Although the novel takes place in 1996, it was published in 2016, as a prequel to other Reacher novels. In this book, Jack Reacher is in his mid thirties and is a Major with the military police in the Army. He is recognized as a talented officer and with two others, one in the CIA and the other in the FBI, he is given an assignment to uncover some kind of a terror scheme. They are all sent to Hamburg, Germany, to discover the whereabouts of someone who is plotting an act of terror. They do not know what is being planned; they only know that the plan has a price tag of 100 million dollars, so it is probably a plan that will cause death and destruction. They have to discover the plan and the perpetrator before he can accomplish his goal.
They know that an American is involved. They do not have much information to work with and Reacher engages others to join him, that he trusts, who have the necessary skills he requires. They must search out clues. Soon, there are what seem to be random murders and Middle Eastern involvement, but it turns out to be more than random. The story is confusing, not only to Reacher, but to the reader.
Finally we discover that a rogue serviceman has found 10 missing bombs, and he is selling them to the enemies of the Western world. As the search evolves, romance blooms between Reacher and a woman from the NSC. The romance was unnecessary and distracting. There were too many tangents and it often became difficult to follow the storyline. The narrator’s voice has somewhat of a tremor and his speech is very slow which can be a bit off-putting.
This was not one of the best Reacher novels. It stretched credulity too far. Reacher is painted as a super lover with unnatural powers, as well. He was a super hero, able to fight multiple attackers at once and survive unblemished, able to figure out motives and mysteries before anyone else with his insight and intuition that never failed. His heroism and strength is well known, but in this story, it does not go over as well.