Eric Riordan was once a wealthy man leading a comfortable, easy life. Until one day Gabriel, his oldest friend, Marine Corps veteran, and a former mercenary, told him how the world was going to end.
He did his best to prepare. He thought he was ready for anything.
He was wrong.
As the dead rise up to devour the living, one man finds himself struggling to survive in the ruins of a shattered world. Alone, isolated, and facing starvation, his only chance is to flee to the Appalachians and join forces with Gabriel. But the journey will not be easy, and along the way his humanity, his will to live, and his very soul will be tested.
This is the beginning. This is his story.
©2011 James N Cook (P)2013 James N Cook
The book is very well written. The characters, dialogue, behaviors, and other elements are believeable not remarkable. The character is a everyday joe who befriends a survivalist type character (pre-apocalypse). The outbreak occurs creating Romero type Zombies. The main character begins his journey to meet up with his survivalist friend. The real journey is the discovery and growth the character endures while meeting other good and bad survivalist. When I first started to listen to the book I immediately thought that this was a "guy" book due to the long drawn out references toward guns, fighting, and other "manly" type interests. As the book went on I found myself engulfed in all the characters and thought to myself how well written this story really was. It became hard to put down. Just wish there were a little more action involving Zombies.
Narration was good but the female voices were a bit comical.
Starting second book now!
Movie loving Brit living Down Under. Anything 'end of the world' themed usually gets my attention, but The Stand has yet to be beat.
A pretty standard tale but though the story's kind of old hat to someone who likes zombie fiction, the characters are well fleshed out despite being mostly well-worn and typical.
Surprisingly, there are a couple of pretty emotional moments, especially towards the end of the story, as the author makes a point of dwelling on cause and effect. He makes a decent stab of putting some real pathos in to proceedings and, more often than not, does a good job of it. In that way, this is a cut well above the average.
Biggest obstacle I have is the narrator who does take some getting used to. Male voices are either slow, deep and gravelly or fast, a bit squeaky and bland. Aside from stereotypes like the duuuude surfer voice, that's about as varied as things get. Female voices aren't that great either. But you get used to it well enough and once you do it rarely intrudes.
All in all, you could do a lot worse than give this a spin. I'm off to grab book 2 anyway, which gives you some idea of how much I enjoyed book 1.
I've listened to most of the popular zombie books in the past year and its been hard finding good ones now. This one I never heard of in anyone's list of favorites but it was one of the better ones I've listened to in a while. I'm going to get the second one now.
Outstanding story with well developed characters. Having three antagonists (Zombies,Man and Environment) helps create a great story line with lots of suspense. Guy Williams does a great job narrating. Would give it 5 out of 5 stars.
this is the kind of zombie apocalypse story i've been looking for! great character development, great storytelling, great narrator. no ghosts, no vampires, no people making dumb, impossible to believe mistakes. all around great!
Gabe! he really brings the character to life.
Avid Zombie fan who's starting to listen to more and more Fantasy and Sci-Fi stories. So, my description is apt to change. Dog lover who's known to have cats. LOL C# coder, part-time prepper, B movie fan, AMC watcher, recovering but successful day trader, perpetual student, overjoyed uncle, former adrenaline junkie with a flare for cooking, and lots more. LOL
one of the better zombie stories i've listened to lately. eric comes into money the old-fashioned way- he inherited it. however, how he comes to be a millionaire is well thought out by the author. along with money, eric inherits some property. he sells his grandmother's cabin in the mountains to a guy named gabe. over time, they become good friends and one night eric finally asks gabe how he got the money to buy eric's cabin. hestitantly, gabe tells eric about his mysterious past and the preparations he's making for an uncertain future.
while there are some aspects of survivalism in the first part of the story, the author does not bog you down with too many details.
the 1st 1/3 of the story details eric's background, how he came into money, his relationship with gabe, and the initial outbreak in atlanta. i enjoyed this part b/c the author slowed down and described the initial outbreak via newscasts ric was watching. plus, gabe's background is interesting.
as the outbreak begins, eric is alone. he lives somewhere ooutside of charlotte, nc while gabe is living in the cabin in the mountains. before the phone lines go down, gabe tells eric to hole up in his bunker and head to the cabin once things get a little less crazy.
the last 2/3 of the story is eric's journey to the cabin. on his way there eric faces a moral dilemma. he meets up with another group of survivors and decides to help them. in doing so, he makes new friends and frenemies. the author does a good job of adding depth to these other characters. eric comes to be good friends with some of the survivors and ends up staying with them longer than he planned.
towards the end of the book, you learn more about the state of things in the u.s. and around the world. although most of the zombie gore is in the beginning, this is a good end of the world survival story.
the writing is strong, and there's believable introspection by the different characters.
however, there are some weaknesses. aside from the opening, there's not a lot of zombie gore and carnage. i really like z-bboks that have a sense of dread. i never feared for characters in this book. there was no sense of impending doom, no shambling zombie hoard. guess tufo spoiled me in those regards.
my biggest caveat was the narrator. whlle his guy voices were ok, his girl voices were just aweful. so bad that i wondered if some of them had an adam's apple. LOL
overall, i enjoyed the story. i listen to a lot of zombie books, and the difference between the middle tier z-books are mostly the characters. i've listened to z-books with all kinds of characters- average joes, moms, military types, etc.. i think this is the 1st i've listened to where the main protagonist is a 1%er. so, yeah, i liked it!
N/A. Uh, who does this???
I am somewhat embarrassed to admit that I read / listen to many of these types of series. Before this, by far my favorite was Day by Day Armageddon. I think it still may be but I think this one may tie it given this first book. It was great. The reader was excellent - not to slow, not too fast. The story was excellent - as if I was the main character (maybe that's why I liked it). Regardless...I'm moving on to the second book now. So many other series have been disappointments compared to Day by Day so I am thrilled that I have found one that competes.
Why does the review form have to be in all these sections? This is the first review I've written and this format is dumb. Makes me not want to write another review.
Great book to pass the time for a long drive. Interesting story line. Good development of the main characters.
Great narrator minus the fact that all the women in the story had a valley girl voice. It could get a little annoying.
This series so far has done a great job by not "jumping the shark" they keep the focus on the main characters and the daily struggle to survive. They keep it interesting without putting so much of the filler that I've noticed a lot of the novels today are doing. Surviving the dead is what I would consider a great example of a survivor horror story. The zombies are there in ample but they don't saturate the plot, which many books tend to do. If you're a fan of undead apocalypse style stories I highly recommend these books, they are well written and the author has certainly done his technical research.... Enjoy.
I'd compare this with the first book by the late Z.A Recht.
He was a good narrator, and doesn't overdo it I like it.
it's too long of a book to listen to all at once but its certainly interesting enough that I didn't just put it in when I wanted some white noise while I did something else. You do want to pay attention and enjoy the story.
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