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Lee Child

New York Times-bestselling author of the Jack Reacher novels

  • About Lee Child

    International #1 bestselling author Lee Child is firmly established as “the best thriller writer of the moment” (New York Times), with more than 22 million copies of his novels in print worldwide. His hero, ex-Army cop Jack Reacher, a loner with no evident roots, has been called “the toughest guy in literature,” and Child’s events draw standing-room-only crowds of hundreds of fans (dubbed “Reacher creatures”).

    Child was born in 1954 in Coventry, England, but spent his formative years in a rough-and-tumble neighborhood of nearby Birmingham. As a boy he was tall for his age, and he became a protector of sorts for less fortunate classmates. One day he saw a bully harassing a girl, so he beat him up on the way home, rolling him down a hill covered with nettles for good measure. The tough guy was born. Is Child himself Jack Reacher? “He’s everything I could be if I could get away with it,” Child admits.

    He went to law school in Sheffield, England, then spent eighteen years as a presentation director for Granada Television in Manchester. When a corporate restructuring caused him to lose his job in 1995, he gave himself a year to try his hand at fiction. He wrote Killing Floor—his first novel to feature Reacher—which won both the Anthony and the Barry awards for Best First Mystery and was a critical and commercial success. Lee Child is now the author of twenty-two Jack Reacher thrillers, including the New York Times bestsellers 61 HoursThe Enemy (which won both the Barry and the Nero awards for Best Novel), One ShotThe Hard WayBad Luck and TroubleNothing to Lose,  Make Me, and most recently, The Midnight Line, which debuted at #1 Many of his titles have been optioned for major motion pictures. In 2012, Tom Cruise, Rosamund Pike, David Oyelowo starred in Jack Reacher, a major motion picture inspired by Child’s book, One Shot. Cruise returned to his role in the 2016 sequel, Jack Reacher: Never Go Back. In 2019, it was announced that Amazon would be developing   script-to-series drama based on the Jack Reacher series. Child is also working on a true-crime TV series which depicts the stories of real-life men and women from around the world who have been driven to stand up and put their lives on the line, fighting for justice in the face of great danger.

  • Speaking Topics

    From Knight Errant to Jack Reacher: Why We Need Tough Guys in Life and Literature

    The Evolution of Storytelling

    Creating the Toughest Guy in Literature

  • Video

  • Praise for Lee Child

    Praise for The Sentinel

    I loved The Sentinel! Classic Reacher, great story. Brilliant, brilliant, brilliant. I do love the spare writing style, the descriptions, Reacher’s responses to threats. Joyous stuff. I hope there will be many more Reachers to come.

    Conn Iggulden

    It’s great to be back in [Reacher’s] company in a world where the bad guys get what’s coming to them. . . . A smooth transition for a much-loved character.

    The Observer

    As always, the bad guys—this time, Russian spies and American-Nazi thugs—discover too late that they are no match for Reacher. Despite the change in authors, the writing remains tight and the non-stop action is as propulsive as ever.

    Associated Press

    As ever, [Reacher is] the sole, unrivalled champion of the average man.

    Daily Mail

    Fresh, perfectly plotted, and packed with action, The Sentinel is one of the year’s best, must-read thrillers.

    The Real Book Spy

    It’s terrific. . . . The story is just as powerful. . . . Brutal action mixes with keen-eyed detective work as Reacher metes out his own brand of justice. . . . If this novel is a harbinger of what’s to come, then Jack is in good hands.

    Booklist(starred review)

    Much of The Sentinel is humorous as Reacher patiently teaches bad guys about the flaws in their tactics. While there’s lots of action, the novel also feels like a procedural as Reacher interviews suspects and delves deeper toward the truth. . . . [The Sentinel has] one of the most inventive action sequences in recent memory. . . . It continues the series without any sense that there’s now a coauthor. In a year of drastic change, fans will welcome the consistency.

    Publishers Weekly

    Praise for Blue Moon

    Child is at the top of his game in this nail-biter.

    starred Publishers Weekly review

    Praise for Past Tense

    Superb . . . [Lee] Child’s spare prose continues to set a very high bar.

    Publishers Weekly (boxed and starred review)

    Praise for The Midnight Line

    Compulsively readable.

    Publishers Weekly (starred review)

    Praise for Night School

    The prose is crisp and clean, and the fighting is realistic. . . . This latest installment has all the classic ingredients: a great setting (Hamburg), a good villain, and a mystery that draws you in efficiently, escalates unpredictably, and has a satisfying resolution.

    The New Yorker

    Reacher [is] one of this century’s most original, tantalizing pop-fiction heroes.

    The Washington Post

    Another timely tour de force . . . The taut thriller is textbook [Lee] Child: fast-paced and topical with a ‘ripped from the headlines’ feel.

    Minneapolis Star-Tribune

    As gripping as ever.

    The Florida Times-Union

    Praise for Make Me

    Lee Child’s Reacher series has hit Book No. 20 with a resounding peal of wisecracking glee. Everything about it, starting with Reacher’s nose for bad news, is as strong as ever.... The big guy’s definitely on the upswing. The guy who writes about him is too.

    Janet Maslin, The New York Times

    I’ve read all twenty of Lee Child’s novels... I can’t wait for the twenty-first.

    Malcolm Gladwell, The New Yorker

    Praise for Personal

    Few novelists can equal [Child's] explosive action scenes, neon-bright descriptions and unexpected plot twists...Reacher is the stuff of myth, a great male of this century's most original, tantalizing pop-fiction heroes...Child does a masterly job of bringing his adventure to life with endless surprises and fierce suspense, and he's peerless on the logistics of killing.

    The Washington Post

    Fans won’t be disappointed by this suspense-filled, riveting thriller. Those who haven’t experienced this irresistible series should definitely start at the beginning and catch up to this book.

    Library Journal (starred review)

    Praise for Never Go Back

    A breathless cross-country spree . . . some of the best, wiliest writing [Lee] Child has ever done . . . Child’s bodacious action hero, Jack Reacher, has already tramped through 17 novels and three e-book singles. But his latest, Never Go Back, may be the best desert island reading in the series. It’s exceptionally well plotted. And full of wild surprises. And wise about Reacher’s peculiar nature. And positively Bunyanesque in its admiring contributions to Reacher lore.

    Janet Maslin, The New York Times

    Brilliant ...Child never, ever slips. He keeps the action cranking better than anyone, but, best of all, he keeps us guessing about Reacher.

    Booklist (starred review)

    One of the best in the series.

    Publishers Weekly (starred review)
  • Books by Lee Child

  • Media About Lee Child

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