This thriller finds Jack Reacher (JR) in Indiana, the heartland, a word much repeated in the book. When he sees a TV report about a killing spree there, with 5 fatalities and hears the name of the suspect, he travels north and west from Miami, by bus. He arrives on the scene 48 hours later.
What follows is a brilliantly-plotted police procedural full of twists and turns. And a meeting with a former lover, and the need to keep the lid on a big scandal. Soon the local police starts a manhunt for JR, and he in turn tries to elude arrest while figuring out who is behind all this, and who can be trusted and who not in this town.
This novel is marvelously plotted and makes for compulsive reading. Every chapter ends with a cliff hanger. The ultimate villains and their leader are a ruthless lot indeed.
For readers unaware of JR, he hails from a military family and spent all his life in the army as a brilliant MP investigator, until he was axed in a major downsizing operation. Ever since he roams America without luggage, mobile phone, changing clothes every four days, living on his severance pay. No roots, no rest. In some of the earlier adventures he drifted into, he was paid. For this exploit, already short of money, he was not.
Wonderful escape reading for males chained to routine jobs and lots of monthly installments to live for. Woman readers find JR attractive too, because he is courteous towards them and because current and former lady friends prove loyal associates.