Black Cross

Black Cross

4.3 57
by Greg Iles, Jay O. Sanders
     
 

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1944-As Allied troops prepare for D-Day, two men are sent to infiltrate the secret Nazi concentration camp where a deadly nerve gas is being perfected on human subjects. Their only objective: destroy all traces of the gas and the men who created it-no matter how many lives may be lost. Including their own...

"On fire with suspense." (Stephen King)

Overview

1944-As Allied troops prepare for D-Day, two men are sent to infiltrate the secret Nazi concentration camp where a deadly nerve gas is being perfected on human subjects. Their only objective: destroy all traces of the gas and the men who created it-no matter how many lives may be lost. Including their own...

"On fire with suspense." (Stephen King)

"A swift historical thriller [that] vaporizes almost every clichŽ about the limits of the genre...good enough to read twice." (Kirkus Reviews, starred review)

"Action-packed yet thoughtful, unusually resonant and gripping." (Publishers Weekly)

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Henceforth, any recommended reading list of thrillers about commando raids behind enemy lines will have to include this second novel by Iles (Spandau Phoenix), who has come up with an action-packed yet thoughtful yarn about a mission to stop the Nazi development of two new poison gases, Sarin and Somin, in a small concentration camp. Mark McConnell, a pacifist American doctor and poison-gas researcher, and Jonas Stern, a Zionist assassin, are chosen by the British to attack the camp. They are instructed to kill all its occupants (including the inmates) by unleashing Britain's own meager supply of Sarin, and to return with information about the manufacture of the gases. The story of McConnell and Stern's training and raid alternates with that of several people interned in the camp, among them Stern's father. The two strands come together in a swift and moving story about mercy, sacrifice and the horrors of war. The mission's purpose is problematic: Would Britain's use of Sarin to kill everyone at the camp really have convinced Himmler to discontinue further research and to persuade Hitler never to use poison gas for fear of Allied retaliation? But Iles builds suspense around the mission itself, not its aftermath, and winds up with an unusually resonant, gripping thriller that's a strong bet for bestsellerdom. Literary Guild alternate; audio rights to Penguin HighBridge; author tour. (Jan.)
Library Journal
After Dr. Mark (Mac) McConnell dies, his grandson discovers the American pacifist had served the war effort 50 years ago: D-Day is imminent when British Prime Minister Churchill learns that the Nazis have a ``Black Cross'' class of deadly nerve gases. The British coerce Mac, then a defensive chemical warfare researcher at Oxford, into accompanying a battle-hardened Zionist to execute a plan to convince the Germans that the British also have the gas. Mac and his accomplice must penetrate the German concentration camp where the gases are being developed and tested, then destroy the camp with the Allies' own tiny supply of Black Cross gas. Aided by a German nurse, they pull off the improbable plot. Like Iles's previous book, Spandau Phoenix (LJ, 4/15/93), this is graphically violent and fast paced, but it is more tightly written and better focused than that first novel, which was a New York Times best seller in paperback. A tribute to World War II valor and sacrifice, this suspenseful, above average thriller is recommended for popular fiction collections. [Previewed in Prepub Alert, LJ 9/15/94.].-V. Louise Saylor, Eastern Washington Univ. Lib., Cheney
From the Publisher
“A swift historical thriller of such brutal accomplishment that it vaporizes almost every cliché about the limits of the genre...good enough to read twice”—Kirkus Reviews Booklist“Like a Swiss watch wired to a bundle of dynamite; impeccable craftsmanship tick-tocking inexorably to an explosive climax. A wonderful mingling of technology, suspense, and character, and a fine exploration of the true nature of patriotism.”—Diana Gabaldon, author of Voyager and Outlander

“…Vital, compelling, magnificent...It has everything—danger, suspense, intrigue, romance, and chills…Characters so finely drawn it is impossible to believe they are fiction…Greg Iles is a major talent, a force to be reckoned with.”—Romantic Times

“Henceforth, any recommended reading list of thrillers will have to include this…Action-packed yet thoughtful, unusually resonant and gripping, swift and moving…A strong bestseller bet.”—Publishers Weekly

“A wonderful thriller…Absolutely remarkable…One of the most exciting action stories ever written…Filled with derring-do.”—Mystery News

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781590861233
Publisher:
Brilliance Audio
Publication date:
10/01/2003
Edition description:
Abridged
Product dimensions:
4.20(w) x 7.20(h) x 1.50(d)

What People are saying about this

Nelson De Mille
Totally absorbing and ingenius!
From the Publisher
“A swift historical thriller of such brutal accomplishment that it vaporizes almost every cliché about the limits of the genre...good enough to read twice”—Kirkus Reviews Booklist “Like a Swiss watch wired to a bundle of dynamite; impeccable craftsmanship tick-tocking inexorably to an explosive climax. A wonderful mingling of technology, suspense, and character, and a fine exploration of the true nature of patriotism.”—Diana Gabaldon, author of Voyager and Outlander

“…Vital, compelling, magnificent...It has everything—danger, suspense, intrigue, romance, and chills…Characters so finely drawn it is impossible to believe they are fiction…Greg Iles is a major talent, a force to be reckoned with.”—Romantic Times

“Henceforth, any recommended reading list of thrillers will have to include this…Action-packed yet thoughtful, unusually resonant and gripping, swift and moving…A strong bestseller bet.”—Publishers Weekly

“A wonderful thriller…Absolutely remarkable…One of the most exciting action stories ever written…Filled with derring-do.”—Mystery News

Meet the Author

Greg Iles was born in 1960 in Germany. He founded the band Frankly Scarlet, plays guitar for the Rock Bottom Remainders, and is the New York Times bestselling author of nine novels, including Blood Memory and 24 Hours. He lives in Natchez, Mississippi.

Brief Biography

Hometown:
Natchez, Mississippi
Date of Birth:
1961
Place of Birth:
Stuttgart, Germany
Education:
B.A., University of Mississippi, 1983
Website:
http://www.gregiles.com

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Black Cross 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 58 reviews.
smp315 More than 1 year ago
A great novel set against the backdrop of WW 2. The story is aptly described in other reviews, so I'll use my review to laud Iles as a unique author who can weave wonderful stories across different genres. Check out The Footprints of God, Blood Memory, Dead Sleep as evidence and Spandau Phoenix to return to the Nazi theme.
ncsurn More than 1 year ago
I enjoy all of Greg's books and this one did not disappoint I would recommend to anyone who likes historical fiction. The plot while fiction has a terrifying ring of truth to it.
win689surf25 More than 1 year ago
MASTERPIECE WORK !!!!! Greg Iles is the best writer I have ever known. No wonder!! He plays in a band with Stephen King and other writers, Ha! Just gota read this and all his other books you will just love this author.
snowbunny88 More than 1 year ago
I got this book for my husband who loves it. When he finished it he said i HAD to read it. I was pretty skeptical at first, thinking its not my style of reading or whatever. But man was i wrong. This book pulls you in through its amazing story, and continues to pull and pull until your nearing the end and cant put it down. The characters have real feelings and emotions that play out into real people during a time period where many people were emotionless and turned their head the other way. I am now sending this book to my dad to read and recommending it to just about everyone i know. There is a lot of information to take in so it feels like you've been reading forever, but its definitely worth it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I've read several other Greg Iles books and have always previously enjoyed the twists they take.. This book was an good read.. It just didn't have the same suspense level I'd come to expect. Liked very much the opening into the story and expected more back and forth during the story which never happened, so that was a litle disappointing.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Spandau Phoenix, Black Cross and Blood Memory....absolute must-reads....they're so good, you'll go back and re-read them after several years...I did.
Briana More than 1 year ago
This is an excellent book. It took a bit to read it but was worth the time and effort I spent to get through it. It really made me stop and think all the way through. I had to remember history and then remind myself that it really was a book and then I had to convince myself that it really could be that way! It was hard to put down because of all the details involved. Excellent book!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Perhaps the best ww ii novel I have ever read! A diverse and complex set of characters are made very real. Brings to life the cruelty of the camps like nothing I've ever read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Loved it from beginning to end. Great character development. 500 + pages flew by.
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birds123_74 More than 1 year ago
Great book.
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good book
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