This story was long awaited, partly because the author has been building up to the meeting of Jack Reacher with Susan Turner and his journey across America to Virginia for several books – this association started in the book 61 Hours, so definitely worth reading that one and before this. On the other hand, this book is one of the best Jack Reacher thrillers, so you might not want to wait. I was waiting to read this in paperback, but was delighted to receive it in a beautiful hardcover edition for my birthday.
I prefer Jack Reacher novels when he works with an accomplice, often a woman, to solve a case and hand out his own brand of justice to the perpetrators. Never Go Back fits the bill and matches The Enemy for excitement and daring plot as a result. There are other plot twists – this book is all about Reacher’s past coming back to haunt him. Does he have a child? Has one of his many violent episodes resulted in a conviction that will see him jailed? Will his previous service in the army see him forcibly conscripted to serve his country again? I tried hard to pace myself reading this one, having polished off other Reacher novels in a couple of days and then having a long wait for the next one. Unfortunately, once I was a few chapters in, I was hooked and as usual sped through it. The compelling question was – having gone back, would Reacher leave again? Or would he finally have re-discovered a life for which it was worth settling down?