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Crucible of Time

Written By:James Axler - 1999

  • Crucible of Time - James Axler cover


In the badlands of postholocaust America, there is no tomorrow


In the centuries after the nuclear devastation of America, life favors those who maintain their fighting edge in the lawless wastelands. In a nearly untouched remnant of California, a land of pines and roaring rivers, forgettfulness is tempting for a much-tried band of warrior survivalists. But Ryan Cawdor, son of an East Coast baron, knows that in the Deathlands even a tiny glimpse of heaven can be a portal to hell.


An insular group of fanatics calling itself the Children of the Rock is leaving a trail of barbarism and a growing tide of hate in its wake. The leader of the cult is connected to Ryan's past—to Trader and the war wagon days. Littered with victors and losers, it's a past some can't walk away from... in this haven in a ravaged country, Ryan and his warrior wayfarers find that new laws of survival have emerged.

In the Deathlands, the wrong move buys eternity.


"Quake! Everybody outside!"

Jak was first to reach the door, hesitating with his fingers gripping the handle.

J.B. held Mildred's hand as they weaved across the heaving floor, looking like a couple of drunks trying to make a decorous exit from a frontier gaudy.

"Door's jammed," the teenager yelled. There was a ferocious shudder, and the kerosene lamp crashed onto the floor, rolling under one of the beds and plunging the room into momentary darkness.

But that lasted for only a few seconds. A flicker of orange flame snaked out of the blackness as the dustdry blankets caught fire, followed by the crackling of the floorboards igniting in the fierce heat.

"Windows are all shuttered and locked from the outside," the Armorer shouted.

Already it was hard to breathe.




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