From the Publisher
“Fans who prefer Wilson's medical thrillers, like Sims, will nonetheless find delight here.” Kirkus Reviews on Crisscross
“There are some writers who, once they settle into an ongoing character, become complacent and happily just write and rewrite the same two of three books over and over again. And then there's F. Paul Wilson, whose Repairman Jack series seems to get better as its hero gets closer and closer to his ultimate fate in Wilson's previous Nightworld…Wilson never lets the pacing lag, using short and punchy chapters to keep the reader turning the page…Crisscross is a new addition to the rich mythology of Repairman Jack. If you haven't made the acquaintance of wither Wilson or his signature character, here's a terrific place to start. And if you have, Crisscross is another great adventure into inner-city weirdness.” Fangoria
“Repairman Jack novels are always fun to read, but this thriller, though also quite entertaining and exciting, is much darker than usual. He solves the nun's problem, but the results are not what he or she expected forcing him to take an amoral position with the blackmailer. The Brady problem is simply world threatening. For those who know Jack will know that F. Paul Wilson provides another fantastic reading experience.” Futures Mystery Anthology Magazine on Crisscross
“Good stuff, with a nasty twist at times, and Jack's usual efficient methods of correction.” Chronicle
The eighth novel in Wilson's Repairman Jack saga pulses with the usual entertaining mix of pulp heroics and supernatural thrills. Jack, a private vigilante-for-hire who flies below the radar of legitimate law enforcement, is aware that he and his crime-fighting opponents are merely human pawns in a timeless cosmic battle waged by entities of "Otherness" known as the Ally and the Adversary. This time, his exploits involve infiltrating the Dormentalists, a shady pseudoreligion that, under megalomaniacal poobah Luther Brady, has grown into a wealthy worldwide cult with vicious instincts for self-preservation. Although warned at the end of Gateways (2003) that "there will be no more coincidences," Jack is stunned to discover that some of the hokiest elements of Dormentalist doctrine eerily echo aspects of the Adversary's malignant design for universal dominance. Suspense escalates through an intersecting subplot involving a blackmailed Catholic nun and appearances by girlfriend Gia, whose difficult pregnancy increasingly portends a strange destiny for Jack. The body count is high, the deaths are uncommonly brutal and the ever-capable Jack is more fallible than usual. But readers who identify with Jack's clients and their need to believe that justice is still possible in a corrupted world will find this all the more reason to sympathize with a hero who achieves both greater humanity and epic stature with each new adventure. Agent, Al Zuckerman at Writers House. (Oct. 1) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Eighth in Wilson's Repairman Jack series (Gateways, 2003, etc.) about his vigilante outcast facing the Otherness, a demonic force much like Lovecraft's indefinably mysterious Cthulhu. Fans who prefer Wilson's medical thrillers, like Sims (2003), will nonetheless find delight here, as Wilson and Jack take on a Scientology organization clone. Although Repairman Jack-a man who's never been photographed or fingerprinted, has no identifying social security card, credit card, or insurance, and pays no taxes-is led about by the Ally, an Anti-Otherness entity or force, Jack's jobs usually take place repairing cracks in humankind that appear to be less than mystical. Here, he has two human jobs that eventually crisscross each other on an occult level. And he has a pregnant girlfriend, Gia DiLauro, who has a snappy nine-year-old daughter, Vicky. Jack's first job is to rescue Johnny Roselli, the absent son of aged millionaire Maria Roselli, from the multibillion-dollar Dormentalist Church (read: Scientology), which buys up property all over the planet and has sucked Johnny and his wealth into its innards. Cooper Blascoe, the church's founder, is presently in suspended animation (read: dead?), and the church is being run by Luther Brady. Hints of the Ally at work, through women with dogs, arise while the Dormentalists (who worship The Presence and work toward Opus Omega) promise to awaken "the Other you" (read: the Otherness in you). Jack's second job is to save a nun being blackmailed by slimy Richie Cordova, whose cover is his p.i. agency. Jack fails his lie-detector test as a prospective Dormentalist, but his fake i.d. as a Swiss with $200 million lands him acceptance by oily Luther Brady himself.Jack teams with investigative reporter Jamie Grant, who hopes to expose the cult but finds herself sinking into occult horror. Will the Otherness join with the Ally when Opus Omega is finished?Too bad rumpled Michael Moore doesn't act: he'd be a true-hearted Jack striking at Christopher Plummer purring as top Dormentalist Brady.
Read an Excerpt
This little jaunt was a departure from Jack's SOP of meeting prospective customers in a place of his choosing, but he didn't expect any problems this go-round. Beekman Place was hardly a Manhattan trouble zone.
The day was so nice he'd decided to walk. No big deal. Only a couple of miles from his apartment, but a big jump in rental price. A cab ride would deprive him of this beautiful day.
Autumn was strengthening its grip on the city: cooler temperatures, gustier winds...sweater weather. Jack's was a cranberry V-neck, worn over a blue-and-white plaid shirt and tan slacks. The preppy look. Never out of place in Midtown. Medium-length brown hair, medium brown eyes, medium height, medium build. Nothing special about him. Just the way he liked it. Practically invisible.
The summer haze had fled south, leaving the midday sky a piercing blue; red and yellow leaves whirligigged from branches, and all the Duane Reades sported ghosts and goblins and spiderwebs in their windows. The official Halloween countdown had dwindled to less than twelve hours.
Just last night Vicky had put on her Wicked Witch of the West costume--green skin, warty nose, the whole deal--and modeled it for Jack. She fairly vibrated with anticipation. Nine years old going on forty, she loved dressing up, and loved candy. Halloween was the one day of the year--well, maybe Christmas too--that Gia let her daughter's sweettooth call the shots. Come November 1 it would be back to reality: Boca Burgers, kasha and beans, and one--just one--piece of candy for dessert.
And for me, Jack thought, one Whopper with cheese to go, please.
He'd come down Central ParkWest, past a large, cheering rally of some sort on one of the park greens, walked east over to First Avenue, then turned downtown. The Trump World Tower was looming large in his vision when he hung a left onto East Fifty-first. A block later he stepped onto Beekman Place. It ran between Fifty-first and Forty-ninth. Right. A whole two blocks long.
Felt like he'd stepped from a wrestling match into a library. The bare-bones bustle of First Avenue was gone, replaced by party-colored trees lining quiet pavements. He'd Googled the area before coming over. Interesting history. Nathan Hale had been held prisoner in one of these mansions before his execution. Billy Rose used to live here, so had Irving Berlin, although his old place now housed the Luxembourg mission to the UN.
Jack walked past canopied front entrances attended by liveried doormen until he came to the brick and granite front of 37 Beekman Place. He nodded to the Hispanic-looking doorman in the gray uniform with black piping.
"Can I help you, sir?" His English carried only a hint of a Spanish accent. The nameplate over his left breast read Esteban.
"I'm here to see Mrs. Roselli. She's expecting me."
Esteban led the way into an echoey lobby: white marble floor, white marble walls, white marble ceiling. He lifted the receiver attached to an intercom in the left lobby wall. "And who shall I say is calling?"
"May I have your last name, sir?"
"Just Jack. Like I said, she's expecting me."
He looked dubious but pressed two numbers on the pad. "Ms. Roselli? There is a 'Jack' here to see you."
Esteban listened a few seconds, then hung up. "Apartment one A, sir." He pointed to a hallway leading off the lobby. "First door on your right." He stared at Jack. "Are you related?"
"No. We've never met. Why do you ask?"
"Just curious. I've been working here two years and you're the first company she's had. You'll like her. Nice lady. The best."
Glad to hear it, Jack thought. Nice ladies were always easier to work for than the not so nice. Later this afternoon he'd be meeting another nice lady customer.
But so far Maria Roselli was a mystery. She'd e-mailed him from his Web site, leaving a phone number, saying it was important. When Jack had called her back she was evasive about who had referred her, saying over and over how she was so worried about her son and how she needed Jack's help.
She was the second customer in two days who'd refused to say who'd referred her. Jack liked to know how his customers managed to find him. His services weren't exactly the kind he could advertise in the Times' classified section. He'd made some enemies along the way, so he tended to be wary of customers who popped up with no identifiable references.
But Beekman Place...the class of people who had a beef with him didn't live in seven-figure East Side co-ops.
So he'd agreed to meet Maria Roselli without knowing who'd referred her. He'd also agreed to meet at her place. She'd said she was physically handicapped and it would put a burden on her to meet him elsewhere.
Hadn't liked that either, but something in her voice...
Anyway, here he was. He knocked on 1A and a dog started barking.
A woman's voice on the other side said, "Hush up, Benno. It's all right."
Oh, hell, Jack thought. Another woman with a dog.
Maybe he should turn and go.
The voice rose in volume. "Come in. It's open."
He took a breath and reached for the knob. Might as well see what was up. He hadn't committed to anything. Nothing said he couldn't walk away if he didn't like the setup.
Copyright © 2006 by F. Paul Wilson