Publishers Weekly Review
This second chronicle (after Cold City) of the formative years of Wilson's long-running series character Repairman Jack begins with an adrenaline-pumped chase across the top of a moving subway train, and the thrills don't stop until the final page. It's 1991, and 22-year-old Jack is getting the hang of life in New York City-as well as having experiences that are training for his future as an anonymous urban mercenary and "fix-it" guy. He has brushes with machete-wielding Dominicans, extortionist mafiosa, a scam artist who preys on elderly ladies, and Arab jihadists planning the first assault on the World Trade Center. An associate also perfectly pinpoints him as someone with "an outlook that mixed outlaw mentality with a moral code." A series of seeming coincidences proves to be the first hints of the supernatural destiny that Jack will embrace in his later adventures. Any reader who has followed Jack's exploits over the decades will find this book an entertaining addition to the series. Agent, Al Zuckerman, Writers House. (Oct.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
Booklist Review
Like Cold City (2012), the first volume of the Early Years trilogy of Repairman Jack novels, this follow-up is a much-needed zap of energy for a series that had grown increasingly lethargic. Set in early 1991, the book follows young Jack as he sets in motion a plan to ensure that his friend Julio doesn't lose his bar, the Spot. Jack's target, Neil Zalesky, a con artist, is a solid villain, although a group of Muslim terrorists also get on the wrong side of Jack and must be addressed. Fans of the Repairman Jack series will enjoy seeing their hero as a kid in his twenties, a regular guy who's still discovering the man he's going to become. Writing about Jack's early years, before the character was part of the author's labyrinthine Secret History of the World cycle of interconnected stories, seems to have freed Wilson, allowing him to tap into a more youthful spirit and style of writing. Will Wilson ever really put an end to the Repairman Jack series? Only time will tell.--Pitt, David Copyright 2010 Booklist