William B. Dubay's The Rook Archives: Volume 1 (2017)
Fiction Review by The Gravedigger
This nicely bound hardcover edition reprints the ROOK stories that first appeared in EERIE magazine before he had his own magazine run. It's about Restin Dane, an inventor who travels in a time travel device that resembles a chess piece. When we're first introduced to him he's rescued his great-great grandfather from 1874-and has his robotic sidekicks, including a humanoid one named Manners, help him. Then, he disappears, leaving the old man to discover why he's now in 1977. We learn that Restin is a techno-physicist and that he's been obsessed with the Old West, particularly the events of the Alamo. He wants to save an ancestor but ends up saving the life of a young boy, who actually turns out to be a relative after all. Unfortunately, at the end of his trip back to his own time Dane gets a hitcher, an evil guy by the name of Gat Hawkin. He wants the time travel device and the power if will give him. He's basically an over-the-top bad guy. In another jaunt to the past Dane falls in love with a woman, Kate, who works at a saloon, and takes her back to his own time. Then, it looks like he's erased himself from time, though he's gone to the far far future to find that the earth is basically a graveyard.
This book brought back some memories, though it's not as cool as I remember the character to be. I actually found the most recent incarnation of THE ROOK more entertaining than these heavy-handed tales.