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Swarm: Star Force, Book 1 | [B. V. Larson]

Swarm: Star Force, Book 1

Kyle Riggs is snatched by an alien spacecraft sometime after midnight. The ship is testing everyone it catches and murdering the weak. The good news is that Kyle keeps passing tests and staying alive. The bad news is the aliens who sent this ship are the nicest ones out there.
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Publisher's Summary

Earth arms marines with alien technology and builds its first battle fleet! Kyle Riggs is snatched by an alien spacecraft sometime after midnight. The ship is testing everyone it catches and murdering the weak. The good news is that Kyle keeps passing tests and staying alive. The bad news is the aliens who sent this ship are the nicest ones out there.

A novel of military science fiction by best-selling author B. V. Larson, Swarm is the story of Earth's annexation by an alien empire. Long considered a primitive people on a backwater planet, humanity finds itself in the middle of a war - and faced with extinction.

Battle stations! Listen to another Star Force novel.

©2010 B.V. Larson (P)2011 Audible, Inc.

What Members Say

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4.1 (4297 )
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 (2014)
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  •  
    Chris A. Reynolds Connecticut, USA 04-06-14
    Chris A. Reynolds Connecticut, USA 04-06-14

    DoWhileEnd

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Abducted... Yeah I think I was!"
    Would you try another book from B. V. Larson and/or Mark Boyett?

    No


    Would you ever listen to anything by B. V. Larson again?

    No


    Which scene was your favorite?

    None


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Swarm?

    The protagonist's son and daughter are killed by the aliens by 14 minutes into the book. A few minutes later, but all in the same scene, he's checking out a woman who has also been abducted: "...my eyes ran downward I couldn't help it, everything below the waist was just as shapely as the rest - and naked...."
    Really? So soon after describing his dead children and looking into his dead daughters eyes. If I could play editor, I be looking for my shredder.


    Any additional comments?

    You did warn me that the 'LISTENERS LIKE ME' tool was 'beta' so maybe work on it some more. I was in a hurry and just decided to try it to save time.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Alex Olympia, Washington, United States 04-03-14
    Alex Olympia, Washington, United States 04-03-14 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Original and Fascinating SciFi!"

    This novel was FAR better than I expected and the synopsis does not do it any sort of justice. The general premise is one that I've never encountered before and it had me hooked from the start. I don't want to spoil anything, as the surprising plot development was the most delightful part of this book for me. If you haven't already read a review that gave everything away I encourage you to get the book without ruining this aspect for yourself! Suffice it to say, Mr. Larson gives the tried old story of alien abduction a twist that might put it into a whole 'nother sub-genre where humans are made to fight for a good cause against their will and under baffling restrictions.

    I REALLY want to talk specifics but the gist is that Riggs is put in a situation where he must work around the bizarre limitations of an artificial intelligence and technology beyond his comprehension to achieve a goal of epic proportions. This is complicated by the fact that he is a random person of no authority forced to take on huge responsibility in a very short time and with no instruction. As many other reviewers have already said, he also must do all this directly following the death of his son and daughter.

    Some reviewers have expressed disbelief at the progression of Riggs' roles and of his response to the death of his children or the plausibility of the plot as a whole. I disagree with all of these. Don't get me wrong, the premise of the story is WILD but it is plausible (at least within scifi) and the rest is really a pretty reasonable progression of events.

    Riggs goes from a nobody to a person of extreme import because he was one of few people given ultimate power by virtue of the premise. What he does with that power and how he responds is quite understandable and reasonable to me. He never makes any leaps in logic or presents with any knowledge or ability that I would consider to be beyond a normal man with a proper education. In fact, I think his character is quite well done. If anything he's just unnaturally calm in crazy situations. His response to his childrens' death is not ludicrous as some reviewers have said. It happens in a situation of high adrenaline and violence so it is completely realistic that he initially turns his despair into rage. In such situations, people usually do not give themselves over to grief until the situation has calmed down.

    The plot is pretty well laid out and supported by teasing clues throughout the book and further into the series. The technology is pretty basic and unadorned. All of it has roots in modern day technology and none of it is really explained in enough detail to say that it doesn't make sense. The author seems to have acknowledged a lack of schooling in physics on his part and the characters admit their ignorance to understand the tech.

    There are only one or two other characters besides Riggs that are developed in any significant capacity and, unfortunately, his girlfriend was not one of them. When she was presented at the start I had high expectations for her but nothing more was ever added. She is used as a human companion (and concubine) for Riggs and little else. Crowe is an entertaining personality and the author sets up an age-old relationship between them that serves the political drama.

    The narrator has a pleasing voice. His character discriminations are mostly very good but the main female is basically just Riggs with a slightly different accent. Nevertheless, I was never distracted by the narrator and the main voices were very satisfactory.

    Overall, I was blown away by the fantastic premise of the book and I very much enjoyed Riggs as a character and his puzzle-solving with the computer (think trying to get a murderous Genie to do your will). It is a unique and gripping adventure with bouts of frequent action broken up by intriguing ideas and thought exercises. Highly recommend it for scifi fans!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 04-02-14
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
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    25
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    Story
    "I resisted listening but an pleased I did"

    I've seen this series and reviews of it floating around for while now. I have been tempted to listen before but always decided against it.

    I finally took the plunge and was pleasantly surprised. The story was solid even though the characters were predictable and pretty shallow. The action was excellent and I was well entertained the whole time.

    This is a lot like watching a SciFi war movie, and was worth the time. I think I'll pick up the other books to listen to when I want something fun to listen to.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Doug Laursen 03-24-14 Member Since 2014

    Tech Guy

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Not my storyline but you may enjoy it"
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    It's basically one more "epic battle to save earth" If you like stories of war, death, strategy, all with a new setup, then this could be for you. It's just not something I enjoy.


    Would you ever listen to anything by B. V. Larson again?

    Not from this series. I'll check out his other series with an ear for a truly creative story.


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

    The performance was clear and made the point when needed. There are only 2 voice artist I really enjoy regardless of the story being told.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Robert Vincelette Milford, CT 03-23-14
    Robert Vincelette Milford, CT 03-23-14 Member Since 2014
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    "My First Audio Book! Pretty Good."
    Would you listen to Swarm again? Why?

    I probably wouldn't listen to this story again. To be blunt, the writing isn't spectacular. The story is original, however, and the protagonist is likable. I'm quite interested to get the next installment and listen to that.


    If you’ve listened to books by B. V. Larson before, how does this one compare?

    I haven't had any previous exposure to BV Larson's work in any form.


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

    Mr. Boyett's voice and overall performance made this story work for me. He projected just the right balance of conviction and reserve to Kyle's voice.


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

    Star Force: the Beginning.


    Any additional comments?

    I listened to this story while working out on the treadmill. I generally listened in 30-45 minute interval and It seemed like a perfect match for that activity.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ben Eau Claire, WI, USA 03-17-14
    Ben Eau Claire, WI, USA 03-17-14 Member Since 2002
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Great SciFi book for high school reader."
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    The book was below average compared to most books I listen to. That said, it kept my attention and interest enough not to stop listening. I have no interest in investing resources in future books in this series.


    Do you think Swarm needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

    I believe there are other books in the series. I will not read them....


    Any additional comments?

    As I recall, I bought the book on sale. It was worth a few bucks but would not have been worth a full credit.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Vernon 03-14-14
    Vernon 03-14-14
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "I like a story that surprises me."
    Would you listen to Swarm again? Why?

    The story is original in the sense of the gravitas it conveys and realistic reactions to situations. I enjoyed Mr. Boyett's narration as always. His inflections are crucial to the pace of the storyline. The situations that occur don't have the necessary "happy results" and are not expected. Predictability in a story can make one put the book down prematurely...not this book.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The seriousness of the storyline and the moments of actions and levity are nicely balanced.


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

    Yes, I truly enjoy his narration. His narration in the Troy Rising series was great and has kept me


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

    yes, unfortunately I had to go to sleep sometime and had to rewind to the parts I went into REM on.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Camille Milwaukee, WI, United States 03-04-14
    Camille Milwaukee, WI, United States 03-04-14 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
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    "Insultingly Bad"
    Would you try another book from B. V. Larson and/or Mark Boyett?

    NO.


    Would you ever listen to anything by B. V. Larson again?

    NO.


    Any additional comments?

    The idea behind Swarm is really interesting. The characters suddenly find themselves used as pawns in a battle between unknown adversaries fighting it out with robots. The character development, however, is so awful that I could only listen to half of the book. According to this author, men are so lecherous that contact with any woman will immediately result in objectifying her and a desire for sex. Apparently this is true even if the woman is trying to kill you, even if you just survived a murderous attack by multiple assailants by killing them, and even if you just witnessed your own children being savagely murdered. Yep, nothing says foreplay to this author like seeing your kids killed. And what of the ladies? Really no development at all. Because why bother…they're just there for our hero to stare at anyway. Really retrograde approach to sci-fi characters.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 12-28-13 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    42
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    "Entertaining!"
    Would you listen to Swarm again? Why?

    Yes, great storyline


    What other book might you compare Swarm to and why?

    The Starfist Series, grounded in the reality of Humanity Vs....


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

    No


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

    Yes, Gripping!


    Any additional comments?

    No, Well done!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer PARKERSBURG, WV, US 12-26-13
    Amazon Customer PARKERSBURG, WV, US 12-26-13 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
    45
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    5
    5
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    "AWESOME!"

    Love this book. Action packed and really hooked me in. There are some unrealistic things but hey, this is fiction so I just enjoy the ride.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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