|Barb, Mom, and Lee Child
When I was invited by Random House of Canada to a party for Lee Child I knew exactly who my date was going to be. For those of you who have never had the pleasure of racing through the pages with his protagonist Jack Reacher, Lee Child is almost number one in the world of thriller writers. Jack Reacher is an ex military cop who wanders around North America with nothing but the clothes on his back and a bank card. He is a present-day Robin Hood who is compelled to right any wrong that he bumps into.
Child had been one of my mother’s guilty pleasures for years. She always told me that she knew that he wasn’t the kind of writer that I liked but he was definitely her box of candy. For some reason, she thought that I read “better” books. So it was when I was in one of my infrequent, but deadly, reading slumps that I picked up an old Reacher novel that was lying around my parent’s house. My father had just died and I found that I couldn’t concentrate on anything. Well, six weeks later, I had read all thirteen Reacher adventures and this reading glut reinvigorated my stalled addiction to books.
So my mother, of course, had to be my date. When we walked into the party we were surprised that there were only a few people. Random House had wanted Child to meet some booksellers because he has always loved bookstores and has often attributed his success to independent booksellers. Lee Child is very tall. My mother and I are very short, so we had to crane our necks to talk and he had to bend down to listen. He is also dapper and dashing, unlike his hero. We quickly told him our daughter follows in the footsteps of mother story, to which he smiled and said “Thank you very much, that’s lovely.” We talked about his superb attention to detail. He said that he always had a good memory for physical things. I asked him to bring Reacher to Canada for his next adventure. He chuckled. I told him that I loved New York, which is his home. To which he replied, “Please call me when you come and we can have lunch.”
He also said that he knew that we would like Tom Cruise in the forthcoming Reacher movie. This, unfortunately, is where we might have to disagree, but I guess time will tell.