Assassins: Assignment: Jerusalem, Target: Antichrist (Left Behind No. 6) by Tim LaHaye, Jerry B. Jenkins
Detail on Assassins – Left Behind No. 6:
The fact that Carpathia is assassinated isn’t, frankly, the surprise. It’s fairly obvious from the earlier books in the Left Behind Series that Carpathia is the world leader who is positioned as the Antichrist. And it’s expected that he will receive a deadly head wound, and recover. The surprise is who does the assassination.
Throughout the book, the reader’s viewpoint switches back to Rayford Steele, Carpathia’s former personal pilot and Christian. He’s become the ‘action leader’ of the Tribulation Force (band of people who become believers in Christ after the worldwide disappearance of Christians). Steele behaves strangely, though not genuinely out of character, throughout the book. He makes preparation to assassinate Carpathia, even though he knows full well it is both wrong and futile. He acts like a man being driven by an outside force. Even so, he is not the assassin. I can truly say that I was surprised by who it was. A mark of good writing.
The other members of the Tribulation Force also feature prominently throughout the book. Rayford’s son-in-law Buck Williams and daughter Chloe are unexpectedly expecting their first child. This opens up interesting conundrums for them both. Should they bring a child into this lost world, with less than seven years until Jesus Christ’s Glorious Appearing? How will they provide for a child, in this ruined, famished, broken world? How will it impact their underground activities?
Another major thread in this story is the reappearance of Hattie. She’s the woman Rayford nearly had an affair with at the beginning of the original Left Behind book. She’s since become the mistress of the Antichrist himself, Nicolae Carpathia. And became pregnant with his child. She fled from Carpathia, only to become deathly ill. And her illness causes the death of another member of the Tribulation Force.
Another thread is ended in this book, as the false ‘Pope Peter’ is dealt with. In an entirely appropriate fashion, opening the door for the one-world religion set to dominate the world. The fashion is appropriate, although it seems a little quick. I would have like to seen this particular thread stretched out over another book or two. Although I can’t say that I’ll miss him very much.
Recommendation for Assassins: Left Behind No. 6:
Strongly recommended, although if you’re just starting the series, you probably want to start with the first volume in the series, the original Left Behind.
Editorial Review of Assassins: Left Behind No. 6:
Is it right to kill Satan’s hit man? Would it help God’s work? This installment in the Left Behind series picks up with Rayford Steele–“believer” and international fugitive–as he struggles with a plan to assassinate Antichrist Nicolae Carpathia. Meanwhile, Carpathia has been busy rebuilding roads, airports, and a cellular/solar satellite phone system–all designed to help him become supreme ruler of the world–and even claim himself to be God. We also find ace reporter Buck Williams anonymously preaching to the masses of believers and converts through his cyberspace magazine The Truth . All the believers in the safe house, including Buck, Doc, Chloe, and Tsion, are suspicious of Hattie–former mistress of Carpathia–who claims to be a believer but may have already compromised their secret location when she tried to buy her way to Europe months before.
Fans of the series won’t be disappointed. Jenkins’s signature writing is at full force. Readers can count on a suspenseful plot, imaginative futuristic thinking, and familiar characters, all of which appear in the opening pages and are sustained until the last cliffhanger scene when God unleashes another earth-shattering disaster. –This text refers to the Hardcover edition.