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Swan Song | [Robert McCammon]

Swan Song

Facing down an unprecedented malevolent enemy, the government responds with a nuclear attack. America as it was is gone forever, and now every citizen - from the President of the United States to the homeless on the streets of New York City - will fight for survival. In a wasteland born of rage and fear, populated by monstrous creatures and marauding armies, earth's last survivors have been drawn into the final battle between good and evil, that will decide the fate of humanity.
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Publisher's Summary

"We're about to cross the point of no return. God help us; we're flying in the dark, and we don't know where the hell we're going."

Facing down an unprecedented malevolent enemy, the government responds with a nuclear attack. America as it was is gone forever, and now every citizen - from the president of the United States to the homeless on the streets of New York City - will fight for survival.

Swan Song is Robert McCammon's prescient and shocking vision of a post-apocalyptic nation, a grand epic of terror and, ultimately, renewal.

In a wasteland born of rage and fear, populated by monstrous creatures and marauding armies, earth's last survivors have been drawn into the final battle between good and evil, that will decide the fate of humanity. They include Sister, who discovers a strange and transformative glass artifact in the destroyed Manhattan streets... Joshua Hutchins, the pro wrestler who takes refuge from the nuclear fallout at a Nebraska gas station... and Swan, a young girl possessing special powers, who travels alongside Josh to a Missouri town where healing and recovery can begin with Swan's gifts. But the ancient force behind earth's devastation is scouring the walking wounded for recruits for its relentless army, beginning with Swan herself.

Please note: Two chapters were originally missing from Part 2 of this book. We were alerted to the problem on 11/21/11 and have corrected it. We're very sorry for any inconvenience. If you had already downloaded the book, don’t worry - your library has automatically updated with the corrected version. Simply re-download from your library, at no additional cost, to get the complete book.

©2009 Robert McCammon (P)2011 Audible, Inc.

What Members Say

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  •  
    Amanda Abilene, TX, United States 06-21-12
    Amanda Abilene, TX, United States 06-21-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Simply an Amazing Story"
    Where does Swan Song rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    I was hesitant on buying this book because of the mixed reviews and the length of the book. After the first part of of the book I was sucked into Swan and Sister's apocalyptic nightmare. The book is simply amazing, frightening, funny, sad, brutal, and inspirational. I am for once at a loss of words to describe this book of fear I might not do it justice. If you like The Stand by Stephen King you will IN FACT LOVE Swan Song.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Sister and Swan


    What does Tom Stechschulte bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Listening to the tone of voice in certain conversations allowed me to experience the characters emotional distress, love, and sadness.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    Both.....I laughed and cried...and sometimes yelled!


    44 of 44 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tim United States 12-20-11
    Tim United States 12-20-11

    Since discovering audible, my life is richer. I live in a small rural KS community, with higher than average IQ which can be a bad combo at times. Audible allows me to be myself.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    114
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    8
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    "I would do it again"

    Good story, a touch of magic but not too much. It's rated R so kids should stay clear probably. It kept me listening without much of a break. That's a good book to me. Top 100

    27 of 27 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Madeleine London, United Kingdom 11-23-11
    Madeleine London, United Kingdom 11-23-11 Member Since 2014

    Audiobook addict.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Very compelling post-apocalyptic tale"

    Although written in 1987, this book really hasn't dated all that badly. It's a well thought out post-apocalyptic saga with a pleasing amount of paranormal added in to set it apart from the other post-nuclear novels of the time. In all fairness, it could have been about 5 hours shorter, but it is full of excellently characterized bad guys. If I had to find something to criticize, perhaps the Swan character could have been just a little less perfect, but nonetheless, I did enjoy the listen. It wasn't easy to turn it off come bedtime.

    The narration is good. Tom Stechschulte does certain characters exceptionally well. I do wish, though, that he toned down his emotive reading a little. I prefer it when narrators let the emotion come through the words instead of using their tone of voice so much. But if you enjoy emotive readers, then you will really enjoy him. And for the most part, the slightly over-dramatic reading doesn't detract from the listening experience.

    I certainly thought it was worth the credit!

    39 of 40 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Renee DOVE CANYON, CA, United States 11-15-11
    Renee DOVE CANYON, CA, United States 11-15-11 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "You'll be up all night listening to this classic"

    Swan Song has been my all-time favorite book, since I first read it in the 1980's, even when compared to other post-apocalypse dramas, like The Stand, or Lucifer's Hammer.

    I still have my old dog-eared paperback copy on my book shelf after all these years!

    I'm excited to purchase the audiobook and re-experience the edge-of-your seat thrills, and ultimately the hope for humanity that Swan Song delivers.

    79 of 84 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jeremy Winfield, IL, United States 02-01-12
    Jeremy Winfield, IL, United States 02-01-12 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Superb apocalyptic fantasy"

    Wow--how could I have never come across this book before? A big thank you to Audible for drawing this one to my attention. This is a massive, epic book about the end of the world (as it existed in 1987). Instantly reminiscent of Stephen King's The Stand, Swan Song draws readers into a post-apocalyptic landscape where only the strong survive. With a massive cast of characters to navigate, narrator Tom Stechschulte does a masterful job of presenting each one with his/her own personality and voice. Amazing job! This is a long book, and it's not always fun to listen to; the world of Swan Song is pretty dark. But in the end, the message of hope comes through, and the interplay of fast-paced action scenes with slower, more contemplative interludes provides a nice pacing to the story. Robert McCammon rides a perfect balance between realism and fantasy in this amazing book. Highly recommended!

    10 of 10 people found this review helpful
  •  
    jewel Hood River, OR, United States 11-15-11
    jewel Hood River, OR, United States 11-15-11 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "don't miss out on this book!!!"

    I have been waiting for this book to come out in audio for years. I thought about waiting until I finished listening to the entire book before writing a review, but didn't have the willpower. Anyone who likes sci-fi will love this book. Although is is an older book it is so well worth the listen. It has everything a good book needs; it pits the forces of good and evil against one anther and is superbly written. I can comfortably and with confidence highly recommend this book. Thank you audible for bringing it to me!!!

    57 of 63 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer Akron, OH, United States 02-15-12
    Amazon Customer Akron, OH, United States 02-15-12 Member Since 2011
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    "Best book ive read in years."

    You won't be able to hear "Here we go round the mullberry bush" again with out getting the heebeejeebees. Very original book,great naration,keeps you on the edge of your seat. This would make a great movie.

    7 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Book and Movie Lover Austin 12-02-11
    Book and Movie Lover Austin 12-02-11 Member Since 2013
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    "Horrible and beautiful at the same time"

    Imagine the horror of a sudden and devastating nuclear war. Russia has apparently bombed most of the United States, rendering most cities and much of the countryside as a nuclear wasteland. Pair that horrible situation with small groups of survivors and a mystical and beautiful crystal/jeweled ring which has unfathomable powers and you have story which portrays mankind at its worst and best at the same time. The story is long (34 hours long) and at first I did not think I would get through the entire book. It did not fully draw me in until about 12 hours in, but once it did I could not put it down and finished it in a few days. If you like apocalyptic tales you will likely enjoy this one. Excellent story and performance.

    23 of 25 people found this review helpful
  •  
    shane eden, VT, United States 11-19-11
    shane eden, VT, United States 11-19-11 Member Since 2014

    McCarthy king Martin Abercrombie Sanderson and Tolkien My favorite book as of 900 listened to ... Sutree

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "a classic supernatural apocolypse novel"

    its long , it borrows alot from the stand even the villain is almost a rf word for word but it has many elements that make it good on its own , and many original concepts I read it when I was younger and liked it enough to listen to it now I still prefer the stand , but i like this book.

    13 of 14 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michelle 11-22-11
    Michelle 11-22-11

    dannyzlady

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Audible is Awesome"

    I wrote a review about missing chapters and how the unabridged version wasn't quite so unabridged. Then I wrote to Audible about it. They responded within 24 hours to tell me they had been made aware of the problem and had fixed it. After a new download, I now have the complete book.
    The book itself is fantastic. I have a tattered paperback copy that I have read repeatedly over the years. Last year I bought a copy for my Kindle. Now I have the audio version.
    Don't miss out on this great book.

    25 of 28 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 1-10 of 367 results PREVIOUS1237NEXT
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  • Jeremy
    10/20/14
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    Story
    "Everything you need from an audiobook!"
    Any additional comments?

    Superb! Everything about this audiobook works. Tom Stechschulte's narration is excellent which brings this epic story to life and keeps you enthralled from start to finish. All characters are fascinating and you want to know what happens to them. Tom's character intonations, voices, accents really work well. This was my first Robert McGammon audiobook and on the strength on this I have since purchased several more. You won't be disappointed with this one!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Brian
    BANGOR, United Kingdom
    8/15/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "What a journey!"
    Where does Swan Song rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    This book kind of hits quite high with me. I was slightly put off with the long intros, which really did not need the length to them, but nevertheless, every word spoken by this brilliant narrator were like gems to hold onto.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    My favourite character has to be Josh. A gentle giant in all ways, and from his own doubts of his humanity, the reality of it saw his selflessness come to the fore.


    Which scene did you most enjoy?

    The best scene? Well there were several, but if I had to pick out one scene, it would be when in the subway tunnels, the demonic character confronts the small team of newly found friends, where a battle of minds ensues, and revenge promised. Gripping.


    If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    In a world lost of hope, strangers bring light to the dark world of the lost and displaced.


    Any additional comments?

    I have to mention the narrator, Tom Stechschulte. The book would only have a matt finish to it. Tom sets the gloss on in his efforts to bring the characters to life. Thank you TOM!!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Ryan
    8/9/14
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    "The next best thing to The Stand and The Passage!"
    Would you listen to Swan Song again? Why?

    No, but that's only because I don't read the same book twice. If I did, I would read it many times again!


    What other book might you compare Swan Song to, and why?

    Swan Song has huge similarities to Stephen King's The Stand (in my opinion, best book of all time) and Justin Cronin's The Passage. It is an epic post-apocalyptic story of good vs evil and at nearly 40hours it builds a vivid picture of the world in your head which remains there even after you've finished it.


    What does Tom Stechschulte bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

    I'm fussy with narrators. I often find good books with brilliant stories but I can't get past the first chapter because the narrator's voice doesn't work.

    No problems here! The only narrator that I've preferred (and it's extremely close between the two) is the guy who narrated The Passage. Tom adds real life to the world and characters and you forget he's reading it to you.
    He makes the whole thing an experience rather than just a book.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    I would if I could, but at 37 hours it's a tough ask!!!


    Any additional comments?

    I can't decide what I thought about the ending, even now I'm not sure if it could have been done a bit better. Only a very, very minor niggle.

    Download this now, and set aside lots of time. I promise you will enjoy this.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Farniboy
    Wirral, UK
    7/2/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "As Good as King's The Stand for Apocalyptic Horror"
    What did you like most about Swan Song?

    I read Swan Song in the late 80's when a nuclear war still seemed a very real possibility. The book left a mark on me as a teenager. I was delighted to see it as been released on Audible. Tom Stechschulte, the narrator does a brilliant job with a huge cast and he keeps you at the edge of the seat in parts. Swan Song has similarities to King's The Stand but the story and cast are a match to those in the King book.


    What did you like best about this story?

    What can you not like about Swan Song? Its an epic listen at nearly 35 hours long! It deals with the big issues of good versus evil but also concentrates on friendship, love and bravery. It doesn't shirk the horrors of the aftermath of a nuclear war and societies collapse but it also shows how people can make a difference even in the direst of circumstances.


    Which scene did you most enjoy?

    The face off in the supermarket has to be one of the most tense parts of the book. Its one of those books that as many stand out scenes. One minute you are despairing for the heroes fates and then a few pages on you have a goofy grin. I guarantee that you will recommend this book and also relisten to this book in a few years time!


    If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    Don't F### with Sister Creep...


    Any additional comments?

    I think Swan Song, like Stephen King's The Stand transcends the genre (ooo, get me!) Even though there are supernatural/horror elements in the book, its the evil that men do to each other that is far more horrifying.Robert McCammon is a fine writer, be it his horror novels of the 80/90's or the historical detective fiction he writes today. I couldn't recommend this book, They Thirst, Boys Life and all of his other work.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • JS
    Slough, United Kingdom
    5/11/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Captivating!"
    Any additional comments?

    I thoroughly enjoyed this audiobook. The characters were well developed and distinctive in personality. Filled with suspense and nail biting moments. Well worth the purchase. The narrator did an excellent job!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Robert
    Putney, United Kingdom
    4/23/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "One of the best books I've know.. Epic!!"
    What made the experience of listening to Swan Song the most enjoyable?

    This was an absolute epic, right up there with Earth Abides and Lucifer's Hammer.
    The character development was amazing. The setting of each scene so absorbing, it was easy to visual everything.
    There's a quality to these old novels you don't find much in modern books. The most noticeable thing is the character interaction. In modern books it's so cheesy but this was exactly how I might imagine (given the circumstances).

    I listened to this book a couple of months ago and still get goosebumps thinking about it.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Josh. True gent, pillar of the book.


    What does Tom Stechschulte bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

    The narration was perfect, each character well defined and not over the top.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    When Josh says he has proud of Swan as any father can be of his daughter.


    Any additional comments?

    It had a splash of fantasy, which was enjoyable. There were a couple of elements I would've changed. I don't want to spoil it but the ending (for me) was a bit confusing. The whole book built towards something then, rather disappointingly, sidestepped that thing.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Michelle
    Rochester, United Kingdom
    4/9/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Long but beautifully read and worth every second"

    I do seem to like an end of the world disaster book; I was hooked from the beginning to the end. Soooo!! well read full of emotion. Great characters good and evil. A must read or listen.
    Buy enjoy you won't be disappointed.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Paul
    Planet Earth
    4/3/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Superb post-apocalyptic thriller"

    Swan Song is a superb story from the pen of Robert McCammon, written in 1991 there are a few similarities to Stephen King's 'The Stand' but anyone who enjoyed SK's masterpiece from the late 1970's will certainly enjoy this tale.

    Clocking in at over 30 hours this story is a real epic & Tom Stechschulte does a great job with the narration (although I did think his portrayal of 'Sister' to be a little tiresome at times), the story has a really good flow & for Audible members a 30+ hour quality book is great value for a single credit.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • dawn
    cornwall, United Kingdom
    3/23/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A great big story in length and in content!"
    Would you listen to Swan Song again? Why?

    Yes, I listened to it again as soon as I had finished as it is so long and complex I wanted to make sure I had it all straight in my head!


    What other book might you compare Swan Song to, and why?

    Yes, a bit like but not really the Stand, if you enjoy post apocalyptic tales this is for you!


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    don't want to do any spoilers......but yes! the end


    Any additional comments?

    I did not really know of this or the author, I usually find my audible books by looking at good reviews of books I have enjoyed - glad I found this.....it is sad though! We live in this big beautiful world full of amazing things - our plant is mind-blowing - let us pray that we do not ever have this post WW3 world with a 7 year winter! Keep your cool leaders of the world! It is only in your hands for safekeeping for future generations - not yours to abuse of damage.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Karen
    Sleaford, United Kingdom
    3/18/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "forgotten goodie"

    read this years ago, and had a credit spare so treated myself. a bit different from Stephen Kings THE STAND but I had forgotten how much I enjoyed reading it

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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