From the mind that gave us the remarkably fun Saint Tommy, NYPD series is a brand-new space opera. White Ops is what you get when you take the ideas of Babylon 5, John Ringo, and David Weber and toss them into a blender. And the result is wild.
Our story starts with a bar fight between a – get ready – giant Irish telepath and a muscular space velociraptor. It gets crazier from there, believe it or not. The Pharmakoi are invading Earth and the only one who can stop the invasion force is an intelligence analyst who is described as having both clownish features and the build (and hair) of someone who should be on the covers of romance novels. There’s also a race of Thomistic space elves.
It becomes apparent rather quickly that the Pharmakoi are not invading Earth on their own. A more powerful force is pulling their strings and it is up to our hero, Sean Ryan, to figure out who they are and how to stop them.
Sean Patrick Ryan is basically a huge, Irish, telepathic, Catholic leprechaun. With guns. And who also likes to break and explode things. Think if Cable had a brogue and decided to put together an elite team of space Templars to stop a malevolent group of very hungry alien monsters ripped from nightmares. You get the idea of where this plot is going.
This is sci-fi adventure the way it should be. It doesn’t get bogged down in politics (though there is some notable scheming and intrigue going on) or info dumps. Instead, we get solid exposition and plenty of explosions. It’s hard not to cheer when the good guys stop the villains or blow stuff up.
Speaking of the politics: Finn doesn’t beat you over the head with anything. Authoritarians are portrayed accurately, and most politicians are portrayed as self-aggrandizing idiots or power-hungry psychopaths. So… a little departure from strict fiction. But amid space raptors, flaming swords, invisible centaur monsters, and telepaths, a virtuous political class would have seemed too outlandish.
Oh, and there are gun fights and stealthy ninja action, too.
If you’re looking for an alternative to [CORPORATE BRAND SPACE OPERA] you are going to love this. Buy a copy and I guarantee you’ll have a blast. Many blasts. I lost count of how many explosions there are. This is also a great starting point if you are interested in reading Declan Finn’s work, but aren’t into horror. When black ops aren’t enough…