Despite all of this I managed to finish up my latest "Repairman Jack" novel, All the Rage, by F. Paul Wilson. This is the fourth novel I have read by this author and, by most lists, is the fourth in the Repairman Jack series. When I say, "by most lists", I mean exactly that. Cataloging Mr Wilson's books is difficult at best; he seems to keep on revising them, publishing new versions so that his whole "Secret Universe" milieu fits together. It seems to me like he has two series that intertwine: The Repairman Jack books and "The Adversary Cycle", although many of the books exist in both series. Confusing, but nevertheless every time I read one of his books, I come away fulfilled, feeling like I've just experienced a great read. And each book drops just a few more clues on what is really going on in the bigger picture.
This book takes Jack into the world of illegal drugs...but not just any illegal drugs. "Beserk" is the primary street name for a substance that comes from the "Loki" molecule, derived from the blood of a Rokoshi. The very same Rakoshi that has haunted Jack's plot lines before. This drug has incredible effects including an amazing increase in violence on the part of the user. There is a great scene where Jack, himself is accidentally exposed to the drug and the resulting rampage by this normally organized, thoughtful, prepared person is priceless. Most of the story is a fairly straight forward thriller/mystery plot, with Jack involved with solving the mystery of the origin of this drug. But once again we get some clues into the background of "The Otherness" or, whatever it is that is "out there" stiring the pot of human existence. The Rokoshi is one aspect of that "Otherness" but we also meet Ozymandias and his traveling circus. This is a cool character and from the way things were left at the end of this book I can well imagine him reappearing in future books. I most definitely will be continuing to read this fascinating series.
I was also able to complete another Louis L'Amour short story, this one called, "Trail to Squaw Springs". Yet another example of how his stories are always fun to read. This one involves a regular ol' cowhand that manages to overthrow the tyranny of a town's local law enforcement in the space of 24 hours, thereby liberating the town and getting the girl. Yes, it's rather difficult to swallow all of the particluars of the plot and yes, the characters are pretty stock characters, but more importantly yes, it was great fun to read.
Next up: time for a western novel and so I'll be reading a L'Amour novel this time: Callaghen.