Three More Jack Reacher Novellas: Too Much Time, Small Wars, Not a Drill and Bonus Jack Reacher Stories by Lee Child
Published by Random House Audio Publishing Group on May 16, 2017
Series: Jack Reacher
Genre(s): fiction, action, mystery, thriller
Format & Pages: audiobook
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Lee Child once again demonstrates his mastery of the thriller genre with an unbeatable collection of three Jack Reacher novellas and six short stories, together for the first time in one pulse-pounding collection from the #1 New York Timesbestselling author
Too Much Time: In this original novella featuring Jack Reacher after his time in the army, Reacher finds himself in a hollowed-out town in Maine. He witnesses a random bag-snatching but sees much more than a simple crime, in a tale that leads into Lee Child’s new Reacher novel, The Midnight Line.
Small Wars: Lee Child goes back to 1989, when Jack Reacher is an MP assigned to solve the cold-blooded murder of a young officer.
The telex is brief and to the point: One active-duty personnel found shot to death ten miles north of Fort Smith. Circumstances unknown. The victim was shot twice in the chest and once in the head. A professional hit. The crime scene suggests an ambush. Military police officer Jack Reacher is given the case. He calls his older brother, Colonel Joe Reacher, at the Pentagon for intel and taps Sergeant Frances Neagley to help him answer the big question: Who would kill a brilliant officer on the fast-track to greatness?
Not a Drill: Jack Reacher is on the road, hitching a ride with some young Canadians who are planning a hike through the dense forests of Maine. They part ways after sharing a hot meal, and Reacher checks out a quiet town surrounded by countryside serene enough to cool even his raging wanderlust. But not for long. First the trail is suddenly closed. Then the military police show up in force. Maybe it’s a drill. Or maybe it’s trouble–the kind of trouble that always finds Reacher, no matter how far he travels off the beaten path.
And for the first time on audio, additional stories featuring Jack Reacher, including: James Penney’s New Identity, Everyone Talks, Maybe They Have a Tradition, Guy Walks into a Bar, No Room at the Motel, and The Picture of the Lonely Diner
I found this book when I was searching through my library app for audiobooks to listen to during a road trip. My requirements were more specific than usual: something in the action category since both my husband and I would be listening; and a length of ten hours or less so we would definitely be able to finish. After some time spent browsing without much luck, I stumbled across this novella/short story collection by Lee Child featuring Jack Reacher. Coming in at just over 8 hours playing time, it was the perfect answer.
In the end, I had mixed feelings on this collection. I really enjoyed all three of the novellas, which take place in various chronological sections of the entire Jack Reacher timeline, from a prequel during his time in the army to a lead-in into The Midnight Line, which is expected to be published this November. Each of these stories was interesting and complete while also adding something to the overall story arc of this character. On the other hand, the short stories were too short and not fleshed out enough for my taste. Instead, they read more like character studies or excerpts out of longer stories, and outside of that context, didn’t do anything for me.
Three More Jack Reacher Novellas only seems to be available in audio at this time, which I also have mixed feelings on. If you’ve been following me here for a bit, you know I like a good audiobook. While Dick Hill did a fine job narrating the stories themselves, the transitions between them weren’t clear. One story ended and the next just began. A simple addition of one more second’s pause and naming the title of the next story would have made a world of difference.
If this was just a collection of the three novellas, Too Much Time, Small Wars, and Not a Drill, I would have rated it a four. Unfortunately, the short stories and a slightly disappointing listening experience brought it down to a three. To be clear, I did still like it overall and feel that any die hard Jack Reacher fans will probably like this book as well.