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The Becoming | [Jessica Meigs]

The Becoming

In the heart of Atlanta, the Michaluk 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.
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Audible Editor Reviews

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.

Publisher's Summary

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.

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.6 (235 )
5 star
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3.6 (214 )
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3.9 (215 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Mike Naka VA 05-18-13
    Mike Naka VA 05-18-13 Member Since 2012

    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

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    "some annoyances but i enjoyed it"
    Would you recommend The Becoming to your friends? Why or why not?

    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.


    Any additional comments?


    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.

    12 of 12 people found this review helpful
  •  
    nicole lawrenceville, GA, United States 04-03-14
    nicole lawrenceville, GA, United States 04-03-14

    Love to exercise while listening

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    "Did an 8 year old write this????"
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    Absolutely nothing!! I can’t believe audible even bothered having someone read this aloud! Did anyone read this before print?


    What was most disappointing about Jessica Meigs’s story?

    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.


    What didn’t you like about Christian Rummel’s performance?

    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


    What character would you cut from The Becoming?

    The author!


    Any additional comments?

    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.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    David Abilene, TX 03-18-14
    David Abilene, TX 03-18-14 Member Since 2012
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    "Hoping For A Good Zombie Series, But..."

    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.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dan Phila, PA, United States 08-08-12
    Dan Phila, PA, United States 08-08-12 Member Since 2011

    I'm a horror nut! Zombies in particular! Epidemics, end of all things! Also enjoyed Game of thrones very much!

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    "Not Good at all! Not believable, ends mid story!"
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    People who are Very Desperate to be friends with the author!


    What do you think your next listen will be?

    Unsure as ive gone through all quality Zombie genre Novels out there which is why I gambled and Lost on this garbage.


    Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Christian Rummel?

    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..


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

    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??


    Any additional comments?

    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??

    7 of 10 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Nathan Wakarusa, Kansas, United States 03-06-12
    Nathan Wakarusa, Kansas, United States 03-06-12 Member Since 2008

    misterx9104

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    "Great. Very enjoyable."
    Any additional comments?

    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.

    6 of 9 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Gunnermike53 CRESTVIEW, FL, United States 09-17-14
    Gunnermike53 CRESTVIEW, FL, United States 09-17-14 Member Since 2009
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    "Eh...."
    What did you like best about The Becoming? What did you like least?

    The book is a typical zombie story. The main character, Ethan, is a douche bag. If the zombie apocalypse actually happened, his companions would shoot him. The author did very little research on things she is writing about. For instance, she mentioned having a gun registered several times. They live in Tennessee, there is no gun registry in Tennessee.


    What about Christian Rummel’s performance did you like?

    He did a fantastic job with the characters. Christian Rummel is a top notch narrator.


    Any additional comments?

    Overall this book was just ok. It was basically a guy being a douche bag to people while running form zombies.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jean Courtenay, British Columbia, Canada 07-11-14
    Jean Courtenay, British Columbia, Canada 07-11-14 Member Since 2010
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    "A sad waste of time"

    Poorly developing characters, unscientifically possible premise, a lot of assumptions, a lot of unanswered questions like how do they keep having cars with full fuel tanks and if they "aren't" zombies when really what are you trying to say. A whole book in and there is really no clarity or believability but there is a big dose of tough guy bravado. If I hear so What's the plan one more time, likely 8 - 10 stated in the listening of the book, I will cringe. Not much discussion around what really is going on and therefore it becomes more and more implausible. Bought the first one on spec but won't be buying any more.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Raul Kingwood, TX, United States 03-17-14
    Raul Kingwood, TX, United States 03-17-14 Member Since 2011
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    "Terrible. Made it 3/4 of the way and stopped"
    Would you try another book from Jessica Meigs and/or Christian Rummel?

    No. The character development was terrible with no background/buildup to characters' reactions which were poorly defined as a whole. Haphazard pacing, no cohesive storyline, just a mishmash of events and unfortunate metaphors.


    What do you think your next listen will be?

    Wish the next in the Remaining series would come out soon.


    How could the performance have been better?

    I think he did what he could with what he had. There could have been a little more variety in his voices used for characters.


    What character would you cut from The Becoming?

    Doesn't matter. You could just change the name of one character to another on all those lines and the book would make as much sense.


    Any additional comments?

    One of the only books EVER that I could not even force myself to get through.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michelle United States 03-12-14
    Michelle United States 03-12-14 Member Since 2011
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    "DISAPPOINTED"
    Would you try another book from Jessica Meigs and/or Christian Rummel?

    Would not read again from this author


    What could Jessica Meigs have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Cut all the unrealistic decisions made by supposedly highly trained soldiers/cop.
    Everyone is "smirking" the whole time, very annoying.


    Any additional comments?

    The book got more of a Mills and Boon feel to it than a serious apocalypse/zombie story

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michael G. Kurilla ROCKVILLE, MD, United States 02-24-14
    Michael G. Kurilla ROCKVILLE, MD, United States 02-24-14 Member Since 2005
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    "Becoming Peyton Place in zombieland"

    Jessica Meigs' The Becoming is a less than valiant effort for a fresh zombie thriller. A virus has escaped from the CDC and makes people violent cannibals which appears to be distinct from an actual zombie, but later in the tale, we learn they really are zombies. An eclectic band of people slowly coalesce and try to stay safe. By the end, they literally drive off into the sunset to another safehouse.

    The timeframe is present day without any true sci-fi elements save for the virus, whose origin is never explained, nor is there any attempt to do something about the infection, nor do we ever learn what is happening in the rest of the world. Most of the plot is dealing with short tempers flaring and people have a tough time dealing with loss. The menagerie that is accumulated along the way has little to recommend themselves and arrive with little in the way of intriguing backstories or histories. There's also little in the way of action except for escape scenes, since there's always too many "zombies" around to do anything else.

    The narration is quite good with a solid range of voices for both genders and adolescents.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
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  • Emma Tucker
    Stevenage
    4/27/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Bit Pointless"
    What did you like best about The Becoming? What did you like least?

    I love Zombie, Vampire and end of the world type stories. The book was generally fine but the story just stopped rather than concluded.


    What was most disappointing about Jessica Meigs’s story?

    The ending I felt is lacked a real finish which made the book a little pointless and lacking in purpose.


    Which scene did you most enjoy?

    N/A


    If this book were a film would you go see it?

    Probably as I like this sort of genre of film but I'd wait for DVD.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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