If you’ve never read a Repairman Jack novel, this is the place to begin.
It’s 1990. A twenty-one-year-old named Jack has dropped out of college, leaving his old life behind to build a new one in New York City. Manhattan’s rough edges are jagged enough to shred any unwary newcomer, but perhaps not one who is determined to stay off the grid, at any cost, in the busiest metropolis on earth. And to do so, he’ll have to take jobs of a less than legal nature.
An interstate smuggling operation seems to fit the bill perfectly. But Jack’s initial foray into the trafficking of illicit goods carries greater risk than he bargained for, putting him afoul of a preteen slavery ring, a group of jihadists, and a pair of vigilante brothers. As if those problems weren’t enough, Jack is hunted by some machete-wielding maniacs, and his bartender Julio is harassed by the mob. How these things are linked, and what they have to do with the murder of Rabbi Meir Kahane in Manhattan’s East Side Marriott, is a mystery Jack cannot let go of.
Cold City is the first of three new novels revealing the early years of one of the most popular characters in contemporary fiction: a self-styled “fix-it” man who is no stranger to the macabre or the bizarre, hired by victimized people who have nowhere else to turn. This is where he begins the metamorphosis from a naïve New Jersey refugee into the urban mercenary known as Repairman Jack.
©2012 F. Paul Wilson (P)2012 Brilliance Audio, Inc.
This a prequel and a good place to start for the series -- but understand that the series is all about the dark hero looking out for the powerless. The writing is technically good and the story moves along, but don't look for feasibility in the plot line, or plausibility in almost any aspect of the series. This book attempts to tell the early story of hour Repairman Jack (a sort of poor man's Jack Reacher) got started helping people, and maybe some of where his skills come from -- but really, it doesn't set up a plausible background for what the character is later in the series. The Reacher character from that series looks well researched and plausible compared to Repairman Jack. If you're looking for solid logic and well thought out long term series story arcs, go somewhere else. If you want to see a tough and mysterious hero beat up bad people this is for you.
I am new to RJ. I wanted to get the books for years, but was put off by the long story arc, which would use up half of my credits! So I decided to take the plunge during the sale. I am SO glad I did.
The story is really complex, with many different plot lines happening at the same time. Living in Qatar, which is ruled by the Al-Thani family, I was intrigued by the baddie being a minor Royal, very funny.
The narration was absolutely superb, the (very good looking, yum, yum :)) Mr Cendense is now officially my favourite audible narrator! He switched from young and old to different ethnicities in an amazing way. He even did a nearly creditable Cockney! Because the story is so complex, in the hands of a less skilled narrator it would have been really difficult to follow.
A word of warning, this is NOT a self-contained story! It ends out of nowhere. If you get this you will be pretty much locking yourself into the first three books because you will so want to know what happens next.
Im off to download the next two while the sale is still on. Happy listening!!!
Yes. I enjoyed the plot and the narration. (As a matter of fact, the valet at a local restaurant told me he hated to give me my car back because he was so intrigued by the narrator.)
I thought the plot was interesting, although, I'm not really sure what the plot was other than Jack getting caught up in events and his efforts to untangle them. Some of these entanglements he does not wind up. The book ends screaming sequel.
Now that I think about it, the plot was ok, and I was interested in Jack, but I liked the narration the best. Candese truly made the book for me. He slipped from character to character with ease. He didn't go over the top; each character seemed to have the appropriate accent or tone or delivery that made it easy to discern which character was speaking.
Can't remember the character's name, but the guy who owned the sporting goods store--Abe?
The sporting goods store owner.
I will eagerly listen to any book read by Alexander Cendese.
I LOVE books. And dogs & quilting & beading & volunteering.
My first exposure to Repairman jack, I understand the similarities between this series and the Reacher series by Lee Child. Sort of. I think Child a more superior author with Wilson running behind on the 'uber fix it guy' front.
I enjoyed most of the book except for the ending which left so many unfinished plot lines that I was quite disappointed and frustrated by it..and wondered if I even wanted to purchase another book in the series...
Maybe followers of these books have discovered the answers to all those different unanswered questions but I found it a pretty poor way to end a book..
Alexander Cendese was a great narrator - I especially enjoyed his take on Jacks Yiddish speaking buddy Abe.
If you are into these books, I'm sure you'll enjoy this newcomer to the series, a prequel subtitled The Early Years. If you don't mind abrupt cliffhanger endings than it shouldn't bother a true fan too much. It just wasn't a great way to start a series.
I searched for more Repairman Jack, but there were only a few recorded. I even broke down and read the 1st book of the series. I see finally there are more audiobooks with a different narrator( I hope they keep the same narrator for the rest of the series). This 1st book explains the beginning of how young Jack became "Repairman Jack". Jack who lives off the grid and lives by his wits to become the man who repairs problems only he can fix using questionable and sometimes violent methods. I am looking foreward to the rest of the series.
I listened to the book almost straight thru.
Most important is once I listened for about 1 hour I was sucked into the book and the action. I look for books that hold my attention.
If you liked this book and want to read other books that have a bit of action here are a few books that I recommend you also listen to:
01) "The Lion's Game"
02) "The Cleaner"
03) "A Clean Kill in Tokyo"
04) "The Butcher's Boy"
05) "The Hunter (Victor the Assassin #1)"
06) "Beat the Reaper" THRILLER, non-stop action.
07) "The Gray Man"
08) "Dead I may well be"
09) "Sharpe's Tiger"
10) "Killing Floor"
11) "The English Assassin"
12) "American Assassin "
Having bought the limited edition from Gauntlet Press, and the issue with the second running of Thanksgiving day, Chapter 3 in the Audio Version, I did prefer the print version. Alexander Cendese the new man doing the read has exceptional flexability in the voices. Each is distinctive and easily identifiable. Jack is my favorite character in print, by far; and this beginning shows how he started in his final chosen field. The introduction of many characters that will show up again and again and how he came to be associated with them was eye opening.I have already reserved the limited print of the second book and sincerely hope Paul will continue to have the books made available to Audible. The Print version is best, but I drive for 2 - 2 and a half hours each weekday. The Audible versions are my choice for travel listening.
Abe Grossman, He adds a bit of humor to the entire story.
Abe Grossman, as done by Alexander Cendese. The switch from Jewish when he is in normal conversation, to the dropping of it when he is questioning Jack's comments was superb. Mr. Cendese does RJ and the associated characters outstanding. I'm looking for forward to the rest of the series by Mr. Cendese.
Every Repairman Jack book I have wanted to either read or listen to in one sitting. This one was no different. As the new Urban Mercenary, RJ is THE MAN! He has been since the publication of the Tomb.
I just finished the first four books and thought Christopher Price was exceptional. Mr. Cendese in the first Pre-RJ book is outstanding!!! The difference in age for the characters in the books makes the case for both readers. Both are exceptional! Read them all!! Keep Mr. Cendese for the three book series. I'll buy them all, print and Audible!
Yes and I probably will! I love Repairman Jack novels. I enjoy the blend of fed-up normal guy willing to make things right and the slowly emerging supernatural, uber-scaries!
Pretty great because it gives us a well deserved build on who and how RJ is!
I love the scenes with Black and Blue.
I say "enough is enough" because FPW makes us wait for so long between audio novels! I love his works and can't wait for the next! BUT COME ON, PAUL...have mercy on us! Lets get a few more on audio! I travel a great deal for work and audio novels like this make my circumstance most tolerable! RJ / FPW... lets do this!!!!!!
Sneak past the dragon and slay the princess!
One of the best audiobooks I have listened to, and I have listened to many! The narrator did an awesome job bringing life into the story. The story itself was incredible. I am so happy I stumbled onto this series.
What to say? This book was awesome! I typically read and review fantasy, so this was a break from the norm for me. Apparently this series delves into that genre later on, but there wasn’t any of it in here. I’m glad I read it though as everything about it I loved.
I have never read a “Jack the Repairman” book by F. Paul Wilson before of which there are a lot already. This is the first of a prequel series to those other novels (which I will read). Consequently, I already knew Jack survived, but even without the fear of death on the plate, the book kept me captivated and rooting for our “hero”. Since I knew nothing of what comes after, everything was new to me. I look forward to lots of “ah-ha!” moments as I “catch up” with the series.
The book takes place along the eastern seaboard of the US in the early/mid 1990s, but mostly within New York City. Our hero is a college dropout who is about off the radar as much as anyone can be. He lacks a social security number, a license, even a telephone. And that is exactly the way he wants it.
Every single character is rich in personality. Each is unique and has their own desires. Dialogue is fantastic – not once did I think to myself “who would say that” – and the conversations all flowed fast and smooth. The attention to details the author took with the characters is something only those who read other people very well can manage. I was truly blown away by these aspects of the book. If you love great characterization, you will do flips for this book.
The plot was amazing too. There were always four or five things going on at once between multiple factions. From the mob and jihadist terrorists, to Latin gangs and tobacco runners, you never knew what was going to happen next. There was mystery and suspense on almost every page with new clues that lead to more questions while providing the answers you wanted to know. I can’t forget to mention the love interest that came into play despite our hero’s reluctance or his mysterious best friend who owns a successful sporting shop yet never has any customers. I can’t give enough accolades for this book.
Jack of course. And Abe. And Julio. And...
I don't write spoilers.
I persevered through this twisted tale, optimistic for some tying up of loose ends at the conclusion but instead was met with NO resolution or indication of the outcomes of the various story lines. It was like "story Interruptus ", as though at a random point the author just decided he was tired of telling these stories and stopped, not giving a hoot about those of us who'd bought in with time and interest. Shame on him. If there's a sequel or a follow up it should be indicated. I'll give a cursory search for one but am peeved to have been left I. The lurch by this author. Darn it. Wished I'd never started
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