Book Review: Lee Child’s Echo Burning

Posted August 10, 2012 by Kathy Davie in Book Reviews

I received this book for free from the library in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Book Review: Lee Child’s Echo Burning

Echo Burning


Lee Child

It is part of the Jack Reacher #5 series and is a thriller that was published by Jove on November 27, 2007 and has 412 pages.

Explore it on Goodreads or Amazon.

Other books in this series include MatchUp

Other books by this author which I have reviewed include Killing Floor, Die Trying, "Second Son", Tripwire, Running Blind, Without Fail, Persuader, 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, "Deep Down", Never Go Back, "High Heat", Personal, Make Me, "Small Wars", Night School, MatchUp, The Midnight Line

Fifth in the Jack Reacher suspense series revolving around an ex-military policeman wandering the country and getting into a bushel of trouble.

My Take

I hated this one! That bitch Carmen and her approach with Reacher. It’s just wrong! Stupid twit! What is so important that she has to stick around? She’s okay with offering her body, with asking someone to kill for her, but she’s not okay with having a clean conscience and going on the run? Even to protect herself and her child? The way she keeps pushing Reacher. Why can’t she see how wrong this is? She keeps pushing about the beating she’ll have to suffer, wanting Reacher to take care of her problem for her. Bitch. I’d like to slug her myself. Take care of your own damn problem. Collect the hospital records. Track the crap they dish out. Gather up some legal ammo of your own!

What is it with people? This story is all about racism. About having and keeping. Especially keeping success or a chance of a decent life from others in almost any way you can describe it. WHAT kind of grandmother is Rusty? Calls her granddaughter “it”? Gets rid of her as soon as possible?

Jack took too much at face value. he should have been checking “facts” from both sides. It’s only that deductive, mathematical mind of his that figures it out.

Ugh, that Red House just sounds NASTY. I gotta wonder if the color and its overall covering isn’t a metaphor for something. I mean, who does that??

Interesting tricks the assassins use to erase their trail and set their traps. Only, none of them know what they’re taking on with Reacher and he certainly has his fun poking away.

I did love how Reacher backed good ol’ Bobby down. Jerk. No good on his own when he doesn’t have his ranch hands backing him up…snicker… I loved Ellie! A birght little girl who seized her chance.

Oh man, poor Reacher. Carmen’s telling the family he knows all about horse and blacksmithing. All Reacher’s thinking is that he knows blacksmithing needs an anvil and does something with horseshoes and they smell terrible. I just loved who taught Reacher how to saddle a horse!

Tight and detailed analysis of the gunshots that killed the victim.

Ooh, Child just leads us by the nose, playing on our expectations. Laying false trails.

It’s almost scary how easily Reacher slips inside the criminals’ heads. Child did a good job of confusing me every which way and I am so looking forward to Reacher’s next adventure, Without Fail.

The Story

On the run from a bullying cop, Reacher hops in the first car to offer a ride. And what a ride it turns out to be. Seems the classy little lady needs a shooter for the husband being released from prison. She thought she had more time. Another year. Instead, she has less than a month and she’s been interviewing drifters all over Texas. Reacher. Well, he seems perfect. Even with her sob story, Reacher won’t do it. He’ll come to the ranch. He’ll protect her, but he won’t kill.

Until that decision is taken out of his hands.

The Characters

Jack Reacher is six-foot-five and two hundred and fifty pounds of muscle. Vigilant. A product of a lifetime spent on military bases, thirteen years of it as a military policeman. To say he has an excellent sense of his surroundings and the human mind is to underplay his abilities. Reacher is on the road again after Jodie left him. She needs a home and normalcy. Everything Reacher is not.

Three assassins who have worked long and well together, the woman in charge. Good instincts.

Carmen Greer is an abused wife who refuses to leave. She loves her six-and-a-half-year-old daughter, Mary Ellen, and she has plans for Reacher. Sloop Greer, her husband, is the oldest son of a old Echo County family. One that is wealthy enough to be comfortable. Sloop was wonderful before marriage when the family sent him his allowance. Moving home when that allowance was cut off. The moving back was fine, but not with a beaner wife. Bobby is the younger brother and despises Carmen…right along with their bitch of a mother, Rusty. Bobby’s hatred certainly doesn’t slow him down when it comes to sexual blackmail.

Al Eugene is one of Sloop Greer’s two best friends as well as his lawyer. He’s working on a deal to get him out of jail faster. Hack Walker is the district attorney running for judge. He’s the other of Sloop’s best friends; a very convincing good guy.

Alice Amanda Aaron is an East Coast, gay, Jewish, vegan woman fulfilling her own five-year plan to put in her time as a lawyer helping the poor. When Reacher hires her, Carmen’s case is so far down the line that Reacher makes a deal to collect that judgment Lyndon Brewer, a wealthy white man, is refusing to pay. Brewer’s maid (and I) certainly enjoyed it!

The Cover and Title

The cover is gleaming in its golden yellowness. A band of fading metallic orange supports a deeper golden ring framing a golden farmhouse surrounded by trees. But it’s only golden until you read the story.

The title is a metaphor as it’s not the town of Echo Burning, but the memories of living there.