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Inspector Of The Cross by John B. Rosenman
(A man sacrifices everything to save humanity, politics and emperors be damned.)
Thanks to suspended animation, Turtan is over 3500 years old and travels on freeze ships to distant worlds. His mission is to investigate weapons to help humanity turn the tide against their ancient nemesis…the Cenknife. Vicious aliens, the Cenknife seek to conquer the universe and enslave humanity.
When Turtan discovers just such a weapon, a beautiful, seductive woman stands in his way. He must use all his skills, abilities, and courage to meet the crisis and save untold billions of lives.
Review by Rochelle Weber (Roses & Thorns Reviews). Heinlein would approve. No higher praise…“The college I attended had a writing program, but when I went, there were no genre-specific classes. Everyone was out to win the National Book Award at the very least, and they all looked down on genre fiction. Eventually they added a sci-fi class, but the instructor told me the rest of the writing faculty were still snobbish toward her. Hugo and Nebula Awards meant nothing to them. Mr. Rosenman’s students were lucky, indeed, to have such a good writer teaching them at a college where I’m sure he received the respect he deserved.
In my opinion, the best sci-fi writer of the twentieth century was Robert A. Heinlein. The first of Mr. Rosenman’s books that I read was almost as good as the Old Man’s. Inspector of the Cross, I think, might have had Mr. Heinlein in the same conundrum as me. The book grabbed me on the first page, but somewhere along the way, I caught a red herring. I mean I really caught it. I had that thing scaled, gutted, and breaded. If I say any more, I might ruin the book. You must buy Inspector of the Cross and follow Turtan on his journeys.”
Review by Micki Peluso (author of . . . And the Whippoorwill Sang). One of the Best Sci-fi books of the times! “Inspector Turtan is in fine shape for someone 3,573 years old. He owes this to suspended animation on so many freeze spaceships. Traveling solo is a lonely job . . . Not to mention the loves, family and friends that he’s outlived. Yet as Inspector of the Cross, it’s his mission to find the ultimate weapon to save humanity from the enemy — the Cenknife aliens bent on controlling the known universe . . . In in spite of compensations, it’s a terribly lonely job.
Will this trip to the desolate planet, Sircon IV, harbor what Turtan needs, “The Godstone?” His aged monkey-like host hopes to reassure Turtan that it is a myth, a useless relic of no merit, revered by religious barbarians from a past long since gone. Turtan, superb at his long-held job, senses the Overlord is lying. Lucan insists a visit to the pillar would not be worthwhile for reasons he refuses to expound upon. The two banter back and forth as Lucan holds his position in the most polite way, while pointing out that the living alien chair wrapped around Turtan contains deadly needles controlled by the simple thought waves of the Overlord. And he’d seemed like such a sweet old man. They finally come to an agreement and journey to the pillar across desert sands and into a dark cool cave. The Monolith, 6 meters high, stands before Turtan. His first thought is . . . The Godstone is alive.
After playing some dangerous mind games, including one where there is suddenly three of him, each a part of his psyche, Turtan writes his report to his superiors, stating that the Godstone is not the weapon he’s been searching for — Lucan had warned him of the Monolith’s tendency to trickery. Now he believes him.
50 years later he awakens from his freeze sleep just above Planet Zontena, his next assignment. In cosmic time, only 20 light-years from Ohio, where he’d grown up — but a far cry from the “tall cuddly birdlike” race who delight in games and cosmetic surgery, armed with no spaceships at all. Still a weapon has been reported here — could this be the “one” which will save the human race? Computer statistics state there is a strong possibility. And why is a beautiful young inspector named Yori already here before him? Like an interstellar Sherlock Holmes, Turtan ruminates over this puzzle — on a planet that loves games.
Tension grows as Turtan’s ultimate enemy, a Cen named Turois, shows up as well. Unlike the rest of his race, this alien has feelings. How did that happen? What game is the seemingly placid Eden-like planet up to, and who will be the winner in a deadly race to control humanity?
This is an engaging sci-fi story on so many levels. Things are never what they seem and alien differences, often startling, make the reader rethink “humanity.” Amidst a war thousands of years long, stretched across endless galaxies, and through black holes, surprises abound from the strangest of places, while complexity often shows a simple face. Author John B. Rosenman has again composed a story both exciting and engrossing, as his plotting unpeels like a ripened onion giving off a plethora of probable conclusions which can suddenly veer off in different directions. Rife with subtle subterfuges, he brings both humor and cleverness to this novel which builds to an unforeseen brilliant climax. This is a book that lovers of this genre and those new to it will not want to miss. It’s just that good.”
Review by Pattimari. 5.0 out of 5 Stars. “Inspector Turtan is quite old according to space-time. He travels away from family and friends that leave him behind as they age. However, being the Inspector of the Cross, his mission is to find the ultimate weapon to save humanity from the enemy. Does he find it? I’m not telling. LoL.
John developed his characters with amazing style and description. In fact, his descriptions are, as I am a big fan of Pearl Buck, who won a noble prize for her descriptive writing, as good as hers. The story flows without stops and goes. John has a good vocabulary in this book, but not one that makes you stop and search for the word. I’m impressed with John’s book and would defintely recommend it to family and friends.”
Review by Lady Bug Lin. 5.0 out of 5 Stars. He’s over 3500 years old yet looks younger than you and me…and he’s scanning the heavens for the perfect weapon. “Although I am not a rabid Sci-Fi fan, I’ve found I’m a INTRIGUED Sci-Fi dabbler. What does that mean? For one thing it means I’ve had the opportunity to read stories written by the amazingly creative mind of John B. Rosenman… (And OMG…have your read this guy’s resumé?)
Someone, somewhere once said…and I think it was Gene Rodenberry, there really aren’t more than maybe four Sci-Fi themes. What brings them to life is how the author reweaves them. I don’t know if that’s true, but as I read this story, I kept seeing correlations to an episode of the Original Star Trek TV Series.
In INSPECTOR OF THE CROSS we have an agent of The Cross who spends most of his life…over 3500 years and counting floating around in space in a state of cryogenic…uhmmm…absence…while his AI controlled ship takes him from one end of the universe to another and from one mission…the search for the perfect weapon…to the next.
His people, The Cross, have been in a perpetual war with the evil Cenknife Civilization. All The Cross needs is that one PERFECT weapon to end the stalemate war and allow its side to finally win.”
Publication Date: February 11, 2020
Print Length: 254 Pages
Publisher: Crossroad Press (February 11, 2020)
Global Library: Science Fiction (Space Fleet Science)
Global Library: Science Fiction (First Contact)
Global Library: Science Fiction (Space Exploration)
Global Library: Science Fiction (Space Opera)
A Senseless Act Of Beauty by John B. Rosenman
(An untouched, beautiful world – what could go wrong?)
Aaron Okonkwo, a Nigerian scientist, travels with a crew in the 24th century to evaluate Viridis, which proves to be a beautiful and fabulous world. There, Aaron discovers a strange, alien species and amazing machines and technology left in a vast underground complex by a mysterious race called the Creators.
Aaron soon falls under the irresistible, seductive spell of Nightsong, a green alien female with ominous and bewitching powers. However, an even greater danger rises. He will be forced to fight for the planet’s survival against a ruthless invasion of many ships to conquer and enslave the planet – just as Africa itself was once enslaved.
Aaron knows it’s A Senseless Act of Beauty to try to reclaim his ancient warrior heritage and fight back against such overwhelming odds, but he knows he must try.
Review by Daz Pulsford. 5.0 out of 5 Stars. A powerful tale of love and wonder. “Cleverly mixing some traditional sci-fi elements: an alien planet ripe for conquest, an arrogant and rapacious paternalistic invader, indigenous humanoids who cause fascination and wonder, and mysterious technological forefathers, A Senseless Act of Beauty also includes tales from the African Mythos of our future past, and more than a dash of love and heartbreak as it weaves a tale of hope, the surrender to love, and a quest for understanding.
It is the central character Aaron’s journey of self-belief and understanding his place in things that sets up the story, and around it we see the story change from his view as a visiting scientist to a fierce protector of the planet Viridis. Beginning with a defining moment of his youth that shapes his future instincts, the author takes you through Aaron’s transformations as he learns to love, grieve, love again, and ultimately triumph over the very forces of mindless subjugation and assimilation of which he was initially a part.
The native aliens of Viridis also undergo a distinct journey. Although physically and psychically far more evolved than humans, they are emotionally stunted, naïve and split along gender lines – believing their omnipotent Creators to have deserted them as a failed experiment and doomed to extinction due to the overbearing mental dominance of the females over the repressed males.
In Aaron they see their saviour, and as with the other males of his crew, he is coerced into gifting reproduction to his mate, Nightsong. What follows is a bizarre evolutionary roller-coaster at high speed as Aaron and the aliens try to leap the gap in fertility, causing distress and anger amongst both Aaron and his former Captain and their offspring.
Woven into the love and heartbreak of these genetic problems is the discovery of the Creators machines below the ground and their array of awesome and terrifying powers – all of which lead to Aaron realising his potential (as bound and retold in the stories of his native heritage) and destiny as guardian of Viridis against the returning, now warlike Humans who want to carve up the planet for its riches. A final conflict brings a neat fulfillment to the story and leaves room for glimpses of what might yet be.
Rich with astonishing sights and sounds, primal fears and advanced technology, the simplicity of love and faith and the ugly faces of envy, greed and mistrust – this book is a magical tale that will have you hanging on right to the end.”
Publication Date: February 20, 2011Print Length: 366 PagesPublisher: Crossroad Press; Crossroad Press Digital Edition (February 20, 2011)
Global Library: Science Fiction (Space Fleet Science
)Global Library: Science Fiction (First Contact)
Global Library: Science Fiction (Space Exploration)
Global Library: Science Fiction (Space Opera)
About John B. Rosenman: When John was a kid, a family friend gave him a subscription to Amazing Stories and fired up his imagination. Later he was infected by EC comics, Ray Bradbury, and terrifying SF movies like The War of the Worlds, Them!, and The Thing. As the imaginative twig is bent, so grows the literary tree.
In time, John received his PhD in English from Kent State University. As an English professor at Norfolk State University, he designed and taught a course in how to write Science fiction and Fantasy. He is a former Chairman of the Board of the Horror Writers Association and the previous editor of The Rhetorician and Horror Magazine. Altogether, he has published 300 stories in places such as Weird Tales, Whitley Strieber’s Aliens, Fangoria, Galaxy, The Age of Wonders, and the Hot Blood anthology series.
His two dozen books include SF action-adventure novels such as his Inspector of the Cross series; Beyond Those Distant Stars, winner of AllBooks Review Editor’s Choice Award, and Speaker of the Shakk (Mundania Press); and A Senseless Act of Beauty and Alien Dreams (Crossroad Press). The Merry-Go-Round Man, a young adult, coming-of-age novel is also available from Crossroad Press. One of his stories, “The Blue of Her Hair, the Gold of Her Eyes,” won Preditors and Editors Annual Reader Poll for short SF/F.
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