Sunday, October 12, 2014

THE ICE GENIUS - An All-New WILD Adventure of Doc Savage by Will Murray

Yeah, Doc's back, and up to his bronze-toned ears in trouble in The Ice Genius.

I've enjoyed all of Will Murray's new Doc Savage adventures from Altus Press (this is the eighth), but I found this one even more compelling than usual because it's firmly rooted in the real world.

Ever wonder what Doc and the gang were doing when Pearl Harbor was bombed? How they reacted, and what they did next?  Well, wonder no more, because that's all revealed in The Ice Genius. But lest you think this is merely a war novel, rest assured all that reality is intertwined with the sort of fantastic adventure Doc Savage fans have come to expect.

This one kicks off with Doc's aide, noted archaeologist Johnny Littlejohn, on a dig in Mongolia. Entombed in an ice cave, Johnny discovers a body that's been frozen for seven hundred years. And despite his best efforts to prevent it, that human popsicle thaws out and takes up exactly where it left off - trying to conquer the world.

How does all this tie in with World War II? Quite nicely, it turns out. The Japanese are already trying to subjugate China, this recently frozen warlord and his Mongol horde make an attractive allies. Doc and his pals are at the center of the storm, hemmed in by enemies on all sides and battling the realities of wartime Asia while struggling to solve the mystery - and stem the threat - of the living dead man.

This book leads me to believe that Mr. Murray - like myself - is an admirer of the Mongol stories of Harold Lamb. He captures all that Lamb flavor and detail and mixes it seamlessly with the characters of Doc's crew and the all-too-real world they find themselves in.

Will Murray credits Lester Dent as co-author on this one, but I suspect the proper ratio is about 95% Murray and 5% Dent. It's hard to tell for sure, because Murray has a perfect grasp of Dent's style, but I suspect the bulk of Dent's contribution was a couple of brief scenes involving Bill Saxon, a stand-up Oklahoma oilman duped into doing business with Japanese interests. What do you think? Read it yourself and let me know.

To order, click here: Doc Savage: The Ice Genius


Unknown said...

I'm about 100 pages into this one. So far, so good.

Will said...

Actually, I never read Lamb....

Evan Lewis said...

Not even his bio of Tamerlane? You'd like him.