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In CROSSWAYS, Ryan Cawdor and his companions emerge from a gateway into the familiar, but ravaged world of the Rockies. Bus this is not a happy homecoming for Ryan and Krysty Wroth as the past becomes a trap, and old debts may have to be repaid.
Hope died in the Deathlands, but the will to live goes on.
As the twenty-second century emerges from the blight of nuclear damnation, humanity is slowly coming to terms with the bizarre new world of Deathlands, where each new generation holds the promise of renewal and redemption -- in men like Ryan Cawdor and his son, Dean.
HOME SWEET HELL
Ryan Cawdor and companions emerge from a gateway into the ravaged world of the Rockies. It's old hunting grounds for Ryan and the Titian-haired Krysty Wroth -- her home, and the place where they first came together. Here Ryan has an unsettling choice to make, and Krysty a debt to pay. But her Mother Sonja may be long gone, and the past becomes a trap as they press toward Harmony, a marauding gang hard on their trail.Hope died in the Deathlands, but the will to live goes on.
# 30 Crossways
This book had a little different feel to it than most other LJ book. It almost seemed like three or four short stories that led into one another instead of a full book. I rather enjoyed this style. The stories were interesting, and not very predictable. I think this was one of LJ's better books. My only problem with this books is Peter Maritza, and Uncle Tyas McCann are referred to as having died in Harmony, but they died just outside of Mocsin in pilgrimage To Hell. Other than that this was a great book, everyone most hated character is out of the picture for awhile. There is more evidence of the Japanese war parties, and we get LJ's continuity of book 29 flowing into 30, and 30 flowing into 31. I give it a 9.
Tom Brown's School Days Meets Pale Rider
This was really a by-the-numbers DL,except for the very bizarre plot element of enrolling Dean in the Brody School. I guess as a Englishman and a resident of Oxford, Laurence James didn't see anything off the wall about a private school operating in a postnuke setting.
The secondary plot line showcased Krysty's return to Harmony ville to check on her mom and during the journey stops in at a house finds a suicide note almost exactly like the one found in The Stand.
When she gets to Harmony ville she finds it overrun by a gang of stickies because the wimpy townsfolk figured if they let them have their way they'd go away happy and not hurt anybody.
So when Ryan and the rest of the group gets to town, the reader is treated to a prose version of the climax of Clint Eastwood's Pale Rider.
Crossways wasn't exactly a bad book but it sure was strange. It was so strange I stopped reading the series altogether at this point and didn't come back until Stoneface.
This is another one which I think could be skipped unless you're a completist.
Dean goes to school
by The Phantom
The book starts off in a redoubt in the Colorado rockies. Ryan's gang deal with some wierd twin brothers in the redoubt, then leave there with a water pipe broken, flooding the complex.
This adventure deals with two things the party decides to do.
One is to enroll Dean in a nearby school for a year for some education. Ryan separates from the group to bring Dean to the school. The parting with Dean was done very well. After leaving the school, Ryan must meet with the rest in a village some miles away. I liked the action that is depicted from both Ryan's perspective, and that of the rest of the party. A lot of the novel deals with the travels through the rocky mountains and the various villages around there. The scene where Ryan is trapped in a collapsed house with the flooding and the mice was suspenseful. Krysty and the others battle against mutie wolves. I liked the scenes in the various restaurants also. This novel has a strong western flavor.
Once the party is united again they are off to do the other thing they wanted. This was to visit Krysty's nearby hometown of Harmony. The last part of the book deals with this along with the battle against the gang of killers that are ravaging the area.
The battle with killers in the town was not the highlight of the book, and the last pages of the novel were kind of filler as the group makes their way back to the redoubt. But overall I thought this book was pretty good, loaded with adventure, action scenes, and interesting characters.
LEASTWAYS CROSSWAYS WAS WRITTEN BY JAMES!
by One Eye Chills
CROSSWAYS had a cool-looking cover. I loved the imagery and colors, but this proves that you can't judge a book by it's cover!
Crossways kinda pissed me off for a couple of reasons: First is the school and leaving your son. NO WAY! I felt that the school part in a world like this did not fit the bill whatsoever. And Ryan leaving his son after all of the harrowing experiences - NO WAY!
I hated that idea. What better school in a world like this than being with the best survivors in the land - Ryan and company!
No Ryan Cawdor that I got to know in this series would leave his son in some unknown school. He would not just blindly trust someone to this level, surely!
Another interesting, but sorely fell short also, was Krysty's homecoming. Not anything like Ryan's. I thought this could have been so much better than it was.
Perhaps time contraints and original ideas was running short for poor Mr. James at this point. I could feel the series running out of gas here, and it was not a good feeling.
Krysty goes home
Great book, Krysty and company go to Colorado, this is the book where dean leaves the series for awhile as hes dumped in a school (thank god) the companions split up and tackle several small towns.. between the storm and wolves, the "Homecoming" the first well.. F#%# of the past for Krysty... its a great story.