Detailed view for the Book: Jokers Wild (Anthology)

With this third volume, the regular Wild Cards approach of individual stories of the previous books is dispensed with in place of a regular, flowing narrative style and is the first true 'mosaic' novel of the series. It's still written by assorted creators but the chapter headings merely specify the time and the only indication of who wrote what is a brief credits page at the end.

With the Swarm taken care of, Jokers Wild continues one of the plot threads of that volume as the Astronomer plans his revenge on the aces who foiled him during that mele??. The whole story takes place over 25 hours and begins at 6am on September 15 1986 - the fortieth anniversary of Wild Card Day - and finishes up at around 7am the next morning.

The main characters in this volume are:
Fortunato (by Lewis Shiner)
James Spector AKA Demise (by Walton Simons)
Hiram Worchester (by George R.R. Martin)
Jennifer Maloy AKA Wraith (by John J. Miller)
The Astronomer (by Lewis Shiner)
Bagabond (by Leanne C. Harper)
Sewer Jack (by Edward Bryant)
Roulette (by Melinda M. Snodgrass)

Needless to say, with the amount of characters in use, the story isn't as straightforward as one might imagine. The revenge plot revolving around The Astronomer on one side and Fortunato on the other, shares the spotlight with that of a city-wide chase to reclaim some stolen account books from Kien's penthouse apartment along with the apprehension of the thief, an ace called Wraith.

As if that wasn't enough, we get further plot strands within the two main ones. Sewer Jack is searching the city for Cordelia, his newly arrived cousin from New Orleans and it's not long before he and Bagabond get embroiled in the search for the books as well. Hiram Worchester is preparing Aces High for the evening's annual Wild Card Day banquet where every ace of note will be present, and Tachyon is targeted by a beautiful associate of the Astronomer's called Roulette.

Hopping between the two main plotlines is James Spector who also wants the books but is constantly trying to avoid the Astronomer who has definite plans for him in his revenge scheme. A host of other characters including Brennan, Jay Ackroyd & Water Lily have parts to play before the story reaches its climax early in the morning of the 16th.

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