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Camouflage | [Joe Haldeman]

Camouflage

The artifact is found seven miles below the surface of the sea and beneath 40 more feet of sand. The Navy's efforts to raise a wrecked submarine uncover it - and set in motion a scientific race to retrieve it, to discover just what it is and where it came from. Denser than any substance known to man, it has broken every drill bit they've tried on it and will not budge an inch. It resists every effort to breach it - or communicate with it.
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Publisher's Summary

The artifact is found seven miles below the surface of the sea and beneath 40 more feet of sand. The Navy's efforts to raise a wrecked submarine uncover it - and set in motion a scientific race to retrieve it, to discover just what it is and where it came from.

Denser than any substance known to man, it has broken every drill bit they've tried on it and will not budge an inch. It resists every effort to breach it - or communicate with it. So the government turns to marine biologist Russell Sutton for help.

Meanwhile, unknown to any of them, two creatures have wandered the earth for generations. The aliens have no knowledge of each other, but possess a residual memory of the artifact - and an affinity for deep water. One, which calls itself the changeling, has survived by adaptation, by taking on many different forms: man, woman, snake, shark. The other, which calls itself the chameleon, has survived solely by destroying anything or anyone that threatens it.

Now, finally brought up from the bottom of the sea, the artifact calls to them both...to come home. For all these generations there have been two invincible creatures on Earth. But the chameleon has decided there's only room for one.

A novel of human and inhuman nature, Camouflage will take you to the depths of the sea, to the limit of man's imagination - and beyond.

©2005 Joe Haldeman; (P)2008 Audible, Inc.

What the Critics Say

Nebula Award, Best Novel, 2005


"Haldeman trips through history wearing alien goggles but his message is all about human nature." (Entertainment Weekly)
An extremely intelligent thriller." (Washington Post)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.7 (535 )
5 star
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3.8 (281 )
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Story
4.0 (272 )
5 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Kevin Herndon, VA, United States 10-19-13
    Kevin Herndon, VA, United States 10-19-13 Member Since 2011

    Checking out Brandon Sanderson's work

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Fun idea, good performance"

    This book is one of those where you will have to suspend your beliefs to enjoy it. The idea of two immortals that end up on earth a very long time ago and as humanity evolves decides to partake in society (one brutal, one less so) and how the two entities find each other....an engaging story. Its sort of disturbing that you know that the humans can do nothing about the situation - only the two entities. It leaves you feeling a bit helpless.

    But I liked the story. It is a quick read will keep you entertained.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tom D. 06-19-12
    Tom D. 06-19-12 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Not your typical story... but a good listen."
    What did you love best about Camouflage?

    I like how the story was written... it did jump around a little more than your typical sci-fi book, but nothing to bad and actually made the story a bit better to listen to. Towards the end you kind of figure out how it is going to end though. Which for me was a bit of a let down.


    What other book might you compare Camouflage to and why?

    I really can't think of a different book to compare this to... it's kind of got it's own flavor that you really can't quite figure out.


    Have you listened to any of Eric Michael Summerer’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    No


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

    Not really... but it takes quite a lot for me to want to listen to a book all in one sitting.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Timothy College Station, TX, United States 04-24-11
    Timothy College Station, TX, United States 04-24-11 Member Since 2011
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    "Excellent, right up until the end."

    This was an excellent book, keeping me riveted right up until the final 10 minutes or so of the recording. I might describe the story as a mash-up between "Forrest Gump", "Contact", and "Rendezous With Rama", if you can imagine that. Right up until the final scene, I could hardly put it down! Unfortunately, the book turns very cliche at the end. I would have given it 5 stars without hesitation if not for the ending. Without giving anything away, I felt it was very "Disney-esque", with a little "Indiana Jones and the Crystal Skull" thrown in (if you hated the way that movie ended, you might feel the same about this ending). Everything is resolved WAY too quickly, with a heavy dose of deus ex machina. I do recommend it, just because it's such an enjoyable ride, but in my opinion the author just got lazy at the end. It could have been much better.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Henry 08-22-10
    Henry 08-22-10
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Beware the Hype - This Book Fails to Deliver"

    The "artifact" is little more than a side show in this book. It does little more than exist until the not so exciting conclusion. The only excitement this book delivers, notwithstanding the obligatory half dozen wham-bam-thank-you-mam sex scenes, the gratuitous violence, the travel log to near and distant places, and a short history of the late 20 the century, comes into focus about half way through the book. At this point, it is hinted that there might be a clash of two non-related, super humans. What the clash may or may not be about or what the winner would win is never actually developed because the usual pattern of three clashes is condensed to one quick skirmish of the super humans. Then, just when the long expected clash is finally at hand one of the super human realizes that the parking meter on their spacecraft (AKA the artifact) has expired.

    Stop everything! So sorry, we are out of quarters, we'll have to finish this fight at home. Goodbye.

    The narration was professional, which is more than I can say for Camouflage by Joe Haldeman.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Matthew Ottawa, ON, Canada 06-21-10
    Matthew Ottawa, ON, Canada 06-21-10 Member Since 2014

    Avid audiobook addict!

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Totally ideal science fiction!"

    Excellent writing, very thought provoking. The best science fiction audiobook I've ever downloaded!

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Donk murfreesboro tn 07-22-13
    Donk murfreesboro tn 07-22-13 Member Since 2006

    "I'll be a story in your head, but that's OK. We're all stories in the end. Just make it a good one, eh? The Doctor

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Sociology Professors should require this book."
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes! Different than any other story I've read in a long time.


    What did you like best about this story?

    I like the Changeling and his mission to understand and become more human. I wish I could hear more about his "adventures". I liked the way it was studied and was interested in why people and groups of people act the way they do was very intriguing story line. The Bataan Death March section was the most interesting. It seeing and wanting to understand why the Japanese treated the Service Men the way they did, but also concluding that he never again wanted to kill indiscriminately.I also liked the contrast of the Chameleon. However, I wish we could have delved deeper into his story so we could see more of his beginnings.


    What about Eric Michael Summerer’s performance did you like?

    I though he did a great job.


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

    Yes. In fact I was sad when I had to get out of my car. I even listened at lunch.


    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Daniel N. Lionsden Torrance, CA USA 09-26-14
    Daniel N. Lionsden Torrance, CA USA 09-26-14 Member Since 2004
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    "Graphic Sex unneccessary for great story"
    If you could sum up Camouflage in three words, what would they be?

    Humanization of changeling


    Any additional comments?

    The changeling went through many lives before it discovered what love is. It, the changeling, began the story by killing a human as it came out of the sea, where it had been living as a great white shark, a killer whale, and other denizens of the deep for a million years. It was immortal and unkillable but vulnerable. It could be seriously injured, but its nature was immortality.It spent so much time roaming the oceans that it had forgotten its past and didn’t know where it came from.After killing its first human and taking over the persona of its victim, it began learning the meaning of being a human. At one point, it had a graphic sexual encounter with its nurse, then injured another woman while attempting forced anal intercourse, and then took an active part in a homosexual incident. Later, it decided to carry on as a woman.Finally, while trying to uncovered the mystery of a million-year-old relic that had amazing physical properties, it befriended a man while it was in the guise of a woman, and fell in love.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    J. Huebert San Francisco, CA United States 07-20-14
    J. Huebert San Francisco, CA United States 07-20-14 Member Since 2013

    I have been a voracious reader since I was a child.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Interesting story - narrator needs a Samoan lesson"
    What did you love best about Camouflage?

    I love sci-fi, especially stories about aliens among us. This book did not disappoint on that front.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The main character was well developed, and I was intrigued by its progression through different 20th century situations.


    What did you like about the performance? What did you dislike?

    The narrator had a pleasant voice, but clearly needed a Samoan language lesson. I've spent time in both Samoas, and am sorry to say almost every word and phrase was mispronounced. It became annoying to the point of distraction.


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

    No, no extreme reactions to the book. In places, the writing seemed forced and some scenes were predictable. There were also some racy scenes that I just couldn't engage with.


    Any additional comments?

    The story took some very interesting turns, but overall fell kind of flat. My guess, without looking at the details, is that this is an early book for a new author - it has that rough-around-the-edges feeling.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Genevieve Arcata, California, United States 05-04-14
    Genevieve Arcata, California, United States 05-04-14 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "When is the movie?"
    Where does Camouflage rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Its one of my all-time favorite books and everyone else I recommended it to loved it.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Louis Sandy Springs, ga, United States 03-10-14
    Louis Sandy Springs, ga, United States 03-10-14
    ratings
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    2
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    "entertaining, but not buyin' it"
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    I enjoyed this book, but it involved two different species of alien who both were virtually immortal highly powerful shapeshifters, living on earth. Apparently they represent a substantial portion of alien life out there? I just find that unlikely.

    One is evil and one becomes good as a result of earth experiences, which is interesting was not developed as well as it could have been.

    So, the book followed the development of one of them on earth (he/she had lost her memory in some unexplained way). That was probably the best part.


    Would you be willing to try another book from Joe Haldeman? Why or why not?

    Maybe but the science aspect is pretty light.


    Would you listen to another book narrated by Eric Michael Summerer?

    I'd rather not. He attempts to imitate voices when he reads a book, which is annoying, especially in the extended conversations when he is trying to be a sexy girl.


    Could you see Camouflage being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

    Yes, I could but that fact doesn't particularly recommend it. They would need to expand the final conflict drama as it is a virtual afterthought and would take about two minutes.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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