The conspiracy of secrecy manipulating post-nuclear Earth takes a terrifying new turn as the mysterious oligarchy becomes something far more sinister. No longer shrouded in the cloaks of hybrid-human divinity, the nine barons have evolved into their true incarnation of ancient overlords, their avaricious scope expanded to reclaim the world they were forced to abandon, and with it, the final subjugation of the human race.
Deep in the fertile African savannah lies an ancient artifact that will unlock secrets hidden for two thousand years, and restore the dormant control of a Sumerian god prepared to bring all of Africa under his ruthless domain. The Cerberus rebels only begin to understand the extent of the power of this deity, and the terrible destiny that waits if they lose this opening salvo to stop evil from regaining a foothold to the future....
For the past decade, Mark Ellis has built his reputation as a popular writer by producing one cool action-adventure novel after another featuring the heroic Cerberus warriors.
Rim Of The World is no exception!
ROTW has a comfortably familiar feel: an artifact from the ancient past (in this case, the Collar of Prester John), with a modern-day megalomaniac determined use it to take over the world, and then place Kane, Brigid and Grant in several "how-will-they-ever-get-out-of-this" situations that stimulate readers’ heartbeats and imagination.
Mark Ellis writes a perfect blend of high-powered action, suspense and humor…his ability to showcase the banter between Kane, Grant and Brigid as they find themselves in one perilous situation after another adds greatly to the enjoyment of this latest classic.
Overlord Utu is a cool adversary with a nasty sense of humor, a lot tougher enemy than the weak little barons. The scenes with him are some of the best in the book, but all of ROTW is explodes with colorful descriptions and vivid energy help you really feel like you are in Africa!
I loved the suspenseful train journey across the veldts to the "Mountain of the Apes" too.
But of course the best thing about ROTW and all OL books by Mark Ellis is the way he writes the heroic characters we've come to know and love —with dignity, intelligence, heart and most of all--respect.
They jump off the page, each one with their own distinct personalities but each one likable in their own way help even stuffy Philboyd who thinks he can tinker around with Annunaki tech with no problem, ignoring unscientific Domi’s advice. Guess who turns out to be right?
Rim of the World is an adrenaline-pumped, two-fisted, pedal to the metal OL adventure the way OL adventures are supposed to be!
A perfect slam-dunk ten stars!
Rim of the World is a fantastic refuge from the last travesty by Victor Milan, Refuge. There is no connection at all between the two books, they might as well be books in completely different series…with Rim being a book in a vastly superior series.
ROTW is bare-knuckled action and adventure from old school Outlanders—duels to the death, monsters, a beautiful, sexy woman, blazing action, colorful but evil villains, an epic journey across Africa in search of an ancient mythological artifact and best of all--the Cerberus crew back in full character and in action all together, kicking ass and outwitting the enemy!
Kane, Brigid and Grant interfere in a scheme by Overlord Utu to use the psycho Waziri Prince Laputara to take control of the Waziri people from his beautiful half-sister Pakari and hold the legendary Collar of Prester John.
As usual for an OL novel by Mark Ellis there is a lot more going on, including a covert attack on the Cerberus redoubt by a "cyberspider’ dealt with by Domi, Lakesh and Philboyd. That part of the book was one of my favorites because of the interplay between the three characters. In the hands of her creator, Mark Ellis, Domi is a complex character with a wilderness cunning that saves the day while the more intellectual Lakesh is still pondering the right course of action.
Although the book involves Bedouins, jinn, Annunaki, and a big bad-tempered elephant that everybody says reminds them of Grant, the meat of the story is an epic journey across Africa in ‘Old 88", a restored 19th century steam locomotive to reach the "mountain of the apes’ and the treasure vault hidden in the ‘rim of the world".
I can’t praise this book enough. It was a fun read, intelligent, fast-paced, funny, full of blazing action and once more fascinating bits of mythology that has made Outlanders the classic series it is.
Overlord Utu made for a very memorable villain and Princess Pakari and her crazy half-brother Laputara and the Waziri holy man Inkula were very colorful characters who stick in your mind.
Mark Ellis really knows how to write an action-adventure series. Everything works! Characters, plots, locales, dialog, action sequences, all are diamond sharp! The slapdash, moronic garbage that passed for an OL novel in Refuge should not even be considered to be anywhere in the same class (or universe!) as Rim Of The World.
Another rousing adventure is what awaits those of you who decide to pick up and read Mark Ellis’s latest Outlanders novel: Rim of the World.
I have found over the decades that all book series follow a set formula. In Deathlands you have the characters jumping to a new redoubt via the mat trans gateways. They explore, sometimes running into nasty inhabitants, sometimes not. They leave the redoubt, explore some more and meet up with the bad guy, typically some fat, deranged baron. They kill the bad guy, make things a little better for the locals, and then they return to the redoubt and jump out using the gateways.
With Outlanders, there is a formula to be sure. However, this formula is what sets it apart from all the other post nuclear holocaust series that have come and gone. The main portion of the formula is as follows: location, location, location! The Cerberus exiles have been all over the globe. They’ve been to Mars, they’ve had misadventures on the moon, and they’ve even been to alternate realities and traveled through time.
Secondly, hot women. Not only are several of the lead females smart, attractive and sexy, many of the villains and supporting characters are as well. Erica Van Sloan, the Imperial Momma is a perfect example. She’s a villain, a true dragon lady with an IQ that is off the scales, but at the same time literally oozes sensuality.
Third: tying real life mythology and various pantheons into the now vast and complex back story. The Annunaki, Sumerian gods returning to reclaim the earth, the Tuatha du Danaan, various myths from all over the world. All of these put together, brought to rich life, and explained scientifically. How many other series can make this claim?
Of course there are other formulated aspects of the series, such as exploration of various ruins and hidden facilities, high adrenalin battles, and even the occasional sexual encounter, but the first three topics I brought up are what set it apart.
Over the past ten years of writing the series, the characters have evolved and grown. Of course there are aspects of each character that rarely change, such as how Stoic Grant can be, or how sarcastic Kane is in the face of adversity, or the fact that Brigid is a walking, talking encyclopedia. But even though these aspects haven’t changed, the characters have, but gradually, not over night, which is what happens when there are multiple authors writing for the series.
The friendship and respect between the characters is there, and it’s obvious, and even when they snipe at one another, as they did in this latest offering, there is a good reason for it.
Take note, those of you who might be considering writing for the series – the way the characters are portrayed has been set in stone and there is no reason for deviation from it!
In the latest adventure, the Cerberus exiles are off in Africa (Formula, location), and end up embroiled in a feud between a half brother and sister who are both trying to lay claim to the collar of Preston John (formula, myth), in order to see who would become the ruler of the Warizi nation.
Overlord Utu wants the collar back, as it turns out that it is a key to a vault that has been hidden away for over two millennia, and only those who possess the genetic trait of the ancient rulers of the Warizi tribe can actually open the gate. To meet this end, he enlists the help of a Warizi prince named Laputara. His half sister Pakari (Formula, hot woman) is against his alliance with Utu, realizing that he is no god.
Throughout the adventure, there are encounters with a Bedouin tribe, a genetic engineering laboratory filled with Jinn, which was almost a scene out of my favorite movie of all time, a battle for the control of a nation, as well as an overland journey in an ancient steam powered locomotive. All these events lead into a final encounter at the Rim of the World, where the fate of not only a nation is decided but the fate of an overlord as well.
Once again, we’ve been given a major romp by Mark Ellis, who has proven that when it comes to spinning a tale and weaving mythology into it, there are none better.
Brilliant, Wonderful, Fantastic...
These are all single words that could be used to sum up this the latest offering from Mark Ellis.
Once again Mark Ellis has proven that this series belongs to him and him alone, gone are the silly stupid mistakes and flat characterization that we get with the stand in "guest" writers and back comes the intelligent, thought provoking penmanship that all Outlanders fans keep coming back again and again for.
Like all his books he weaves a tale that draws the reader in with the first few words and then bombards the mental senses with well written, well described scenes that makes it almost impossible to put down once you have started.
Previous reviews have laid out the tale and background to this novel so I am not going to repeat it again here. What I am going to add is it is nice to see the usual bunch of heroes (Kane, Grant and Brigid) supported by one of (in my opinion) the most under rated secondary characters in the series Reba DeFore. Here we get to see her do a lot more than patch up the hero's after a fight, in this book we get to see here get into the fight herself.
This book is sure to please no matter if you are a long time fan or a first timer to the series, get it and enjoy...
This is a whirlwind of entertaining adventure for 340 pages of some of the author's best writing yet in the series! In this episode we see the Cerberus crew dealing with one of the overlords, named Utu, and his nefarious activities in Africa. Most of the action takes place in the Congo or the Sudan area, with a mixture of futuristic tech and ancient primitive legends and peoples to make a very entertaining story, as is expected from the long track record of terrific titles before it from the talents of Mark Ellis.
This is one of those books where twenty or thirty pages fly by while seeming to have only turned the page once. I loved the scenes taking place from the cerberus redoubt as well, the cyberspider, Domi, Philboyd, Lakesh and company had great scenes of their own. The technology of the annunaki is further revealed in this title, both at the redoubt and in Africa.
Manta ships, waziri princesses, steam trains, tribesmen, evil overlords, robots, cyber-apes, ancient artifacts, and much much more, weaved into another amazing volume in this series, I consider this to be one of the very best. A solid ten all the way!