Review: Houdini vs. Rasputin

Houdini vs. Rasputin

I was in the mood for a change of pace, and upon seeing Houdini vs. Rasputin I felt I had to give it a shot. I was not disappointed.

Who and What

Harry Houdini makes an ahistorical second trip to Russia in 1911, brought over by the head of the secret police to try and deal with the mystic Rasputin. What follows is a book-long adventure as the mystic and the escape artist match wits and trade blows. Pitting the two larger-than-life figures against each other is brilliant.


Almost all the descriptions are for something actually important to either the plot or scene at hand. Imagine that!

Zombie Sorceresses

This just isn’t the kind of book where this category is important or even viable. I could argue “not even memetic Houdini could escape from that” but this isn’t the kind of book for that. I could argue “is it a coincidence he runs into everyone from Stolypin to Lenin?” but this isn’t the kind of book for that. This is the kind of book where you just run with it.

Tank Booms

After dozens of books of red-blooded Mack Bolan wannabes, tanks booming, clinical technothriller battles, and spacesuit commandos, the earnest old-fashioned adventure here, beautifully written, is highly refreshing. I could almost imagine a John Williams score in the background for some of the scenes.

The Only Score That Really Matters

Houdini vs. Rasputin is a fresh, earnest, amazing tale. Not since the first few volumes of Jerry Ahern’s Survivalist have I read with such  totally along-for-the-roller-coaster-ride enthusiasm. I highly recommend it.

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