Book Review: “Cleaning the Gold” by Karin Slaughter & Lee Child

April 29, 2020 Book Reviews 0

Book Review: “Cleaning the Gold” by Karin Slaughter & Lee Child

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.

"Cleaning the Gold" by Karin Slaughter
Series: Jack Reacher #23.6,
Genres: Thriller
Published by William Morrow on May 9, 2019
Pages: 129
Format: eBook
Source: the library

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Also in this series: MatchUp

Also by this author: Kisscut, Indelible, A Faint Cold Fear, Triptych , Faithless, Beyond Reach, Blindsighted , Triptych, Fractured, Undone, Broken, "Snatched", Criminal, "Busted", Unseen, The Silent Wife

A short story, 8.5 in the Will Trent series and 23.6 in the Jack Reacher series, both thrillers revolving around two men who believe in the law. They just have a different way of going about it.

My Take

Slaughter/Child caught my attention with that annoying Dave Baldani, and of course, I was curious as to why Will Trent is going undercover at Fort Knox. And how Jack Reacher fits in.

Whoa…he lifts 60-pounds in each hand. Don’t wanna get on his bad side, lol.

“There were no cuts on his skin, but he probably bled hydraulic fluid…”

Hmmm, “what’s best for the officer”. That could apply to the choices politicians make as well. And this as well as comments like the above made this an interesting blend of cynicism and humor.

Slaughter/Child using first person protagonist point-of-view from Will’s perspective allows us to hear a lot of speculation about Reacher, which is good for a laugh, especially if you’ve been following both series and know their characters well.

Speculation that gets turned on its head when Trent confesses. And then there’s more speculation that gets really interesting. And it really ticks me off that Slaughter/Child just leave us hanging here. WTF? I was also annoyed by that vague “temporary embarrassment”.

I had to wonder why cleaning the gold was so important after Lukather goes on and on about how “fragile” the gold is. Will certainly notes all the issues introduced with this “cleaning”, which leaves me wondering why anyone would use a cleaning process as stupid as this one.

Why was only one supposed to survive? Who’s the Georgia congressman?

As much as I love reading a story involving Will Trent and Jack Reacher, this story was so full of holes and then there’s that lame ending. And what I want to know is, is it an ending?

The Story

Will Trent is undercover at Fort Knox. His assignment: To investigate a twenty-two-year-old murder.  His suspect’s name: Jack Reacher.

Jack Reacher is in Fort Knox on his own mission: To bring down a dangerous criminal ring operating at the heart of America’s military.  Except now Will Trent is on the scene.

But there’s a bigger conspiracy at play — one that neither the special agent nor the ex-military cop could have anticipated. And the only option is for Jack Reacher and Will Trent to team up and play nicely. If they can…

The Characters

Special Agent Will Trent with the Georgia Bureau of Investigation may be dyslexic, but he’s brilliant with numbers. He’s undercover as ex-Army Captain Jack Phineas Wolfe, a loser in desperate need of a job.

The H*U*G*E Jack Reacher, a retired army major, has a brilliant analytical mind and is also good with numbers. Joe Reacher had been his older brother and had been with the FBI.

Fort Knox, Kentucky
Colonel Stephanie Lukather is in charge of the US Bullion Depository. The obnoxious Major Dave Baldani suffers from Small Man’s Hysteria and is Lukather’s XO. Mrs Baldani works in HR.

Peter David Beter is a DC attorney with a theory about Deep State.

1977, Margrave, Georgia
Deputy Phillip Michael Deacon was murdered. Eventually. Beatrice Collins was the eyewitness.

Ex-Sergeant Frances L. Neagley is a friend of Reacher’s and the best soldier he’d ever met. These days she runs a security agency in Chicago. And the girl is connected.

The Cover and Title

The cover has a wintry feel with all that gray and white. It’s the “museum” of Fort Knox just below center with its lights and fences around it, framed on either side by the silhouettes of two bare-branched trees under a dark gray to pale gray sky. At the bottom is most of a flapping American flag. At the very top is the series info in white and the authors’ names immediately below it. I reckon Slaughter’s name is on top because the story is mostly told from Will’s perspective. The title is between authors and building in deep gray with a white outline.

The title is what it’s all about, “Cleaning the Gold”.

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