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The Enemy 1st (first) edition Text Only Hardcover – 2004


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  • Hardcover
  • ASIN: B004ND7684
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (551 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 4,115,709 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Lee Child is one of the world's leading thriller writers.His novels consistently achieve the number one slot in hardback and paperback on bestsellers lists on both sides of the Atlantic, and are translated into over forty languages.His debut novel, Killing Floor, was written after he was made redundant from his television job in Manchester, and introduced his much-admired maverick hero, the former military cop Jack Reacher.Born in Coventry, he now lives in America.


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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

26 of 26 people found the following review helpful By angelgerl on 6 April 2004
Format: Hardcover
This latest novel by Lee Child is sure to please long time fans of all-American hero Jack Reacher, as well as newcomers. The story grabs you from the first few pages and keeps it's grip right through to the end.
It's January 1st, 1990, just past midnight and Reacher receives a phone call concerning the death of a General in a rather seedy motel room. Although a heart attack is established as the cause of death, the forthcoming investigation uncovers a lot more, starting with the murder of the General's wife and a missing briefcase belonging to the General, the contents of which gives others reason to kill. The body count begins to mount and Reacher is warned by his new commanding officer to stop investigating. Although in this prequel, Jack Reacher is under the restraints of military protocol, Reacher fans will not be disappointed. Child finds a way to allow Reacher to be the "One man army" that fans have come to love. We see that, even wearing a soldier's uniform, doesn't stop Jack Reacher from seeking the truth, no matter where it leads, facing the inevitable charges of misconduct and insubordination. Even the threats to his own life don't deter him, but instead lead him deeper into the dark and secretive world of military politics and cover-ups. For true thriller fans, there are enough bone-chilling scenes and suspense to satisfy even the toughest critic. Through Lee Child's superb writing, we see that you what makes someone a true soldier, is not the uniform, but the man.
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70 of 72 people found the following review helpful By Mary Whipple HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on 19 May 2004
Format: Hardcover
In the taut, staccato style reminiscent of Raymond Chandler or John D. MacDonald, Lee Child presents his eighth Jack Reacher novel, a police procedural with a difference: Reacher is an MP, an army Major at Fort Bird, North Carolina, obedient to a different set of rules and objectives. Recently transferred from Panama to be MP Executive Officer, Reacher must immediately investigate the death of a two-star general who has died in a seedy, nearby motel, presumably with a prostitute. His briefcase, containing the agenda for a top-secret conference in California, has disappeared, and when Reacher and his aide, Lt. Summer, go to break the news to the general's wife, they find her dead, too, bludgeoned to death with a crowbar within hours of the general's death.
With almost military precision, dramatic complications unfold, and Reacher soon finds himself facing two new deaths, one of which is a gruesome butchering which takes place on the base. Ordered by superiors to cover up the murder by calling it a "training accident," Reacher and his aide investigate surreptitiously, soon discovering that his MP XO counterparts at twenty more bases throughout the world have also been newly appointed to their positions, all of them on or around December 29. Obvious questions arise about who is pulling the strings, who has the power to transfer so many MPs to new posts, and why someone would want to do so.
Child is a meticulous writer whose plot follows a strict chronological order and moves at a breath-taking pace, with one dramatic scene following hard on the heels of another. Reacher and his aide Summer are not fully developed characters, but they do not need to be as they struggle to learn who is controlling the grisly chess game which has resulted in four deaths.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By T. Parker on 28 Dec. 2006
Format: Paperback
Lee Child raids Reacher's back story and takes us back to the great man's last days in the military police, linking the story to the fall of the Berlin Wall. Reacher is bright enough to see what the "peace dividend" is likely to bring in terms of power struggles and military mis-management. This link to real events gives the story a strong foundation, though it is fun spotting the points where Child uses hindsight to make his predictions.

Child has clearly done his research well, for the novel brims with military jargon and procedure, all of which feels right and is delivered effortlessly, rather than dropped in as window dressing. The tale provides the usual generous helping of of murder and mayhem and is tricky enough to keep the reader interested right to the end. We even get to see Reacher make a mistake - proving that he's human after all.

I'm not sure if this is the only Reacher novel written in the first person but, if so, the change makes it a more personal and satisfying experience. Reacher feels right at home here and The Enemy is worthy of its place in the collection.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Mr. Joe HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on 25 Feb. 2005
Format: Hardcover
In the previous seven books of the Jack Reacher series, author Lee Child positions his hero in space and time after his release from active duty with the U.S. Army's Military Police. We've gotten to know Jack as a relatively asocial tough guy who wanders the United States attracting big trouble as he helps others cope with assorted villains. Here, in THE ENEMY, we see Reacher in his previous life as an MP officer.
It's New Year's Eve 1989, and Major Reacher has only just been yanked off duty in Panama and hurriedly assigned to Fort Bird, North Carolina as the Executive Officer of the post's MP detachment. As the MP Commanding Officer is on leave, Jack is Fort Bird's acting top cop. At the stroke of midnight, Reacher gets a call from the local civilian police saying they've found a dead general in a cheap hotel room. He'd apparently died of a heart attack while entertaining a hooker. The deceased turns out to be General Kramer of XII Armored Corps deployed in Germany. Kramer had been traveling to California for a Big Meeting, and had gone far out of his way from a Washington, DC layover for a night's sleazy good time. Trouble is, the general's briefcase containing the meeting agenda has disappeared, and Jack's duty is to find it. Soon enough, the bodies begin to pile up, mostly of murder victims. And Reacher is pressured from above to stand down from his investigations or be charged himself with one of the killings. But Jack bulls ahead anyway in the trademark Reacher style that his fans have learned to expect.
THE ENEMY strikes me as the most complex Reacher thriller to date. Perhaps too complex. Reacher's personality is unadorned. (In a previous book, we learn that he doesn't even know how to fold a shirt.) His rapport with any Bad Guy involves kicking butt.
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