In the summer of 2011, Grad Student, myself, GS's BF, our cousin and some friends went to southern Spain for a magical vacation. Yet I planned poorly and read my one book WAY TOO FAST ( John Irving's Hotel New Hampshire-- now, this is a long book, but so weird and a story for another time...) Writhing desperately with nothing to read on my lounge chair on the beach, GS's BF basically threw a Jack Reacher novel at me to make me be quiet, and man did it work. He had brought along multiple Reacher novels and on the last day, my cousin and I chose not to eat more tapas in the cutest Spanish square ever but to sit and read our Reacher books... and from there a monster was born.
My only goal over Thanksgiving other then spending time with my family eating copious amounts of creamed onions was to get my hands on some Jack Reacher. The following is the review of Lee Child's first Jack Reacher story, Killing Floor, and guys, it was awesome.
The electrifying debut novel which introduces Jack Reacher, a drifter and ex-military policeman; a man of action, unafraid to take justice into his own hands; a man of intelligence and cunning. Shortly after Reacher arrives in the sleepy town of Margrave, Georgia he’s arrested for murder. The next three days’ events leave everyone stunned.
Absurdity: 9. While this is not scifi or fantasy Jack Reacher is THE MAN. I give a high absurdity because one night in the pouring rain, getting ready to get some guys who tried to kill him, 5 step out of the van instead of the 4 he thought and he basically says something like "Four wasn't going to be a problem, but 5? Still going to kill them all". And he does. He also head butts a lot which seems absurd for someone of his stature, lots of low bending.
Level of Harry-Potterness: 8. Lee Child, thank you for writing some of the best formulaic books out there, and I mean this as the highest compliment. There is foreshadowing (LITERARY TECHNIQUE!) twists, turns, surprises and just generally a well written story. So a slow clap for a man who actually knows how to write for adults and remembers, yes, we do like a complicated story.
Go forth and get some Jack Reacher in your life, really, you can start with any book, but the Killing Floor was an excellent series introduction.