you read Lee Child‘s books & have not read 61 Hours yet!

Worth Dying For is the sequel to 61 Hours & sees the story start shortly after 61 Hours ends. Reacher is in Nebraska, having survived the explosion in the military bunker in 61 Hours. He ends up at a motel where he witnesses the power of the Duncan family over the residents of this small Nebraska back-water. As per standard, Reacher refuses to stand by & watch while the citizens are abused on his watch. He, even though he is hurting from his recent run in, takes on the Duncan Clan & their army of ex-football players for security.

Worth Dying For sees the usual level of  drama as Reacher works to ensure that the locals are freed from the hold that the Duncans have over them & while you know that Reacher will succeed, you are never bored even though you know roughly what the outcome will be.

Reacher is a master at sticking his nose in where it doesn’t belong, causing absolute chaos & coming out smelling like a rose at the end. Somehow Child manages to write stories which you can relate to, even though you probably really shouldn’t be able to. He spins a tale that leaves you rooting for the main character, even though that main character is a murderer…I guess that it helps that he is always on the side of the good guys & always trying to get justice for those who cannot get it for themselves.

If I had a complaint about Worth Dying For it is just that as a sequel, it doesn’t really tie in very well to 61 Hours. Child doesn’t write much about how Reacher survived the jet fuel explosion which happens at the end of 61 Hours. It is mentioned almost as an after thought, which I think really did a disservice to the readers who had deliberately been left hanging at the end of 61 Hours, with the promise of “To be continued…” It wasn’t really.

Leave a comment

Filed under postaweek2011, Relaxing reading

Reading book series' in order – how often does it matter?

I read a lot of series of books – Lee Child‘s Jack Reacher books, Ian Rankin‘s Rebus series, Jeffery Deaver‘s Lincoln Rhyme series,  etc, etc & I have religiously read them in the correct order. I think it’s important to read them in the order that they were published, as you are reading them as the author intended & often there are small nuances in books, connecting details, that if you read them out of order could make the stories less effective, make less sense & potentially could ruin subsequent stories by giving away things that you wouldn’t necessarily know, not having  already read the earlier books in the series.

There are other series’ where it doesn’t so much matter whether you read them in any order. Series where  the main characters may remain the same, but because there is little to no chronology to the books, reading them out of order matters less. In these kind of series the author ensures you know what you need to about the main characters. Back references about the main characters  to make sure you know enough to ensure you can read the books in any order you want. The Sherlock Holmes books specifically spring to mind. Each of those books, while about the same core of characters, can be read as individual stand-alone books.

Well, it turns out that I have recently broken my unwritten rule & have read 2 books in a series – out of order. Obviously I didn’t realise at the time that I was doing this, otherwise I would have chosen a different book to read. Unfortunately, the  books in question were part of a series that need to be read in order, especially the 2 I read – Stone Cold & The Collectors, by David Baldacci. Even worse, I read Stone Cold first, then The Collectors & this is definitely one of the cases where reading them out of order ruined the reading. Stone Cold is essentially the continuation of The Collectors & having read Stone Cold first meant that I knew exactly what was going to happen (both the plot & the outcome) before I read it. Don’t get me wrong, I still enjoyed reading The Collectors, but I would have enjoyed it far more if I had had no idea what was happening before it happened!

So, my question to you is: How do you feel about reading Series of books out of order?

3 Comments

Filed under postaweek2011, Relaxing reading

61 Hours by Lee Child

Jack Reacher is one of those characters that while I cannot relate to him at all on a personal level, I do love him! I suppose it’s kind of like how people (me) love the character Dexter – the mass murdering blood spatter analyst. Reacher is a drifter who in his travels is righting the wrongs he comes across, and more often than not by very violent means. Reacher has killed more than his fair share (is there such a thing as a fair share in the murder game?) of men, making him as mass murderer…….but the thing is, he’s a good guy. He only kills people who deserve it, lol.

I don’t remember which was the first Reacher book I read (it definitely wasn’t the 1st book, though), but once I read that first book, that was it, I was hooked!

61 Hours sees Reacher travelling on a bus, with a Senior’s tour in the middle of winter, more by accident than by design, though. He’d bribed the driver to allow him to travel with the tour to the next stop on the tour where Reacher could then move on to where ever he was next drifting toward. unfortunately the bus becomes involved in an incident & crashes. The police from the nearest town come collect the injured seniors taking them to hospital & putting the rest with host families while they wait for their replacement bus to arrive.  Bolton, the town they are taken to is the location of a new super prison & home toa flourishing drug trade.

The Bolton police are locked into a service contract with the prison which requires every last officer to rush to the perimeter of the prison within ten minutes of a riot or escape alarm sounding & the town is in a kind of lock down while they are protecting one of the locals who is due to testify against the drug lords who are operating out of the old army base. Queue the drama!

***SPOILER ALERT***

This is the 1st Reacher book that isn’t a stand-alone. The book come to a pretty dramatic climax, as those of who have read Reacher books have come to expect, and ends with a “To be continued”, with Worth Dying For being the next in the Reacher installment.

If you haven’t read any of Lee Child’s books – DO! Start at the beginning & enjoy!

Leave a comment

Filed under Relaxing reading

Gone Tomorrow by Lee Child

Gone TomorrowFrom the Dust Jacket –

“Suicide bombers are easy to spot. They give out all kinds of tell-tale signs. Mostly because they’re nervous. By definition they’re all first-timers.

There are twelve things to look for. No one who has worked in law enforcement will ever forget them.

New York City. The subway, two o’clock in the morning. Jack Reacher studies his fellow passengers. Four are ok. The fifth isn’t.

The train breaks for Grand Central Station. Will Reacher intervene, and save lives? Or is he wrong? Will his intervention cost lives – including his own?

As the dust jacket says, Reacher gets involved in a situation where he thinks that there is a suicide bomber on the subway. The “action” he chooses to take results in a lot of action happening to & around Reacher. He gets caught up in a network of crime & intrigue involving the Taliban, a US Senator & lots & lots of men with guns!

I have read (and loved) all of the Jack Reacher books, so I was very eagerly awaiting the arrival of this one. Then, life kinda got in the way & I didn’t buy it as soon as it came out, like I usually do.  Well, I can happily report that once I did finally get around to buying Gone Tomorrow, I was very pleased I had! It was another typical Reacher page-turner. I read it in little better than an afternoon, though it has taken me far far longer to get my act together & write this blog (I have had it on a draft since the 28th of June!)

If you have read (and enjoyed) any of the Reacher series, then I can safely say that you will not be disappointed with the latest in the series. Jack gets up to his usual tricks & saves the world (lol) & meets a beautiful lady at the same time. Hmmm, never really thought about this before, but maybe these books are the James Bond for the 2000’s? A rough & tumble, sexy man who does his utmost to protect the world – only he doesn’t have the techno gadgets that come courtesy of Q – using his wit, physical strength , strength of character & the skills learned from a lifetime around the military. Sort of formulaic, but it works. It must work or I for one wouldn’t be rushing out to buy the next installment every time Mr. Child releases a new Reacher book!

In short, this is an excellent book & I am sitting at home on my sofa counting down the days until I can have my next Jack Reacher fix!

1 Comment

Filed under Relaxing reading