by Lee Child
Putnam, May, 2002.
Hardcover, 384 pages.
Ex-military cop Jack Reacher gets approached by Secret Service agent M.E. Froelich with an odd job offer: infiltrate the Vice-president elect's security and assassinate him. Froelich turns out to be the ex-girlfriend of Jack's dead brother, who was killed in a botched Secret Service operation. Remembering how highly her boyfriend spoke of his younger brother, Froelich decides that Reacher is just the man to perform an external audit of the new Vice-president's security. Someone has been sending death threats to the Vice-president, and they appear to be a legitimate threat. The kicker? The assassin may be a member of the Secret Service. Reacher calls in his old MP buddy, Frances Neagley, who is as talented as she is attractive. The more Reacher investigates the case, the more complex it becomes, especially as he gets to know his dead brother's ex.
Without Fail moves Jack Reacher onto the national stage, as he goes head to head with assassins unknown and attempts to save the life of the second most important man in Washington. Reacher is still a bit of an enigma, but we learn a bit more of his back story in this book. Reacher is more than competent; his gift is seeing things that no one else sees. From the halls of the Secret Service offices to a Thanksgiving Day homeless shelter to the wilds of Wyoming, the book provides plenty of fascinating backgrounds as it clearly exposes the incredible difficulty of protecting a public figure from assassination. Lee Child presents us with a fast-paced, thrilling suspense novel which should vault to the top of the bestseller lists with ease. Highly recommended.
--Claire E. White
Without Fail is available for purchase on Amazon.com
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This review was published in the July-August, 2002 of The Internet Writing Journal.
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