Futura, 1985. (Got no scanner and can't find a pic online...shame, as it's damn funny)
"AMERICA'S LAST HOPE!
When America is brought to its knees by Russia's nuclear sneak attack, it's Ted Rockson, the Doomsday Warrior, who rallies the scattered Free Cities to rise up and fight the Soviet invaders. While the land of the brave is not yet the land of the free, at least Rockson rekindles the fires of hope - until the new American Revolution suffers a crippling blow when he's captured by the Reds and dragged off in chains to Moscow.
Half a world away from his loyal troops, Rockson is trapped in the evil centre of a world gone mad. Inside the walls of the Kremlin, surrounded by KGB agents, there is no running and no escape. He has only one choice: to die in the name of freedom, fighting for a cause known as America - as he wages a one-man war that could only be fought by the...
"The dwarf lifted his mallet again and leaped up, searching frantically around for the next opponent. But there were none. Just a charnel ground of mutilation, blood and pieces of flesh. He could scarcely believe it. The crowd began cheering him, standing in their seats, laughing and sarcastically applauding this 'great gladiator'. The dwarf raised his now blood-coated weapon high in the air and turned slowly, letting the crowd see this hero of the misfits..."
An immense tiger, nearly five feet high at the shoulder, rushed at a buxom white Irish girl with skin as fair as the first November snow. But it wasn't a quick or efficient killer. It ripped out one of its plate-sized paws, the claws fully extended like a row of daggers, and slashed across her chest. Her right breast was ripped from her body like a piece of flimsy paper...
Rock stared at the man incredulously, not quite knowing what to say. "Are you all musicialns? I see you're holding a clarinet." "Oh," Yuri Goodman said with a smile, "this not regular clarinet. This be weapon, too - sonic boom-boom. Understand?"...he pointed his brass clarinet toward the mouse and played a sweet extremely high note. The mouse froze, then shivered and dropped dead.
I could go on...you can pick a page at random really
Without a doubt, the stupidest book I have ever read. Absolute gold. Picked this up at a market stall a fair while back (for 30p I think!) for the cover - don't go a bundle for most sf usually but this features a nice 80s heavy metal album cover-style painting of two very muscular dudes (one big Chewbacca-type meathead and one smaller, hunkier chap) in post apocalyptic Mad Max-style gladiator duds weilding futuristic cutting weapons. They are surrounded by blades and the backdrop is Moscow...
This is so ludicrous on so many levels I don't know where to start. Virulently anti-Communist to the point of hilarity (the big bloated toad-like Russian leader sleeps with two little children, for instance), ridiculous plot devices, OTT violence, paper-thin characterisation like watching He-Man or something, sexism, racial stereotypes, badly written sex...great stuff in other words. There's a big old series of 'em, going right into the Perestroika period but still hatin' on the Reds I assume. Will try and pick more of these up. Ted Rockson is the Ultimate American, taking on the Reds almost single-handedly sometimes. He's very difficult to kill, as he has mutant blood, or something...
Apparently not. Fantastic Fiction reckon it's one fella under a pseudonym ( www.fantasticfiction.co.uk/s/ryder-stacy/ ) and this site reckon it's two ( everything2.com/e2node/Doomsday%2520Warrior ). The names sound Scandinavian...which maybe gives these books a different angle, knowing they're not written by an American. If you look on Amazon, Jan Stacy and Ryder Syvertsen have also written a few books about movies. I like the sound of the 'Body Smasher' series! hahaha...you can imagine what they're like! haven't managed to find hide nor hair of either of 'em anywhere though...
The Fantastic Fiction entry appears to suggest that Ryder Syvertsen and Jan Stacy are one and the same. They're actually two different people.
Ryder Syvertsen may well be of Scandinavian origin but he's a graduate of Binghamton University, State University of New York and so, I suspect, somewhat American. Their Alumni Connect website has the following entry about him and his work;
"Ryder Syvertsen '69, MA '71, author of the Mystic Rebel and Doomsday Warrior action/adventure/sci-fi novel series... The Mystic Rebel series consists of six novels about CIA operative Bart Lasker, who travels to Tibet on a mission but "remains behind, disobeying orders, to wage a personal war against the brutal Red Chinese oppressors,"... Hunted by assassins aligned with both the KGB and the "Company," Lasker eventually morphs into "a fearless avenger from out of the West, transformed from mortal man to . . . Mystic Rebel." Doomsday Warrior is a 19-novel saga that takes place in the year 2089. The main character, Ted Rockson (alias 'Rock'), is "The Doomsday Warrior,"... "He fights back against the Russian invaders who now control post-World War III America - a land decimated by nuclear missiles from Russia's first strike."
Jan Stacy died of AIDS, aged 41, on 20th August 1989. The New York Times printed an obituary;
"Mr. Stacy wrote several books about movies, including ''The Great Book of Movie Monsters,'' and several paperback adventure novels, including a series called ''Body Smasher.'' In the mid-1960's, Mr. Stacy co-founded a drug-rehabilitation program for teen-agers in New York called Encounter. He also opened a short-lived gallery in SoHo called Fear of Art in the 1970's."
So it seems Ryder Syvertsen wrote the Mystic Rebel series, Jan Stacy was the author of the Body Smasher series (they do sound fun, don't they?), and the two collaborated (at least initially) on Doomsday Warrior with Syvertsen presumably taking over the series in its later years (it lasted until 1991).
In case you can't quite make out what Capt. Lou Albano* is saying up top there...
"Meet Rick Harrison... The bone-crushing power-slammer who's got a deadly choke-hold on fanatical terrorists!"
Yup, it's a wrasslin' book. But not just any wrasslin' book... it's a wrasslin' book with crazed fanatical anti-American terrorists (boo!) and enormous Bulgarians (yay!) in it;
"He's six-feet four-inches of volatile human dynamite, body-slamming his way to glory in the rib-cracking world of professional wrestling! But the arena's baddest bad men aren't the only foes Rick Harrison takes to the mat - for America's newest champion is also the C.I.A.'s most lethal secret weapon! Leading the bloody battle against domestic terrorism, he's got the forces of international evil locked in an unbreakable chokehold! A pulverizing, power-punching piledriver, he is the Body Smasher.
At the prestigious World Wrestling Games, crazed fanatics plan to transform New York's Flushing Meadow Park into a new Hiroshima of horror. Contestant Rick Harrison is the only man who can prevent the devastating nuclear nightmare. But the maniacs are going for the gold - and before the terrorist scheme to french-fry the Big Apple can be derailed, a gigantic muscle-bound Bulgarian monster is gearing up to take down the Bodysmasher... for good!"