Friday, July 24, 2020

Berlin is Never Berlin, by Marko Kloos

Tor Books, May 2020

In this story set in the Wild Cards universe, Khan is a Joker-Ace, half human and half tiger--literally, straight down the middle, and he works as a very expensive bodyguard. His latest job is escorting Natalie Scuderi, a young woman who is a wealthy socialite and a pop media figure on a trip to Berlin, Germany. She's brought her small but annoyingly energetic entourage, and they head for a nightclub the day they arrive. As they're leaving the nightclub, they are targeted by an extremely well-planned ambush, which includes another Joker-Ace. He's built like a tree--fairly literally--and is even stronger than Khan.

Natalie is kidnapped.
Khan spends the rest of his time in Berlin juggling local police, who don't like Joker-Aces and would prefer he were one of the suspects, and the Georgian mob, who have a beef with Natalie's father.

It's fast-paced and enjoyable. Recommended.

I received this as part of the May-June 2020 short fiction collection, and am reviewing it voluntarily.

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