As a child, Chris Hooper dreamed of monsters. But in deep space, he found only darkness and isolation. Then, on planet LV178, he and his fellow miners discovered a storm-scoured, sand-blasted hell - and trimonite, the hardest material known to man.
When a shuttle crashes into the mining ship Marion, the miners learn that there was more than trimonite deep in the caverns. There was evil, hibernating and waiting for suitable prey. Hoop and his associates uncover a nest of Xenomorphs, and hell takes on a new meaning. Quickly they discover that their only hope lies with the unlikeliest of saviors....
Ellen Ripley, the last human survivor of the salvage ship Nostromo.
©2016 20th Century Fox (P)2016 Audible, Ltd.
"[Narrator] Laurel Lefkow shines as Ripley - her mature, sarcastic tone barely concealing her raw terror at reliving a nightmare. The mix of music, sound effects, and vocals is painstakingly orchestrated - from the creaks of the ship to the subtle shifts in atmospheric tone as the characters enter different situations. Add in a diverse ensemble of voices, and this production succeeds in keeping the listener in the center of the action." (AudioFile magazine)
All of my reviews are on my blog audiobookreviewer dot com
In 2014, Titan Books released the first in a new series of books set in the Alien film franchise under the supervision of the movie studio 20th Century Fox. These novels are considered part of the film canon and help expand and flesh out the movie universe, and they launched with Tim Lebbon’s Alien: Out of the Shadows, set between the first two movies and featuring the series’ heroine, Lt. Ellen Ripley.
Following the destruction of the Nostromo in the first Alien movie, Ripley put herself into hypersleep and drifted through space. Movie buffs know that 57 years passed between Alien and Aliens, but Lebbon has crafted a nicely fitting story that slots itself directly into the middle of this time gap. In Out of the Shadows, the damaged mining vessel Marion picks up a distress call from Ripley’s lifeboat, while the crew contends with the discovery of a vicious life-form on the planet LV-178. It’s not long before Ripley is pressed back into action, haunted by the events aboard the Nostromo, and hellbent on saving the crew of the Marion.
Rather than taking Lebbon’s novel and producing a straight-up audiobook, Audible Studios and director Dirk Maggs have turned Out of the Shadows into a brilliant audio drama, crafting a production that may well be the best Alien production since James Cameron’s own Aliens. Using an ensemble cast of voice actors, including actor Rutger Hauer in his first audio performance as the now-disembodied ghost in the machine of the android Ash, and an array of sound effects and musical score, the production quality on display here is downright phenomenal.
Actor Corey Johnson brings to life Chief Engineering Hooper, while Laurel Lefkow voices Ripley. The chemistry between these two is terrific and you get a great sense of camaraderie as they form a fast friendship under the threat of the alien menace. Lefkow in particular wowed the heck out of me, and a few times I could have positively sworn that Maggs had gotten Sigourney Weaver to reprise her role. Lefkow absolutely nails the tone, inflection, and speech patterns of Weaver’s Ellen Ripley and it’s mighty damn impressive to listen to.
Rounding out the voice talent is the full-fledged sonic experience of the work itself. From the familiar not-quite dot matrix noises of the computers as they display text, to the ferocious grunts, hisses, and screams of the aliens, and the attendant instrumental score, Out of the Shadows is a frighteningly immersive experience, and one that is very audibly an Alien story. Dirk Maggs has been credited with turning the audio drama into an audio movie for his BBC productions, and that particular knack is on full display here. Lebbon’s prose work has been stripped away, although the story and dialogue, with a bit of finessing for this dramatization, remain intact and is lovingly crafted in a highly cinematic experience for the mind. With the accompanying audio you can really let your imagination run wild and set the scene in your mind’s eye on this one. This is as much an audio movie as it as a movie of the mind, and it’s scarily effective. Be sure to listen to this one with a good set of headphones to fully appreciate the layers and depth that went into constructing this audio drama, but be careful not to fall off the edge of your seat.
Some may argue that by placing this story between the first two Alien films that it’s not an entirely necessary work. To this, and with a shoulder shrug, I can only say, “meh.” I, for one, don’t care a whit about this works “necessity” because it’s just too damn good to ignore. This is a fun listening experience, and one of the best Alien productions we’ve gotten in a long, long while. It’s great to see, or rather, hear, Ellen Ripley back in action and kicking butt on land and in space.
If I have to post one complaint, it’s that the inclusion of Ash serves mostly as story recaps. While Hauer is a great choice to voice this iconic character, a lot of the information Ash relays, in the form of status update reports to the Weyland-Yutani corporation, is redundant to the unfolding plot, and given the frequency at which this is done over the course of the production’s 4 hours and 28 minutes it often times feel highly repetitive. If you’re spreading this listen out over multiple days or longer, these updates may serve as helpful story recaps, but if you’re digesting the story in large chunks they ultimately add little. Like a television show’s “previously on” segment, these recaps don’t eat up a lot of time, so this is ultimately a very minor complaint in the grander scheme of things.
As they did with last year’s adaptation of Joe Hill’s Locke & Key, Audible Studios has delivered a knock-out win of an audio drama – and for a work set in one of my favorite film series, no less! I had read and enjoyed Lebbon’s novel of this work when it came out a few years ago, but I absolutely loved listening to this adaptation. Dirk Maggs and his cast and crew have created a very special production for Alien fans with this dramatization, released on Alien Day (4-26, as in LV-426), and it’s a work that I highly recommend. Now go give it a listen!
Audiobook was provided for review by the Publisher.
Please find this complete review and many others at my review blog
[If this review helped, please press YES. Thanks!]
Hi my name is Marty, Im book worm from Portland Oregon. I work graveyard shifts and listen to books while I work and read comics in the day
This has to be the best dramatization on Audible.
The tone of the entire book makes you feel claustrophobic & on edge.
The core cast of characters are likeable and have just enough backstory and personality that; when one meets a grisly end you actually feel bad for them.
The production is spot on, extremely well directed and coordinated. The pace is well kept, characters talking to themselves or explaining to others in place of narration with out getting bogged down.
The actors were all extremely fun to listen to.
Over all I give this a 10/10 rating, we need more audio drama's like this one.
Way above average, and I don't usually enjoy full-cast productions.
Can't name any particular moment,
Ripley, of course. The actor actually sounded very much like the original film version and her delivery of Ripley's snappy one-liners in horrific situations was spot on. But all the actors did a great job.
Not that kind of book. But why must everyone scoff at Ripley's firsthand account of the aliens' capabilities?
It would have been nice if the description of this audiobook had included the running time (about 5 hours.) I like how the writers neatly managed to wedge an additional story line between the first two films. I gave four instead of five stars on story because it was difficult to follow the fast action and movement around the ship without the visuals. However, that's nobody's fault and only reflects the difference between the two media. The ship layout was complicated and hard to visualize.
My taste differs from kid books to gory horror books.
HOLD ON TO YOUR PANTIES LADIES, WE'RE GOING IN
The story itself is okay, but not great. The narrators and the production are top notch. If you are an Alien fan or a Sci-Fi fan this belongs in your library. Even though the story is a little weak, but not bad, the production, more than makes up for it. This is entertaining.
Sci-fi, Fantasy, Mystery, Adventure, and YA Novels. If it weren't for physics, law enforcement, and my medication, I'd be unstoppable!
This was less of an audiobook and more of an audio performance. Complete with a full cast of actors, sound effects, music, and excellent directing.
If you are a fan of the Alien franchise, then you will certainly LOVE this audiobook. Even if you have never seen any of the movies, I can't see anyone not being entertained.
This book takes place between the first and second movies (Alien and Aliens). A mining ship deep on the outskirts of known space encounters the xenomorph aliens. After bringing them back to the ship, there is a catastrophic accident that leaves the ship slowing falling out of orbit with no hope of rescue.
Ripley's shuttle locks onto the distress signal and automatically docks with the ship. Unknown until much later, the android Ash (the one from Ripley's first ship that tried to kill her and the crew to bring back an alien specimen) downloaded some of his personality into the ship's computer. He covertly manipulates the situation to put the crew of the new ship into danger in order to hopefully fulfill his mission to bring back an alien specimen to the company research labs. Along the way, Ripley and her new allies not only battle the aliens but also make an astounding discovery on the planet's surface. The miners discovered an alien vessel buried miles beneath the surface of the planet, obviously millennia old. The xenomorph aliens have infested the ship of the unknown alien species who have now been dead for centuries... or have they?
This book had excellent writing. It was more than just a narration. The voices were all from experienced actors, and the sound effects and music made me feel like I was immersed in another alien movie...
5 stars for this book. I would highly recommend it to all sci-fi fans.
The sound environment, voice acting and story that will keep you on the edge of your seat. It is an amazing adaptation, in an interesting and interesting format, which is rarely as potent as it comes across in this dramatisation.If you're a fan of the Alien films and also have played Alien: Isolation, you will love this one!
Great tie in between the films and also (a quick nod in the book) to the computer game Alien: Isolation.
I admit this is my first time listening to an audiobook(don't judge) but boy am I glad I chose this one as an introduction. The cast, story and direction was great-all creating the same feeling of suspense and claustrophobia from the original film. Definitely does the canon justice. And the actress who voiced Ripley was spot on. Rutger Hauer gives an amazing performance as the bodiless synth Ash. My expectations have now been set. Wonder if anything can match Alien: Out of the Shadows.
Currently an Apocalypse listener most of my titles I have read are Apocalypse other than books not on my profile such as the Dresden Files
love the films love the story Concepts so to see it come together in this kind of production was phenomenal is a must-listen if you are a fan of the Alien series
Haven't heard much like this. Very well produced with an excellent audio environment and great voice casting. Trying to fill gaps between the movies is understandably difficult, so trying to suspend that disbelief took some slights. Overall a great ride, will definitely recommend this to friends who are fans of the franchise.
if I had to pick one criticism about this audio drama. it's that it's not longer!
the performance by all the cast in this is fantastic! Laurel Lefkow, the voice of Ripley, really sells it. a number of times I was convinced this was Sigourney Weaver herself speaking!
it's just fantastic! I wish it was longer!
"Supercharged Alien Creepiness!"
Deliciously creepy tension and fast paced action, this was a blast! From the opening scenes through to the end this smashes through the storyline at a remarkable rate. The high quality cast and excellent production values make this an absolute joy to listen to. Eerie and solid sound effects genuinely do add to the unfolding drama, even the cat gets some lines!
Some will find problems with the fact that this deviates from the known Alien story that went before it but I think this does a good enough job to bend things the amount it does and indeed it does just bend things rather than break them. It’s a fine audio drama and while probably nothing could quite match the tension of the films this does a great job of evoking similar feelings of dread and panic. There are some clever story telling techniques including the “software interloper” whose identity I will not reveal as I don’t do spoilers!
In all this is a fine drama, if I have a complaint it’s that it simply wasn’t long enough!! I am sure I could have listened to this kind of action for several more hours! And I am delighted that after my previous experience with Audible Studios which was the awful Starling Project this is the best one that I have heard from them yet. The investment in the production values and the high quality cast has more than paid dividends!
"Great production, poor story"
Impeccably produced, great voice actors, but a b-movie story full of holes let's down an otherwise smashing listen. Worth your time if you enjoy schlock
"Amazing vocal similarity"
Laurel Lefkow sounds so much like Sigourney Weaver, I had to check the credits! Typical Alien style story and nothing truly original but a fantastic audio production never the less.
"Didn't put it down!"
So this was my first audible, i was initially expecting and audio book but very happy with this performance audio.
At first I was apprehensive, the start didn't grab me, perhaps it was a little to close to the original books/movie for my liking. As it turns out (without giving it away) it all seemed it fit quite nicely with the series.
I seemed to have filled all my spare time (and also time I should have been working) listening to this, so that's a good sign!
It's gripping, tense, the characters are very likeable and real!
If your into the alien series (or like myself your not really) then it's worth a listen. If your into the space or the sci-fi again it's worth a listen
"Brilliant audio drama!"
Astonishingly good listen. Dirk Maggs and his team deserve your attention, because this is superb. Well acted, great sfx and a real sense of tension. If you're a fan of the Alien movies then this is well worth the purchase.
I thought everything about this was excellent, the whole production, I just agree with everyone else though that it was too short.
Should have been aliens 4 instead of that bizarre ridiculous thing that was made.
"I would recommend."
Great story! Fast paced! Would recommend this to anyone looking for a short exciting but scary adventure.
"well acted audio drama. Clever script. Absorbing."
Had to keep listening for the whole of Sat p.m. Rutger Hauer Android voice clever choice. " wonder if I will dream". Atmospheric & leaves mental pictures of the events. Essential graphic violence & swearing so don't listen on loudspeakers in delicate company! Fits cleverly between the two main storylines.
really gripping and intense book! would recommend it to anyone.i loves how it connected to the films and answered some questions about the film. the acting was extremely well done and made the book flow mire easily.
Report Inappropriate Content