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3.50  ·  Rating details ·  189 ratings  ·  21 reviews
Argus Ward is a former U.S. Secret Service agent who runs a protection agency catering to the rich and famous. His best-kept secret--which he shares with lawyers and doctors and even psychiatrists--is his status as a high-functioning paranoid schizophrenic. One day, with little warning, he turns psychotic for the first time in twenty years. He lands in a secure psychiatric ...more
Kindle Edition, 217 pages
Published July 14th 2009 by Amazon Digital Services
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3.50  · 
Rating details
 ·  189 ratings  ·  21 reviews

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D.B. Henson
Jul 21, 2010 rated it it was amazing
I was completely absorbed by this well-written thriller. Crack-Up tells the story of Argus Ward, the schizophrenic owner of a successful security firm. Argus manages to hide his disease from his colleagues until the voice of Darth Vader tells him to murder the billionaire he was hired to protect. The story moves along at a great pace and I finished it in two sittings. Definitely recommended!
Timothy Frost
Sep 29, 2010 rated it really liked it
Argus Ward has a medical problem. He's a paranoid schizophrenic. But as long as takes his medication, he can function as head of the successful security company he established and nobody need know his secret.

Then he starts seeing things - like a naked flight attendant on his plane. Then he starts hearing things - voices issuing strange and menacing commands. What's going on? Trouble, that's what, and Argus is soon knee-deep in it, charged with the murder of his most famous client.

Did he do it? I
Vicki Tyley
May 21, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: indie
“Listen to me, son,” said the caller. My father? “Kill John Helms.” Then he hung up.

What happens when the lines between reality and delusion start to blur? Paranoid schizophrenic Argus Ward sees and hears things, but how much of it is real? What about the voices telling him to kill his most famous client…

Crack-up hooked me from the start. By the end, I was almost as paranoid as Argus. A fast-paced, excellently crafted thriller, gripping from start to finish. I look forward to reading more from t
Jan 13, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: feb-list
This story has a healthy dose of paranoia and conspiracy theories. The main protagonist has a history working as a Secret Service agent for the president and now works in security industry advising and protecting but now he finds himself in a situation where who exactly he should be protecting. You really get into the mind of his dual personality which adds to making this an interesting read.

" I’d left the Service ten years earlier, and not many agents last a full decade on protection detail.
Mar 22, 2011 rated it really liked it
3.75 star rating (started off as a 4)

Stated off as a real promising edge of the seat serious conspiracy thriller and I really did get into the world of Argus scary is it real or not and who do I believe. The illness described was terrifying but also put into some context when controlled.

However at about 60% it became clear it wasn't really in this genre but a little more tongue in cheek. I still enjoyed the style and the story it just lost a little plausibility for me that's all.

Jul 16, 2013 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this book by author, Eric Christopherson. It was a fast and exciting read,and well written. The character's battle with his psychotic condition was extremely well done and I felt as if I was a part of him. I liked the character Argus Ward. He was a strong person who did not give up...
Aug 14, 2010 rated it it was ok
Having a hard time getting into this one...
Beckimoody Moody
Feb 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Psychological thrillers are my favorite genre and i love unreliable narrators. This may rank up near the top in my opinion.

Argus is a former Secret Service agent who took a bullet for the president and now owns his own security firm. He’s also a high functioning paranoid schizophrenic. When Argus is arrested for killing one of his clients, it becomes a race against time to discover how much is the truth, and how much is his disease.

I am NOT a psychiatrist so I don’t know how accurate any of th
Kathy Jenkins
Jan 25, 2011 rated it liked it
This book started off really good, but I'm about 70% finished and it's losing some of it's oomph. It's written well enough for me to want to keep reading it, but the story line is becoming more and more implausible, so I'm anxious for the book to end. This got 4 1/2 stars on Amazon, but I'm giving it a 3 star rating.

From Amazon: Argus Ward is a former U.S. Secret Service agent who runs a protection agency catering to the rich and famous. His best-kept secret--which he shares with lawyers and do
Jan 30, 2011 rated it liked it
"Crack-Up" was a good little read. I don't read many mysteries, but the psychological aspect (and the 99-cent download!) attracted me to it. Without giving anything away... The protagonist is a highly-functioning schizophrenic, named Argus Ward. He is accused of murdering one of the most powerful men in the nation. The writer takes us on a twisting, turning search to find what's real and what's delusion. As Argus peels back the layers of an elaborate, and far-fetched, plot, he peels back the lay ...more
K.R. Bankston
Aug 31, 2011 rated it liked it
This was on okay read, not horrible, but not exhilarating either. The story is basically about mental illness and the stigma attached to that in the United States. It was well written in the sense of being able to understand the author's point, but not in the sense of a highly entertaining read. Argus, the main character, was memorable in his attempt to uncover the truth of his ordeal, while at the same time fighting his personal demons. I did like his character very much throughout the entire b ...more
Keith Vandenbergh
Nov 03, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: own-it
I'm no expert on schizophrenia so I expect that some readers will object to how the condition of the protagonist is portrayed in Crack-Up. To me it came across as believable to a degree; at least enough to enjoy the story. The concept of a deadline to solve a mystery can be effective but is often so contrived as to take away from the story line. I felt that the progress of his illness could ultimately result in him not being able to resolve his conflict.

Crack-Up is a good story with characters t
Jul 07, 2010 rated it really liked it
I thought this was a very well-written book. Told from the perspective of a schizo, it is natural that the story have some disjointed and fantastic elements. Reality and hallucination don't always meld together well. I was fascinated to speculate about what might or might not be real.

About the only complaint I had was that the Gardener character was completely abandoned when his active role was over. For a long time, I was speculating about his role in the story, but then he just disappeared.

Peggy Holloway
May 13, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I like this book because: I like books written in the first person, I like espionage-type books, I like paychological thrillers, I like lots of surprises, I like stories where the hero doesn't know who to trust. In this he doesn't know who to trust or what's real and what's not. The plot idea is very unique, I've not read anything like it before and I like that too.

I intend to read more by this author and would highly recommend him to anyone who likes this type of boo
Apr 27, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I really enjoyed this book by indie author, Eric Christopherson. It was a fast and furious read, but intelligently written. The character's battle with his psychotic condition was extremely well done and I felt as if I was right there with him. And it's less than £1 for the Kindle! Looking forward to reading his next novel.
Feb 28, 2011 rated it really liked it
Well crafted thriller whose hero is a paranoid schizophrenic struggling to unravel a complex crime.
Mar 18, 2014 rated it liked it
Good fun.
Aug 31, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Excellent book! It was very well written and enjoyable all the way through. Eric Christopherson has a new fan! :)
Jan 17, 2011 rated it really liked it
Loved this book, a real page turner.
Nev Thomas
Jan 28, 2014 rated it liked it
Rather good thriller about the power of computers and mind control.
Rob Twinem
Jan 19, 2011 rated it really liked it
excellent little read for the kindle costing a mere few pence!
Jane Dickie
rated it did not like it
Nov 10, 2014
Ted Ipsen
rated it really liked it
Mar 22, 2014
Shah Wharton
rated it it was ok
Jun 22, 2012
Mary K Robinson
rated it it was amazing
Apr 08, 2018
Miriam Anwar
rated it did not like it
Jul 28, 2015
rated it liked it
Jan 16, 2012
rated it really liked it
Mar 06, 2011
rated it it was ok
Apr 14, 2015
rated it it was ok
Nov 10, 2010
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Best Mystery 2010 award 4 7 Dec 22, 2011 12:05PM  
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Eric is a former police officer and federal government consultant. His undergraduate degree is from the University of Texas at Tyler, and he has a graduate degree from Duke University. He was born in California, grew up in New England, and has since lived throughout the USA and a bit in Asia. He now lives in semi-rural Ohio with his wife, Seiko, and their children, Keith and Annabel.
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