This is the last of the books in this never-ending series of books, games, spin off series and more, that I actually made it through. The writing quality dropped with every volume. In less than two decades they wrote 16 novels - over 7200 pages in the main series alone. They have eclipsed Piers Anthony's Xanth which took many decades to write.
In this series I never really agreed with the author's theological view of the end times, even though the series started off as good fiction, with entertaining books that made a reader think about the end times. Yet as the series dragged on, the writing became weaker and weaker, and for myself and many I know the authors lost the audience. I never made it through the whole series and I doubt I will ever go back and finish it. It really is a pity as there was so much potential in this series.
Everybody is out to be the one to kill the Antichrist (Nicolae) - Mac, Abdula, Chiem, Rayford. But we are left hanging about what really happens. The Trib Force team again loses members, Doc dies and Leih joins the team. Cameron travels to Israel again and sees the two witnesses resurrected and called up to heaven.
However even with all the action this was the end for me. I did not make it through any more books of the 16 in the series. The books in publication sequence are:
Left Behind: Tribulation Force Nicolae: The Rise of the Antichrist Soul Harvest: Apollyon: Assasins: The Indwelling The Mark Desecration The Remnant Armageddon Glorious Appearing The Rising: The Antichrist is Born The Regime: Evil Advances The Rapture: In the Twinkling of an Eye Kingdom Come
In the end it just seemed link a money-making ploy, with graphic novels, cds, teen versions, a video game and more. It is a pity this series dropped in quality so much. Jenkins went on to write an excellent trilogy - Soon, Silenced and Shadowed, that were set in a different interpretation of a future with a one world government.
After reading "Conquest of Paradise" by Britt Gillette, I was instantly turned onto biblical end times literature, and I instantly started reading the Left Behind series. From book one, I was totally hooked, and I've read up through book seven in less than a couple of weeks. In "Assassins", the adventure and intrigue of the Left Behind series continues unabated with an interesting twist. Unlike the others, this book concentrates on a fundamental theological question: "Is it righteous to kill someone who is evil?" While the antichrist, Nicolae Carpathia, works around the clock to rebuild the world's infrastructure and government to serve his own ends, the Tribulation Force and member Rayford Steele struggle spiritually with a plan to assassinate Carpathia. Meanwhile, Buck Williams builds a large following via his Internet magazine The Truth, and Hattie Durham (former colleague of Rayford Steele and former mistress of Carpathia) joins the ranks of the true believers in the Tribulation Force. "Assassins" continues the brilliant storytelling of LaHaye and Jenkins with masterful suspense and full cognizance of the scriptures. Fans who have made it this far will not be disappointed. I can't wait to find out what happens next. I look forward to reading books seven through twelve, and I encourage other Left Behind fans to pick up "Conquest of Paradise: An End-Times Nano-Thriller" as additional reading. That book got me interested in this series, and what a great book! What "Left Behind" lacks in realism, "Conquest of Paradise" adds in abundance. The prose is much more advanced and the international politics are identical to the current world scene and the war on terror. Peppered with biblical verses, "Conquest of Paradise" will turn even the most hardened skeptics into believers, or at least it will make them think twice. It's one lovers of end-times fiction shouldn't miss. Book seven, "The Indwelling" continues the adventures of the Tribulation Force, and the infamous antichrist becomes indwelled by the devil himself. Can't wait to read the rest!
The halfway point of the peace treaty between Carpathia and Jerusalem is nearing, and all hell is about to break loose. Literally. As the book opens, we find that it's all Rayford Steele can do to keep his rage, no...make that murderous rage, inside him. He wants to be the one to kill Nicolae Carpathia no matter what the cost. And he's willing to do just about anything to make sure that happens. Nicolae Carpathia, on the other hand, is preparing a global gala in Jerusalem. Not because he really wants to have a party. His main purpose is to kill the two witnesses at the wailing wall. He has pinpointed the exact time they will become vulnerable and wants the credit of doing them in. In front of a worldwide audience, no less. However, Carpathia appears to be ignorant of the fact that his own time is near as well. He will not make it out of this global gala alive. The question is, who will be the one to kill him? Rayford Steele, who has purchased a new gun just for that reason? Hattie Durham, who blames Carpathia for all the horrible things she did during their time together (not to mention the fact that he killed their unborn baby and tried to kill her). Mac McCullum, who fantasizes about flying the Pheonix 216 into a mountainside with Carpathia in it? Dr. Chaim Rosenzweig, who seems to work night and day in his workshop on a project that he won't reveal to his own housestaff? You get the idea. "Assassins," the 6th book in the popular "Left Behind" series is, without question, the most suspensful book in the series so far. Tim LaHaye and Jerry B. Jenkins use the entire book to set up the explosive finale. The suspense is so thick by the time Carpathia gets his just reward that you could cut it with a knife. But it doesn't stop there. A cliffhanger ending will make you want to throw the book out the window in complete frustration. Assuming you forgive the authors for that dirty little trick, you will immediately want to start in on the next book. After all, you just have to know what happens next.
My father, brother, mother and I have all read this book and we are fascinated by the authors wonderful imagination and their interpretation of Revelations. If you have read Revelations and don't quite understand it, you should try reading these books, they will help you understand. I think that this book is a great witnessing tool. If you are one of the thousands, I am sure, that believe that this book is a nice fairy tale, or a great scary story and rank it up there with Stephen King (yuck!!), you are totally and completely, 100% wrong! The Bible doesn't lie, people, God doesn't lie, and John didn't lie; plus, the Bible is the oldest book that you can turn to that not only tells of the past, but tells of the future. I not only recommend this book with five stars (deserves more) but I am also recommending the Bible. The way that Jerry and Tim used the book of Revelations as their background is wonderful. They way that Rayford struggled with his emotions and feelings in Assassins is so human. I felt myself believing that since he turned to God and was a professed and sealed Christian, everything was fine and dandy and that nothing could go wrong for him. That since he was devoted to God, he should be happy that he is still alive and God is using him daily. But everything was not all right. He was tired of sitting around all day, digging graves for his new found best friends, and praying that the ones that remained will last until Christ came at the Glorious Appearing. I found it inspiring that he was struggling with his wanting to murder Carpathia (did he really do it, or was Hattie the one, if she really was there, or did the three potentates do it? It leaves you hanging, doesn't it?) I find myself wanting to pray that Chaim gives himself to God before it's too late, but then I remember that this is still just a story. Although the overall plot of the Tribulation is true (and I mean really and truly true), it doesn't mean the characters in this book are really going to be there.
I've read all but The Indwelling in this series and found this one to be entertaining but a little drawn out. Besides the continuing saga of good vs. evil as portrayed by Buck, Rayford and other believers against Carpathia and his henchmen, the book continues to move along in its narrative of the end days. The specualtive interpretation, based on Biblical Phrophecy is full of God's message all be it not so suttle at times. If you've read the others in this series you probably will read this book no matter what is said. If you're new I suggest you start with the original to get a complete feel for Jenkin's and LaHaye's apacopalyptic vision. If you just want to jump into the series, don't do it here as this book is a bit drawn out. I found myself saying "OK kill him already"! I thought there would be much more to this installment than there was but nonetheless found it rewarding. For believers and non-believers alike this is a fun book that will at least make you think and hopefully be a better person. There are tons of reviews for this book but I told myself I would review all in the series, so, peace be with you, share the spirit.