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Nothing to Lose - Lee Child

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3 Reviews

Author: Lee Child / Genre: Crime / Thriller

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    3 Reviews
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      16.04.2010 15:15
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      A good read, but not as good as the others in the series

      This is one of the two latest Jack Reacher novels by Lee CHild and I think this one could be the weakest. I am a massive fan of Jack Reacher, in fact slightly obsessed and all the other books have been great, but I think this one was a bit of a let down. It starts the same as most of the others, by telling us where Jack is in the USA and where he is going next. He is currently in Colorado in a town called Hope, the next town along is called Despair, and he walks over the border from one place to the other to find a diner to get some coffee and some food. While at the diner he is spoken to by the deputies of the town called Despair, and they tell him basically it's a small town and he is not welcome (as he has no identification, posessions or job they class him as a vagrant) and they try and get him out of town. Basically the rest of the story is Jack finding out why they don't like strangers in their town, and what they are trying to hide if anything. This leads to the usual violence and investigation that we love from Jack Reacher but not much else. There are a couple of side story lines, but they aren't too interesting, and obviously there is a love interest for Jack as there is in all the books. I found this book a bit pointless, as Jack isn't helping anyone, he is just holding a grudge and really being quite childish by not leaving. It's quite strange for us to see Jack get so engrossed in something just for the sake of it, and not really for a valid reason. Throughout the book, there is some fighting and a bit of violence, which is great, but not as much action as we are used to in some of the other books. It's an incredibly slow starter, and the ending isn't as dramatic as I expected. There are a few good parts to the book (don't want to say too much and spoil it), and I'm glad I read it, but this is the first of the series that I have struggled to finish, and didn't really care about the outcome. I have got the net in the series called Gone Tomorrow so I'm hoping that will be better.

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      02.06.2009 14:02
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      Jack Reacher can wander my way anytime!

      I've read quite a few of Lee Child's books with his main character being Jack Reacher and have to admit I'm really partial to them. Nothing To Lose is another Jack Reacher story based in two small towns in Colorado: Hope and Despair. These two towns are separated by 12 miles of empty road and couldn't be more different. After spending a day in the town of Hope Jack Reacher figures it's time he moved on with his wandering lifestyle. He heads through Despair stopping only to get a coffee in the restaurant and things take a strange turn. Not only will the waitress not serve him but she calls for the town's civilian deputies who come and attempt to run him out of town. Jack Reacher is not one to be intimidated and even though he gets arrested and dropped back at the edge of Hope with the warning never to return to Despair he can't let it go. Just what is going on in Despair? For anyone who hasn't read a Jack Reacher book he is currently homeless and jobless. This book doesn't explain that Reacher chose to walk out on his normal life and has plenty of money in the bank which is a shame because the early ones do and it makes him seem less of a hopeless case if you know those details. He is ex-military police, a huge guy with alot of combat skills so there are always some fight scenes and often tricks he picked up from his army days. I read a couple of reviews before I bought this book and some people seem to be sick of Reacher's wandering lifestyle. Personally I think it works well to place him in various situations that create an interesting storyline and the only thing I'd like to see change about that aspect is perhaps Reacher getting briefly involved with more people at each stop. Sometimes, as is true with this book, there is only really one other person he has regular dialogue with which would be better if there were more people on his side. Having more people to work with would also allow the author to showcase Reacher's military tricks and skills better. I do agree with the other reviews I read though that Reacher's character doesn't seem to develop much. Without reading the early books the reader knows next to nothing about him except he is ex-military police, can fight and wanders around America. It would be better if some situations arose that gave us more in depth information about Reacher in each book. Some of the facts we are told about him in the early books could do with repeating too as these books are stand alones and many readers will just read a couple. The other minor gripe I have with this book is the way he becomes interested in Despair. I can understand the author wanting to make Despair as odd a place as possible to get us interested but surely if your town has something to hide and strangers are not welcome you would serve them coffee and watch them leave? Surely the intruder would only be run out of town if they tried to book into the hotel? It seemed a bit too contrived to have problems start just with the ordering of a coffee! However saying that Jack Reacher stories are always interesting. There are always going to be some fight scenes, sadly in this book there weren't many fight scenes and I do really like these in Reacher stories! There are always a few survival techniques too which without fail intrigue me. Naturally Jack Reacher with his brawny body and unique attitude always attracts a woman in each place he stays at. This book is no different and he has a no-strings-attached fling with the female police officer from Hope. Strangely though this works, unlike other authors who seem to give their main characters a string of girlfriends and it gets ridiculous, because Jack Reacher is always on the move it's credible he would have so many different women. The storyline is intriguing and the character of Jack Reacher is as fair and likeable as ever so this book makes for a good read. I will definitely be reading the next in the Jack Reacher novels and think he has a good few books of wandering, fighting and flirting left in him yet! I bought my copy from Tesco as part of a two for £7 deal but Amazon have copies at £3.84 new and 77p on Amazon Marketplace.

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        30.05.2009 06:23
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        Not the best in the series, but should provide a Reacher fix for old fans and newcomers

        After the events of 'Bad Luck and Trouble', lone wanderer Jack Reacher is back on his own, drifting his way into Colorado. The book takes place in two main settings; the aptly named towns of Hope and Despair. Hope is a pleasant town with friendly inhabitants and Despair is quite the opposite, with nothing but a single road stretching for miles between them. After being turned away from Despair, Reacher sets off to find out what they're hiding. For those of you who don't know Jack Reacher, he's an ex-military cop in the United States Military. Standing more than 6" tall and filled out with muscle, Reacher wanders the United States in order to see the place he never grew up in. He makes no plans and carries nothing but the clothes on his back, a photo ID and a folding toothbrush. When it comes time to sleep or change clothes he rents a cheap backwater motel and buys cheap surplus store garments; anything that'll fit. He has an obsession with coffee and is trained to perfection, reacting with a menacing coolness to any situation. The twelfth book in the series, it appears author Lee Child is running out of ideas. Reacher's usual motivations for what he does revolve around his own personal idea of justice; someone messes with his friends or loved ones, Reacher's going to be there. In a somewhat more minor way, he also looks out for the little guy. Not because he cares about the little guy, but because he doesn't like the big guy sitting on them because he can. It is for these reasons that loyal fans of Child's fantastic character might find Nothing To Lose a little hard to swallow. Reacher doesn't make plans. He goes with the flow. The very last line in the previous book Bad Luck And Trouble was "I don't make plans", yet after being turned away from Despair, a closed community, Reacher makes it his business to find out why. He has no real reason other than pure stubbornness, which doesn't sit right with his character; In all the other stories, Reacher has been forced into the situation or has a personal reason. Couple this with a bizarrely trusting policewoman who lends personal vehicles to a total stranger and you have a slight mess on your hands. Outside of this, Nothing To Lose is an enjoyable read, and will undoubtedly appeal to new fans if it does fall short of pleasing the current fanbase. It does appear that Child is clutching at straws for plot ideas and the ending is rather absurd, topping even the premise of 'Die Trying'. Nevertheless, it is a worthwhile purchase, but given the option between this and any of the the other books in the Reacher series, pick another.

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    • Product Details

      Two small towns in Colorado: Hope and Despair. Between them, nothing but twelve miles of empty road. Jack Reacher can't find a ride, so he walks. All he wants is a cup of coffee. What he gets are four redneck deputies who want to run him out of town. Mistake. They're picking on the wrong guy. Jack Reacher is a big man, and he's in shape. No job, no address, no baggage. Nothing, except bloody-minded curiosity. What is the secret the locals seem so keen to hide? A hard man is good to find. Ex-military cop Reacher is today's most addictive hero. Now he pulls on a tiny loose thread, to unravel conspiracies that expose the most shocking truths. Because, after all, Jack Reacher has nothing to lose.