Author: Tom Leveen
Review by: Dani Hoots
He’ll sacrifice anything to save these children. . . except being human.
The world became aware of them sixty years ago: people with remarkable physical and sometimes psychic powers, often with terrifying deformities. Most folks call them deviants; deevs for short. Rejecting the slur, they call themselves omnihumans.
Manic is a federal officer tasked with taking down allegedly dangerous deevs. He loves his job, and he’s damn good at it. He’d wipe ’em all off the face of the earth if he could, because he believes every deev out there is a threat to mankind, just by their very existence. Not everyone agrees with him, though, including his only child—a naïve college girl who has devoted her life to protecting the civil rights of those very same deviants that he hauls in off the streets.
When his daughter’s tuition funds suddenly run out, Manic accepts a high-paying, off-the-books gig assassinating individual deevs. But after learning a deviant he’s killed was hunting down gangsters trafficking in the minds and bodies of human children, Manic decides to inherit the deviant’s quest.
Manic’s identity and clarity of purpose are thrown into chaos when he uncovers the concrete labyrinth where the gangsters are doing their dirty work. There, he finds a vigilante deviant who’s also trying to destroy the organization. Manic discovers deevs may be more human than not, as it becomes irrevocably clear that rescuing these most innocent of humans may not only cost Manic his life . . . but his humanity . . .
This book reminded me a lot of the show Heroes and the X-Men, but if it was told in the perspective of those who were hunting the mutants. The press portrays these omnihumans as being dangerous, and Manic really could use the money for his daughter’s tuition. And at the same time, he would be keeping the city safe, right?
Leveen does a great job portraying the mental process of reasoning out what is right and wrong for someone in this possession. Manic wants to do what is right, but how does one know what is right? At the same time, Malakai, an omnihuman, is trying to save someone child from a human trafficking wring. What will happen when these two go head to head? Will Manic be faced with the realization that maybe these omnihumans aren’t as dangerous as they are? Or will he follow orders?
This is a great military sci-fi for anyone who loves this aspect of X-Men. I highly recommend to fans of this genre!