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The Tomb is the second book in Wilson's Adversary Cycle and indirectly related to The Keep, though the connections do not become obvious until much later in the series! It is also the first Repairman Jack novel, written at a time when Wilson was not prepared to start an ongoing series. It would be several years until Wilson would go back and continue the adventures of the character first introduced here, expanding on events in his Adversary universe as he did so!
Repairman Jack is not your usual repairman. He does not mend Dysons, fix Washing machines or househoild appliances but instead "fixes" situations for people who have need of solutions outside the law. Officially he does not even exist: his fingerprints are not on file, he has no social security number and does not pay taxes. Recently he broke up a relationship with ex-girlfriend, Gia, because she discovered his real identity and what he actually does for a living and she could not handle the truth. But now, she is back in his life because Gia needs his kind of specialist help!
Gia's Aunt has gone walkabout; disappearing from her apartment inn the middle of the night with neither a bye or leave! Gia is worried but Jack is not too sure exactly what he can achieve. Still investigating for her gives him a chance to get close again to both Gia and her daughter, Vicky.
Meanwhile, an Indian diplomat also seeks his help. A family heirloom, an iron necklace, was stolen from the man's Grandmother when she was mugged and now she lies dying in a hospital bed, desperate for its return. Sounds like a simple job, and it is, but Jack soon discovers a link to Gia's Aunt and secrets in her past that have ramifications for the future line of the Westphalen family and in paticular Gia's daughter Vicky who is the last and youngest of the line.
Facing life and death is nothing new for Jack but this time he may well have wandered out of his depth as the world of the supernatural begins invading his existance in a tale all wrapped up in ancient myth, Indian Demons and a curse that will not be forgotten until the Westphalen family has all been wiped out! Can Jack keep Vicky and Gia safe when he is not even exactly sure what it is he is dealing with?
This is kind of an interlude between The Keep and Reborn, the next direct book in the sequence, though is still included as an installment of The Adversary Cycle though I have my doubts if it was originally intended like this. Reading this novel, you kind of feel as though Wilson may only have joined the dots long after this was published as events here happen long after The Keep and indeed Reborn! It does introduce The Rakoshi who return again in the Repairman Jack novel, All The Rage, and sets things up nicely for the other Repairman novels that have since followed and is certainly enjoyable but definetely feels like a novel written in the eighties with its reference to Betamax and I would be lying if I said this book didn't feel as though it had slightly aged in the intervening years!
I really enjoyed this though and think Jack a fascinating character. Fans of Wilsons other novels will not be disappointed and what we get is a novel that has much in common with John Connolly's Charlie Parker books in that we get an (almost) ordinary guy and witness him thrown headfirst into a shady, dark supernatural underworld that he never might have imagined existed! Both series take their protagonists firmly out of their comfort zones so that what we get is a roller-coaster ride of discovery with plenty of thrills, chills and spills!
This is easily one of the better books in The Adversary Cycle and miles better than The Keep and I love everything about this! It makes me want to read much more of Repairman Jack and I cannot wait to pick up more of his adventures, especially having an idea of some of the things to come....