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Synopsis: In a Chicago suburb, a dentist is met in his office parking lot by three men and ordered into the trunk of his Lexus. On a downtown sidewalk, Jack Reacher and an unknown woman are abducted in broad daylight by two men - practiced and confident - who stop them at gunpoint and hustle them into the same sedan. Then Reacher and the woman are switched into a second vehicle and hauled away, leaving the dentist bound and gagged inside his car with the woman's abandoned possessions, two gallons of gasoline. . . and a burning match. The FBI is desperate to rescue the woman, a Special Agent from the Chicago office, because the FBI always - always - takes care of its own, and because this woman is not just another agent. Reacher and the woman join forces, against seemingly hopeless odds, to outwit their captors and escape. But the FBI thinks Jack is one of the kidnappers - and when they close in, the Bureau snipers will be shooting to kill.
Review: Television writer Lee Child's otherwise riveting first thriller, Killing Floor, was criticized by some reviewers because of an unconvincing coincidence at its center. Child addresses that problem in his second book--and thumbs his nose at those reviewers--by having his hero, ex-military policeman Jack Reacher, just happen to be walking by a Chicago dry cleaner when an attractive young FBI agent named Holly Johnson comes out carrying nine expensive outfits and a crutch to support her soccer-injured knee. As Holly stumbles, Reacher grabs her and her garments--which gets him kidnapped along with her by a trio of very determined badguys. "He had no problem with how he had gotten grabbed up in the first place," Child writes. "Just a freak of chance had put him alongside Holly Johnson at the exact time the snatch was going down. He was comfortable with that. He understood freak chances. Life was built out of freak chances, however much people would like to pretend otherwise." Lucky for Holly--whose father just happens to be an Army general and current head of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, thus making her a tempting target for a bunch of Montana-based extremists--Reacher still has all the skills and strengths associated with his former occupation. And Child still knows how to write scenes of violent action better than virtually anyone else around. --Dick Adler
Title: Die Trying (Jack Reacher, No. 2)
Publisher: Paperback Nova Audio Books
Publication Date: 1999
Book Condition: very good
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