Neurotic tech Zagarat Cole had no choice but to steal 432,985 credits from the Deus Syndicate. It was the only way to pay for his mother's medical treatments. So, when a Deus executive called Zag into his office, he knew the jig was up. Or down. Or however it was you danced a jig. Yet to Zag's astonishment, the executive didn't excoriate, eviscerate, or "ate" him at all. He offered him a job.
The Deus CEO would consider it a personal favor if Zag helped privateer, ladies' man, and all around great guy Fletcher Griffin with an easy outsource assignment. Were the fates smiling on Zag for once in his sunning life? Until then, it seemed like whoever was writing his story in the great cosmic diary just plain didn't like Zag. But here was an opportunity to curry favor from the 10th most powerful CEO in the known universe and possibly even make a few credits on the side.
However, Zag quickly learns that nothing is easy when Fletcher Griffin is involved. He soon finds himself hacking into the corporation's database, searching for incriminating evidence linking a Deus executive to Galustay; an insidious drug that can only be derived by harvesting adrenaline from living Weiylans. Now Fletcher and Zag must find a way to stop the harvesters and free the Weiylans, all the while fighting off a case of intentionally induced food poisoning (which Fletcher could totally explain), avoiding the ire of a powerful executive (which Fletcher could totally explain), and generally running for their lives wherever they go (which Fletcher could totally explain).
And yet, something strange happens to Zag along the way. His anxieties dwindle, subsumed by something called courage - all because of an enigmatic privateer who is more than what he seems, and he seems to be a bumbling idiot.
©2015 Edward Zajac (P)2015 ListenUp Production, LLC
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Zagarat works as a technician in a big corporation called DEUS Syndicate. His mother is terribly ill and the only medical treatment that can give them hope is very expensive. Zagarat is always neurotic, and usually cautious, but desperate about his mother's health he decides to "borrow" the money from the DEUS Syndicate. The next day a big executive calls Zagarat to his office, and he fears the worst, but this will just be the beginning of Zagarat's adventures and his transformation into a new person.
This humoristic science fiction novel deserves a place beside 'A Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy' and 'Gateway' by Frederik Pohl. It made me laugh hard several times and I really enjoyed Zagarat and Fletcher's personalities. This book is aimed at the techy nerd many of us carry inside, and we could very well have reacted in the same way as Zagarat did, who suffered the collateral effects of Fletcher's wild plans. We have here a characteristic duo: Fletcher, the charming and full of confidence, but with poor ideas, privateer; and Zagarat, socially awkward, and much more resourceful than he wants to believe. Apart from being a humoristic novel, this book has a decent amount of geeky mentions, but it is not really overloaded with them so I think it could be enjoyed by a vast public.
Even though the characters are not fully developed they have a personality of their own and Nicholas Tecosky really succeeds in bringing them to life. Anytime he exclaimed the 'What now!' from Zagarat I couldn't help but laughing and seeing Zagarat desperate about the current events. He became Zagarat, Fletcher, and the other characters in a seeming effortless way. This audiobook would not have been the same without him.
But not all was perfect about this book. The event happening at the beginning, where Zagarat steals the money from DEUS has little impact on the story, and I somehow expected some consequences from it. Also, the book feels a bit long to be able to keep the humoristic tone, and after a while it is easy to get a bit tired of the cutaway stories.
This is meant to be a series, and I am sure we will know more about Fletcher's procedence and his story with Aurore. I am really looking forward to listen more about it, and I hope Edward Zajac does not keep us waiting for too long.
Audiobook was provided for review by the publisher.
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Really looking forward to future works from this author. If the author turns this into a series of books, I hope the narrator stays with them.
It's a quick, fun story. The protagonist character Zag is a bit annoying because of his social ineptitude, but it's refreshing that he is mostly unimportant and that he acknowledges that he is only a sidekick in someone else's narrative. Fletcher though is a generic charming rogue character with a heart of gold. Zag's mother is delightful.
The book is has some funny language and internal monologuing. It's all reminiscent of Douglas Adams. Zajac is not some brilliant or genius science fiction writer, but this book is evidence that Zajac may write something much better in the future with more practice.
Read, listen, live
I enjoyed this author & narrator pair. The author is brilliant, funny, and weaves a great story, and I was able to follow him down his rabbit holes. The narrator brought the book to life with the best inflections and interpretations. I will look for more from both of them.
The book was a lot of fun. It's not a book you can be serious about. It's basically an adventure of Zapp Brannigan and Kif from Futurama. Zapp is fletcher who thinks himself sexy but behaves like a bumbling idiot. Kif would be the main character who is a smart, timid tech with no sex appeal. I thought the humor was spot on if you like the brawn and brains duo type stories.
Unfortunately I had a hard time with the names of the species since they were thrown at you with little or no background on the mentioned race. Some races are eventually described in more detail somewhere around half way into the book
This was an entertaining book. I laughed frequently at the dialogue, although it does read like a screenplay in some parts. The book and the plot kept me interested and if there are any further books in this series, I will read them. I would recommend this book for a light and entertaining read.
This got put on my recommendation list because of listening to A. Lee martinez and Douglas Adams. Usually I am skeptical of the books it recommends, but I decided to give this one a shot. I am so happy I did because the story and the narration were just awesome! I hope this turns into a series because the world was pretty awesome, the characters were great, and there are still questions to be answered!
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