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“Phantom Deadfall”


Phantom Deadfall

Well, this series is getting much, much better. I’ve even gotten used to having a talking gun around and some of his stupid humor! That’s saying a lot when I at first didn’t see the point in having a “talking gun” around in a military science fiction book. The humor is getting better and not so much of it. I think it fits in more so I think the author is learning as he writes. I’m also reading some real good character building and personal interaction between the Phantom members. Our main guy, Master Gunnery Sergeant (Ret.) Patrick (Wic) Finnegan is one heck of a leader and is becoming more so as the story progresses.

Yeah, he was retired some where in upstate New York, but close enough that he had a good view of the great city and clearly saw the alien invasion when it happened. And by now, you should know the rest. The aliens are “harvesting” humans for whatever purpose their customers have in mind. As we found out in the last book, humans from Earth are being taken through giant transportation rings back to a merchandise processing facility (Terminal A3) on planet Karkin Four. It’s not necessarily a place that humans can survive and they are treated like cattle. And again, there are millions of humans being taken from Earth, that is until Wic and his Phantom Team stopped that process cold!

Due to Phantom Team’s action, the aliens have decided to stop processing humans and are withdrawing all their ships and rings from Earth. That’s a good sign except for the fact that millions of humans that have been processed won’t make it back and that’s something bothering Wic. He would certainly like to do something about that, but he knows he doesn’t have the assets with him on Earth. In fact, him and his team just barely made it back to Earth. Now they need to focus on getting all the survivors that are still in New York City some place where they can continue to survive. They certainly won’t be able to do so in the city since now of the city services and in fact, nothing is working in New York City at all. Food is all but gone so the people stuck in their homes or hotels or wherever are going to start getting real hungry real soon. Then there’s those that are already injured. Since none of the hospitals are functioning, there’s a lot of people that need help and can’t find it. So, Wic leads his team to begin getting the remaining people out of New York City.

He gets help from a lot of police that surprisingly stayed on Duty and are doing their best to help folks. Then there’s the gang members who have suddenly realized that without the people in the city to prey on, their lives are going to get much worse. A lot of these gang members don’t know how to exist without functioning city services, food stores and other city conveniences. Wic confronts a number of these and eventually convinces them that they can’t continue to be the “bad dudes” they think they are because, for one, Wic’s people are much better armed and trained than they are and two, they don’t have a clue as to what to do. So with the help of some of the city gangs, the local law enforcement officers and now the not so hidden Russian mafia, they all pull together to get people taken care of. Except, where are they going to take all these people?

Wic comes up with a solution and it seems to be the only one that will work. Without the manpower to now run all of our utilities for electricity and fuel station, we’re back to the middle ages of doing without fancy electronics and gadgets. Fortunately, Wic knows of a group of people in Pennsylvania who are used to living this way and are very generous when it comes helping others. So, that problem seems to have a solution. Then another one shows up.

A large, black alien spaceship comes through the last ring on Earth. It’s armed to the teeth and Wic hasn’t got a clue as to why it might be here. Then his alien friend, Major Insarka Kindesh, comes through in a small ship to tell Wic that he’s got a big problem. It seems that an alien General isn’t too pleased with Wic and the Phantom Teams activities so he’s put a huge bounty on Wic’s head. The black ship belongs to the most feared bounty hunter the aliens know. And now he’s after Wic!

Again, I’ll say at first I wasn’t crazy about having a talking rifle around, but that part of the story is kind of humorous and it’s growing on me. There’s still a lot of serious fighting and I’m amazed that for every problem they encounter, Wic seems to come up with a plan on how to deal with it. And then he starts implementing his plan pretty quickly. Oh, he does discuss some of his plan with his team, but not very much and usually only to get them to understand what he wants done. I don’t care how good a leader you are, no leader can always come up with the perfect plan and that’s what’s happening in this book. It’s makes for a good story, but it’s not realistic, but this is science fiction after all!

Even though I figured this could be the end of the series, it’s not! Book 4, “Decayed Legacy”, is out on Amazon already. I have it on my reading list, in fact, it’s going to be read next!

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