Dec 9, 2016

Society Agent Series Installments

In December 2016, author Shaun J. McLaughlin published the first novelette, Final Exam, of a new science fiction series on Amazon.

For his final exam, Shane and his student partner visit a snowy vacation planet to solve a mystery--how could a sub-intelligent species leap 50,000 years in evolution in months to harness fire and develop a language. Their investigation leads them into deadly conflict with a sophisticated gang trying to gain control of the planet for its mineral riches.
Shane and his secret fraternity investigate infractions of the colonization charter that protects vulnerable intelligent species and their planets. They risk their lives to make sure that the tragic aftermath of 1492 in the Americas never happens again anywhere humans go. Some people want them stopped.

Final Exam begins the Society Agent series, written in the classic sci-fi visions of Asimov and Heinlein, that examines human society as people expand through our galaxy. Humanity faces its historic enemy, humankind, but under different skies. Even as civility and civilization advance through the millennia, greed, gangs and malice remain as wolves chasing down the weak and vulnerable.

You can find a balanced review of this story here or check the Mazon page.

Life and Death in the Stone Forest continues Shane's adventures. For his first assignment as a graduate agent, the Society sends him to a dusty planet deep in the M4 globular cluster. An ancient race of alien artists is dying out. The scientist sent to discover why disappeared. Shane’s assignment: solve both mysteries and try not to get killed.

Flawed Pearl (#3) takes undercover agent Shane O’Ryan to New Tahiti. Tourist ads describe it as a perfect pearl. Shane’s mission: expose the planet’s impure, gritty core. Every pearl has one. Mysterious investors built the colony in defiance of laws designed to protect intelligent indigenous species. The one man who gathered evidence died of a knife in his heart. Shane needs to prove two aquatic species deserve protection and he must identify the main conspirators before he becomes the next victim.

In Like Bedbugs, Only Much, Much Worse, Shane teams up with an attractive and quirky scientist, Dr. Chloe Kelly, to solve a legal conundrum. Individual members of a low-level organism deserve no Charter protection, but in groups, the bugs become a distributed computer network. Their collective intelligence is a square of their numbers. They have only one goal—eat anything that moves. Intellect without morality is terrifying but it is still intelligence that must be protected. How can Shane defeat the bugs that have decimated a farm colony without wiping out the species and do it before the military resorts to mundicide?

Episodes 5, 6 and 7 are in the works.



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