Bad Luck and Trouble
Goodreads ratings
4.18 / 5

"Bad Luck and Trouble" Summary

By Lee Child

thriller | 378 pages | Published in NaN

ISBN_13: 9780385340557

Estimated read time: 5 min read

One Sentence Summary

A former military police officer recruits his old unit to solve the mysterious death of a fellow comrade in this thrilling crime novel.

Bad Luck and Trouble by Lee Child: A Thrilling Ride into the World of Jack Reacher


"Bad Luck and Trouble" is a gripping thriller written by the acclaimed author Lee Child. This novel is part of the highly popular Jack Reacher series, featuring the enigmatic and unstoppable former military police officer, Jack Reacher. Packed with intense action, suspense, and unexpected twists, this book takes readers on a thrilling ride through the dangerous world of Jack Reacher.

Brief Synopsis

The story begins with a cryptic message that brings together Reacher's former colleagues from the elite military unit, the Special Investigators. The message informs them about the death of one of their own, Calvin Franz, and suggests foul play. Reacher and his team, which includes Frances Neagley, Karla Dixon, and Victor Hobie, reunite to uncover the truth behind Franz's death.

Set in Los Angeles, the team embarks on a mission to find answers. As they dig deeper, they discover a sinister conspiracy involving drug trafficking, money laundering, and a ruthlessly organized criminal syndicate. Reacher and his team face numerous obstacles, including corrupt law enforcement agencies, hired assassins, and an elusive mastermind known as "The Ghost."

Main Characters

Character NameDescription
Jack ReacherThe protagonist and a former military police officer with exceptional investigative skills and combat expertise.
Frances NeagleyA tough and resourceful former colleague of Reacher, skilled in covert operations and weaponry.
Karla DixonAn intelligent and tech-savvy member of Reacher's team, specializing in computer forensics.
Victor HobieA skilled pilot and a valuable asset to the team, known for his expertise in aerial reconnaissance.
Calvin FranzReacher's former colleague, whose suspicious death sets the events of the story in motion.

Summary of Different Story Points Over Chapters

Chapter 1: The Cryptic Message

  • Reacher receives a mysterious message informing him about the death of Calvin Franz and a potential conspiracy.
  • Reacher contacts his former colleagues, Neagley, Dixon, and Hobie, to investigate further.

Chapter 2: Reunion and Investigation

  • The team reunites in Los Angeles and begins investigating Franz's death.
  • They discover inconsistencies in the official report and suspect foul play.
  • Reacher suspects a larger conspiracy involving drug trafficking and money laundering.

Chapter 3: Uncovering Clues

  • The team uncovers a link between Franz and a criminal syndicate known as "The Ghost."
  • They follow a trail of clues, including encrypted messages and coded transactions.
  • Reacher suspects that "The Ghost" is involved in a major drug operation.

Chapter 4: Confronting Corruption

  • Reacher and his team encounter corrupt law enforcement officers who try to hinder their investigation.
  • They narrowly escape an ambush and realize they are getting closer to the truth.
  • Reacher suspects that "The Ghost" has infiltrated various institutions.

Chapter 5: Closing In

  • The team tracks down a key member of "The Ghost" organization.
  • They engage in a high-stakes confrontation, leading to a major breakthrough in their investigation.
  • Reacher and his team gather evidence to expose the criminal syndicate.

Chapter 6: The Final Showdown

  • Reacher and his team plan a strategic operation to dismantle "The Ghost" organization.
  • A thrilling and explosive showdown takes place, testing their skills and determination.
  • The truth behind Calvin Franz's death and the criminal conspiracy is finally revealed.

Main Events

  1. Reacher receives a cryptic message about the death of Calvin Franz.
  2. Reacher reunites with his former colleagues to investigate Franz's death.
  3. The team uncovers a larger conspiracy involving drug trafficking and money laundering.
  4. They face corrupt law enforcement agencies and hired assassins while gathering evidence.
  5. The team confronts "The Ghost" and engages in a final showdown to expose the criminal syndicate.

Themes and Insights

"Bad Luck and Trouble" explores themes of loyalty, justice, and the pursuit of truth. The novel delves into the dark underbelly of organized crime and highlights the corruption that can infiltrate institutions. Lee Child masterfully weaves a tale of suspense and action, keeping readers engaged as they navigate through twists and turns.

Through the character of Jack Reacher, the novel also explores the complexities of a lone wolf protagonist who relies on his instincts and skills to uncover the truth. Reacher's unwavering determination, resourcefulness, and analytical thinking provide insights into the mindset of a highly capable investigator.

Reader's Takeaway

"Bad Luck and Trouble" is a thrilling page-turner that will keep readers on the edge of their seats. Lee Child's masterful storytelling and intricate plotting make this book a must-read for fans of action-packed thrillers. The relentless pursuit of justice, the camaraderie among the characters, and the unexpected twists will leave readers craving for more.


"Bad Luck and Trouble" is another gripping addition to the Jack Reacher series, showcasing Lee Child's prowess in crafting suspenseful and action-packed narratives. With its intriguing plot, well-developed characters, and unexpected revelations, this novel is sure to captivate fans of the genre. Prepare for a thrilling ride as Jack Reacher and his team unravel a dangerous conspiracy and face off against a cunning adversary.

Bad Luck and Trouble FAQ

  1. What is 'Bad Luck and Trouble' about?

    'Bad Luck and Trouble' is a thriller novel written by Lee Child. It follows the story of ex-military policeman Jack Reacher as he investigates the mysterious deaths of his former army colleagues, who were all part of an elite military unit known as the 'Special Investigators.'

  2. Who is the author of 'Bad Luck and Trouble'?

    The author of 'Bad Luck and Trouble' is Lee Child.

  3. Is 'Bad Luck and Trouble' part of a series?

    Yes, 'Bad Luck and Trouble' is the eleventh book in the Jack Reacher series by Lee Child.

  4. Can 'Bad Luck and Trouble' be read as a standalone novel?

    While 'Bad Luck and Trouble' is part of a series, it can be read as a standalone novel as it has its own self-contained story.

  5. What genre does 'Bad Luck and Trouble' belong to?

    'Bad Luck and Trouble' belongs to the thriller genre.

  6. What is the publication date of 'Bad Luck and Trouble'?

    'Bad Luck and Trouble' was published on May 1, 2007.

  7. Where is 'Bad Luck and Trouble' set?

    'Bad Luck and Trouble' is primarily set in Los Angeles, California, but the story takes the characters to various locations throughout the United States.

  8. How long is 'Bad Luck and Trouble'?

    'Bad Luck and Trouble' has a total of 400 pages.

  9. Are there any sequels or prequels to 'Bad Luck and Trouble'?

    No, 'Bad Luck and Trouble' is part of an ongoing series, but it does not have any direct sequels or prequels.

  10. Has 'Bad Luck and Trouble' received any awards?

    While 'Bad Luck and Trouble' may not have received any specific awards, it has been well-received by readers and has garnered positive reviews.