How many Jack Reacher books are there?
The Jack Reacher books are thrilling, suspenseful, and engaging stories that have captured the hearts and minds of millions of readers worldwide. Written by Lee Child, the books follow the story of Jack Reacher, who was once a major in the United States Army. What’s great is that each book can be read as a standalone story rather than part of a series.
All of the Jack Reacher books are gripping with complex plots, interesting characters, and suspenseful conclusions, making them perfect for anyone who wants to read thrillers. Here you’ll get a complete list of the Jack Reacher books, as well as where you can read them.
An overview of the Jack Reacher series
The Jack Reacher series was written by Lee Child, the pen name of James Grant. Born in 1954 in Coventry, England, Grant attended law school before embarking on a successful career in television production. It wasn’t until he was in his 40s that Grant turned his hand to writing fiction, and the character of Jack Reacher was born. The first book in the series, Killing Floor, was published in 1997 and became an instant success.
The series follows the adventures of former military police major Jack Reacher as he wanders through the United States. He may seem like a drifter, but he solves crimes and rights wrongs, ensuring that justice is served and that the bad guys are put away. The plot ranges from working with FBI agents to protecting the Vice President.
Each book is set in a different location within the United States, including both big cities and small towns such as New York City, Chicago, Nebraska, Margrave, Georgia, Colorado, and South Dakota. There have been Jack Reacher movies as well, with Tom Cruise portraying the hero in film outings in 2012 and 2016.
Jack Reacher is an intriguing and complex character. Undoubtedly, it’s the protagonist himself that makes the series so compelling. His wandering and mysterious approach to life allows him to solve his cases with stellar efficiency. Lee Child’s writing style is also incredibly descriptive, immersive, and fast-paced, making all the books in the series action-packed and suspenseful.
The complete list of Jack Reacher books
There are many Jack Reacher books, with a new one being released every year since 1997, except for 2010, when two Jack Reacher books were published. Below you can find a list of the Jack Reacher books in chronological order:
- The Killing Floor
- Die Trying
- The Visitor (short story also known as Running Blind in the U.S.)
- Echo Burning
- Without Fail
- The Enemy (Prequel to the first novel in the book series)
- 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
- Better off Dead
- No Plan B
There are 26 Jack Reacher books in all. A new book will be coming out in October 2023 called The Secret. In addition, it’s interesting to note that The Sentinel was co-authored with Child’s younger brother Andrew Child.
Jack Reacher short stories
Besides the Jack Reacher novels, there have also been short stories and novellas in the Jack Reacher series in the collection No Middle Name: The Complete Collected Jack Reacher Short Stories. These include:
- Too Much Time
- Second Son
- Deep Down
- Guy Walks into a Bar
- James Penney’s New Identity
- High Heat
- Not a Drill
- Everyone Talks
- The Picture of the Lonely Diner
- Maybe They Have a Tradition
- No Room at the Motel
- The Midnight Line
- Small Wars
Which Jack Reacher book should I start reading first?
It’s important to note that each Jack Reacher book functions as a standalone story. You can choose from different books and follow the mysteries from start to finish. Very little background knowledge or context is needed to delve into any Jack Reacher book. Many still choose to read them in order and start with the first novel Killing Floor as there is a cast of recurring characters.
However, perhaps you would like to get right into the action. One Shot is particularly interesting because it is action-packed and fast-paced. It’s arguably one of the most suspenseful books in the series.
In One Shot, a lone sniper shoots and kills five people in a public square in Indiana. The police quickly track down the perpetrator, an ex-Army sniper named James Barr, who they believe is responsible for the massacre. However, Barr insists he’s innocent and requests that they bring in Jack Reacher to investigate. Reacher pieces together a conspiracy and uncovers lies and deception involving wealthy businessmen, politicians, and Russian gangs.
Where can you read the Jack Reacher books?
The Jack Reacher novels are available on Amazon for those who want to read the book series. You can also find the television series available on Amazon Prime Video starring Alan Ritchson.
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Will Lee Child write any more Jack Reacher books?
Lee Child has retired from writing the Jack Reacher series, but he has passed the torch to his younger brother, Andrew Child, who will continue writing the series under the pen name “Child.” The first book by Andrew Child is titled The Sentinel and was published in 2020.