Home > Literature, Reviews > Review of Jokers Wild (Wild Cards Book Three) edited by George R R Martin

Review of Jokers Wild (Wild Cards Book Three) edited by George R R Martin

I’ve read the first three Wild Cards books so far and each one has been better than the last (and the first one was pretty darned good). Jokers Wild is much more of a sequel to Aces High (book two) than the latter was to the original Wild Cards. The story comes out of the aftermath of Aces: the Astronomer’s plan might have been thwarted, but he escaped and now he’s back. It’s an engrossing read, full of well-realised characters who, despite the changes wrought on them by the Wild Card virus, are always totally human. It’s also very fast-moving, each scene lasting, at most, a few pages before the narrative skips on to the next character. Because the stories of each protagonist are so closely interlinked this technique never seems bitty – indeed, it lends the novel the feel of a good thriller or action movie.

What’s really impressive about Jokers Wild, though, is how the work of the various authors comes together, under Martin’s guiding editorial hand, to produce a coherent and fluid story. On the whole, it’s not noticeable that the tiles in this ‘mosaic novel’ are the the work of different writers, but, as in the first book, Melinda M Snodgrass’s (wonderful name) sections are the weakest – although less so here than there. I’m looking forward to getting my hands on book four … book five, book six, book seven …

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