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Assignment: Jerusalem - Target: Antichrist
By Tim LaHaye and Jerry B. Jenkins

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Assassins: Assignment: Jerusalem, Target: Antichrist

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Assassins: Assignment: Jerusalem, Target: Antichrist
Large Print Edition
The Left Behind Series - Book 6
By Tim LaHaye and Jerry B. Jenkins
Thorndike Press, (2001)
ISBN: 0-7862-2906-3
Genre: Mystery - Suspense

Reviewed by Sheldon Ztvordokov - October 11, 2001

Assassins, the sixth book in the Left Behind Series begins with a slight change in format, when compared to the previous volumes. Until now, the books in the Left Behind Series have commenced with a short description of what 'went before'. With this book, however, the authors have added a list of the main characters, along with a brief description of whom they are. And, besides the prologue describing what went before, they have also added a short passage from the Book of Revelations.

This volume grabs the reader immediately, with one simple word - rage. Rayford Steele, the one member of the Tribulation Force who is always calm and steadfast is in a murderous rage aimed against Nicolae Carpathia, the man whom he believes is the Antichrist. After opening with Rayford's tirade against Carpathia, the story starts to get down to the nitty-gritty. Picking up where the last volume left off, Chloe has had her baby. Dr. Floyd is ill, dying from the same poison that had infected Hattie Durham, whom he nursed back to health. He became infected with the poison when he delivered her of her sill-born baby. David Hassid, the brilliant Tribulation Force member who works for Carpathia in New Babylon is proving invaluable to the force, both as a source of information and as a source of supplies. As events unfold, new members join the Tribulation Force while those that know what is coming wait anxiously for the next tribulation to strike the land, an event which is not long in coming.

With diabolical precision, supernatural horsemen appear on the horizon. Their horses have heads like lions with huge teeth, and they breathe fire and smoke. They have the tails of serpents, and their hoofs never touch the ground as they gallop across the globe, leaving behind the corpses of nonbelievers. When their murderous rampage has run its course, one third of the population that had existed when they appeared, will lie dead. In all, there are 200 million of these horsemen. They not only sweep over the Earth, but also fly through the sky, killing what prey they could find on airplanes and the like. The horsemen have two main weapons that they use to kill, the fire and smoke. Some people are burned to crisp, while others are suffocated with the sulfur rich smoke produced by the horses. Interestingly, believers can see the horsemen, and the horsemen can apparently tell who the believers are because they carefully avoid injuring them. Their victims, however, cannot see them.

According to the author's calculations, with this, the latest mass decimation of the Earth's population, there are now only one half of the people left alive from what constituted the entire population that had been left behind at the time of the rapture. Interestingly, with the advent of the horsemen also marks the halfway point of the seven-year tribulation period. Most important to the characters in the novel, the halfway point also signals the time when it will be possible for two preachers at the wailing wall in Jerusalem to be killed. Furthermore, the 144,000 witnesses that are trying to convert people to 'true' Christianity are also vulnerable.

Not wanting to be a spoiler, let me just say that this Assassins ends with a bang. A bang that will, most likely, affect all the future plot lines in this series. As with the previous books in the Left Behind Series, this volume is fast paced. True to form, the characters lack depth, but are nonetheless interesting. And the story, although simplistic at times, does manage to keep the reader's attention.

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