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Better Off Dead

Updated: Oct 31, 2021

By Lee Child and Andrew Child

Jack Reacher #26

A Riveting Thriller With A Diabolical Bad Guy and An Unconquerable Superhero



Michaela Fenton, an army veteran and FBI agent, is desperately trying to find her brother, who has gotten mixed up with some dangerous people. Dendoncker, a shadowy figure, rules the Arizona Border desert town with an iron fist while staying out of sight. His loyal employees would rather die than defy their leader. And Dendoncker is the one that has Michaela’s brother.

Jack Reacher, is on his way into town and finds Michaela slumped over the steering wheel of a Jeep. She has plowed into the trunk of the only tree for miles around. But not everything is what it seems. Reacher’s expertise, among other things, is finding people who can’t be found, and he offers to help Michaela find her brother. But to get to Dendoncker, Reacher will face one of his most formidable opponents ever. He may even end up in the morgue.


BETTER OFF DEAD is a dark and dangerous Jack Reacher thriller in a different town, with a diabolical bad guy. Reacher, at six-foot-five and two hundred and fifty pounds, is an unforgettable character. He is intelligent, strategic, strong, and empathetic. He goes where he wants, when he wants, and has the uncanny ability to find trouble wherever he goes. Reacher, like any superhero, will never turn a blind eye to a person in need; and Michaela Fenton needs his help.

Lee and Andrew Child have skillfully written another action-packed Jack Reacher story. The tension and the fighting are non-stop and the read is riveting.

If you have not read Reacher before I highly recommend the series, especially if you like a continuous flow of suspense. Each book in the series can be read independently, but it’s so much more fun to start at the beginning to see how Reacher became the man he is.

For those of us that are Jack Reacher mega-fans and have read them all, BETTER OFF DEAD is definitely worth the read. The writing is taut and atmospheric, but I must admit that for me, the formula is getting a little stale and the story seems to be lacking the sensitivity that earlier books had. Reacher has devolved into a fighting machine who is bulldozing his way across the country. It’s still a great series, with an unconquerable character.

Thanks to Netgalley for an advance reading copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Publisher Delacourt Press Random House Publishing

Published October 26, 2021

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