We are currently making improvements to the Audible site. In an effort to enhance the accessibility experience for our customers, we have created a page to more easily navigate the new experience, available at the web address www.audible.com/access.
 >   > 
The Dog Stars | [Peter Heller]

The Dog Stars

Hig survived the flu that killed everyone he knows. His wife is gone, his friends are dead, he lives in the hangar of a small abandoned airport with his dog, his only neighbor a gun-toting misanthrope. In his 1956 Cessna, Hig flies the perimeter of the airfield or sneaks off to the mountains to fish and to pretend that things are the way they used to be. But when a random transmission somehow beams through his radio, the voice ignites a hope deep inside him that a better life exists beyond the airport.
Regular Price:$28.00
  • Membership Details:
    • First book free with 30-day trial
    • $14.95/month thereafter for your choice of 1 new book each month
    • Cancel easily anytime
    • Exchange books you don't like
    • All selected books are yours to keep, even if you cancel
  • - or -

Your Likes make Audible better!

'Likes' are shared on Facebook and Audible.com. We use your 'likes' to improve Audible.com for all our listeners.

You can turn off Audible.com sharing from your Account Details page.

OK

Publisher's Summary

A riveting, powerful novel about a pilot living in a world filled with loss - and what he is willing to risk to rediscover, against all odds, connection, love, and grace.

Hig survived the flu that killed everyone he knows. His wife is gone, his friends are dead, he lives in the hangar of a small abandoned airport with his dog, his only neighbor a gun-toting misanthrope. In his 1956 Cessna, Hig flies the perimeter of the airfield or sneaks off to the mountains to fish and to pretend that things are the way they used to be. But when a random transmission somehow beams through his radio, the voice ignites a hope deep inside him that a better life - something like his old life - exists beyond the airport.

Risking everything, he flies past his point of no return - not enough fuel to get him home - following the trail of the static-broken voice on the radio. But what he encounters and what he must face - in the people he meets, and in himself - is both better and worse than anything he could have hoped for.

Narrated by a man who is part warrior and part dreamer, a hunter with a great shot and a heart that refuses to harden, The Dog Stars is both savagely funny and achingly sad, a breathtaking story about what it means to be human.

©2012 Peter Heller (P)2012 Random House Audio

What the Critics Say

"Richly evocative yet streamlined journal entries propel the high-stakes plot while simultaneously illuminating Hig's nuanced states of mind as isolation and constant vigilance exact their toll, along with his sorrow for the dying world.... Heller's surprising and irresistible blend of suspense, romance, social insight, and humor creates a cunning form of cognitive dissonance neatly pegged by Hig as an apocalyptic parody of Norman Rockwell...a novel, that is, of spiky pleasure and signal resonance." (Booklist)

"In the tradition of postapocalyptic literary fiction such as Cormac McCarthy's The Road and Jim Crace's The Pesthouse, this hypervisceral first novel by adventure writer Heller (Kook) takes place nine years after a superflu has killed off much of mankind.... With its evocative descriptions of hunting, fishing, and flying, this novel, perhaps the world's most poetic survival guide, reads as if Billy Collins had novelized one of George Romero's zombie flicks. From start to finish, Heller carries the reader aloft on graceful prose, intense action, and deeply felt emotion." (Publishers Weekly)

"Leave it to Peter Heller to imagine a post-apocalyptic world that contains as much loveliness as it does devastation. His likable hero, Hig, flies around what was once Colorado in his 1956 Cessna, chasing all the same things we chase in these pre-annihilation days: love, friendship, the solace of the natural world, the chance to perform some small kindness, and a good dog for a co-pilot. The Dog Stars is a wholly compelling and deeply engaging debut." (Pam Houston, author of Contents May Have Shifted)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.2 (1439 )
5 star
 (642)
4 star
 (502)
3 star
 (206)
2 star
 (52)
1 star
 (37)
Overall
4.2 (1270 )
5 star
 (588)
4 star
 (423)
3 star
 (184)
2 star
 (44)
1 star
 (31)
Story
4.4 (1268 )
5 star
 (709)
4 star
 (400)
3 star
 (120)
2 star
 (21)
1 star
 (18)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    serialnumber55 Alaska 02-10-13
    serialnumber55 Alaska 02-10-13 Member Since 2012

    serialnumber55

    HELPFUL VOTES
    16
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    34
    17
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    7
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Brutal, Poetic, Erotic"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I was surprised. At the beginning, the brutality made me ready to quit. But the poetic description of trout fishing, the continual reflection, the slow progression of the protagonit's thoughts - all kept me listening.


    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer STAMFORD, CT, United States 02-06-13
    Amazon Customer STAMFORD, CT, United States 02-06-13 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    9
    5
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Very Interesting Dog and Master Survival Story"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    It depends on which ones. My wife is not interested in reading about shooting others to live. It may happen but she refuses to read such stories. However, I have guy friends who are glad that I told them about this book. Almost all of them will read instead of listen to it. It was a reasonably well written story that has lots of adventure and action on a steady basis.


    What did you like best about this story?

    It was a story about a decent guy who had an extremely tough life because of the drastic events of earlier days and his only true friend just might have been his dog.


    What about Mark Deakins’s performance did you like?

    The reading of the story was done with the right amount of emotion and compassion. I could understand almost every word without high volume.


    Who was the most memorable character of The Dog Stars and why?

    The main man who owned the dog. He was the reason for the story. He was strange at times like sleeping outside every night in Colorado without any shelter. Come on. With all the tools, materials available, and construction that was completed in the book lots of possible options come to mind without being stuck in a standard house.


    Any additional comments?

    I have since listened to another book by this author, "Hell or High Water". I enjoyed this book also but in my opinion The Dog Stars was better.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mark Reno, NV, United States 02-04-13
    Mark Reno, NV, United States 02-04-13 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    128
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    88
    73
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    4
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Slow-paced, poetic post-apocalypse novel"
    Any additional comments?

    Good, literate post-apocalypse book. It's got its share of violent, tense scenes, plus heartbreak, but it's told in a calm, weary way. If you want lots of action, you won't like it. If you prefer thoughtful, poetic books, you probably will. I liked it. But I've read so many post-apocalypse books that this one doesn't really stand out.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Melissa Austin, TX, United States 01-30-13
    Melissa Austin, TX, United States 01-30-13
    HELPFUL VOTES
    50
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    111
    18
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    5
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Sticks with you"

    It's easy to believe a man would be equally desperate and devastated by survival in a post apocalyptic world. Heller wrote the characters as I believe they would be in the same scenario. At times the story is touching and others you're faced with the potential reality of a world gone mad.
    I can only hope in the event of the nightmare scenario where the Earth is wiped clean to begin again I would act as Hig did. His internal conflict with the world he was living felt true and given the decisions he was forced to make I hope I would have the strength to act as he did.
    The most poignant thing about the story is that I was left feeling like the main character was a friend. He speaks of instinct and heartache and philosophy and there's truth to what he says. I would discuss the same topics with my friends and wonder where I'd heard them as if they were in my heart instead of in my mind.
    I have recommended this to friends and who don't care for the genre. You either like the genre or you don't, I suppose. This is more than that though. This is more literary. It isn't McCarthy's, The Road, but that's a good thing. It's kinder and gentler and gives you hope for the best what's left of the world has to offer.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Maria Lachine, Quebec, Canada 01-28-13
    Maria Lachine, Quebec, Canada 01-28-13 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
    11
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    53
    23
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Not for me"

    Post-apocalyptic novels are not my preferred genre. Perhaps that's what why it didn't strike a chord. Descriptions are bountiful and action, in my opinion, rather scarce. I found it long in parts. I kept waiting for something to happen.

    At least by the end of the book I felt satisfied enough that something changes in the status quo of the protagonist's life and the reader's (listener) as well as the protagonist's perception shifts to give place to a deepened understanding.

    Not one to say this, but perhaps a book better enjoyed when read rather than listened to. At the bookstore, I happened to flip through the book and realized that it's supposed to be read in a staccato, bits of thoughts on the protagonist's part. Doesn't have the same flow/effect when listened to.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    A Reader 01-24-13
    A Reader 01-24-13 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    58
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    560
    24
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A Dog Named Jasper and a Man named Hig"
    Any additional comments?

    I loved this book--not everything about it but overall. I loved the relationship between Hig and Jasper most of all. the comfort and companionship across species in a world where human society has disintegrated. the author never even describes Jasper except to say, at one point, that he has short fur and he was a mix, but he doesn't hazard a guess at the breeds. So I imagined Jasper as a hound retriever mix with a sweet and concerned face. I also came to love the relationship between Hig and his ornery and often kind of awful partner in survival, Bangley. Very aptly named with his love of fire arms and explosives. I found the story interesting and engaging. I don't want to give away too much of the plot because discovering it is part of the pleasure.

    The one thing I didn't find realistic was how Jasper was fed. I felt the author went for shock value when there seemed many unexplained missing options for how Jasper could be maintained.

    The reader was great. In my mind he sounded how Hig would sound and did a good job with the voices of other characters as well.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ellen Tulsa, OK, United States 01-21-13
    Ellen Tulsa, OK, United States 01-21-13 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Amazing story, beautifully written and read."

    Don't let the theme of this book discourage you from listening to Dog Stars.
    It's thought provoking, funny, and very entertaining.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Linda 01-10-13
    Linda 01-10-13 Member Since 2010

    I am waiting patiently for the best book on earth!!

    HELPFUL VOTES
    22
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    36
    32
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A gentle man caught in a violent world."
    What did you love best about The Dog Stars?

    The main character trying to always related to the "past" which is today's present. Making the reader see that tomorrow may not be as we planned.


    Have you listened to any of Mark Deakins’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    Have not. Will though


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    Enjoy today, because tomorrow you may want it all back.


    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Patty Lyons, CO, United States 01-02-13
    Patty Lyons, CO, United States 01-02-13 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    4
    4
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Interesting and compelling but..."
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    My recommendation to a friend will depend on who the friend is. The story lacked a certain depth and at times it slipped into "romance novel" mode by adding too much detail for me. It didn't fit with the rest of the book's style. Lots of violence. Interesting to have it take place within 30 minutes of where I live. I bought the book after hearing a review on an NPR program (Colorado Matters). Liked the idea of reading a Colorado author. I wanted to finish the book but was getting a bit tired of the sameness of the story throughout.


    What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

    Not a "happy, everything worked out great" ending but not unsatisfying either. It fit with the rest of the story.


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

    His voice helped identify the characters.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    Get your guns ready...


    Any additional comments?

    This book deals with a future that seems more possible than a lot of futuristic books. Incorporating a flu pandemic, water issues, global warming, etc. hit on topics that may actually catch up with us one day.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    E. Butler Boston, MA USA 01-02-13
    E. Butler Boston, MA USA 01-02-13 Member Since 2001

    E.B.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    42
    4
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "The sensitive side of the post apocalypse!"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes, The book was well written, had me thinking of Hemmingway at times. I enjoyed the prose like writing style.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    My favorite character was Hig. He is a sensitive guy despite what he has been thru and done. Hig human side gives other not so nice people too many chances for the situation he and the world is in.


    Have you listened to any of Mark Deakins’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    I have not listened to any other books narrated by Mark Deakins. Mark did a great job and was very easy to listen to. I was reading and listening to the book with whisper-sync and I preferred to listen to him over my inner voice. His voice gave more depth to the story than mine and added to the story. This is the kind of book audiobooks were made for.


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

    There were a few parts that the writing truly touched me.


    Any additional comments?

    Overall, the book was great. The writing style was perfect for this story and framed the story and characters great. I really enjoyed the book and went thru it quicker than I liked. Although I do not re-listen to many books, this one is on my list.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 121-130 of 162 results PREVIOUS112131417NEXT

    There are no listener reviews for this title yet.

Report Inappropriate Content

If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.

Cancel

Thank You

Your report has been received. It will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.