Master Detective John Simon is a tough, streetwise fifteen year veteran of the Kansas City Police Department with a healthy disdain for the encroachment of modern technology into his workplace. When his partner is kidnapped after a routine stakeout by thugs with seeming ties to connected, wealthy art dealer Benjamin Ashman, he’s determined to find the truth, but the only witness is a humanoid android named Lucas George. Reluctantly, he takes Lucas along as he begins to investigate and soon finds himself depending more and more on the very technology he so distrusts. Meanwhile, Simon’s precocious teenage daughter begins to teach Lucas how to sound more like a cop using dialogue from famous cop movies. If only he’d use them in the appropriate context.
As the two men dig in deeper, they find themselves and every witness they touch faced with danger from assassins as they begin to uncover a conspiracy that may stretch from the heights of the KCPD itself to South America and beyond. Can they identify the guilty before it’s too late without getting themselves killed in the process?
This exciting new mix of near future science fiction and procedural thriller captures the gritty realism of Michael Connelly’s Bosch, the humor and action of Lethal Weapon, and follows the classic science fiction tradition of Isaac Asimov’s City of Steel. From the editor of the international bestselling phenomenon The Martian by Andy Weir, and the national bestselling author of tales including official entries in The X-Files, Predator, and the Joe Ledger thrillers, comes this action-packed first entry in an exciting new series.
About the Author
Bryan Thomas Schmidt is a national bestselling author editor and Hugo-nominee who's edited over a dozen anthologies and hundreds of novels, including the international phenomenon The Martian by Andy Weir and books by Alan Dean Foster, Frank Herbert, Mike Resnick, Angie Fox, and Tracy Hickman as well as official entries in The X-Files, Predator, Joe Ledger, Monster Hunter International, and Decipher's Wars. His debut novel, The Worker Prince, earned honorable mention on Barnes and Noble's Year's Best Science Fiction. His adult and children's fiction and nonfiction books have been published by publishers such as St. Martins Press, Baen Books, Titan Books, IDW, and more. Find him online at his website www.bryanthomasschmidt.net or Twitter and Facebook as BryanThomasS.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
A fast-paced blend of near future sci-fi and police procedural thriller filled with memorable characters, intrigue and heart-pounding action. In amongst the intrigue and action (including a masterfully written car chase) there was plenty of humor (including a ton of pop culture references to movie franchises like The Terminator and Robocop) and heart. I loved the interplay and growing camaraderie between Detective John Simon and the android Lucas George as they try to untangle a web of kidnapping and murder. I can’t wait to read the next book in the series!
When I first heard about this novel, I immediately thought of the cult classic late 1980s science fiction noir thriller ALIEN NATION and its follow-on television series. The basic premises are the same: In a near-future yet still recognizable city, a veteran human cop is paired with an inexperienced and decidedly "not human" partner, and hijinks ensue as they attempt to solve a mystery while navigating the tumultuous path that is their growing friendship. Having enjoyed that show, I was intrigued by this story as soon as I heard about it as I’m always up for a good “buddy cop” story. Bryan Thomas Schmidt did not disappoint with his take on the genre. To paraphrase a line from the film LIVE FREE OR DIE HARD, John Simon is an analog cop in a digital world that continues to advance despite his contempt for the technology in his midst. So of course he’s teamed with a Lucas, an android who happens to be the only witness to the murder of Simon’s partner. As Simon pursues the case, his relationship with Lucas makes him begin to rethink his stance on technology in general and Lucas in particular. Sure, the elevator pitch for this might be something along the lines of “LETHAL WEAPON meets ALIEN NATION” with a little bit of HOMICIDE: LIFE ON THE STREET and BOSCH mixed in for flavor, but that’s doing a disservice to Schmidt, who does a superb job here putting his own spin on things. John Simon is every bit as compelling a character as those who inspired him, and in some aspects Schmidt even does them one better. The dialogue is snappy and the descriptions engrossing as he paints a picture of “tomorrow’s” Kansas City, a feature of the story that definitely captured the attention of this longtime KC transplant. SIMON SAYS is billed as “A John Simon Thriller,” and I for one hope it’s simply the first of many.