- Paperback: 416 pages
- Publisher: BANTAM PRESS (5 November 2018)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0593078209
- ISBN-13: 978-0593078204
- Product Dimensions: 15.3 x 3 x 23.4 cm
- Boxed-product Weight: 358 g
- Customer Reviews:
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 30,399 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Past Tense: (Jack Reacher 23) Paperback – 5 Nov 2018
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"Jack Reacher is today's James Bond, a thriller hero we can't get enough of" (Ken Follett)
"I loved it. One of the best." (Jonathan Ross)
"It’s Lee Child. Why would you not read it?" (Karin Slaughter)
"Sometimes you just want someone who can beat the s*** out of people! I pick up Jack Reacher when I’m in the mood for someone big to solve my problems" (Patricia Cornwell)
From the Publisher
What people are saying about Past Tense...
Child is an excellent writer...As ever, the prose is precision-tooled. - Evening Standard
Lee Child shows no signs of slowing down. . . . Reacher is a man for whom the phrase moral compass was invented: His code determines his direction. . . . You need Jack Reacher. - Atlantic
The concision, procedural chops and terse, surprising action of Past Tense make it a fantastic read. - USA Today
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My personal rating system
1 Star Couldn't finish the book
2 Stars Didn't really like the book, but was interested enough in the story to finish (Skipping great chunks)
3 Stars The book was okay, finished it and will consider reading more from the author
4 Stars Really enjoyed the book, will check out others by this author
4 1/2 Stars Loved the book, will immediately check out others by author, if asked will recommend book
5 Stars LOVED the book, will immediately check out all others by author, will pre-emptively recommend book to ALL my book friends
I loved it and expect I'll be rereading it again in the future. This book is a solid 4 and a half stars which I've bumped up to five as Amazon doesn't do half stars.
It is hard to identify precisely what it was that I didn't like, all of the introspection of the 2 other main characters (apart from JR) was annoying. JR was also too busy self analysing - the whole book just didn't work for me. I was almost angry when I was finished with it.
Had it been a Hard Cover I would have tossed it in the bin (heresy to me, I have kept all of my books over the last 40 years) - I wouldn't have bothered lending it to anyone (unlike all of my other Lee Child books) but as it was on my Kindle I just deleted it.
So sad :(
Top international reviews
To any die-hard Reacher/Lee Child fans who want to own this book I'd suggest waiting a while until the price comes down; it really isn't worth a tenner.
I pre-order every Jack Reacher and read straight away hoping for a true return to form.. and always come away disappointed.
Lee Childs is cashing in all the brownie points he amassed early in the series, but for me, he has now spent up, I will no longer pre-order and feel the need to start leaving HONEST reviews to counteract the blinded fans.
The book starts superbly, Jack Reacher takes one of his little side trips that becomes an adventure, and at the same time another story 20 miles away is woven into the narrative, except in this case the side story is probably the main one. To be honest the Jack Reacher 'side' story is pretty much wasted text, as the only exciting part of it (Jack making trouble with the wrong people), I literally think Lee Childs forgot it existed and forgot to finish it.
When the main story wraps up however, it is a damp squib, and all the build of of tension becomes a.. 'is that it?'
I won't lie, the build up is like a perfect starter and main course, but the dessert turns out to be a dry digestive biscuit.. slightly stale and I now realise the truth, finally accepting it with sadness.. Lee Childs has lost his spark and is the not the genius author we thought he was, and Jack Reacher has run its course and needs to end
When it came to the so called main story it felt as though I had read this before, especially the bit about her finding a cotton bud on the floor behind the bin in the bathroom. I am certain it was used in another one of his books. The plot resembled a film and the only one I can think of is VACANCY, it seemed to copy the plot down to a tee. All along while reading the book I knew what was going to happen next it was getting so predictable and boring I just had to finish it. I don't think I could say anything good about this book. Apart from the cover looks good. I feel as if I have wasted my money. Since this was a Christmas gift for someone and felt robbed. Either Lee Child is going to have to up his game if he does another one or maybe retire. It is no good re-hashing old stories or either taken plots from films it doesn't work.
Hope this review is helpful. To be honest I should have waited till it was more reduced in price or bought it from a charity shop
The basic premise is great - why can't Reacher find any record of his father in the records of the town he said he was born in? The resolution (no spoilers from me, although TBH if anyone who hasn't yet read it reads all the review all the way down to mine, I doubt they'll have escaped a few) is good, though.
Although I enjoyed the scenes with the two canadians, I did feel they went on a little too long. I managed not to skip ahead, but often had the desire to do so - only the thought that I might miss a vital clue kept me from doing so!
Reacher seemed strangely 'absent' at times. Compared to other books in the series I felt as if some of it was a little rushed or not fully explored, and his usual reluctance to kill was strangely absent, indeed at times he seemed almost heartless, and I kind of didn't like him -though i liked the bad guys even less!)
My main complaint is that it seemed way too short - took me two days to read and i didn't have to read late into the night to do it.
If after 23 books the author is getting a tad bored with Reacher I couldn't blame him. I think the next book or two should really focus on Reacher getting older and then maybe end it at 25. Wait, what am I SAYING???
To sum up: i did enjoy it, just not quite as much as previous books in the series. Sorry, Mr Childs!
Jack decides to go south for some sunshine but doesn't get far. He ends up in a small town where his father was born and grew up, so that he can find out some more information about him.
At the same time a couple from Canada are making a long journey south for a new life in the US. Sadly, they chose an old and unreliable car to do that in.
While Jack is in town, trying to find out information about his dad, he gets involved in a couple of fights and in one of them he takes on 5 opponents. Nothing new there though; he's done that before.
As far as the thread about the Canadian couple is concerned, you soon become aware that all is not well with them, and that something is going to happen, but you don't know what it is.
You just know that at some stage these two story threads will come together, but it's quite a long time coming.
Without giving away any spoilers I thought it was so funny when it finally dawns on Jack what is happening. Lee Child puts in a great sentence immediately afterwards. I'm sure he enjoyed writing that one. Another one to add to Jack's list.
All in all I loved it, but I grow a little impatient when there is more than one story thread and I can't work out what's going to happen. By the time you find out, you know you've nearly finished the book and will have to wait at least another year for the next one.
The first half,for me, was tedious and boring, full of page filling waffle that did little to hold the attention. The back and forth, between offices in town, was far from riveting and it was difficult to build any kind of rapport with Shorty and Patty, who came across as so unlikeable, you wouldn’t care what happened to them.
You knew something was building up, at the motel, but it lacked the tension that makes you want to turn the next page.
Two very minor skirmishes in the first half of the book wasn’t made up for by the increased action at the end.
I have the entire Jack Reacher series, including the short stories, but will not be pre-ordering the next book, when it is written.
I will probably buy it, out of hope and habit, but will check the reviews first.
This book would be improved by Tom Cruise playing the lead in an on-screen adaptation. That’s how far the hero has fallen.
Don't waste your money, the plot is bizarre and thought up by someone whose favourite films are the Hunger Games...no, in fact, it's the Hunger Games plot with bows and arrows, people paying to hunt youngsters in a forest till Our Man Jack wipes the floor with thme, and then shoots them in the head??
Jack Reacher?? I think not. This is a shameful stitch up of loyal readership, by the publisher, just like the Jason Bourne movie that didn't have Jason Bourne in it.
A scam, avoid, go watch Countdown, its more exciting.
Usually with Jack Reacher novels he's built such a world that you genuinely care about the side characters and love interests. This was boring and predictable, and the side characters were flat and uninteresting, with barely any time spent on them at all. Really pointless book.
I am pleased to say the original magic is back: Lee Child has portrayed his modern day Shane as well and as convincingly as he did in the earlier volumes and this one has as good a second plot as those first few did. If you're a long time fan, you'll see much of it coming but fear not that simply increases the heat of the action when it blossoms.
I enjoyed this one more than the previous two or three. Lee Child still has it.
Post Script I should add "Let's see Cruise act this one." I have refused to watch his portrayal of Reacher for obvious reasons and Mr Child seems to have made sure this one cannot be made with a stunted puppet. Well done Sir!