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DanSchwent

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Merkabah Rider: The Mensch With No Name - Edward M. Erdelac,  D.D. Gerald L. "Moss" Bliss (Editor),  Cinsearae Santiago (Illustrator) The Merkabah Rider is a Hasidic gunfighter well versed in Jewish mystacism, on a journey across the Old West in search of his mentor and betrayer, Adon. This is the second collection of his tales.

The Infernal Napoleon: The Rider is pursued by the minions of Lilith and they catch up with him in the tiny town of Varuga tanks. Can the Rider overcome half-breed demons and a cannon that was used in the war between angels to continue his search for Adon?

The Merkabah Rider's question resumes with a bang. The Infernal Napoleon was a great plot device. Both biblical and Lovecratian mythologies are references, most notably the story of Samson. By the time it's over, the Rider has been through the wringer yet again.

The Damned Dingus: The Rider is on a train that is robbed and loses his gun to the robbers. With Doc Holiday and Mysterious Dave Mather in tow, The Rider goes to reclaim his Volcanic pistol and gets a lot more than he bargained for...

Wow. The Damned Dingus was damned good. The Lovecraftian overtones get even stronger and the invisible creature was straight out of a Lovecraft tale. I geeked pretty hard when the stone bearing the Elder Sign made an appearance, as well as the mention of Hyperborea, The Necronomicon, and Al-Hazred. It appears The Hour of Incursion is growing near...

The Outlaw Gods: The Rider's travels pit him against serpent men, monstrous trees, and the Black Goat Man. Can even his allience with a Hindi mystic and a host of spirits help him defeat the Black Goat Man and his consort?

Astute Lovecraft readers will guess the identity of the Black Goat Man's consort but that doesn't make it have any less impact. The Rider's palaver with Chaksusa and Chaksusa's revelations about the nature of the universe or universes reminded me of Roland and the Man in Black in the Gunslinger. The scope of the Merkabah Rider's quest even reminds me of The Dark Tower. The same sense of urgency is building. If I didn't already know there are two more volumes planned, I'd be wondering how Erdelac was planning on wrapping things up in the next sixty pages.

The Pandaemonium Ride: With a new ally at his side, the Rider goes to hell to get some answers from Lucifer. He won't like what the ultimate betrayer has to say...

Sweet. F#cking. Christ. The full scope of the Hour of Incursion is revealed in this tale and it's a f#cking whopper. I knew the saga of the Merkabah Rider was going to be huge in scope but this is even bigger than I was prepared for. I've never read anything that explained the relationships between the Lovecraft mythos and that of the Judeo-Christian one. Heaven and hell united against the Great Old Ones? It's f#cking mind-boggling. Also, I really liked that the staff Solomon Kane uses is in the hands of Kadebe.

Conclusion: Ever since I read the Dark Tower, I've been looking for a weird western quest story to fill the void. If the first two volumes of the Merkabah Rider's tale are any indication, the Dark Tower is going to get a run for its money.

Note: You can read an interview I did with Edward M. Erdelac here.