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Bad Luck And Trouble

by Lee Child
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Product Details

  • Publisher: Dell
  • Publishing date: 19/05/2009
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-13: 9780440246015
  • ISBN: 0440246016


Ex-military cop Jack Reacher is the perfect antihero--tough as nails, but with a brain and a conscience to match. He's able to see what most miss and is willing to do whatever it takes to get the job done. Each book in Lee Child's smart, addictive series (The New York Times has referred to it as "pure escapist gold") follows the wandering warrior on a new adventure, making it easy to start with any book, including his latest gem, Bad Luck and Trouble. However, be forewarned...once you meet Jack Reacher, you'll be hooked, so be prepared to stock up on the series. --Daphne Durham

Who Is Jack Reacher? A Video from Lee Child

Watch the video

A Note from Lee Child

Two years ago I was on a book tour, promoting that year's new Jack Reacher novel, One Shot. One particular night, the event was held in a small town outside of Chicago. The date was June 21st. As I was giving my talk and answering questions and signing books, that date was nagging away at the back of my mind. I knew it had some significance. I started panicking--had I forgotten my anniversary? No, that's in August. My wife's birthday? No, that's in January. My own birthday? No, that's in October.

Then suddenly I remembered--it was ten years to the day since I had been fired from my previous job. That was why and how I had become a writer. That night in Illinois was a ten-year anniversary of a different sort, somewhat bittersweet.

And ten is a nice round number. So I started thinking about my old colleagues. My workmates, my buddies. We had been through a lot together. I started to wonder where they all were now. What were they doing? Were they doing well, or struggling? Were they happy? What did they look like now? Pretty soon I was into full-on nostalgia mode. Ten-year anniversaries can do that to a person. I think we all share those kind of feelings, about high school, or college, or old jobs we've quit, or old towns we've moved away from.

So I decided to make this year's Jack Reacher book about a reunion. I decided to throw him back among a bunch of old colleagues that he hadn't seen for ten years, people that he loved fiercely and respected deeply. Regular Reacher readers will know that he's a pretty self-confident guy, but I wanted him to wobble just a little this time, to compare his choices with theirs, to measure himself against them.

The renewed get-together isn't Reacher's own choice, though. And it's not a standard-issue reunion, either. Something very bad has happened, and one of his old team-members from the army contacts him, by an ingenious method (it's hard to track Reacher down). She gives him the bad news, and asks him to do something about it. He says, "Of course I'll do something about it."

"No," his friend says. "I mean, I want you to put the old unit back together."

It's an irresistible invitation. Wouldn't we all like to do that, sometimes? --Lee Child

Secrets of the Series: A Q&A with Lee Child

Q: Why do you think readers keep coming back to your novels?
A: Two words: Jack Reacher. Reacher is a drifter and a loner with a strong sense of justice. He shows up, he acts, he moves on. He's the type of hero who has a long literary history. Robin Hood, the Lone Ranger, Aragorn from The Lord of the Rings, Jack Reacher--they're all part of the same heroic family. Reacher just ratchets it up a notch. Maybe more than a notch. Why is he so appealing? Most often people say to me it's his sense of justice; he will do the right thing. Even though there is no reward in it for him, even though there is often a high cost to be paid by him, he will always try to do the right thing and people find that reassuring in today’s world when not too many people are doing the right thing.

Q: Jack Reacher gets compared to James Bond, Jack Bauer and Jason Bourne, each of whom now has a "face." In a movie, which actor do you think could fill Reacher's shoes?
A: That's the toughest question. The thing about Reacher is he's huge; he’s 6'5" tall and about 250 pounds. There aren’t any actors that size--actors tend to be small. So we aren't going to find a physical facsimile for Reacher because there aren't any. We have to find someone who is capable of looking big on the screen. Many people have said to me a young Clint Eastwood would have been perfect--we need someone like that who has the vibe of a big intimidating man. Hopefully there will be somebody available like that. It's also a question of finding somebody ready to sign up for more than one movie. They want to make a franchise, minimum of three, and that makes it a little bit harder.

Q: What research is involved in writing one of your stories?
A: My research is all kind of backwards. I don't go to the public library for three months and take notes in advance; instead my best research is by remembering and adapting. I read, travel, and talk to people just for the fun of it, filing away these interesting little snippets to the back of my mind and eventually they float to the surface and get used. The problem is, I approach writing the book with the same excitement and impatience that I hope the reader is going to feel about reading it. But even so, I need a certain measure of technical intrigue in the story. There is specific research I have to do as I go along, anything that's a small detail; a car, a gun, a type of bullet. I will check that out at the time. But, that's what I call the detail--the broad stuff is the stuff I already know.

Meet Jack Reacher

The Killing Floor

Die Trying


Running Blind

Echo Burning

Without Fail


The Enemy

One Shot

The Hard Way

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  • good writing here
    From Amazon

    I have never had trouble with Child's ability to tell a story. What I don't like is just how this series progresses. You might have a beef with my judging this pretty well crafted story as being a part of a whole Reacher series. Its just that while I can take Reacher saving the day in an epic fashion against a hoard of bad guys, I cant see some nomadic dude wandering across the country ending up in fights equal to James Bond scenarios. Reacher is obviously 100% crafted on the character of Rambo. In Bad Luck and Trouble, he is Rambo with a mathematical mind worthy of Matt Damon in Good Will Hunting. He buys a new shirt twice in this story and changes out of his old one in the store, throwing the old one away. He says that he doesn't like to get bogged down with baggage. Hmmmm, didn't change his underwear for the entire novel? Must have been getting pretty ripe. I really dont like series' that turn the main character into superheros from one book to the next. Here Reacher is not quite a superhero, but he has the ability to be walking down a very busy street talking with his friends and is able to react to the sound of a muffled round being chambered 20-30 feet behind him. Silly timing starts off the book. One of his old army buddies puts 1030 dollars into his account at a bank. Reacher could have gone the next couple of months without checking that balance. Reacher has these seven old army friends that this story revolves around. Their slogan is "You do not mess with the special investigators". They all are willing to drop everything in order to help each other out. All seven of Reachers friends talk in worshipful observance of the Special Investigators to their friends and families. Why is it that in this, the 11th Reacher book we hear about them for the first time? I know I know, this is a little out of line, but what if it turns out that one of Reachers old jobs was as a stock analyst and he goes and investigates a huge money laundering scheme in the next book. Using his old friends who were once everything to Reacher before he went into the army. I mean, I hate it when an author just lands a huge chunk of important past into a series like Child does here. Especially 11 books in. Bad luck and trouble always finds Reacher. I seem to remember a story where it started off as Reacher hitchhiking and some gang kills the lady who picked him up???Something close to that. I mean, give me a break, one guy just cant step in so many piles of dung. In this story... I AM VERY SORRY (but I cant get into who the bad guys are, its revealed way too far into the book), the bad guys in this book are too insanely impossible. Trust me on this, its almost laugh out loud bad. Suffice it to say that once again Reacher saves the USA from disaster. He sleeps with a woman in a very cold removed manner (every reacher book i have read treats women like a commodity). And he lives up to his very high Rambo personal ethical standards. THe writing - 5 stars, the story - 3 stars. The series at this point, 1 star. If these were stand alone thrillers they would be a lot better.

  • Bad Luck and Trouble
    From Amazon

    I am a big Jack Reacher fan, but I had a hard tome slogging through this one.

  • Reacher does it again!
    From Amazon

    The format may be the same but the plot is another show stopper! excellent read

  • Okay plot but bit of a turnoff
    From Amazon

    The book is okay and I read it all the way through. I didn't really mind the mathematical premise though at times it seemed a little contrived. I also don't necessarily need a bloodbath from Reacher every time. However, Child disappointed me a bit. I don't know why he had to portray a bias against all things biblical. That was a turn-off to see his cynical bitterness. I also saw no reason to come down on the LAPD. Not sure where Child's head was at. I read Bad Luck and Trouble a while back but it also seems to me that the ending was particularly bleak. Not my favorite Reacher novel.

  • first miss...
    From Amazon

    I absolutely love the Reacher series, and I think Child is doing something really special here. His style is unique and in many ways revolutionary. after 10 hits there comes this miss... It's a different style, way less sharp and a little too conventional for my taste. But, hey, Child is still the MAN... he can write like no one else I just hope he gets his mojo back.

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