San Francisco police sergeant Adam Plantinga’s new novel ‘The Ascent’ is in some ways autobiographical, with one major exception — the protagonist cop is forced to break out of a maximum security prison.

It’s pretty unusual for  a cop to write a book. But SFPD sergeant Adam Plantinga had previously written two; 400 Things Cops Know: Street-Smart Lessons from a Veteran Patrolman (2014, and the winner of the 2015 Silver Falchion award for best nonfiction crime reference), and it sort-of sequel Police Craft: What Cops Know About Crime, Community and Violence (2018). But the Bay Area News Group reports today that Plantinga just published his first novel, called The Ascent.

The initial reviews are promising, with Kirkus Reviews calling its “A meat-and-potatoes thriller, sure—but they're delicious meat and potatoes.”

Now Plantinga’s debut novel is suddenly bigger news, as Deadline reported Tuesday that The Ascent has been picked up to be developed as a TV series. The TV production company Universal Television won something of a bidding war over the rights. Universal Television is also the production company behind the hit series The Gilded Age and the (frustratingly recently canceled) Schmigadoon!, as well as the recent reboots of Bel-Air and The Equalizer.

The Ascent tells the story of Detroit ex-cop Kurt Argento, who in a case of bad luck and mistaken identity, finds himself incarcerated in a maximum security prison. When a security flaw allows for an inmate uprising, Argento and a band of civilians are forced to improvise an escape that only gets more dangerous as they ascend each level, each with different categories of hardened criminals.

“I’ve always been fascinated by prisons: that forbidding silence and boredom punctuated by violence,”  Plantinga told the Bay Area News Group. “It helped me understand not just prison layout, but prison culture. Talking to staff there, I learned there are inmates who legitimately feel sorry for crimes they committed and will try to do better. Some actually had victims who come visit them. There’s a spectrum, but mine, even the best are still on the outs. It’s not a place where anyone’s getting better.”

So when is The Ascent going to be on TV? Difficult to say. Hollywood is littered with ideas that get bought up but never made, like the time that Guillermo del Toro was going to make a movie based on the video game Halo. Even if The Ascent gets cast and made, it could end up on a big network, or a streaming platform like Netflix or Apple TV. Universal Television is owned by NBCUniversal, so Peacock is a possibility too.

That could all take years to sort out. So in the meantime, just grab a copy of The Ascent at your favorite local bookstore and dig in.

Related: Rainy Weekend Reads: Three New(-ish) Books Set In San Francisco [SFist]

Image: @AdamPlantinga via Twitter