Mysteries' Colorful Characters Reel in Readers

Books in the crime/mystery genre often feature a colorful character, frequently a detective, who is the main reason readers keep coming back for more — from Edgar Allan Poe's Auguste Dupin to Ross Macdonald's Lew Archer, by way of Sherlock Holmes.

In his latest novel, Bad Luck and Trouble, author Lee Child continues the adventures of dashing Jack Reacher.

'Reaching' Back to a Murky Past

Lee Child's Latest Novel Prequels His Popular Series

Author Lee Child

hide captionAuthor Lee Child.

Read an excerpt from 'The Enemy'
Blanche Mackey

Jack Reacher is a man who redefines the term "loner." A tough ex-military cop, Reacher wanders across America without any family, job or possessions, but trouble seems to find him wherever he goes.

This item is available for purchase online. Your purchase helps support NPR.

British novelist Lee Child takes the maverick drifter back to 1990 in The Enemy, the eighth book of the best-selling "Jack Reacher" series. In writing the prequel, Child had to create a younger, more naïve version of his popular character. "It was a tremendous exercise technically to regress a character rather than progress him," Child says. "But it was a lot of fun to do."

In the second of a three-part series on mystery writers, Child talks to NPR's Linda Wertheimer about his latest thriller and who "the enemy" really is.

Related NPR Stories

Books Featured In This Story

Bad Luck and Trouble
Bad Luck and Trouble

A Jack Reacher Novel

by Lee Child

Hardcover, 377 pages | purchase

close

Purchase Featured Books

  • Bad Luck and Trouble
  • A Jack Reacher Novel
  • Lee Child

Comments

 

Please keep your community civil. All comments must follow the NPR.org Community rules and Terms of Use. NPR reserves the right to use the comments we receive, in whole or in part, and to use the commenter's name and location, in any medium. See also the Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Community FAQ.

Support comes from: