Thursday, September 4, 2014

Review: Never Go Back by Lee Child (Jack Reacher, #18)

Some characters in books never age. They live as long as the pen of their respective authors keep filling up pages to give them a larger than life story. Author Lee Child continuing with the tradition takes his most bankable character Jack Reacher through motions in the latest story "Never Go Back". So how this latest offering from him turn out to be? Let's find out. 

Lee Child brings to yet again an intriguing story about Jack Reacher, a former American military policeman. He travels from South Dakota to Washington D. C. to meet his new commanding officer, Major Susan Turner. On reaching the destination Reacher discovers that Turner is missing and what more, he is accused of murdering a sixteen year old.

Will Reacher regret his decision of going back or get a clean chit after finding his commanding officer, Major Susan Turner. Time is running and Reacher has to make quick moves and decisions to clear his name off the criminal charge.Never Go Back, is apt for those who like to turn pages after pages to know what’s going to happen next. 

First look at the title and the cover and one can get the fresh and lonely feel of a figure standing in the midst of nowhere. It's a trademark Lee Child style and the colour contrast manages to catch the attention of the readers. The blurb as usual is full of intrigue and suspense and holds back the plot pushing the readers towards a candid journey of Jack Reacher. 

The story has been set off in Washington D.C where Jack Reacher has returned back to his old command i.e 110 M.P to meet Susan Turner. But what awaits him is a bag full of surprises when instinctively he finds himself embroiled in two cases and few more undue controversies. He quickly reacts to the situation and tries to get hold of his only known source Turner but finds that she is amiss from the scene. So what will happen to Reacher this time? Will this homecoming a celebration or turn out to be another party pooper? What's there from the past that will come back to haunt him and how will he stand up against an entire invisible force to serve justice to him and the others? That's what the story is all about. 

The story is set off in a slow motion pretty much on the lines of what one expects from Reacher series. You need to get soaked in the atmosphere and then look out for spin-offs and surprises best served cold to the readers. It's the hidden entities behind the whole saga that sets tone for the novel and this one goes through a similar motion. A sluggish yet steady inclusions of numerous problems in the book and lengthy suspense and drama sequences make it a candid affair. The book running the course without turning back once and getting the readers sucked in it's entire length and breadth. The story maintains the sanctity of a thriller and drama and chugs along on a dangerous territory with lot of impetus on the past and bits of present. 

The downside of the book is it's sheer slowness at times eats away the excitement. The entire sequence of events never adding up to a perfect finish to the book. The revelations pretty dull and the antagonist not as forceful and active as one expects to be. The sidekicks pretty much hogging the limelight from the main antagonist. The story becomes a dull affair and the two parallel lines doesn't quite offers a spectacular or a jaw dropping finish to the book. It softens up bit too much for the liking of the readers. 

All in all it's a mixed affair. The book manages to remain sane for most of the part but insanity sets in towards the end. The story gets battered and scarred but still holds off through the motions of Jack Reacher. It's not entirely convincing as a story but enough to keep the interest alive for the future books featuring Reacher. A sharper deliverance is what was required while filling up the gaps of a weak homecoming. A bitter sweet experience for the readers. 


3 OUT OF 5

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