Cover image for Inside straight
Inside straight
Publication Information:
New York : Tor, c2008.
Physical Description:
384 p. ; 24 cm.
General Note:
"A Tom Doherty Associates book."

A Wild Cards novel.
A new generation of aces comes of age as twenty-one of them compete against each other in a series of tasks and stunts on the blockbuster TV reality show "American Hero, " and John Fortune, son of the show's creator, discovers his destiny.
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader Grades 9-12 5.2 20 Quiz 122287 English fiction.


Material Type
Shelf Number
Item Notes
Book MARTIN 1 .SOURCE. 3/09 H
Book SF MAR 1

On Order



In 1946, an alien virus that rewrites human DNA was accidentally unleashed in the skies over New York City. It killed ninety percent of those it infected. Nine percent of those who survived mutated into tragically deformed creatures. And one percent gained superpowers. The "Wild Cards" shared-universe series, created and edited since 1987 by "New York Times" #1 bestseller George R. R. Martin along with Melinda Snodgrass, is the tale of the history of the world since then--and of the heroes among that one percent. Originally begun in 1986, long before George R. R. Martin became a household name among fantasy readers ("The American Tolkien" --"Time "magazine), the "Wild Cards" series earned a reputation among connoisseurs for its smart reimagining of the superhero idea. Now, with "Inside Straight," the Wild Cards continuity jumps forward to a new generation of major characters, entirely accessible to Martin's hundreds of thousands of new readers, with all-original stories by Martin himself, along with Daniel Abraham, Michael Cassutt, and Stephen Leigh, among others.

Reviews 3

Publisher's Weekly Review

The newest Wild Cards mosaic novel marks a new beginning for the long-running saga. Veteran contributors such as Melinda M. Snodgrass and John Jos. Miller and newcomers like Carrie Vaughn and S.L. Farrell create a new generation of fantastical characters, including Jonathan Hive, who can transform himself into a swarm of wasps, and the six-armed, tattooed giant Drummer Boy. Twenty-eight superhuman "aces" are cast in a new reality show called American Hero. As the contestants compete in staged challenges and systematically get voted off amid Hollywood-fueled melodrama, horrific events in the Middle East bring to light the glaring unreality of reality television. When the show reaches its climactic final episode, some of the contestants decide to forsake the trappings of fame and fortune and become real-life heroes. The first volume of a projected trilogy, this fast-paced and sardonic story will appeal to comic book aficionados and heroic fantasy fans alike. (Jan.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Booklist Review

Its original editors and most of its original authors revive the Wild Cards, fielding a new generation of WCs (mutant superheroes, the results of a space-borne plague) and changing the central dilemma. The newbies must contend with their surviving predecessors and each other on the reality show American Hero, in which only one may emerge with that potent title. Will it be Tiffany, born dirt poor but a wealth creator; Jonathan Hive, a better chronicler than fighter; mean-tongued Toadman; or one of 30-odd others? The answer for round one comes herein, and the WC fans it wins and rewins may cry loudly for further episodes.--Green, Roland Copyright 2008 Booklist

Library Journal Review

In 1946, an unknown virus rewrote human DNA, killing 90 percent of those who caught it and leaving the survivors with strange powers or deformities. The lucky ones, called aces, possessed the powers of heroes, while the unfortunate "jokers," embittered and dangerous, turned their back on the rest of the world. That was the first generation of "wild cards." Now, in 2007, a new group of children of the virus have come into their own and the world is theirs for the taking--or destroying. This 18th installment in the long-running "Wild Cards" series launches a new set of heroes and villains, all part of the culture of hip-hop, computers, and cell phones and holding the future in their hands. Nine interconnected stories by Melinda Snodgrass, George R.R. Martin, Michael Cassutt, and other genre authors take the tales of super-heroes in new directions. A good choice for series fans and newcomers, this SciFi Essential Book belongs in most libraries. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.