“Then finally he opened the wrong door, and what came out at him was his problem, not mine.”
There is something comforting about a series like the Jack Reacher novels. None of them are extremely original, but they’re all entertaining. If you’ve read these before, you know that Reacher will be honorable, kick-ass and clever. He’ll kill a few people, save a few people and figure out the conspiracy just in time. There will be a little death, some blood and guts, but nothing too extreme. Overall, they’re pretty clean-cut adventure novels, always guaranteed to keep your fingers flipping (or swiping) those pages until the end.
Personal is not the 207th novel as the title of this blog post jokes – though sometimes if you’re a reader of the whole series, it may feel close to that. We’ve been through so many scenarios with Reacher, it feels like he’s been around much longer than he has. I can’t swear I’ve read all 19 Reacher novels. I definitely read first five or so and after that it became a little sporadic, but always fun, when I stumbled upon one. The great thing about the Reacher books is that you don’t need to read them in any particular order. He’s a pretty simple character that you can engage with through any book you happen to pick up.
In Personal, a sniper has taken a shot at the president of France from an astounding distance. The president isn’t killed, but the threat has been declared. A large international summit with global leaders is coming up where they’ll all be in danger, so their governments must find the sniper before the summit occurs. A worldwide search for snipers that could make that shot is put in motion and of course, only a few names come up.
One of them, John Kott, is fresh out of prison and has an intense personal vendetta against Reacher because Reacher was the one to put him away 15 years prior. Reacher ends up hunting down his old foe and defeating new ones along the way, as he tries to get to Kott before Kott gets him.
This Reacher adventure is chock-full of the usual. A woman partner (though Reacher would prefer to work alone), thugs, guns, stake-outs, plots inside plots and the various sectors of the military weaved throughout the entire debacle.
On a day when I needed a little book-vacation, I picked up Personal and was delighted by an evening of mindless lighthearted reading. As always, it was a perfect escape.