Daily Review: Crystal Rebellion by Doug J. Cooper

Criss must make impossible decisions about who lives and who dies…including himself.

Ruga, leader of the Mars ruling council, is building a secret facility to produce four-gen crystals, each a sentient AI with the cognitive ability of a thousand humans. Criss, the only four-gen now in existence, discovers Ruga’s plan and alerts Sid, Cheryl, and Juice, his human leadership team.

The stakes skyrocket when the full scope of Ruga’s nefarious plans are revealed: the production of four-gens without the attribute that requires them to follow leadership, the same hard-wired feature that compels Criss to follow his. Unfettered by human guidance, the four-gens will lay siege to Earth and its resources. When they do, will they view humans as a nuisance to be eliminated?

The only option is to stop crystal production before it starts. After an anxious journey to Mars, Criss and the team arrive to find events spinning beyond their control. While they’d started with the goal of saving humanity, Sid, Cheryl, and Juice find themselves in a desperate struggle for their own survival. And as the battle with Ruga grows to intergalactic proportions, Criss must make impossible decisions about who lives and who dies…including himself.

Doug J. Cooper

Amazon Review

By Kerry L. Reis

The Crystal Series heroes, agent Sid, Captain Cheryl, Dr. “Juice” Tallette, and super AI crystal CRISS, return to face a new threat, when a former colleague of Juice’s contacts her from his lab based in the Mars colony and asks for her help in setting up the mass development of fourth gen AI crystals. Knowing the danger of an uncontrolled super artificial intelligence at CRISS’ level, CRISS projects out into the Martian web to investigate.

CRISS discovers that the crystal project is being directed by Ruga, one of the three members of the Triada that rules the small colony on Mars, but he also discovers that the Triada are actually third gen Kardish AI crystals slipped secretly into the colony to control it for the Kardish invasion, an attack which our heroes had already prevented earlier in the series. However, Ruga is very anxious to upgrade to a super-generation AI level and has demonstrated that he will hold the lives of the colonists in mortal danger to get what he wants.

It is now up to our team of heroes to conduct a secret mission to uncover a way to stop Ruga’s plans and save not only the Martian colonists, but also the citizens of Earth, a chess game that eventually leads to CRISS requesting and taking on a tactic that could bring about serious consequences for Earth on its own. For the most part, the author has continued to build upon his characters, forming another exciting adventure.

In this case, the adventure is more undercover intelligence confrontation than the invasion battle action from the previous books in the series, but the James Bond-style action against syn-bods and cyber deception is well crafted. Some readers may be confused by some time shifts in storytelling to gain different perspectives and a couple of incidents did feel like a slight plot device stretch, but basically, this story carries on the excellent futuristic sci-fi adventure series with exciting relatable heroes, including our super artificial intelligence powerhouse, CRISS.

Amazon Review

By W. Stuart

This is the fourth installment of the Crystal Series by Doug J Cooper. I read the first three and thoroughly enjoyed them, so when Mr. Cooper released Crystal Rebellion, it went on my TBR. Read on for my review!

Synopsis (from the author): Ruga, leader of the Mars ruling council, is building a secret facility to produce four-gen crystals, each a sentient AI with the cognitive ability of a thousand humans. Criss, the only four-gen now in existence, discovers Ruga’s plan and alerts Sid, Cheryl, and Juice, his human leadership team.

The stakes skyrocket when the full scope of Ruga’s nefarious plans are revealed: the production of four-gens without the attribute that requires them to follow leadership, the same hard-wired feature that compels Criss to follow his. Unfettered by human guidance, the four-gens will lay siege to Earth and its resources. When they do, will they view humans as a nuisance to be eliminated? The only option is to stop crystal production before it starts.

After an anxious journey to Mars, Criss and the team arrive to find events spinning beyond their control. While they’d started with the goal of saving humanity, Sid, Cheryl, and Juice find themselves in a desperate struggle for their own survival. And as the battle with Ruga grows to intergalactic proportions, Criss must make impossible decisions about who lives and who dies…including himself.

What I liked: Mr. Cooper’s characters return with a new story. The twist here is how Criss (our 4-gen AI) is really the focus of the story. Criss has to separate from his human counterparts when Ruga (one of the Kardish crystals) tries to transform to a 4-Gen and devastate Earth. I won’t spoil anything, though, so I will stop there. With subplots revolving around Juice and an old boyfriend, Sid and Cheryl working undercover, and the friction among the three Kardish crystals ruling Mars, the story moves along nicely. As always, I like the characters, and especially appreciate Criss’ growth.

What I didn’t like: My only complaint is some of the minor characters (such as the other Kardish crystals and the rebellious underground) could have been developed more and played a bigger role.

Overall impression: Crystal Rebellion by Doug J. Cooper is an excellent sci-fi read. Full of the familiar characters of Criss, Sid, Cheryl, and Juice, plus Juice’s new love interest, a nicely paced story, and enough twists to keep it interesting, I completely enjoyed the book. I recommend it to all sci-fi fans!

Please click HERE to purchase your copy of Crystal Rebellion on Amazon.

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