In the first book of Jessica Meigs' The Becoming series, the Michaluk Virus has escaped Atlanta's Center for Disease Control, engulfing the Southeast and turning its citizens into zombies. Cade, Brandt, and Ethan band together in an attempt to survive the hordes of walking dead and find the truth behind the virus. Christian Rummel has an incredible burr to his voice, so pleasingly rumbling and intense in his performance of Meigs' story that he helps to make The Becoming a riveting experience. His laudable commitment to Meigs' characters and scenario should sway even the most undead skeptic of zombie fiction.
The Michaluk Virus is loose.
In the heart of Atlanta, the virus has escaped the CDC, and its effects are widespread and devastating. The virus infects nearly everyone in its path, turning much of the population of the southeastern United States into homicidal cannibals. As society rapidly crumbles under the hordes of infected, three people - Ethan Bennett, a Memphis police officer; Cade Alton, his best friend and former IDF sharpshooter; and Brandt Evans, a lieutenant in the US Marines - band together against the oncoming crush of death and terror sweeping across the world.
As Cade, Brandt, and Ethan hole up in safe houses, others begin to join them in their bid for survival. When the infected attack and they’re forced to flee, one departs to Memphis in search of answers while the others escape south to Biloxi, where they encounter more danger than they bargained for. And in Memphis, the answers that one man finds are the last answers he wanted, answers that herald a horrific possibility that there may be more to this virus than first suspected.
©2011 Jessica Meigs (P)2011 Audible, Inc.
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
sure if they're avid zombie fans. if you're new to the zombie genre, there are a lot of other books you should read before this.
i've been eating my way through the zombie novels on audible, and i came across this one, the becoming. i was skeptical at 1st b/c of the cover art, but i gave the sample a try. being an avid zombie fan, i decided to download the book b/c of the fast start to the story.
the story starts out with brandt running, hiding, and fighting through the streets of atllanta. apparently, he was part of a marine contingent at the cdc (center for disease control) when a virus went air born and started infecting people. he abandoned his post as soon as he realized the red line was crossed.
the story then breaks to memphis, tn. it's the morning after ethan has been promoted. he's hung over. he manages to join his wife, anna, and best friend, cabe, out back for some grilled food. when ethan asks cabe about her boyfriend, drew, she tells him that he came back from his business trip to atlanta with a cold. later in the day, they get the news that there's rioting in memphis. anna is called into the hospital to help. as night falls, all H-E-Double Hockey Sticks starts to break loose.
the 1st part of the becoming covers the initial outbreak of the michaluk virus. then there is a time skip of about 3 months. this is done pretty well.
the book is paced well. there's zombie action in the beginning, followed by some down time, and then there's more zombie action action that leads to the ending.
while i liked the story, there were parts that were unbelievable. according to my myers briggs personality type, i'm an intp (introversion, intuition, thinking, perception). whle i'm sure i'd be freaking out and half hysterical at 1st, i'd like to think i'd get my s#!t together within 72 hours. at least, that's what i think! lol anyway, i KNOW i wouldn't be screaming, throwing temper tangents, and breaking stuff. ethan and cabe are both hot heads, who at times let their emotions get the better of them. he's been a cop for 20 years, and she was an idf (israeli defense force) soldier for 7 years. so, it is kind of unbelievable when they lose control of their emotions when they're supposed to be keeping it low key, hiding in their safe house. my best friend is very loud. it's even a joke among our friends. i don't think he'd lose it like ethan and cabe do at times.
anyway, that's my major complaint.
the zombie action is pretty good. there is a nice twist on the zombies. they aren't your pure romero type slow, dumb, walkers. since this is the 1st in a series, i hope the author fleshes out why some of the infected are smarter than others. well, i may have just answered my own question. in this story, there are people who are infected but aren't yet zombies- they haven't been killed. maybe the infected but not dead are the smart ones? well, it is a twist that's kind of a mystery, and i'm a sucker for mysteries.
the narrator is ok. be ready for a bunch of southern drawl. i'm from virginia and don't think i have an accent even though my yankee friends think i do. lol i tell them if they want accent, then i can introduce them to some of my friends who're from georgia. lol
overall, it was what i wanted. a pretty good zombie story. yes, there are some problems and annoyances, but i'm not looking to solve any deep conundrums. i wanted to be entertained, and i was. the becoming isn't in my top 15, but it was entertaining enough for me to download book 2.
I like Jack Reacher style characters regardless of setting. Put them in outer space, in modern America, in a military setting, on an alien planet... no worries. Book has non moralistic vigilante-justice? Sign me up! (oh, I read urban fantasy, soft and hard sci-fi, trashy vampire and zombie novels too)
His blue eyes glared out the window; her green eyes flickered with anger. Brent's dark eyes (or, sometimes, brown eyes) closed with exhaustion...
I have absolutely no idea why people's eye color is mentioned every time they do something with their eyes. Do his blue eyes see something different than they would if they were brown? I kept waiting for their eye colors to become significant (i.e., his blue eyes turned grey as the life ebbed out of him). But, alas, no...
I won't go into how every action included an adverb: they don't smile, they smile tightly. They don't run, they run haltingly. They don't speak, they speak softly. They don't open a door, they open a door hesitantly.
And there is a lapse of consistency - at the very start we are specifically told that these are "not zombies" - they just have a virus that makes them angry and violent. And yet, later in the story, these "not zombies" have an overwhelming need to eat human flesh. Well... far as I know, the urge to eat human flesh pretty much *is* the hallmark of zombiehood. Being angry and violent does not equate to munching on brains... sorry Ms. Meigs.
I hate to say it because it's few and far between when zombie books are written by women - but - you can tell this author has read a lot more of, shall we say, chick-lit urban fantasy than zombie fiction.
It's not *bad* - for a zombie book. (I have read some that were sooo bad I couldn't finish them, this one is finishable.) And it's refreshing to skip the bog-standard "oh there's a woman, let's rape her" that is rampant in zombieland... it's just that not much happens and the characters' eye colors are more fully developed than their personalities.
I'll probably read more by Meigs as I suspect she'll get better as she writes more in this genre, and learns to tone down her use of adverbs and eye-actions. There isn't any sex or gore and it's not particularly violent. I don't recall any swearing. The narrator is pretty good.
Just personal preference, I guess, but I thought the book was slow, and I didn't care for the writing style of the author. There were a many things that bugged me as well. During the initial few days after the outbreak, the characters seemed clueless as to what was going on, whereas it seems that a normal person would put two and two together. The book was overweight with hot tempers and angry personalities. Nobody was really likable in the book. After reading, we don't really know what caused the virus, no indication of what the government is doing, no information if it has spread worldwide or how other countries are handling things, or if there is any attempt to counteract the virus. No attempt by the characters to communicate with the rest of the world. Although there were several scenes of action, many times the book just seemed to drag on and on. Being descriptive is one thing, but I felt that at times the author was too descriptive, unnecessarily so, and redundantly at times. After the first time, I got tired of hearing that somebody whispered something "to whatever deity might be listening."
It's difficult to rate a narrator with a book like this, because the writing itself does affect the narration. I think Christian Rummel did a fair job, and is overall a good narrator for this type of book. That being said, something nagged me throughout the whole book, every time Cade spoke via Mr. Rummel. Cade was a female, former Israeli military. Someone even mentioned her Israeli accent in the book. However, the narrator applied a semi-warped British accent when Cade spoke, so every time she was talking, I was thinking, "That's an odd accent for an Israli." To me, since Cade was a major character, that was a pretty big irritation, but other than that, the narrator did a decent job with the material he was given, whether he was speaking for a male or female.
Unfortunately, I don't think I'll be reading the rest of the series.
I'm a horror nut! Zombies in particular! Epidemics, end of all things! Also enjoyed Game of thrones very much!
People who are Very Desperate to be friends with the author!
Unsure as ive gone through all quality Zombie genre Novels out there which is why I gambled and Lost on this garbage.
I would say Chris did what he could with what he had! Put a tux on a Pig & it's still a pig! He has to read the rediculous conversations characters have with zOmbies breaking through doors or windows, "so joe What's the plan?? They are almost so maybe it's good that we talk out our entire thought process.! Hmmm you think it may rain? I'm gonna sit down and when you have idea let me know because first zombies are cracking the glass as we speak they are looking right at me,I'm perfectly calm though and they will not get me flustered.. ( punches partner inShoulder kiddingly). This was the type of garbage you find you will hear! No concept of the emotion the characters should be feeling! Any of us would be panicked and freaking out.! Even Chuck Norris couldn't have been as calm and collective through the situation in this book! But these characters are..
All conversations between characters during zombie attacks or any stressfully moment! The dialog was completely unbelievable.
Ending?? Isn't there something in writing a
Book called.. I dunno, Giving the story a ending??
Sorry to be harsh! Author shouldn't give up' I say go listen yourself and picture yourself in that Rv for instance and tell me the dialog is believable!
I also would have given it a ending??
If you love zombie novels then this is a quick listen. Its pretty fast paced and has interesting characters. I almost wished that there was a tad more interaction with Theo and his brother. Overall I would recommend. If there is a sequel you can sign me up. Now that I know the characters I'm ready to get to more into the story.
Love to exercise while listening
Absolutely nothing!! I can’t believe audible even bothered having someone read this aloud! Did anyone read this before print?
I don't know where to begin! There were so many times I gasped out loud because of the silliness of it all! I think the biggest example was when one of the main guys drives all the way from Alabama to Tennessee on a motorcycle (no mention of getting gas throughout the whole book) without seeing any zombies. He gets to his neighborhood, and sees some. He doesn't want to alert them to his presence so he quietly puts the kickstand down and that draws their attention. Did I mention HE DROVE ON A MOTORCYLCE??? The entire book was filled with this absurdity.
He has a very nice voice, but does an Israeli and a southern 16 year old girl both have to have a pathetic southern accent? It's hard to judge him when the nonsense coming from his mouth was hard to take
I only finished it so I could sum up some of the foolish scenes to my co-worker. I didn't once have to go back to listen to something I may have missed since I just needed the summary.
Avid Zombie Fiction listener!!! Bring on the living dead.
I don't know who would waste their time listening to this.
Hopefully a well written zombie book or series.
The narrator was OK. It was the story and the characters that were awful.
It was so poorly written.. I mean I think I made bit an hour into the book before I just couldn't take it anymore. I mean the characters are ridiculous. After they see people eating each other they care still talking about it just being riots and looters... They ask each other 5 times do u think this has something to doc with that virus... And the guy answered what virus. I was done...
Theses characters are just stupid. Sure looters and riots cause people to start eating each other... Smh what a waste of time!!!
By the end of the day, may you have learned something, laughed, and gotten laid.
If you're a zombie junkie, you'll probably like this book. If you've never read a zombie book, you'll probably like this book. If you've read a lot of Zombie fiction and you're looking for something with a new twist, this probably isn't it.
Former avid reader, current avid listener.
Christian Rummel is one of my favorite narrators, and I was happily surprised by the story.
All of the characters were ALLWAYS confrontational and very often tactically stupid. It seemed during every conversation someone was almost "ready to punch him in the face". It became very formulaic. Also, characters where strange about some very tragic moments, cracking jokes when loved ones died, and asking really dumb obvious questions, i.e. Zombie apocalypse going on around them, just had to shoot some friend and family in the head ten minutes ago and then the question: "Why are you bringing your gun?". Just didn't seem like the author comprehend what that situation would be or feel like. Great narrator, though
I love Zombie, Vampire and end of the world type stories. The book was generally fine but the story just stopped rather than concluded.
The ending I felt is lacked a real finish which made the book a little pointless and lacking in purpose.
Probably as I like this sort of genre of film but I'd wait for DVD.
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