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The four-man group from "Awakening" and "Successors"
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Jeff Sichta
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12/17/2010 8:34 AM
    After reading the Outlanders books "Awakening" and "Successors", I rather liked the four characters who were dethawed a la "Morrow Project", and was wondering if they appeared in any other Outlanders titles?
    Ron Miles
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    12/17/2010 9:42 AM
    Well Jeff, what you've got there is what you might call a "hot button topic", so I am going to answer your question and then please ask everyone else to please be civil.

    See, that group of four characters are pretty much loathed by the vast majority of Outlanders fans. You are a brand new user here, so let me fill you in:

    The vast majority of the Outlanders books up through Ghostwalk were written by Mark Ellis. The two books you mention, plus a small handful of others, were written by Victor Milan. Now, personally I like Vic and I definitely like the books he wrote in the Deathlands series as well as his Rogue Angel work. His Outlanders books, however, are.... problematic. They seem to discard or ignore some very core elements of Outlanders, and the regular characters (particularly Domi) behave completely out of character in these books. Finally, it seems a bit rude to come into an established series with (at that point) 26 books preceding and then basically relegate the main characters into the background and then bring in a set of your own characters and not only make them the leads in the story but also attempt to make them even more bad-ass than the established characters.

    In addition, I gather that those four characters are a very thinly-veiled copy of the main characters in a different and now defunct series. I haven't read those other books, but it seems fair to say that Vic brought in his own personal established characters, kind of filed off the serial numbers, and then shoved them into the series.

    So yeah, a lot of people really hate those books. That doesn't make you wrong for liking them, but you should know the background on them to understand some other replies that are very likely to happen here.

    (And again, to everyone else - be civil. I will be monitoring this thread *very* closely.)

    Those four characters do appear again briefly at the beginning of Dark Angel, written by Mark Ellis. Things to not go well for them.

    "Sadly then I knew the answer. All her life she was a dancer, but no one ever played the song she knew." - The Residents
    Jax2
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    12/17/2010 4:36 PM
    To go a step further...none of the books that feature Team Phoenix actually happened in the "official" Outlanders continuity.

    With two exceptions--

    Part of Awakening and the prologue to Dark Goddess.

    And to go a step further than that...

    None of the OL books written by Victor Milan happened in the official OL continuity.

    If you want to believe they occurred on "Earth V" or something like that, fine.

    But as far as the creator and primary writer of the series is concerned (that's me), all of Milan's books have been relegated to the status of "Never Happened, Not No How, Not No Way."

    )3az )3aziah
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    12/17/2010 6:01 PM
    Posted By Ron Miles on 17 Dec 2010 09:42 AM

    Those four characters do appear again briefly at the beginning of Dark Angel...

    Ah Hum, cough, splutter...

    Dark Goddess...

    Cough, cough...

    Ducks for cover
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    Ron Miles
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    12/17/2010 9:07 PM
    Oh god. You're right. Dark Goddess.

    I just lost several million geek points on two levels.
    "Sadly then I knew the answer. All her life she was a dancer, but no one ever played the song she knew." - The Residents
    Cerberus Man
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    12/17/2010 10:25 PM
    If you read the reviews of Milan's books here on the site, you'll get a good idea of why most OL fans didn't like them. I was just looking over them again and he was cut a lot of breaks by readers.

    As for Team Phoney (as a lot of fans called them), Mark nailed what they really were dead to rights in the prologue of Dark Goddess. Still one of the most uproarious funny scenes I've ever read.
    "It's better to have a blaster and not need it than to need it and--" "Oh, spare me," Brigid said irritably. (Kane and Brigid Baptiste from Armageddon Axis)
    Jeff Sichta
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    12/18/2010 12:23 AM
    Thanks for going easy on me, guys; I had no idea this was a sore subject. Clearly I'm gonna have to spend more time delving into this site and bone up on these things. Will have to pick up "Dark Goddess", then, or at least read the prologue...

    It's not a spoiler to tell me what occured in "Dark Goddess" to these characters; don't know when I'd get around to acquiring it much less actually reading it. Anyone want to fill me in?

    Additionally, and I don't want to piss anyone off here who is highly dedicated to the series, but over several years and visits to bookstores both new and used, I have picked up most of the books in both the Deathlands and Outlanders series...however, I don't have as much reading time as I have in years past or bookcase space to keep them in, and recently I have been going through my vast repository of post-apocalyptic fiction and sorting out items into "keep" and "pitch" piles. Unfortunately, as it stands at the moment, due to the prolific nature of the aforementioned series most of the DL and OL titles are heading for the "pitch" piles. In the process, I've been reading the little blurbs on the back of the books and selecting a few to hang on to that sound particularly interesting; the one for "Omega Path" caught my eye as the cast is transported to before the nukecaust. And I read OP morning-noon-and-night and finished it in two days.

    What I'd like to know as a reader are, what titles are truly exceptional and are considered "must-haves" for the two series? This seems like an interesting website and forum, and I'd hate to inadvertently pitch a title (or several) that would contribute greatly to my enjoyment of the series. But there's no way I'm going to be able to carve out enough time to catch up with, what, some 150 books?

    Any helpful tips or advice would be, well, helpful!
    Jeff Sichta
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    12/18/2010 12:27 AM
    Also, and I'm sure someone will direct me to where I can find this answer on the forum, but is there a way to set it up where you are e-mailed a notification when someone responds to one of your posts? Thanks in advance!
    mikeclr
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    12/18/2010 8:25 AM
    Jeff,

    If you like those characters my suggestion would be to find The Guardians series by the same author writing as "Richard Austin". You can usually find them on eBay and in used bookstores.
    "Courage is not a man with a gun in his hand. It's knowing you're licked before you begin but you begin anyway and you see it through no matter what." - Atticus Finch
    Jeff Sichta
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    12/18/2010 10:12 AM
    Actually, I really enjoyed the "Guardians" series; that and Johnstone's "Ashes" series kicked off the whole post-apocalyptic fiction affinity for me that led me to Outlanders and Deathlands. When I was directed by his website to "Awakening" and "Successors", as I had enjoyed the "Guardians" series, I likewise enjoyed A and S due to his homage to the principal characters from that series.

    It would certainly appear, however, that not everyone else feels that way here!

    Thanks for the recommend, though.
    Ron Miles
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    12/18/2010 10:23 AM
    Posted By Jeff Sichta on 18 Dec 2010 12:27 AM
    Also, and I'm sure someone will direct me to where I can find this answer on the forum, but is there a way to set it up where you are e-mailed a notification when someone responds to one of your posts? Thanks in advance!
    To subscribe to everthing, click on the "My Settings" link at the top of this section, then click on the "My Preferences" tab, and check "Subscribe to Topics".

    To subscribe to just the thread you started, click "Edit" on your original post, or on any of your replies to any post, and towards the bottom there is a checkbox to send you mail notifications for that topic.

    "Sadly then I knew the answer. All her life she was a dancer, but no one ever played the song she knew." - The Residents
    )3az )3aziah
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    12/18/2010 3:34 PM
    Posted By Jeff Sichta on 18 Dec 2010 10:12 AM
    I likewise enjoyed A and S due to his homage to the principal characters from that series.

    It wasn't so much as a homage, more like a blatant hijack of another authors long established series in order to get his own long defunct characters back into print.


    ===============================
    Billy Fish: He wants to know if we are gods.
    Peachy Carnehan: Not gods - Englishmen. The next best thing.


    Please check out my FLICKR photos
    )3az )3aziah
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    12/18/2010 3:43 PM
    Posted By Jeff Sichta on 18 Dec 2010 12:23 AM
    What I'd like to know as a reader are, what titles are truly exceptional and are considered "must-haves" for the two series?
    Hi there,

    I would look at the book lists listed in the links below "The Books" to the top left of the page and keep

    Deathlands
    Any book written by Laurence James (books 1-33 & 44), Mark Ellis (#34 & #37) and Alan Philipson (#46, 50, 58, 63, 74, 78, 81, 83, 85, 86 & 95). If thats too many then just keep the LJ ones above all the rest.

    Outlanders
    All of Mark Ellis books, the rest are just unrelated "filler" by other less than suitable hacks.



    NOTE
    The above choices (and comments) are mine alone and based on my personal prefrences, they are not in any way meant to influence others or upset those who may prefere another author over my own choices.
    ===============================
    Billy Fish: He wants to know if we are gods.
    Peachy Carnehan: Not gods - Englishmen. The next best thing.


    Please check out my FLICKR photos
    )3az )3aziah
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    12/18/2010 3:45 PM
    Posted By Jeff Sichta on 17 Dec 2010 08:34 AM
    ...a la "Morrow Project"...

    Did you / do you play Morrow Project?


    ===============================
    Billy Fish: He wants to know if we are gods.
    Peachy Carnehan: Not gods - Englishmen. The next best thing.


    Please check out my FLICKR photos
    Ron Miles
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    12/18/2010 6:30 PM
    Posted By )3az )3aziah on 18 Dec 2010 03:43 PM
    Deathlands
    Any book written by Laurence James (books 1-33 & 44), Mark Ellis (#34 & #37) and Alan Philipson (#46, 50, 58, 63, 74, 78, 81, 83, 85, 86 & 95).
    Ditto on that.  Laurence James is The Man, he made Deathlands what it is, and on the whole it has been a pale imitation of itself since he left.  There have been a few bright spots since then, and Alan Philipson has surely  been the best to contribute to the series.  If you can, pick up the two Empire of Xibalba books (Plague Lords and Dark Resurrection), those are the best two DL books in recent memory.  Also, Blood Harvest by Chuck Rogers is very, very good.

    "Sadly then I knew the answer. All her life she was a dancer, but no one ever played the song she knew." - The Residents
    )3az )3aziah
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    12/18/2010 8:20 PM
    Posted By Ron Miles on 18 Dec 2010 06:30 PM
    ...Blood Harvest by Chuck Rogers is very, very good.


    I forgot about that one.
    ===============================
    Billy Fish: He wants to know if we are gods.
    Peachy Carnehan: Not gods - Englishmen. The next best thing.


    Please check out my FLICKR photos
    Jax2
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    12/19/2010 8:33 AM
    Posted By )3az )3aziah on 18 Dec 2010 03:34 PM
    Posted By Jeff Sichta on 18 Dec 2010 10:12 AM
    I likewise enjoyed A and S due to his homage to the principal characters from that series.

    It wasn't so much as a homage, more like a blatant hijack of another authors long established series in order to get his own long defunct characters back into print.




    This "homage-in-hindsight" business is as much nonsense now as it was when it was first brought to my attention.

    Inasmuch as Awakenings was not promoted as featuring thinly disguised versions of the Guardians--and indeed, neither I nor the GE editor at the time were apprised of TP's true identities--the end result was pretty ineffective as homages go.

    As I recall, one of the members here first posted about the connection between TP and the Guardians--and he wasn't favorably impressed.

    Although I resisted the hijack motive at first, after applying my own hindsight, I'm certain that was the intention.
    Kerrick
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    12/19/2010 12:22 PM
    Posted By Jeff Sichta on 18 Dec 2010 12:23 AM
    What I'd like to know as a reader are, what titles are truly exceptional and are considered "must-haves" for the two series?
    I'd just hit The Books link - it has user reviews and ratings for most of them, so you'll quickly be able to find out which books float to the top. Pretty much all the DL books up to Encounter are worth saving, as well as the early OL stuff.
    Cerberus Man
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    12/21/2010 9:30 AM
    Posted By Jax2 on 19 Dec 2010 08:33 AM
    Posted By )3az )3aziah on 18 Dec 2010 03:34 PM
    Posted By Jeff Sichta on 18 Dec 2010 10:12 AM
    I likewise enjoyed A and S due to his homage to the principal characters from that series.

    It wasn't so much as a homage, more like a blatant hijack of another authors long established series in order to get his own long defunct characters back into print.




    This "homage-in-hindsight" business is as much nonsense now as it was when it was first brought to my attention.

    Inasmuch as Awakenings was not promoted as featuring thinly disguised versions of the Guardians--and indeed, neither I nor the GE editor at the time were apprised of TP's true identities--the end result was pretty ineffective as homages go.

    As I recall, one of the members here first posted about the connection between TP and the Guardians--and he wasn't favorably impressed.

    Although I resisted the hijack motive at first, after applying my own hindsight, I'm certain that was the intention.

    That is what I thought after Successors. I stopped reading Milan's books after Refuge, which is high on my list of WORST books I've ever read in my life.

    I remember somebody posting that if Mark had done what Milan did when he wrote his first Deathlands--sticking versions of his own characters to carry the story--DL only fans would STILL be howling for his blood.
    "It's better to have a blaster and not need it than to need it and--" "Oh, spare me," Brigid said irritably. (Kane and Brigid Baptiste from Armageddon Axis)
    )3az )3aziah
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    12/21/2010 2:00 PM
    Posted By Cerberus Man on 21 Dec 2010 09:30 AM

    I stopped reading Milan's books after Refuge...
    You spelt Refuse wrong !!!
    ===============================
    Billy Fish: He wants to know if we are gods.
    Peachy Carnehan: Not gods - Englishmen. The next best thing.


    Please check out my FLICKR photos
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