Mystery, Suspense, Thriller

Make Me by Child

make me.jpgLee Child adds his twentieth book in the Reacher saga with Make Me. While tautly written, the story is not an action adventure, but the narrative is gripping and the tale unfolds smoothly and quickly.

The strength of the story lies in the protagonist, Jack Reacher. He is a stellar character:  watchful but not infallible, skilled but not superhuman, intelligent but not genius. He’s a character who is intriguing in his own right without needing a tragic, dramatic backstory to make him so. The female character, as with all of the Reacher novels, is flat and interchangeable. The character serves as a plot device, and while she serves the story well in that regard, I think a more fully-fleshed character would have added an interesting dynamic to the tale.

In Make Me, Reacher ventures with curiosity and unflinching resolution into uncovering the dark underbelly of humanity. Shocking and gritty, the climax of the story is haunting and grotesque. And, as always, Reacher metes out justice with rousing ruthlessness and pragmatism. This twentieth installment in Mr. Child’s series is an excellent, memorable read. 

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6 thoughts on “Make Me by Child”

  1. Okay…I’m in. I am a little (a lot, actually) disappointed in the obligatory female character. Hopefully she’s not–or at least, not only–T&A. (Writing from the douche macho male perspective, of course.) I have only so much patience for blatant sexism–saving it primarily for classic noir.

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    1. In the thrillers I have read, I have found Child to be one of the better male authors handling female characters in the genre. My disappointment lies in the fact that he gives these characters a lot of potential to be very interesting–and more than just T&A–but he does not follow through with it. I did not see any blatant sexism in Make Me, more of a lost opportunity for an intriguing character. I’d be interested to hear your point of view if you decide to read the book.

      I posted another review, for Gone Tomorrow, and that read is a little more action-packed with a slightly more dynamic female character.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. So I finished Make Me. I liked it. I felt it kept me on the line too long. All the phone calls, the traveling around, it frustrated me a bit. Would have appreciated a more economy version. When it got rolling it was pretty great, actually. The female character was good. A little generic, though I can tell Child is trying… Like you said– long on potential, short on luster. T&A yes, but far from just that.
    The subject matter is appallingly intriguing. Reminds me of “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo”, which I absolutely loved and it was substantially longer, of course. Everybody’s read that one.
    As for the Reacher books…I’ll read another one. Probably “Gone Tomorrow.” Like you, I typically don’t go for series. That said, I think my husband will like these books a lot.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That was my primary complaint about his latest release, The Midnight Line. A lot of driving back and forth and talking, but no real action. I concur, once Make Me was really underway, I was gripped. And I appreciated that the climax revealed a plot that was as dark and disturbing as it was. I like when an author doesn’t shy away from the gritty, grim, and horrifying.

      I appreciate you taking the time to let me know what you thought of the story. If you read Gone Tomorrow, I’ll be curious to hear your thoughts on that one as well.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. My plans are to start Gone Tomorrow after what I’m currently reading, She Rides Shotgun. I’m only thirty pages in and it is moving…More noir than thriller. Unusually well written. I think you’d like it–though like I “said” I’ve just started it.

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