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Jacks Are Wild is the first book in the new series by Monique Martin, titled Saving Time.
Before I continue with the review, a bit about the history of the author’s books. Monique Martin has become popular through her Out of Time historical time-travel series. I’ve read all the books, however I haven’t reviewed them on Mystery Sequels, because they are not within the scope of the site. Sure, there is adventure involved in each book, but still, they’re not truly crime mystery novels.
Then enter Saving Time. This new series follows Jack, one of the main characters in Out of Time, this time with him going off on his own to write his own life story.
Jack Wells was once an OSS officer who eventually joined Simon and Elizabeth Cross in their own time travel adventures. But Jack wanted to be more than a third wheel trailing behind the famous couple. He wanted to make a name for himself as well. So Saving Time was born. And Jack Wells became a legend on his own.
Jacks Are Wild takes Jack to his first solo assignment: stop a murder before it happens. So Jack is sent back to 1960s to Las Vegas, to a time and place where mob was king. And the mob’s wife was the one that needed saving.
If you ignore the time travel aspect (which only occurs at the beginning and at the end, really), this is a classic adventure mystery novel. Jack uses all his previous knowledge as a spy to infiltrate the mob’s inner circles and work towards saving the person who needs to live.
The story is fast paced, it is never boring (but then if you’ve read the previous novels by this authors, you will know this as a fact), and things move along at a rate that keeps you on your toes throughout.
Comparing this book with her previous series, I would say it is a bit less polished. I think it’s because Jack is a new hero and the author needs to find his voice first, after being used to Simon and Elizabeth’s voice for over 10 books. However she is getting there.
Jack is a bit more brusque, but then he is a different type of guy, who used to live his life during WWII, a time where brusque brought you further than polite and idle chit-chat.
Some people gave this book less rating than the books in the author’s first series, but only because they expected more Simon and Elizabeth. However this series is not about the Cross family. It is about Jack Wells and his legacy in this world. He is a hero well worth writing about.
I am now reading the second book in the series, Aloha, Jack, and yes, indeed, Jack really grew into his own skin. Will review the second book shortly, as well.
If you haven’t read any book by Monique Martin, you should start with the Out of Time series and work your way through all the books and then get the Saving Time books. They are all well worth reading.