Sunday, June 03, 2012

The Desert Demons -- Kenneth Robeson (Will Murray)

I didn't pick up the Doc Savage reprints by Bantam at first, but once I did, I ran through a big stack of them, one after the other. I still have dozens of them around here.

Now The Man of Bronze is back in a new series billed as "The All-New WILD Adventures of Doc Savage," the first of which is The Desert Demons. I'm not sure this story is any wilder than the ones in the original series, but it's wild enough, and it's a lot of fun. What Doc is investigating here is the mystery of strange copper-colored clouds that seem alive. They descend on people and things, and when they're gone, nothing is left but shapes that disintegrate into tiny white particles. Even worse from Doc's point of view, one of the people who's disappeared into a copper cloud is his sister, Pat.

The story's full of action from first to last, with car chases, hand grenades, gun battles, fisticuffs, and everything else you'd expect in a fine pulp adventure. Doc's crew -- Ham, Monk, Renny, Long Tom, and Johnny -- are all here, and all play a part. Monk's pig, Habeus Corpus, and Ham's ape, Chemistry, are here, too. And here's the good part: Gators! Doc versus two of the little snappers! Guess who wins.

Will Murray does a wonderful job of capturing the spirit of the original Doc Savage novels and also the style. It's been a long time since I read the Bantam editions of Doc's exploits, but I think if you slipped this one into the batch, nobody would know it didn't belong there. In fact, it does belong there. It just continues the series in swell fashion.

If you're a fan of Doc, you'll definitely want this one. If you'd like to get to know him and his crew, this would be a great place to start.


Evan Lewis said...

I agree. This one is a great ride!

George said...

I have THE DESERT DEMONS on order. Will Murray writes wonder Doc Savage!