Following in the footsteps of the New York Times best-selling graphic novels and the record-breaking new television show, this debut novel in a trilogy of original Walking Dead books chronicles the back story of the comic book series' greatest villain, The Governor.
In the Walking Dead universe, there is no greater villain than The Governor. The despot who runs the walled-off town of Woodbury, he has his own sick sense of justice: whether it’s forcing prisoners to battle zombies in an arena for the townspeople’s amusement, or chopping off the appendages of those who cross him. The Governor was voted “Villain of the Year” by Wizard magazine the year he debuted, and his story arc was the most controversial arc in the history of The Walking Dead comic book series. Now, for the first time, fans of The Walking Dead will discover how The Governor became the man he is, and what drove him to such extremes.
©2011 Robert Kirkman and Jay Bonansinga (P)2011 Macmillan Audio
“If the comic book writer Robert Kirkman were a superhero, his name might be the Midas Touch.” (The New York Times)
I am an entertainer...so I spend a lot of time on the road. I take my audio seriously. I appreciate great writing and outstanding narration.
I am a fan of the series and so picking up this book was a no-brainer. (Pun intended...)
But the book takes on a "they run...they kill zombies...then they run to a different place" feel that is tedious after a while. If you're looking for backstory on "the Governor" don't expect much. Because it only comes out in the last few minutes.
Author tries to create tension but in the end we're left with one-dimensional completely predictable (although sometimes gross) character actions and motivations.
The narrator is excellent -- trying to do his best with an essentially flatlined story.
Is it listen-able. Sure.
Are there better options? Absolutely.
Have listened to every book in this genre on audible. No joke. This book is hard to grade. The story is good. The narration is ok. But somethings missing. Its not as good as Day by day or Morningstar. Or the Joe Ledger novels. And I mean nowhere near as good. But its alot better than The Infection, Haters, or The Undead Situation. And I mean alot better.
Google search...lets see, Harley Glides are air cooled. ..no radiator to drink from, Glocks don't have manual safeties and Ford doesn't make an S10. Plus a Marlin 55 is a turnbolt shotgun...and a 12 is bigger than a 20...GOOGLE!
Normally I would not but I've already bought the other two...
Kirkman REALLY needs to research his world. Its fiction , but you can only suspend disbelief to a certain extent. ..
Ok bare with me here. I am one of those HUGE Walking Dead fans. You know the ones who have each single issue, variant, and limited edition omnibus. The fan who counts down the days until the monthly comes out, just so I can DOWNLOAD it right away to get my “fix,” and later buy the issues when time suffices. Well, needless to say, if you are like me (and you probably are if you’re reading this) or even just a casual fan of the comic of TV show, you probably are going to be looking to check out Rise of the Governor.
First off, if you’re just a TV fan, just stay away period. This is not worth your time, you won’t know how this pertains to TWD, and will get pretty bored with it. There is better stuff out there. Now, being the fan that I am, I have been trying to read my hardcover (signed by Kirkman/Bonasinga at NYCC….sigh) for quite some time, but being a high school teacher with zero free time, I turned to audio-book instead. This book is ULTRA-descriptive, to the point where it is a glaring flaw. Think of THIS review that your fine self is reading, and I just NOW began talking about the book! You’re probably saying “I don’t care about your fan-dom, your profession, or frankly you cyber man….just talk about the book!” Yes, all that stuff was purposefully included to make my point, but you need to know the gravity of the situation. “The zombie was gnashing like a BLANK which was BLANK. The gnashing was so BLANK that it reminded Brian of a BLANK. ……“ It’s difficult to express how much this book suffers from this in words.
Unfortunately, the ending was predictable after the first 25% of the book, which wasn’t all that jarring, yet still the biggest highlight of this book. Not that much happened looking back, just descriptions of EVERYTHING including the word “arterial” maybe 35 times. Yes TWD is a slow burn, but still there’s supposed to be that “OH S***” moment, which sadly, never came. The narrarator’s voices were okay at best, but during heated conversations, they all sounded too similar.
My biggest quam will be yours too if you’re a fan of the comics. Only the last 10% of the book is in Woodbury. So if you were expecting to see crazy “Governor stuff” it totally lacked. They could have added maybe 3 more chapters and made it 100% more satisfying.
Anyhow, what can I say, it was TWD….in book form…so it still gets 3 stars, but apparently a Michonne book is next in the trilogy, I just hope it is a bit more memorable.
Black Ops Guy
There are several silly technical mistakes in this book that should have been caught and corrected before it was published. Just a few examples, Ford doesn't make the S10... Try Chevy... Glock Handguns don't have a manual safety. The safety is incorporated into the trigger. Oh, and a mistake made by so many writers... CORDITE... Bullets haven't contained Cordite as a propellant since 1945. It's production stopped at the end of WWII, yet writers continue to refer to the air hanging heavy with the smell of Cordite. Unless your shooters are using Vintage WWII bullets, it's not Cordite they are smelling :-)
I am a graphic designer by trade and a Film student by choice! I am always looking for a good story!
I felt the writing to be pretentious. The story was okay…
As an avid Walking Dead fan I felt a huge disconnect with this book. I felt that the writers there in a few $10.00 words to make them selves seem smarter and felt the story to be a bit unbelievable.
No I don't, However I do hope that after reading it I will get a better sense of “The Governor” when he is introduced in Season three of the series. If not then I fear this purchase would have been a total waste.
I felt that this book could have been a bit better. I found myself having to force myself to listen to the story just to finish the book.
I may listen again, I don't usually listen or read books twice, I feel I got everything out of this I needed to. The story was non stop, A thriller for sure. The reason I may listen again is because of the big twist ( which I don't want to give away) so I observe the chapters before it for clues or hint, also I have not read all of the comics, so I may read it again after I do that. I feel like it did not matter much that I had only read a few of the comic books. Before going into this novel, I knew nothing of the Governor. I think the timing of this novels release was great, it gave us walking dead fans something to do while waiting for the next season.
There were many memorable moments. The ending was for sure the best, but it left me wanting much more, so I hope they write another novel.
The description of the zombies, biters, walkers,whatever you call them was astounding. I have no fear of the living dead, but at certain moments I was a bit freaked out.
Fred Berman gave a brilliant performance. I cannot say enough great things. Every character had a very distinct voice, never had any problem knowing who was narrating. He even did an awesome job with penny's voice, and the other females in the novel. He made this story even more memorable.
A few minutes worth of fact checking would have made a HUGE difference. A Ford S-10 pickup? A 20 guage goose gun? A 12 guage blowing off two heads in one shot from a few feet away? Feeling light headed from Naproxin? And the mispronunciation.... The story was good but these distractions and many more made the book hard to not listen to without feeling like you should be getting paid for editing the book. I bought this cause I love the TV series, but I think Kirkman needs to stick to comics.
Probably, its a pretty good story, but the terrible editing take away from it alot
I have not
Yes, but barely
Tons of really stupid technical mistakes. Not just the annoying little stuff that fanboys love to point out, but stuff that a lot of everyday people would pick up on. For examples, Ford doesn't make the S-10 pickup, Chevy does and The Delta Force is not part of the Marine Corps. These are just two GLARING examples. There's a lot more subtle stuff two, things that any 5th grader with an internet connection could have check on and corrected. One or two of these is understandable, but this book is LOUSY with them! It really takes away from the experience.
Love to listen to books all the time since I'm disabled & sit around all day. Mostly LUV zombie books ~ anything w blood & guts & guns!
I truly loved this book. I don't care what anyone else says.I was interested in the story about this character. I was surprised how it ended. Way different then I expected. This book kept my interest just as well as a book I would read myself. I was thrilled with the narrator chosen for this book. His version of the voices were great and I don't think it would have come across this way if it was someone else. Fred is perfect for this story. And because of this I would truly want to listen to more books that he has read.
I've been on the zombie kicked for many years now. Way before "The Walking Dead" TV show came out. I'm a fan of the TWD comics that started off the TV show. Because of this I could say I would compare this book to many of the other zombie books I've read. But because of Fred it was so great to listen to and I wanted to keep going and not "put it down".
All of the book was my fav but the best was the end (which I won't give out for those who've not read it yet) when Brian introduced himself.
YES...it was so difficult to stop ready when I was sleepy or have something to do..it took me a week to listen to it for these reasons when it should have taken one day.
I became a member of Audible because I'm disabled now and sitting around all the time so i'm always reading and it's nice to just liten once in awhile...I've always reading the descriptions and trying to find great books to listen too. I am on a big zombie kick right now so that's how I roll at the minute...
Loved this story. A little twist near the end really finished it off nicely for me.
"Fantastic book, performed really well, recommended"
I havent read the print version but the performance for me really added to the story so I would expect the audio edition to be better than the print version.
Some pretty dark areas are covered within the story which were really insightful and added a great deal to the background of the walking dead series.
When the group were in Atlanta, I wont go into more detail as to avoid spoilers .
"A must read or listen!"
Loved Fred Berman's narration and the book itself is great. I can not wait for the 2nd book.
"First Audiobook "
amazing. first Audiobook and I loved it. cant keep concentration reading books so tried this. amazing. great book for any walking dead fan
as a fan of the walking dead show i decided to read this series. im hooked, every chapter has moment that is great. from the half way point its near impossible to stop listening and the twist at the end i personally never saw coming. awesome book and a must read for walking dead fans.
"Brilliantly dark and disturbing."
A dark and moving tale of how the WD's Governor developed from a kind but weak youngish man to the psychopath we meet in the Walking Dead TV series and later WD audio books.
Briliant because it's believable. The story evolves at a perfect pace. One of those rare stories where you can understand and somewhat empathise with some of the terrible actions he takes, due to the background and current circumstances.
I love the twist at the end and really did not see it coming.
The characters are great. Narration is top notch.
"Not bad at all"
Huge fan of the TV show, wanted to go back and read the books, listen to the books. This was great, good twist at the end, lots of detail. Would recommend to fans of zombies and zombie killing, not that the killing is a huge past time these days. Good to hear the backstory of the Governor as we were not treated to that in the television series. Will crack on with the rest in the series now.
The Governor is one of my favourite characters in the Walking Dead and this detailed backstory of his rise is fantastic. The narration is second to none. For fans of the series, you will not be disappointed!
"A little slow to get started but a good listen"
I struggled to get into it at the beginning but enjoyed it when the action picked up
The book is well written and narrated, and the ending has a great twist for people who have watched the show, and for people who are only reading the book. The book is brilliant, and helps develop the characters further for the TV show.
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.