Kiwis love Reacher

April 17, 2010
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61 Hours, by Lee Child (Bantam Press, RRP $39.99):

Benjamin Franklin reckoned there were only two things in this world that could be said to be certain: death and taxes.

However, I’d like to add a third item to that list: Lee Child hitting the best-sellers list here in New Zealand with his Jack Reacher novels. Per head of population, the Reacher thrillers outsell most other markets where Child’s books are available.

The latest offering, 61 Hours, hit the bookstores last month and looks set to be another triumph for the United States-based Brit author who has sold more than 16 million books worldwide.

The 14th thriller featuring Reacher, ex-United States army MP and decorated war hero. Reacher is now a drifter, who takes centre stage in a this series of novels.

As each book has been released we’ve learned a little bit more about this giant of a man (1.96m tall and built like the proverbial brick outhouse), from his love of music to his fascination with maths.

This time around, Reacher is in South Dakota in the middle of winter. As the brutal weather takes hold, Reacher hitches a ride on an ill-fated bus. The bus skids in the snow and crashes, stranding its passengers and leaving them to deal with the weather and each other.

Add to the mix a witness hidden away in a small town near the crash and bad guys plotting a murder and you have the recipe for a cracking thriller.

This story has all the expected twists and turns, along with plenty of unexpected developments. And of course, there’s not a fictional hero out there who can match Jack Reacher when it comes to ass-kicking and name-taking.

This book works equally as well as a standalone story so don’t be put off if you haven’t read the earlier books. Although, it’s pretty much a certainty that once you read this you’ll be hooked and looking for the rest of them.

Jillian Allison-Aitken

I come from the other land down under, where men are men, and sheep are nervous. I'm a sub-editor and in the past have been a proof-reader, news editor and web editor. I am also an ex-columnist, and book and software reviewer for the local daily newspaper.I still read. A lot. And surf the web. Also a lot.You'll find a little about both of those pastimes here, and on By George.

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