Black Cross

Black Cross

by Greg Iles

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Overview

From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Penn Cage series comes a gripping World War II thriller that “vaporizes almost every cliché about the limits of the genre...[it’s] good enough to read twice”(Kirkus Reviews).

It is January 1944—and as Allied troops prepare for D-Day, Nazi scientists develop a toxic nerve gas that will repel and wipe out any invasion force. To salvage the planned assault, two vastly different but equally determined men are sent to infiltrate the secret concentration camp where the poison gas is being perfected on human subjects. Their only objective: destroy all traces of the gas and the men who created it—no matter how many lives may be lost...including their own.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780451185198
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 11/28/1995
Series: A World War II Thriller Series
Pages: 656
Sales rank: 99,172
Product dimensions: 4.28(w) x 7.04(h) x 1.52(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Greg Iles is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Penn Cage series. His novels have been made into films, translated into more than twenty languages, and published in more than thirty-five countries worldwide.

Hometown:

Natchez, Mississippi

Date of Birth:

1961

Place of Birth:

Stuttgart, Germany

Education:

B.A., University of Mississippi, 1983

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

“A swift historical thriller of such brutal accomplishment that it vaporizes almost every cliché about the limits of the genre...good enough to read twice”—Kirkus Reviews Booklist “Like a Swiss watch wired to a bundle of dynamite; impeccable craftsmanship tick-tocking inexorably to an explosive climax. A wonderful mingling of technology, suspense, and character, and a fine exploration of the true nature of patriotism.”—Diana Gabaldon, author of Voyager and Outlander

“…Vital, compelling, magnificent...It has everything—danger, suspense, intrigue, romance, and chills…Characters so finely drawn it is impossible to believe they are fiction…Greg Iles is a major talent, a force to be reckoned with.”—Romantic Times

“Henceforth, any recommended reading list of thrillers will have to include this…Action-packed yet thoughtful, unusually resonant and gripping, swift and moving…A strong bestseller bet.”—Publishers Weekly

“A wonderful thriller…Absolutely remarkable…One of the most exciting action stories ever written…Filled with derring-do.”—Mystery News

Customer Reviews

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Black Cross 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 72 reviews.
smp315 More than 1 year ago
A great novel set against the backdrop of WW 2. The story is aptly described in other reviews, so I'll use my review to laud Iles as a unique author who can weave wonderful stories across different genres. Check out The Footprints of God, Blood Memory, Dead Sleep as evidence and Spandau Phoenix to return to the Nazi theme.
ncsurn More than 1 year ago
I enjoy all of Greg's books and this one did not disappoint I would recommend to anyone who likes historical fiction. The plot while fiction has a terrifying ring of truth to it.
win689surf25 More than 1 year ago
MASTERPIECE WORK !!!!! Greg Iles is the best writer I have ever known. No wonder!! He plays in a band with Stephen King and other writers, Ha! Just gota read this and all his other books you will just love this author.
snowbunny88 More than 1 year ago
I got this book for my husband who loves it. When he finished it he said i HAD to read it. I was pretty skeptical at first, thinking its not my style of reading or whatever. But man was i wrong. This book pulls you in through its amazing story, and continues to pull and pull until your nearing the end and cant put it down. The characters have real feelings and emotions that play out into real people during a time period where many people were emotionless and turned their head the other way. I am now sending this book to my dad to read and recommending it to just about everyone i know. There is a lot of information to take in so it feels like you've been reading forever, but its definitely worth it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I've read several other Greg Iles books and have always previously enjoyed the twists they take.. This book was an good read.. It just didn't have the same suspense level I'd come to expect. Liked very much the opening into the story and expected more back and forth during the story which never happened, so that was a litle disappointing.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Spandau Phoenix, Black Cross and Blood Memory....absolute must-reads....they're so good, you'll go back and re-read them after several years...I did.
Briana More than 1 year ago
This is an excellent book. It took a bit to read it but was worth the time and effort I spent to get through it. It really made me stop and think all the way through. I had to remember history and then remind myself that it really was a book and then I had to convince myself that it really could be that way! It was hard to put down because of all the details involved. Excellent book!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Perhaps the best ww ii novel I have ever read! A diverse and complex set of characters are made very real. Brings to life the cruelty of the camps like nothing I've ever read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Jarratt on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Greg Iles¿ ¿Black Cross¿ was a good read (listen, in my case), but a bit too long for its own good. ¿Black Cross¿ tells the story of an American chemical scientist who¿s working for the British during WWII. While a pacifist, he¿s working to develop chemical weapons. When he¿s lead to believe that his brother, a US pilot, has been KIA, he and a German Jew are brought together to take part in a secret mission to invade a Nazi ¿medical facility¿ where chemical weapons are being prepared and tested to thwart the Allied invasion. Their job is to use gas to kill all Nazis (and prisoners), then take pictures of the Nazi lab. The idea is that by using this gas, Hitler will be bluffed into thinking the Allies have lots of chemical weapons and aren¿t afraid to use them.What transpires is a story of survival for the camp¿s prisoners and our main characters as well as the moral dilemmas they both face. Most of the history is accurate (based on the Afterword) and certainly the details of medical testing and other forms of torture and abuse by the Nazis are unfortunately accurate and disturbing.But again, the book could have been much tighter had it been shorter. Iles spends too much unnecessary time on the training for the mission, character development in the concentration camp, etc.I must also say that while the narrator did a great job with German, Polish, English, and Scottish accents, I cannot stand the way he (and many other male narrators) enunciate every single word. It sounds so unnatural. Just being picky, but this style of reading makes even the most mundane sentence way melodramatic!
MSWallack on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
After a glowing recommendation, I had high hopes for Black Cross. Unfortunately, I just never really got into the story. Some elements of the plot seemed overly complicated and there were quite a few places where I said, 'Gee, and why would they do that?' I guess the biggest problem that I had with the book is that the characters felt more like cardboard cutouts than real humans. Sure that had feelings and motivations, but they felt more like emotions retrieved from a 'create your character' checklist. I will admit to having become quite emotional during a sequence late in the book where some of the characters are asked to make an agonizing set of choices.
schatzi on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I'm pretty stingy with five-star ratings, but if I could, I'd give this book more than five stars. It hooked me from the first page, and I found it difficult to put it down. The characters are all wonderfully done and complex, even the Nazis (unfortunately, most historical fiction books I've read from this era tend to make Nazi characters two-dimensional evil villains; Schörner is probably the best done fictional Nazi I've read - Iles captures both his blood-chilling ruthlessness and his more refined qualities perfectly). The ending felt rushed and rather fake, but I'm willing to forgive that for the rest of the novel. I'm definitely going to be reading more books by this author in the future.
Penforhire on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I didn't know what to expect when I picked up this book. I knew Greg Iles for his contemporary thrillers. This was a breath of fresh air, a war story in the nail-biting tradition.Yes, the plot was overdone in the later part of the story. Yes, there is no way the narrator could know all those events. But that only takes the slightest shine off a novel that I had a hard time putting down. Iles suspends my disbelief very easily.The framing of the tale is fun. You never know what that old fart next door might have accomplished in his past!It must have taken a lot of research to come up with the details. I enjoyed the ring of authenticity to so much of it.
mythlady on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I've listened to a lot of audiobooks, but this is the first one that had me wanting to drive around in my car (where I listen) just to keep the story going. It's extremely suspenseful; the last couple of hours are almost unbearably intense. Because some of it takes place in a WWII concentration camp, it is at times quite graphic and hard to take, but I don't think he was being sensational, just conveying the depths of horror that some people had to endure in that place and time. The reader is absolutely wonderful, does a great job with all the accents and differentiating between the characters, and I didn't notice a single edit, remarkable in a book of this length. Highly recommended.
harpua on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
What a great novel. WWII fiction depicting a raid on a concentration camp that was developing poison gas for the Nazis. Story is as simple as that. No real twists or turns to keep you guessing, just straight forward fiction that keeps you from putting this book down. Greg Iles is becoming one of my favorite authors. I have a few more sitting on my shelf now and will be looking for the rest of his soon. Great stuff.
Neilsantos on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Even though I hate stories told in flashback, I thought this was a hell of a good spy thriller.
dspoon on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
When a young Atlanta physician attends the funeral of the grandparents who raised him, he is approached by silver-haired rabbi who claims to have known his grandfather well. Retuning together to the family home, they open his grandfather's safe. There they discover four mysterious objects. They are the relics of a man haunted by something he did one winter night in 1944, an act that brought him unparalleled honors, but left wounds in his soul that would never heal. As the story of these secret souvenirs unfolds, the grandson's concept of honor is stretched to the breaking point and his notion of heroism redefined forever. In January 1944, four people held the fate of the world in their hands. They were not statesmen or generals, but an American doctor, a German nurse, a Zionist killer, and a young Jewish widow. At the command of Winston Churchill, these four strangers are brought together in a place almost beyond imagination. It is a small SS-run concentration camp serving as the incubator for a weapon of staggering lethality, a weapon U.S. General Omar Bradley later admitted could have wiped out the D-day invasion force on Omaha Beach. What they were forced to do in the name of victory and survival demonstrates with terrible clarity that in a world where all is at stake, war has no rules. Black Cross explodes the myth of World War II as "the good war." It is a novel of transforming power, in which healer must become destroyer and a young killer is tempered by love into a savior. Peopled with men and women as compellingly human as he historical figures who manipulate them. Black Cross will pull you into a steadily tightening web of danger and deception that seems impossible to resolve until the explosive final chapter.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great read. Scary that it could just as easily be non-fiction!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Greg Iles knows how to satisfy the readers interests. I have enjoyed his trilogy and look forward to going on more adventures.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Loved it from beginning to end. Great character development. 500 + pages flew by.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
birds123_74 More than 1 year ago
Great book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago