Past Tense (Jack Reacher, #23) by Lee Child


Past Tense (Jack Reacher, #23)
Title : Past Tense (Jack Reacher, #23)
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 0399593519
Language : English
Format Type : Hardcover
Number of Pages : 400

Jack Reacher hits the pavement and sticks out his thumb He plans to follow the sun on an epic trip across America, from Maine to California He doesn t get far On a country road deep in the New England woods, he sees a sign to a place he has never been the town where his father was born He thinks, What s one extra day He takes the detour.At the same moment, in the same isolated area, a car breaks down Two young Canadians had been on their way to New York City to sell a treasure Now they re stranded at a lonely motel in the middle of nowhere The owners seem almost too friendly It s a strange place, but it s all there is.The next morning, in the city clerk s office, Reacher asks about the old family home He s told no one named Reacher ever lived in town He s always known his father left and never returned, but now Reacher wonders, Was he ever there in the first place As Reacher explores his father s life, and as the Canadians face lethal dangers, strands of different stories begin to merge Then Reacher makes a shocking discovery The present can be tough, but the past can be tense and deadly.


Past Tense (Jack Reacher, #23) Reviews


  • Dorie

    This is the second book by Lee Child that I have read and I definitely enjoyed this one than the other which was The Midnight Line I liked the dual storyline which converges later on in the story However I did feel that the one with Reacher in it, looking into his family tree to be quite slow moving and a bit dry The second story line with the two young people stranded finally at a than creepy motel was the most interesting in the book.I like my characters well drawn and I think This is the second book by Lee Child that I have read and I definitely enjoyed this one than the other which was The Midnight Line I liked the dual storyline which converges later on in the story However I did feel that the one with Reacher in it, looking into his family tree to be quite slow moving and a bit dry The second story line with the two young people stranded finally at a than creepy motel was the most interesting in the book.I like my characters well drawn and I think Mr Child did a great job in helping me get to know Patty and Shorty and how they are hoping to set up a shop in Florida with the help of whatever is in that extremely heavy suitcase which they are unwilling to part with even when their lives are at stake They have stopped at a motel during their cross country travels and this ends up to be the most incredibly wrong decision they have ever made The motel in question is being run by one of the most depraved and money hungry bunch of goons I ve ever come across, headed by a man with the last name of Reacher, go figure We aren t really sure what they are up to until the mark in the book but I had a pretty good hunch once the other guests started arriving and let s just say that Patty and Shorty didn t have much say in the process Their clever thinking and love for each other help them through their ordeals.Meanwhile we are still following Reacher and his quest for family knowledge as he searches libraries and town halls for records of his father and grandfather I felt this was than a bit boring and was anxious to get back to Patty and Shorty His extreme detail in parts still drives me crazy example Reacher hit him in the face, with a straight right, maximum force, crashing and twisting Like a freight train The kid s lights went out immediately He went slack and gravity took over Reacher kept his left hand rock solid All the kid s weight fell on his own locked elbow Reacher waited The kid s elbow broke and his arm turned inside out Reacher let him fall, etc etc etc Too much detail already.In what I have come to know as true Reacher style his path converges with those in trouble just when he is most needed I have to admit that I m a little surprised at how many people are so enthralled with this character as he doesn t grow or change in his books, at least in what I ve read He is also endowed with super human strength and smarts but I was willing to suspend belief for entertainment.All in all I still had fun reading this book and would recommend it to anyone who enjoys reading series books with a character that they can count on to come to the aid of those in need.I received an ARC of this novel from the publisher through NetGalley

  • Paula Kalin

    I ve been reading the Jack Reacher series since Lee Child wrote his first How wonderful it is after finishing 23 in the series to say it s definitely one of my favorites Jack Reacher, our 6 5 ex military hero is on a journey from Maine to California and decides to take a pit stop in Laconia, New Hampshire to check out his father s birthplace Scanning through records at town hall and researching census from long ago bring him in contact with a lot of different characters some nice and some I ve been reading the Jack Reacher series since Lee Child wrote his first How wonderful it is after finishing 23 in the series to say it s definitely one of my favorites Jack Reacher, our 6 5 ex military hero is on a journey from Maine to California and decides to take a pit stop in Laconia, New Hampshire to check out his father s birthplace Scanning through records at town hall and researching census from long ago bring him in contact with a lot of different characters some nice and some not so nice I always like to see the not so nice come into play as this means some action is to be expected I ve got to tell you I love his hand to hand fighting skills that emerge and the surprise of his foes Bring on all the details My father had us watching every war movie and John Wayne film since I was a kid I love, love, seeing Reacher beat up the bullies Bring it on What I really liked about this book is the duel storyline Two young Canadians, Shory, and his smarter girlfriend, Patty, break down at an isolated, creepy motel not far off from Laconia Unbeknownst to them, they are about to enter hell They are in desperate need of Reacher s help The two stories converge with a lot of action and excitement Meanwhile, there are some other nasty folks around that our hero gives a mighty fine lesson.A definite stand out for me is the female ex MP, now Laconia cop, Reacher interacts with throughout the book.If you have never met Jack Reacher yet, but would like to meet a man that likes intelligent women, doesn t take any crap from anyone, and will protect those that are in despair, read this book It doesn t matter that you haven t read the others in the series Start here 5 out of 5 exciting starsThanks to NetGalley, Random House Publishing Group Ballantine, and the fabulous Lee Child for the ARC

  • Dave

    Jack Reacher has apparently been thrilling readers for twenty years No one told me Although this is only my second Reacher novel and its number 23 with a bullet , count me in as a fan Reacher is an ex MP who has taken to wandering the country, heading here and there for the barest of reasons Well, he likes a puzzle and is curiouser than any ten cats Along the way, Reacher always seems to stumble into trouble Here, he returns to his father s hometown and decides to see his dad s old haunts Jack Reacher has apparently been thrilling readers for twenty years No one told me Although this is only my second Reacher novel and its number 23 with a bullet , count me in as a fan Reacher is an ex MP who has taken to wandering the country, heading here and there for the barest of reasons Well, he likes a puzzle and is curiouser than any ten cats Along the way, Reacher always seems to stumble into trouble Here, he returns to his father s hometown and decides to see his dad s old haunts Meanwhile, a couple of Canadians head south on an adventure of their own, one perhaps that could have been better planned and in a car that certainly could have been better maintained Their adventures could not have put them in a bizarre and offbeat predicament Of course, eventually their paths will cross I found this to be an enjoyable and compelling read, although don t open it up expecting a lightning paced thriller It s pace is thoughtful and confident, if not laconic What makes it work is the even pace, the narrative voice,and natural curiosity

  • Jeanette

    They are all so good but this one is straight out spectacular Telling you about the tension I felt reading this one I had to stop at some point after about page 100 to relax with some physical work exertions to get unwound and to distract myself enough to be able to swallow my own spit It was creepy, evil terrifying the premise AND the execution of it.The premise is one that I ve read in maybe 10 novels in my life, mostly sci fic but in some YA reads too, like Hunger Games.That tells yo They are all so good but this one is straight out spectacular Telling you about the tension I felt reading this one I had to stop at some point after about page 100 to relax with some physical work exertions to get unwound and to distract myself enough to be able to swallow my own spit It was creepy, evil terrifying the premise AND the execution of it.The premise is one that I ve read in maybe 10 novels in my life, mostly sci fic but in some YA reads too, like Hunger Games.That tells you enough And I won the paperback copy here and want to thank you for the gift Several other people will be reading my copy quite soon too.All of you who know Reacher for so many years of reading and knowing each nuance of his unique and quirky lifestyle can you tell me if Child ever let us know how he shaves Somewhere in Book 4 or 6 perhaps He can t be bearded with the techniques he uses, IMHO One day I was driving along and that thought popped into my head He s light haired but still Lee Child I am a fan Can Child write a thriller It almost makes you believe that the super hero is not only a true possibility but certain to be johnny on the spot with his radar for the horrendous, evil and violent perpetrator, even those as despicable as these And ultimately solving the problem without undue regret This one 23 and the one that was in the plains of Kansas or Nebraska within a similar evil cabal as locale operating they were the best And he also gets two different unforgettable couples in there too this time And Reacher isn t even half of either 2 MP s and a priest It sounds like the beginning of a joke It sure isn t

  • Michael

    Our itinerate hero Jack Reacher is headed from Maine to San Diego and decides to make a visit to Laconia, New Hampshire, where he heard his father grew up Before he died, he never did share with Jack much about his childhood beyond the fact that he ran away from home and joined the Marines in World War 2 All he remembers is him talking his father Stan having a position with a tin plant of some kind While Jack explores family history in town, we are treated to the misadventures of a poor, youn Our itinerate hero Jack Reacher is headed from Maine to San Diego and decides to make a visit to Laconia, New Hampshire, where he heard his father grew up Before he died, he never did share with Jack much about his childhood beyond the fact that he ran away from home and joined the Marines in World War 2 All he remembers is him talking his father Stan having a position with a tin plant of some kind While Jack explores family history in town, we are treated to the misadventures of a poor, young married couple on the way from Canada to Boston who end up stuck at a strange motel in the woods near Laconia Their story interleaves with Jack s until a point of convergence near the end.It takes him a long time and creative work for him to get past the first roadblock of no birth, tax, or property records for the family We watch Jack do what he does best, chatting up people in different walks of life, for clues to a mystery, in this case his own family Someone remembers a Reacher kid who was a birdwatcher and actually lived out of town in an area near the tin factory which no longer exists Exploring the orchard where the settlement was turns up some ornery people, and asking about why reveals resentment and bad blood over possible water pollution by the plant Around town he intervenes in a situation of personal injustice, his typical Good Samaritan role which blows up into a line of violent interludes The scenario of him fist fighting several opponents at once with a technical blow by blow account is a guilty pleasure for me and something one expects from past volumes in this series Despite progress and diversions into violence, the possibly nefarious secrets about his father s and grandfather s past remain resistant until the very last pages.All that I can say about the couple from Canada is that they are being held against their will and that their strategies to figure out their situation and try to escape bears a lot of similarity to Jack s style of problem solving That includes quiet courage, thinking through the smallest inconsistencies in what they are told, and the willingness to take bold but thoughtful action when the right opportunity presents itself Their teamwork was often pleasurable than Jack s escapades And eventually, as we know must happen somehow, they find Jack on their side when it really counts Giving this couple so much air time was a nice new wrinkle this entry in a series that never fails to satisfy me.This book was provided by the published for review through the Netgalley program

  • Monnie

    4.5 stars, actually.Honestly, I m not at all sure how much I d like Jack Reacher if I met him in person because he doesn t pull any punches, but I m certain I d want him on my side in a fight for the same reason And in this, the 23rd book in the series, he gets plenty of opportunity to practice his considerable skill.The story begins as Reacher walks and hitchhikes near a remote and tiny town in New Hampshire on his way to wherever else the wind or accurately, any driver who gives him a l 4.5 stars, actually.Honestly, I m not at all sure how much I d like Jack Reacher if I met him in person because he doesn t pull any punches, but I m certain I d want him on my side in a fight for the same reason And in this, the 23rd book in the series, he gets plenty of opportunity to practice his considerable skill.The story begins as Reacher walks and hitchhikes near a remote and tiny town in New Hampshire on his way to wherever else the wind or accurately, any driver who gives him a lift takes him When he recalls his late father Stan saying he grew up in the town, though, Reacher decides to pay a visit to the family homestead if he can find it, that is.Concurrently, Shorty and Patty, a pair of grifters from Canada on their way to New York with a get rich quick plan in tow have car trouble Just as the old jalopy is ready to blow, they spot a sign pointing to a motel in a heavily wooded area of you guessed it , New Hampshire Yep, there s a halfway decent room available but very soon, it becomes obvious that this isn t your average Motel 6 In fact, they may have happened upon their very worst nightmare.Chapters follow the progress as Reacher tries to find what appears to be nonexistent evidence of his father s old home and the couple try to find their way out of the mess they re in As expected, the two storylines end up converging but not before plenty of action takes place in both Early on, Reacher gets on the bad side of a bad seed and his wealthy father although the local police are for the most part on Reacher s side after all, he s been both an Army guy and a fellow cop they don t want Trouble with a capital T that rhymes with P that stands for Problem Just go on your way, they tell Reacher, hoping he ll heed their advice.He d love to, but he s got problems of his own not the least of which is getting on the bad side of the folks he runs into when he finally locates the family town Besides that, other local and otherwise innocent folks are finding themselves in potential danger simply because they helped Reacher how can he possibly turn his back on them and hike away And so it goes, with excitement and action building all the way from town to the woods and back to an explosive end If I have an issue, it s that I have a hard time believing in coincidences meaning things that happen at precisely the time they should to make the story work Life usually doesn t follow that kind of pattern but then again, it s Reacher s life, not mine In the end I m happy, and I ll be looking forward to the next installment as usual Meantime, I m thanking the publisher via NetGalley for the opportunity to read an advance review copy of this one

  • Pamela

    First and foremost, my thanks to the author, publisher and NetGalley for the ARC of PAST TENSE Mr Child has written another suspenseful Reacher installment Per his wrting style, the exposition is methodical However, in PAST TENSE the build up is slower than usual due to the lengthy, picayune details The reader can guess where this first storyline is headed early on and the albeit slow and steady build up piques the reader s curiosity and tickles the spidey sense, which builds up the susp First and foremost, my thanks to the author, publisher and NetGalley for the ARC of PAST TENSE Mr Child has written another suspenseful Reacher installment Per his wrting style, the exposition is methodical However, in PAST TENSE the build up is slower than usual due to the lengthy, picayune details The reader can guess where this first storyline is headed early on and the albeit slow and steady build up piques the reader s curiosity and tickles the spidey sense, which builds up the suspense Reacher comes into play in a secondary story line, which is quite unique and interesting, involving his heritage via his father s backstory There are a few surprises as he makes new discoveries about his family s past generations Thus the title PAST TENSE Reacher s familial quest is well developed, intriguing, and cleverly executed The pace is picking up somewhat as there is a bit action The two divergent storylines converge in trademark Reacher style heart stopping, electrifying, accentuated with explosive deadly force However, that Reacher style does not culminate until the 75% mark in the book Although PAST TENSE does not have much action or thrills chills until the last quarter of the book, it is worth the wait and ended up being than satisfying Reacher s character doesn t grow and mature in this installment, yet it stays true to form help the helpless, cut through red tape and bureaucracy, say good bye and move on I will be looking forward to his next adventure somewhere in between his present locale of New Hampshire and his San Diego destination He always seems to find trouble, or vice versa

  • Joanne Harris

    I received this as an ARC from the publisher, who is well aware that I ve read every Lee Child book as a proof since the first one, twenty years ago Some are better than others in my view, and I think this is one of the best It has the pleasing simplicity of the early Reacher books the uncluttered landscapes, the quirky perspectives and unlike some of the author s later books, which try to vary the formula by relocating Reacher to Europe, or going back too far in time, this one hits the ma I received this as an ARC from the publisher, who is well aware that I ve read every Lee Child book as a proof since the first one, twenty years ago Some are better than others in my view, and I think this is one of the best It has the pleasing simplicity of the early Reacher books the uncluttered landscapes, the quirky perspectives and unlike some of the author s later books, which try to vary the formula by relocating Reacher to Europe, or going back too far in time, this one hits the mark perfectly The tension is beautifully handled throughout there are no intrusive sub plots the writing is clean and characteristically graphic This is Lee Child back on form and all the enjoyable for that

  • Janet Newport

    Thank you NetGalley and Random House Publishing for this arc.I do adore Lee Child s Jack Reacher books In Past Tense, he strays a bit from his usual formula His ramblings take him into New Hampshire this time, not far from his father s childhood home and since he s not expected to be somewhere else and doesn t really have any solid plans other than heading south for the winter, he decides to wander down that pig trail and check out his father s hometown But he runs into trouble finding it and Thank you NetGalley and Random House Publishing for this arc.I do adore Lee Child s Jack Reacher books In Past Tense, he strays a bit from his usual formula His ramblings take him into New Hampshire this time, not far from his father s childhood home and since he s not expected to be somewhere else and doesn t really have any solid plans other than heading south for the winter, he decides to wander down that pig trail and check out his father s hometown But he runs into trouble finding it and has to do some research into the city records Seems like a slower start than usual, but right off trouble manages to find him of course it does Reacher s story takes a break and about 20 miles away Patty and Shorty s story picks up a nice young couple running away from Canada with a very heavy suitcase It gets eerier and eerier for Patty and Shorty what is in that suitcase They are obviously scheduled to be the next victims in the book but Reacher isn t even aware of them Bad guys keep getting in the way Small town thugs and goons Rural thugs and goons. Some imported thugs and goons And some really nasty rascals from all across the country What fun Remind me to stay away from New Hampshire.Past Tense was a slower paced compared to most of the previous books A little eerier, too Reacher doesn t get a girl He does finally gain a better picture of his father s family tree The fists kept flying but they were like appetizers It took most of the book before the two stories became one Patty and Shorty decided to fight back and finally they meet Reacher Reacher finally connects with his father s remaining family But he didn t get a girl I don t think he changed clothes either Patty and Shorty did save their very heavy suitcase.A great read

  • Michele

    I am a huge Jack Reacher fan and this book did not disappoint This book was different from Lee Child s other books and I liked it There were two seemingly unrelated storylines going on and I spent most of the book trying to figure out how they connected Also, the plot was not at all predictable and kept me guessing the entire time Thank you NetGalley for the ARC This was a great read and I would definitely recommend it