Trinity’s Fall

Trinity’s Fall assumed published, copyright and written by P. A. Vasey.

A prologue describes a man awakening in unusual surroundings somewhat similar to those of a hospital room with various leads retracting into the wall. Finally recognizing himself but strangely not functioning under his own thoughts, when a young woman enters he attempts to kill her. But again suddenly, he crashes emotionally, recovers and finds the woman gone. The first chapter then opens with a woman in Detroit answering her cell phone when a man asks “Is that you Kate?” She answers that she is Dr. Sara Clarke and whether she can help him? His answer “I don’t want to freak you out” She asks why should she? And she is told he is directly across the street and waves. He is a man she does not remember, but he tells her his name is Pete Navarro and that she actually knows him very well. He wants to know from whom she is hiding because of the name Sara Clarke. Eventually they connect and she discovers that she had been Sara functioning as an ER physician in rural Indian Springs when a man was brought in after being struck solidly by a large truck travelling down I-95 while walking down the highway at night. She had called Navarro, another physician, in for consultation because upon examination the patient’s tests had showed weird components rather than those normally found in the human body but that he seemed ‘to be alive although comatose’. She has no memory whatsoever of Indian Springs, the man brought in to the ER, nor of the man with whom she was speaking, although he had been her co-worker. From this unusual introduction the reader begins to follow a complex plot involving the attempted take-over and eventual destruction of the human race by the alien Vu-Hak who first entered earth through a wormhole that served as an intergalactic portal that had evolved from the crater created at the atomic bomb testing site.

Discussion: further details certainly would be a disservice to the prospective reader. There is a sizable number of characters who are not particularly ‘well fleshed-out”, but sufficiently to elicit at least varying amounts of empathy. The aliens, and humans converted to alien-like components to a degree, can read minds, manipulate electrical fields, gravitational fields and more and can exhibit bursts of special activity, mental as well as physical when required, and are almost indestructible. The plot is of a complexity that makes for somewhat lesser enjoyment for this particular reader, but no doubt will appeal to most devotes of this genre. (An admittedly most irrelevant aside – Navarro likes Suntory scotch liquor. I’ve never had it outside of Japan where we had it occasionally if it was the only scotch available.)

4* 5* probably for alien genre devotees.

Tap Sapiens

Tap Sapiens (Reign of Sapiens’ Evil [R.O.S.E.] Book 1) published, copyright and written by Robin T. T. Poon.

This post-apocalyptic, Sci-Fi opens with young Brandi Perry travelling on a bus through sections of the countryside varying from complete destruction and ruin, small towns with inhabitants living on a barely above starvation level, areas of obvious wealth and plenty, and finally arriving at the army’s station where she is to be inducted into the armed services. After the usual examinations, issue of clothing, etc. she is assigned to a barracks with other new inductees. After ‘lights out’ she finds herself to be overcome with restlessness and quietly moves to the door, exits and wanders throughout much of the area including the officer’s building. Here she has an almost disastrous encounter with two officers, one of which is the commanding general. She returns to her own building where she is greeted by her immediate bunk mate. Gradually, the reader discovers that Brandi’s reason for joining the army is to somehow destroy the stranglehold it has upon the populace through the inequality dictated by the Supremo and enforced by his army. Death and destruction not only are continuing but actually increasing quite rapidly. She discovers that her bunk mate has suffered greatly, as have others whom she gradually begins gathering to her in a small group. After boot training, assignments are made and she finds that she has been promoted to 2nd Lieutenant and moved to another building where she now has only one other roommate. This person, also having been poorly treated by the army, but continuing because of the needs of her family, becomes convinced of Brandi’s sincerity, and joins her group. From this point, the activity escalates as more about Sapiens becomes apparent and with Brandi developing a problem because of a growing attachment to the equally affected general who allowed her to retreat to her own barracks that first night when she wandered into the officers’ quarters.

Discussion; the author has set forth a complicated tale of revolt against tyranny complicated by introduction of romance. It moves along relatively well, is peopled with interesting characters and generally should appeal to those who like dystrophic tales with an emotional component. A number of characters are unaccounted for, bits of early history are injected in a somewhat ‘startling’ manner and other minor features no doubt will disappear as the author continues to mature.

4* dystrophic tale; surprising developments and a bit of romance.

Strategic Entanglements

Strategic Entanglements assumed published, copyright and written by D. K. Knightley.

The author has set forth this initial book in the planned Kendra Veiss series that introduces her and other characters in another world in the year 2977. This world is composed of the dominant empire of Basur who had defeated and literally destroyed Askar, a medium-sized militant nation and left in this state although it’s ideological enemy. Askar gradually had climbed out of its devastated position and was again proving problematical. Both nations retained Counterintelligence agencies including Clandestine Operations, State Security and similar branches. The plot centers in Kendra’s position as an operative in Basur’s clandestine operations and her hot/cold sexual attraction to Aran Reiner, her Askar counterpart, especially after having been abducted by his operatives and submitted to torture. Kai Ansurian, an apparently good friend of Aran but seemingly a Basur-Askar Double agent, presents a somewhat similar problem after sexually attacking her not un-pleasurably during her torture sessions. Additionally, he also was helpful in her survival before release. A number of other supportive characters also are introduced and the story provides no ending per se, but rather serves as an introduction to the next volume in the series scheduled to appear in the near future.

Discussion: The author is described as presenting “A red-hot battle of the sexes designed for sophisticated readers looking for something original and out of the ordinary.” From what this reader seems to have been able to assemble from relatively diverse social intercourse, she has provided a vehicle that should have great appeal for these individuals. If the potential reader has not attained the more advanced levels of this mental state, however, the following notes may be helpful. Kendra’s at times almost hostile verbalization and actions with respect to attitudes of male dominance certainly are understandable after the horrible results of such activity she encountered within her own home. Similarly, such chauvinistic attitudes, even without her life experiences, are totally understandable and justified. It is only in the manner in which she often uses them that is difficult to accept. It would appear that she held almost a ‘death wish’ associated with some latent desire to be dominated as demonstrated by her totally unrealistic actions that repeatedly placed her in a dangerous, even untenable, position from which some dominant male’s activity was required to extract her. Additionally, the basic direction of the tale was a little difficult to discern. Besides depicting a highly intelligent and totally modern, courageous young woman fighting male chauvinism, an underlying tone of hesitant titillation seems prominent. For example, a rather extended scene seemingly slanted toward raising the expected titillation, proceeded during the torture period but was followed by quite clinically explicit descriptions that, perhaps purposely, nullified its apparent direction. Another feature of this volume that readers who prefer at least partial closure to parts of a story, may find the tale a little annoying in that it’s serial nature dictates that one must wait with baited breath until the author has been able to furnish the next episode.

Summary: If the prospective reader is not deterred by the above listed features, they will discover a well-written tale incorporating tension and sexual, as well as other, intrigue between attractive characters in a foreign land of the future. A good first novel.

3* 5* “…battle of the sexes …for sophisticated readers”       -2* for some as described.

The Protectorate Wars: Born Hero

The Protectorate Wars: Born Hero. Assumed published, copyright and written by S. A. Shaffer, Esq.

This is the story that takes place in a mythical land “of vast wealth and power, towering mountains and lush plains ….a bastion of hope between sweltering deserts and the raging ocean.” Within this land are individual countries that have been peaceful for a number of years but now unrest again is arising both within the countries and among them producing further tensions. The protagonist, David Ike, is a very young man who is the son and grandson of heroic pilots who are legends as saviors of the country in which he lives. Presently, his circumstances are rather dire. His father was killed heroically saving the boy and his mother in a disastrous air crash and his illustrious grandfather passed away shortly thereafter. He lost an arm in the crash and the bionic replacement, although quite adequate, precludes continuing his air cadet training. Responsible for his mother’s care, an invalid unable even to speak, he is her caretaker and ekes out a meager living until by routine mandatory public testing, it is discovered that he is of superior intelligence and is hired by one of the major representatives in the country’s parliament. Unfortunately, David is a quite naive, sincere individual with a strong work ethic and a strong belief in principles. As a result, from this initiating step, he is poorly fitted to be involved in the political arena replete with maneuvering that involves deceit, distrust, betrayal, treachery and even murder. The story continues until somewhat unexpected activity produces a conclusion that leaves little closure and only begs for further action.

Discussion: A somewhat unusual book with an interesting plot, set in a mythical world of the future with many sci-fi features, some mystery and a hint of romance. The characters are well portrayed and the plot provides several surprises. As such the reader will enjoy, but must be aware of a rather slow beginning consisting of largely unbroken prose with few conversational or other breaks – a tendency that persists throughout much of the ensuing material.

4* 5*Interesting multi-generic plot; -1 with questionable feature for some.

Trinity’s Legacy

Trinity’s Legacy a Sci-Fi Alien thriller assumed published, copyright and written by P. A. Vasey.

The book opens with an explanation, Trinity’s Legacy: The Vu-Hak are “An ancient and malevolent alien race, once organic, now entities of pure thought, drifting between the stars, limitless and immortal. An alpha species. A species that colonizes on a galactic-scale.” (Destroying the original populations en route.) Supposedly their galaxy is far too removed from ours for their malevolence to be of concern. However this is not the case. Apparently the early atomic bomb experimentation during the Cold War Era had opened a ‘knothole’, or small slit through which aliens could enter our world, and our scientific attempts to contact other civilizations in some manner had aided the attraction, So, for whatever unfathomable reason, the breach had opened and reached far beyond our galaxy to one at the very edge of the universe. The tale itself, opens with Kate Morgan, single parent of charming 5-year-old Kelly whom she has been forced to bring with her upon occasion as she functions in her position as ER physician in a Chicago hospital. She left the child, entranced with a program on her little personal computer, with an understanding Chief Resident in the waiting area as she is called to treat a ‘gang’ member with a bleeding abdominal wound. Other apparent members were with him and when a rival gang member appeared with gun in hand at the same time Kelly rushed in to see her mother, shooting began and little Kelly tragically was killed. Kate, obviously devastated, begins a downhill slide but eventually recovers sufficiently to move to a small hospital in Indian Springs, Nevada, where she again begins to function in a more normal fashion. Still desperately grieving, she had chosen this sparsely populated area as a place where she had once known some degree of happiness when her father had been stationed in the area during her childhood. Unfortunately, one morning a man is brought into the ER who was struck and thrown completely over a truck going 50 mph. Amazingly, there were none of the extensive injuries evident that usually would be encountered in such an accident, and the patient, although seemingly alive, produced none of the vital signs and Cat Scan results were unbelievable. Gradually he awakens, at first communicates with Kate through mental telepathy then changing to normal means of communication. Gradually, he explains his relationship to the aliens, and his need for her aid to save earth’s population and the tale begins to unfold and progress to a strange ending. An epilogue opens the way to the subsequent volumes that supposedly will provide possibilities of saving earth’s population from annihilation, although as here presented, makes one wonder as to what that survival might be like.

Discussion: This is the first in a trilogy to be followed by Trinity’s Fall to be released in 2019 and Trinity: Extinction with an expected 2030 publication date. This initial offering opens and continues for a considerable time in a ‘different’ and intriguing manner. However and regrettably from this reviewer’s perspective, the action climbs to a chaotic level that moves the story and a subsequent Adam/Karen relationship into a questionable area if the thought is for them to remain in this world as it exists. However, the story as presented along with the material set forth in the epilogue conjure up thoughtfully speculative ruminations. As presented in this first volume, both characters have been empathically provided in a ‘normal’ earth environment. But then as stated, the Epilogue leaves the reader in a thoughtfully speculative status.

Summary: An intriguing alien/sci-fi tale that provides several messages in a vehicle basically interestingly written, but with a few hiccups. Thus, readers’ scoring can range quite widely depending upon his/her mind-set and subsequent evaluation. Sci-fi/alien aficionados will discover a unique and intriguing possibility.

4* with wide variation dependent upon readers’ mind set and evaluation.

Find the Needle

Find the Needle, Part 1: Diary of a Digital Outlaw. Copyright by 514 Entertainment, Inc. written by Frank Perrotto.

The protagonist is an AI video game character functioning in California as an Estonian immigrant member of an Eastern Mob, the leader of which is his former immigrant buddie. The story evolves with Dmitry suffering from increasing frustrations heaped upon underlying but vaguely unformed thoughts on morality, a vaguely remembered life-threatening childhood event, his mother’s development of cancer that requires extensive and expensive therapy, and an ununderstood dissatisfaction with his life in general. The fast paced tale moves rapidly toward a finale that prepares the reader for Part II.

Discussion: The author has set forth a well-written description of an AI character set in California as a human with acquired street-wise intelligence and little education who is attempting to exist within a life situation that he finds to be totally confusing. For this reader it is difficult to discern whether the supportive characters of his sister, as well as his mother, girlfriend and his boss and associates, each with his/her own unpleasant and interrelated life situations are of similar origin.  In the author’s preface he explains that this most unusual story is in itself of an experimental nature and is the first in a projected series of three following the life of Dmitry, who is the subject of an A.I. video game living in a digital environment. As a reader totally unfamiliar with video games but aware of AI, its present limitations and attempts at further development, I am sure I have missed some significant aspects of this novel. However, as a fast-paced thriller centered in a seamier part of society, the story explores interesting aspects of individuals with the described deficiencies who might be caught in similar circumstances. As such, at least to this reader, the tale explores the thought processes of humans of lesser intelligence with minimal education and the vagaries of thought and frustrations they constantly must endure. Thus from this perspective, the author’s experiment appears to be highly successful. A caveat is required in that more sensitive readers should be aware that the language employed often is explicitly raw but typical for the level of individuals described.

5* Interesting thriller as the author’s ‘experiment’ appears successful.