By Van Allen Plexico
White Rocket Books
Giant robots battling each other and horrific giant
monsters. Ah the stuff of Japanese movies and American comics. And now a wonderful,
action packed novel by veteran sci-fi and pulp writer, Van Allen Plexico. This
one truly has it all and this reviewer was entertained from the very first page
to the last. Having followed Plexico’s writing career over the years, we
weren’t the slightest bit surprised at the theme of this new book. If nothing
else, Plexico has shown he will not be pigeon holed in any one genre.
We’ve applauded his superhero series, and gone ballistic
over his crime thrillers. So again, no surprise when he takes us back to 1978
and a top secret base in the Pacific Ocean
where giant robots manufactured by an alien race are discovered. A scientist
named Garen pieces together an incredible history of two powerful intergalactic
empires, the good Ahlwhen and the power mad Xovaren. Using super science to
battle each other across the galaxies, the Ahlwhen built the giant robots while
the more barbaric Xovaren created massive organic monsters. One of the hundreds
of planets they fought across centuries earlier was earth and upon their
departure, they left behind remnants of both these incredibly powerful
David Okada is a high school student in Hawaii living with his maiden aunt, while
his older brother John is a navy pilot whom he hasn’t seen in several years.
Both were orphaned when their parents passed away. Our tale begins one day when
out of the sky, a giant robot lands near David’s school and out of the control
“head” room appears John desperately seeking help. Something has infected his
units other three robots leaving John the sole “free” agent to battle them.
When David comes aboard the robot machine, called Validus-V, he somehow links
with it empathically and when John is several wounded in battle with his former
allies, it is David who takes command of three foot tall battling machine. Only
he remains to somehow save his brother, defeat the other three giant robots and
solve the mystery behind their bizarre brainwashing.
This is Van Plexico at his best and the action is non-stop. Not cliché, but here a fact. Combining all out sci-fi thrills with likeable characters, he puts forth elements that in the end come together to produce one of the finest books of the year. If you like top-notch writing, do not pass up “Validus-V.” As for this reviewer, we are so begging for a sequel Mr. Plexico. In the words of Jean Luc Picard, make it so.