Wednesday, May 06, 2015

Repairman Jack is Back in FIX


  Kindle Worlds is an interesting idea. Basically Amazon will pay for fan fiction. There are various worlds based on comic books, TV series, and books, and you can write for any of them, publish on Amazon and split the money with Amazon. So say, if you wanted to write a story featuring THE ETERNAL WARRIOR or ARCHER AND ARMSTRONG from Valiant Comics, then have at it.

   Not surprisingly, J.A. Konrath, the guru of self publishing, has set up his own Kindle Worlds, one featuring his signature character Jack Daniels, and a new one featuring Codename: Chandler, a female spy/hit person he created with Ann Voss Peterson. However in Konrath's worlds there's a difference. With other Kindle worlds, you lose the rights to the characters you create to Amazon. They become part of the Kindle World. Not so in Konrath's world. If you team one of your characters with Jack Daniels or Chandler, that character still belongs to you.

   Which brings us to FIX, a brand new story by Konrath, Ann Voss Peterson, and F.Paul Wilson, which teams Chandler with Repairman Jack, hero of a whole series of novels by Wilson. I downloaded this last night, sat down to read the first couple of chapters and of course, gleefully tore through the entire story.

   Chandler works for one of those 'off the books' government organizations that thriller writers are so fond of. She's been sent to New York to find a terrorist who is planning on selling a canister of extremely deadly toxin. Chandler's job? Get the toxin and eliminate the terrorist with extreme prejudice.

   Meanwhile, Jack, who works as a freelance urban mercenary, is hired by an aide to New York's Mayor to retrieve a sex tape featuring the Mayor's daughter. Through various circumstances, Jack and Chandler cross paths and in true comic book fashion, try to beat up each other before teaming up to face a common foe.

   If you're a fan of F. Paul Wilson's Repairman Jack series, you know that it has now officially ended. No more adventures for Jack after the events of NIGHT WORLD. This story, however, takes us back to the early days of Jack's career, before he met Gia, the Love of his life. Thus Jack is open to romance with Chandler.

   Of course a romance between someone who kills when he has to and someone who kills for a living can take some interesting turns. Fans of Jack will see the usual faces and places, but the book is considerably sexier than the average Repairman Jack novel. According to the book's afterword, that's the fault of Konrath and Peterson. It works though.

   This is a fast moving, action packed novella, which barely slows to catch its breath. If you're a fan of the Repairman Jack series, this is a must have, and if you're like me, you'll leave the tale wanting to read more about Codename: Chandler as well. Heck, I might even write a story for one of Konrath's Kindle Worlds myself.