ENDWORLD #29 THE LORDS OF KISMET BY DAVID ROBBINS

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tarzan

Copyright 2016.

Blade has decided to confront the Lords of Kismet head on after their failed attempt to destroy the Home. But how to get to Asia when they are thousands of miles away and have no plane. The answer is salvaging a time machine from an old enemies lair. Thanatos had used it to send Alpha Triad back in time in an untold story. Now they plan to use it to get to Asia. Going back one hour in time and to the destination of Bangkok. Blade, Hickok and Yama are chosen for the mission.

Things go wrong right from the start. The three warriors are scattered apart. They find that Bangkok is under the rule of Dhurga. The lords are ancient beings that were the Hindu gods of old. Using demigods and other fantastical creatures they rule the humans with an iron fist. The people are totally cowed and now meekly serve the Lords including being used as food. Blade and the other warriors find that they may have bitten off more than they can chew.

A new Endworld book. Just after reading a new Survivalist book. Makes me feel like its 1986. Robbins still hasn’t lost his touch. Indeed the series is going as strong as ever. The characters are still the same that I loved thirty years ago. He has crafted a new threat for the warriors. It ends with Blade planning to use the time machine to go back in time to fight the Lords of Kismet. The story about Thanatos was never told so I wonder if that will be written about in a future book. Can’t wait for the next book.

ENDWORLD DARK DAYS BY DAVID ROBBINS

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tarzan

Copyright 2012.

A small girl comes up to the Home. She claims to have lost her parents. Naturally the Family takes in the young orphaned girl. This girl is not really a girl but a shapeshifting Gualaon. This shapeshifter is an assassin come to infiltrate and destroy the Home. Now this creature is loose among the Family on a killing spree. Blade and the warriors must hunt down an enemy that can be one of their most trusted friends or family member.

Bonus short story “Boys Night Out”. Gabe, Ringo and Cochise the twelve year old sons of Blade, Hickok and Geronimo sneak out at night to hunt down a zombie. The young boys get more than they bargained for when they stumble on a horde of the undead.

The first new story in 21 years sets a whole new tone for the series. It takes place at the walled compound so there is no run to some far away place. Dark Days is indeed an appropriate title. Many characters including four warriors and the leader Plato are killed off. California and the Civilized Zone have been conquered by the Lords of Kismet. And there are hordes of zombies roaming the countryside. I don’t remember any zombies from the old series. I guess the author has been watching The Walking Dead.

So I thought that Robbins did an excellent job of reviving the series into the 21st century. The characters were still familiar. The Gualaon are a formidable enemy. Shapeshifters that predate humans and are possibly alien in origin. The Lords of Kismet also predate humans and they will be the main focus in the next book titled The Lords of Kismet. An interview that Robbins did hinted there will be more of the shapeshifters , a time machine and other strange stuff in this book. It does end with Blade vowing to form a strike force and take the fight to the Lords of Kismet even if he has to go to Asia. I am looking forward to the next book.

The short story was a fun little story. The sons are just like their fathers and I can already see future stories with the next generation of warriors.

So the series has probably had one of the most diverse villains that have ever existed in a series. Blade and the warriors have fought: Soviet Russians, mad scientists, evil dictators, giant ants, giant spiders, giant crabs, mutant flocks of seagulls, rabid dog packs, killer androids, crazy giant computers, evil Chicago technocrats, humanists, white supremacists, cowboys, Indians, assassin guilds, Mexican bandits, Canadian pirates, bat-men, bear-men, spider-men, lizard-men, cat-men, snake-men, the Mafia, naked cultists, voodoo cultists, street gangs, biker gangs, drug gangs, transvestites, alien shapeshifters, Spartans, zombies, cannibals, giant snakes, giant alligators, gill-men, vampires, multinational corporations, and every imaginable low life scum and mutant.

So this series took a long time to read through. What’s next? Well there is a prequel series that Robbins started which I will review tomorrow. Then I will start on something completely different.

ENDWORLD #27: CHICAGO RUN BY DAVID ROBBINS

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tarzan
Copyright 1991.

Yama the warrior has deserted the Home. Way back in the New York Run Yama fell in love with a Technic soldier named Alicia. She sacrificed her life to save Yama and died betraying her people to save the Home. Her death has been a constant source of grief to him and finally he snaps. He takes off to Chicago to wage a one man war against the Technics to avenge her death.

When he infiltrates the city he finds out that there is a successful insurgency being waged against the Technics. So successful the Prime director of the Technics has come up with a final solution to the problem. He plans to fake a phony plague that attacks men from 18-40. When they go in for an inoculation that will instead kill them. He plans to kill off a million adult males which would put an end to any insurrection. Yama joins up with the resistance and comes up with a daring plan to decapitate the leadership in one daring attack. Blade and the Alpha triad meanwhile must follow on foot since the SEAL is in for repairs and fight various raiders and cannibal gangs along the way.

It was August 1991 when this book came out. The Soviet Union was months away from oblivion. A new era was approaching and this saw the end of the popular post-apocalypse series from the ’80s. Some ended with a story that brought closure to the series. Others just abruptly ended. This was the fate of the Endworld/Blade series. So the last book ended with the defeat of a major enemy. The Technics were overthrown and the city of New Chicago was a democracy about to enter the Freedom Federation. Then no further books came out.

I didn’t give it much thought at the time. I was graduation college and moving into an adult life so there was little time for books. Well since I have rediscovered reading these books I also found out that the author three years ago has revived the series. So the adventures of Blade, Hickok, Yama and the other warriors are still not over. So join me next weekend for brand new adventures of Endworld.

ENDWORLD #26: MADMAN RUN BY DAVID ROBBINS

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tarzan

Copyright 1991.

The story takes us back in time to when Blade, Hickok and Geronimo were just teenagers. A young 16 year old Blade and his friends are off on a little adventure. The journals of their founder Kurt Carpenter mention that a recluse millionaire build a castle fifteen miles from the Home. The young boys are on an adventure to explore and find out if the castle still exists.

They do indeed find that the castle is still standing and inhabited. Angus Morlock is the descendent of the millionaire Morey Morlock. He lives with his son a big dumb simpleton named Elphinstone and his wife/daughter Endora.(The Morlocks have a family history of incest that dates back centuries.)They also have to deal with the servants of Morlock called serfs, descendants of survivors enslaved and now are little more than congenital idiots. They also have to deal with Grell a mutant bear that was raised from a cub by the Morlocks. Now the young boys get their baptism of fire as warriors.

This was a change of pace in giving us a story from Blades youth. I suppose that during this time it was in vogue to go back to when characters were young. Muppet babies and Scooby-Doo kids come to mind. Indeed this story is sort of a Scooby-Doo after the apocalypse. You have a spooky old castle with all sorts of traps and secret passages. A ten foot mutant monster with red eyes. And of course the creepy inhabitants lead by an inbred madman.

I thought that it did a good job of capturing Blade and friends as teenagers. We see then as young boys and see how this shapes them to be the warriors that they turned out to be. A nice change of pace from the runs around the country. So we getting to the end of the series. I will be on vacation starting next weekend but will be back with the final two books of this series.

ENDWORLD #25: SPARTAN RUN BY DAVID ROBBINS

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Copyright 1991.

The Family hears about a community in Northeastern Iowa called Sparta. Sparta was formed after the war by a group of professors and a remnant of a national guard unit. A history professor suggested that they emulate the Spartans since the community would need to be strong to survive and the Spartans were strong. Blade takes Rikki-Tikki-Tavi and a warrior named Teucer in the SEAL to make contact with a possible new ally for the Freedom Federation.

They arrive and find that the Spartans have indeed gone full out in emulating the Spartans. They have build a city using the classic Greek architecture. They wear red cloaks and bronze helmets with short swords. Although they do have modern automatic weapons those are only used against outsiders. Spartans must use ancient weapons when fighting another Spartan. They are ruled by two kings. They train from the age of seven on how to fight and can’t marry until they are thirty. And they also live for war and are unquestionably loyal to their rulers.

Blade’s arrival and invitation to join the Federation starts a civil war. One king is for it and the other opposes the idea. Now Blade and his fellow warriors are caught up in the middle of a war that threatens to tear apart their potential new allies.

I have to say that this has to be one the goofiest groups that Blade has run into. I know that’s saying a lot but these guys are actually play acting at being ancient Spartan warriors. They have kind of gone off the cosplay bend if you get my drift. The apocalypse sure does bring out the wackiness in people.

It is a fun story with plenty of action and a history lesson about ancient Sparta. The Federation gains a new ally and we get introduced to another warrior Teucer. Teucer picked his name from a bowman from the Iliad. He is skilled with a bow and has a fondness for poetry. He was a warrior introduced back at the beginning of the series but it took twenty-five books until he finally got his place in the sun.

ENDWORLD #24: NEW ORLEANS RUN BY DAVID ROBBINS

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tarzan

Copyright 1991.

The Home gets a distress call from New Orleans. A group of resistance fighters is asking for help. Naturally the Home will sent out Blade and the Warriors to investigate. This time Blade chooses the Beta Triad made up of the hybrids Lynx, Ferret and Gremlin. Lynx as been pestering every warrior that he wants to go on the next run and finally gets his wish. His teammates on the other hand are not happy. They are perfectly content with the easy going life at the Home.

The four are dropped off in a swamp outside New Orleans by one of the Hurricane VTOLs. There they must contend with the cottonmouths, mutant snapping turtles and giant alligators that inhabit the post war swamps. Blade, Ferret and Gremlin are captured by the tonton macoutes. The tonton macoutes are the enforcers for the Black Snake Society which rules New Orleans. The Society is a voodoo cult that rules the city. Lead by Baron Laveau it sacrifices its victims to their god Damballah, a forty foot long giant snake. Now Blade and the mutant hybrids must destroy hundreds of voodoo cultists and take on a giant snake. Just another easy day in the life of a warrior.

The next book in the series once again takes us to a new part of the country. It seems logical that a voodoo cult would take over New Orleans. I mean what else is more appropriate for New Orleans than a voodoo cult. It also showcases the hybrid warriors especially Lynx. Lynx is a fun character and ranks up with Hickok as one of my favorite warriors.

The story also show how much a badass that Blade is. He actually carves his own spear and takes on a giant snake. Could you do that? I know I couldn’t. That Blade is one tough muther.

ENDWORLD #23: YELLOWSTONE RUN BY DAVID ROBBINS

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tarzan

Copyright 1990.

Blade is enjoying some time with his family when he gets an unwanted visitor. Star the leader of the Flathead Indians has come to ask for help. Small towns in western Montana are being attacked and the inhabitants have vanished without a trace. The only clue is a survivor that claims his family was abducted by bear-men mutants. Now Blade has an obligation as the leader of the Force to investigate. He takes his buddies in the Alpha triad Hickok and Geronimo with him. He also takes Achilles his choice for the open warrior position along.

Achilles is a competent fighter but Blade’s choice is running into resistance from the elders and his fellow warriors. The problem is Achilles rubs people the wrong way with his conceited arrogance. Blade hopes to show that Achilles is qualified to fill the vacant position.

They land in Yellowstone and find the park in the same condition as before the war. They also find the Breed. After the war a group of survivalists settled in a valley in Idaho. The lake they used was later found to be contaminated by chemical canisters dropped by a bomber. The chemicals have transformed the inhabitants into bear like mutants. Now the mutants want to expand. They plan to convert thousands with the contaminated water into the Breed and the humans not turned can be used as the mutants favorite food source.

Well another group of cannibalistic mutants bent on conquest. Also once again from the Pacific Northwest. I have to say that the Pacific Northwest is a place to avoid after the apocalypse. Nothing but mutants trying to eat and/or enslave you. The main interests in this story is the introduction of a new warrior and the fact that Old Faithful is still faithful 106 years after the apocalypse.