Mel Odom

Here's an author I seriously stumbled across. I have a bad habit of buying books because of cover art that catches my attention. The cover art of Preying for Keeps really caught my eye. It is part of a series of books, Shadowrun, set on earth, a little ways into the future. Somehow or other, elves, trolls, goblins, orcs, dragons, and other mythical creatures have reentered the world as we know it. Magic works. So do computers. Shadowrunners are people who skirt along the edge of the law.

In the F.R.E.E. series, which is also set on earth, a little ways in the future, humans have come up with a name for certain "talents" previously displayed but not understood or believed (such as somebody able to bend spoons without touching them). These individuals are called "metables", and metability makes itself known in many different ways. For instance, one character in this book has the ability to be an organ recipient from just about anybody (most peoples' immune systems have a nasty habit of rejecting most organ transplants). He's apparently seen quite a bit of violent action, because most of is body parts are not original equipment. Another character has an uncanny ability with things of a mechanical nature. Early on in the second book, a young teenager is who rescued by the F.R.E.E.Lancers has the ability to form ice spears out of thin air and send them flying with great force at whatever he wants to send them flying at. He doesn't need an obvious water source to accomplish this. Mr. Odom's books definitely make for entertaining reading.

You will note that I gave one book a significantly lower rating than all the others I've read by Mel. This actually makes sense. The Sabrina, the Teenage Witch series is aimed at teenagers, and the writing in this book reflects this fact. While I didn't enjoy it a whole bunch, the fact that I enjoyed it at all is a good testament to Mel's writing skills. In my opinion, this book belongs to a significantly different genre from his other books, and yet he was still able to write for that genre very well.

Books I've Read by Mel Odom

Blade (based on the screenplay by David S. Goyer) (Mass Market Paperback) or (Paperback edition)


Born in terror, orphaned by violence. Neither human nor vampire, but both. Trained as an instrument of vengeance by a scientist who keeps him alive with ancient serums and secret technology. He uses his awesome powers to serve and protect the very species that despises and fears him—our own.


His lonely crusade against The Dark Ones has reached flash point. Humanity's primordial enemy, the Vampire, is emerging from its long, uneasy sleep, preparing to engage in an apocalyptic struggle in the nocturnal city streets.

The weapons are fang and claw, shotgun and sword. The battlefield is the urban night. The game plan is the same for either side:

Rule or die.
(book description)

Stalker Analog (Mass Market Paperback) or (Paperback edition)
Stalker Analog


Bethany Shay, daughter of a cop, is already a top detective on the Houston police force at age thirty-two. Now she's been given the toughest assignment of her career: tracking down a serial killer who is terrorizing the city. She and her partner, Tully, will follow the trail no matter where it leads—from the mean streets to church sanctuaries and beyond the ever-shifting nets of cyberspace. But there are two things neither Shay nor Tully could anticipate. The first is that someone else, someone very high up, is also out to find the killer. And the second is that death might just as easily stalk a cop as be stalked by one . . . .

(book description)


  1. F.R.E.E.Lancers (Mass Market Paperback) or (Paperback edition)

    Both cursed and blessed by amazing matabilities, the F.R.E.E.Lancers, under their beautiful-but-deadly administrator, Lee Won Underhill, hire out for every down-and-dirty assignment available. But now a gathering of old and fresh foes is threatening not only the existence of the F.R.E.E.Lancers, but the global balance of power in a future fantastic world.

    In the first novel based on the exciting TOP SECRET/S.I. gaming system, the F.R.E.E.Lancers take on an enemy that can strike across the world and into space with lethal force.

    Mel Odom is well-known as the author of forty popular books in the science-fiction, thriller, and action-adventure fields. (book description)

  2. F.R.E.E.Fall (Paperback edition)

    First there was F.R.E.E.Lancers

    ". . . a fast-paced high tech adventure . . . an exciting story with a well-conceived plot."

    Science Fiction Chronicle

    Now there is F.R.E.E.Fall

    In a highly technological future, ancient artificts and scrolls would seem to have little relevance, but in a small Indonesian country, new archeological discoveries lead to incomprehensible leaps in technology.

    When the nation uses itself as collateral against a debt and can't pay up, the F.R.E.E.Lancers are called on for help. The agency soon finds that there is more at stake than money, as ancient inventions are united with new technologies to endanger the fate of the world. Lee Won Underhill and the F.R.E.E.Lancers enter a desperate race to seize control of Melaka and defeat a rogue S.A.S. officer who commands a force of deadly metables equal to their own. (book description)

Forgotten Realms

Left Behind -- Military

  1. Apocalypse Dawn (Paperback edition)
    Apocalypse Dawn


    First Sergeant Samuel Adams "Goose" Gander finds himself center stage in the opening act of the Apocalypse. Goose and the men of the 75th Army Rangers fight to survive a massive attack on the Turkish-Syrian border. Battling his own failing faith, Goose prays for the lives of his men and the innocents who are caught in the rain of bullets and missiles.

    Back home, Goose's wife, Megan, fears for her husband and rebellious teenage son while she struggles to save another family. But her life is upended by an incredible, confusing, remarkable occurrence. She's not alone.

    (book description)

    Personal Note: The only reason I read this book was that it was written by Mel Odom. I don't believe there will be a Rapture or a Tribulation and those events are the central focus of this series. I also found myself getting frustrated with many of the characters because they didn't seem to grasp things that were obvious to me. I tried to give Mr. Odom a break, understanding that he was doing it on purpose, with the attitude that their faith had to be extremely weak for them to get left behind when the Rapture took place, but it still got quite annoying. Nevertheless, I did get something out of the book, it did make me re-examine my own faith, and I never got to the point where I gave any consideration to just putting down the book and walking away from it.

  2. (I haven't read this book, yet) Apocalypse Crucible (Paperback edition)
    Apocalypse Crucible

    The End of the World Is at Hand . . .

    In the midst of global chaos, people around the world continue to search for loved ones who have vanished. First Sergeant Samuel Adams "Goose" Gander and the 75th Army Rangers fight to hold Sanliurfa, Turkey, against superior enemy forces. Goose's newfound Christian faith is being tested at every turn, and he's not sure he'll survive long enough to learn if the troubles he's facing are the result of the great events of the end times or the side effects of another terrible war.

    Back at Ft. Benning, Goose's wife, Megan, is struggling with the disappearance of her youngest son, worrying about a husband who is overseas and a teenage son who has run away from home. She's been brought up on charges by the parents of a missing child, and anyone who could support her claims has disappeared.

    As devastating as the disappearances have been . . .

    (book description)

  3. (I haven't read this book, yet) Apocalypse Burning (Paperback edition)
    Apocalypse Burning

    In the days and weeks following the Rapture, First Sergeant Samuel "Goose" Gander and his 75th Army Rangers have held firm while the Turkish/Syrian–border skirmish erupted into full-scale war. As the Syrian army surrounds Sanliurfa, Turkey, the Rangers' base of operations, Goose begins to suspect he faces enemies within the city as well. Someone in his circle works for the Antichrist, and whoever it is won’t stop until Goose is destroyed.

    Back home at Fort Benning, Georgia, Megan Gander fights all the judicial resources of the U.S. Army. Megan sidestepped the chain of command in her quest to help teens orphaned by the Rapture, and the army wants her to back down, to stop talking about the good news of Jesus Christ's abiding love. Her refusal launches a spectacular court battle where everything she holds dear is at stake—including her freedom.

    With lives—souls—on the line, the fires of the apocalypse burn ever higher. (book description)

Sabrina, the Teenage Witch


Previous (/authors/NaomiNovik.html)Next (/authors/frederikpohl.html)
HomePaul's Favorite Authors