May 9, 2014

Never Go Back

Never Go Back (Jack Reacher, #18)Never Go Back by Lee Child
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Reacher has been trying to get to Virginia to meet Susan Turner ever since 61 Hours when he talked to her on the phone. He finally gets there only to discover she is no longer in charge of the 110th and has seemingly disappeared.

Then Romeo and Juliet make their first mistake they instruct Major Morgan to recall Reacher to military service and hit him with two cases against him. The first involves Juan Rodriguez (Dog) and Reacher is accused of his homicide the second is a paternity case where he supposedly has a daughter (Sam) with Candice Dayton (a woman he doesn't remember). If that isn't enough to make Reacher run they send two guys to beat him up and send him on his way. But of course Reacher doesn't run and the two guys are the ones who get beat up.

Eventually Reacher is able to break Susan Turner out of jail and they try to unravel what she knows that makes her dangerous to Romeo and Juliet (high placed military officials). They realize that the only thing she knows is who the rogue American was going to meet in Afghanistan, but he seems like a nobody. Why is he important?

While they are working on that mystery they head out to LA so Reacher can meet his daughter. Her home is surrounded by various government agents as well as the bad guys just waiting for Reacher to show up. But they fail to follow her to the Diner where she eats most of her meals. In true Reacher style she confronts him and he is enchanted with the tall blond pedant teen. Realizing the bad guys may try to use her as leverage Reacher is determined to meet her Mother and protect them, but Sam confidently states that Reacher doesn't know her Mother and she doesn't know him. Reacher ask how she knows as their involvement would have occurred before she was born and Sam reveals she is the blond waitress that Reacher has seen a dozen times at the diner. The paternity case was a hoax.

The Rodriguez case was a scam. Rodriguez was beaten up by a LA gang, the beating was witnessed by the LPD who used undue force when they arrested the gang members and as a result purged their files of the incident. When Rodriguez and his lawyer tried to go after the LPD they were discouraged by the missing files so went after Reacher instead. Leon Gerber had the incident investigated and uncovered the scam, Reacher was never aware of the investigation.

Now that Reacher's legal troubles are over he can concentrate fully on catching Romeo and Juliet and ending their opium trade, thus clearing Susan Turner. A cleared Susan Turner chooses to stay with the 110th and Reacher (who may or may not still be in the military) leaves town alone.

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