Thursday 6 October 2022

Jack Reacher A Mysterious Profile - Lee Child - Mysterious Profiles Series

Jack Reacher: A Mysterious Profile 
Mysterious Profiles
Lee Child
eISBN 9781504074377

A few years back I started reading Jack Reacher books. I read almost 30 Reacher short stories and novels in under a year. I also read the whole Hunt For Reacher series by Dian Capri before finishing the Reacher novels. I absolutely loved the TV Series, and greatly enjoy the books. So as soon as I saw this offering I picked it up even without reading the description. That description is:

“In this short piece, the creator of Jack Reacher shares the origins of the ex-military cop who now makes use of his skills in the civilian world—a place where he never feels quite at home. In addition, Lee Child reflects on writing and his own life story: the importance of character; making the transition from a television career to a literary career; how his famous character was almost named Franklin—and how he wound up being called Reacher instead.”

This volume is one of 26 that were all released in 2022. It is a collection of pieces by authors about how they came up with their characters. Having read through the list there are a couple of others I am interested in, and my dad has read books in almost all of the series. But there are some that I feel are missing. I would love to see the stories behind Temperance Brennan, DCI Robert Kett, DCK Jack Logan, DCI William Blake, and William Murdoch. But back to this volume, the creation of Reacher, no middle name, Jack. I highlighted a number of passages my first time through this little volume. Some of them are:

“Legal language strives for concision and avoids ambiguity wherever possible. The result is inevitably dull, but all that striving and avoiding really teaches a person how to write.”

“G. K. Chesterton once said of Charles Dickens, “Dickens didn’t write what people wanted. Dickens wanted what people wanted.” I would never compare myself to Charles Dickens, but I know exactly what Chesterton meant.”

“First: Character is king. There are probably fewer than six books every century remembered specifically for their plots. People remember characters. Same with television. Who remembers the Lone Ranger? Everybody. Who remembers any actual Lone Ranger story lines? Nobody.”

“Second conclusion: If you can see a bandwagon, it’s too late to get on. I think the person who said that to me was talking about investment issues—as if I had anything to invest—but it seemed an excellent motto for entertainment as well. It’s a crowded field. Why do what everyone else is doing?”

“His physical competence is really an expression of his mental competence too. He’s a fully functioning person.”

“So I wanted Reacher to do what we all want to do ourselves— stand strong and unafraid, never back off, never back down, come up with the smart replies. I thought of all the situations that we— timid, uncertain, scared, worried, humiliated—find ourselves in and imagined a kind of therapeutic consolation in seeing our wildest dreams acted out on the page.”

“He has no need for or interest in employment. He’s not a proactive do-gooder. So why does he get involved in things? Well, partly because of noblesse oblige, a French chivalric concept that means “nobility obligates,” which mandates honorable, generous, and responsible behavior because of high rank or birth.”

““Not really,” Reacher admits. “I don’t really care about the little guy. I just hate the big guy. I hate big smug people who think they can get away with things.””

Those quotes and this book give us insights into Reacher, Child, Child’s process of creating Reacher, and some of his writing style. In many ways this is a profile of Lee Child as much as it is of Jack Reacher. It was an excellent little read, and I can easily recommend it for fans of Reacher!

Mysterious Profiles Series:
Lincoln Rhyme: by Jeffery Deaver 
Elvis Cole and Joe Pike: by Robert Crais 
Jack Taylor: by Ken Bruen 
Jack Reacher: by Lee Child  
Charlie Parker: by John Connolly  
Hieronymus Bosch: by Michael Connelly  
Dismas Hardy: by John Lescroart  
Bob Lee Swagger: by Stephen Hunter  
Alex Delaware: by Jonathan Kellerman  
Tess Monaghan: by Laura Lippman  
Charlie Resnick: by John Harvey  
Peter Decker and Rina Lazarus: by Faye Kellerman  
Inspector Morse: by Colin Dexter  
Charlotte and Thomas Pitt: by Anne Perry  
John Rebus: by Ian Rankin  
Lou Boldt: by Ridley Pearson  
Mallory: by Carol O'Connell  
Aloysius X. L. Pendergast: by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child  
Spenser: by Robert B. Parker  
Ian Rutledge: by Charles Todd  
Maisie Dobbs: by Jacqueline Winspear  
Jane Whitefield: by Thomas Perry  
Precious Ramotswe: by Alexander McCall Smith  
Amos Walker: by Loren D. Estleman  
The Lincoln Lawyer: by Michael Connelly  

Books by Lee Child:
Jack Reacher Books Publishing Order:

Killing Floor
Die Trying
The Visitor /Running Blind
Echo Burning
Without Fail
The Enemy
One Shot
The Hard Way
Bad Luck and Trouble
Nothing to Lose
Gone Tomorrow
61 Hours
Worth Dying For
The Affair
A Wanted Man
Never Go Back
Make Me
Night School
The Midnight Line
Past Tense
Blue Moon

The Sentinel

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