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The Beginning of the End: Apocalypse Z | [Manel Loureiro]

The Beginning of the End: Apocalypse Z

A mysterious incident in Russia, a blip buried in the news - it’s the only warning humanity receives that civilization will soon be destroyed by a single, voracious virus that creates monsters of men. A lawyer, still grieving over the death of his young wife, begins to write as a form of therapy. But he never expected that his anonymous blog and journal would ultimately record humanity’s last days. Governments scramble to stop the zombie virus, people panic, so-called Safe Havens are established, the world erupts into chaos; soon it’s every man, woman, and child for themselves.
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Publisher's Summary

The dead rise…

A mysterious incident in Russia, a blip buried in the news - it’s the only warning humanity receives that civilization will soon be destroyed by a single, voracious virus that creates monsters of men.

Humanity falls…

A lawyer, still grieving over the death of his young wife, begins to write as a form of therapy. But he never expected that his anonymous blog and journal would ultimately record humanity’s last days.

The end of the world has begun…

Governments scramble to stop the zombie virus, people panic, so-called Safe Havens are established, the world erupts into chaos; soon it’s every man, woman, and child for themselves. Armed only with makeshift weapons and the will to live, this survivor will give mankind one last chance against…Apocalypse Z.

©2012 Manel Loureiro (P)2012 Brilliance Audio, Inc.

What Members Say

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3.9 (763 )
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  •  
    Keith Arlington, TN, United States 11-14-12
    Keith Arlington, TN, United States 11-14-12 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Just For Pleasure"

    I have to confess that I secretly love last person on Earth books. This book was no exception. It was told from the first person and that was one of the things that made it good. From beginning to end the book was just plain good.

    Nick Podehl complimented the book better than any one else I can think of. His voice brought the book alive and you felt what the main character felt. In one place the main character was talking about the loss of his family, and I swear you could hear his voice crack and see the tears rolling. Apocalypse Z was written well and the narration made it even better.

    32 of 35 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lesley Seattle, WA, United States 05-10-14
    Lesley Seattle, WA, United States 05-10-14 Member Since 2005

    From Austen to zombies!

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Meanwhile, in Spain..."

    Most zombie apocalypse stories I've read were set in the USA. Apocalypse Z takes place in Galicia, a rainy region in Northwestern Spain best known for the historic area of Santiago de Compostela. It's a refreshing change that makes for an exciting zombie yarn.

    A widowed lawyer and his cat, Lucullus, watch nervously as things go bad in Russia, then the EU, then everywhere. The lawyer blogs his struggles at first, and then is forced to change to paper when the Internet finally dies. He and Lucullus leave home and bravely traverse Galicia, taking out "those THINGS," as he calls them, searching desperately for any kind of safety.

    All the regular zombie tropes are present here, but the story is made exciting by the fact that our hero is just some guy--sometimes brave, other times terrified, but able to use the knowledge he has to get by and survive. If you're at all familiar with Spanish culture, another dimension is added: the lawyer is a definite Spanish "type," so the story becomes more of a question of what would this average guy, the guy you see every morning on the train going into the city, what would he do if there were an apocalypse?

    Some sections of the story didn't go fast enough for me--our hero was a little waffly at times, agonizing too much over decisions. But he is a lawyer, so maybe the overanalysis is a kind of professional hangover from normal times. Mostly, I was hooked--I had to find out what was going to happen next. And as an animal lover, not listening all the way through wasn't an option: would Lucullus make it? There was no way I could skip the answer to that question!

    I can't say enough about the narration, beautifully done by Nick Podehl who did such a fantastic job on The Name of the Wind and The Wise Man's Fear by Patrick Rothfuss. Podehl makes the fear, disgust, and sadness really come through. His Spanish pronunciation is pretty good, too.

    If you're looking for a zombie story that's a little different, this one is a great choice: a little less John Wayne and a lot more guy-next-door, Apocalypse Z will keep you listening through to the end. I can't wait for the next volume in this saga!

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    crazybatcow East Coast, Canada 11-17-13
    crazybatcow East Coast, Canada 11-17-13 Member Since 2007

    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)

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    Story
    "Wonder cat saves the day... again..."

    I enjoyed the first half of the book quite a bit: a story about how a well-prepared man faces the development/existence of a zombie horde. Sure, the main character was a bit too prepared for a guy with his background and job, but still, it was believable. And the way information on the initial sickness was shared (or not) felt very realistic. (Oh, I am pretty sure the technical aspects of, say, diving, guns, or solar panels, etc, were creatively interpreted, but I didn't mind, since I don't really care what size bullet goes into what type of gun anyway.)

    About halfway through, the story took a little turn from a survivalist story to a "spy-thriller" wannabe. Which might have been okay - if this aspect had been more than a "let's have the main character get caught up in some spy-ops in order to show him facing zombies". This entire thread is sorta wrapped up, but the reader is never given any information as to the point behind these events. Perhaps it is a thread intended to be brought up in the next book in the series, but, as it is here, it is just a huge red herring put into the story for no purpose other than to have an excuse for the main character to meet a sidekick and venture into zombieland.

    There were some other weak points that became more noticeable as the story progressed: especially in regards to the main character's cat. Even if you assume that the main character would risk his own life to save that of his cat... why would he take it out of its cage and tie it to a string with the plan that it would walk beside him during a thunderstorm/zombie attack... hey, I can suspend disbelief and accept zombies, and even that silly spy-ops thread, but a) what cat would walk beside you as if it were on a leash and b) what cat would walk beside you in a thunderstorm, leash or not c) and why would anyone think a cat would come to them when they called it (regardless that it is during a thunderstorm/abandoned building/zombie attack)?

    The ending left even more to be desired. I think it is intended to set up the next installment of the series, but the way the main character "found" other survivors was just a smidge beyond believable (another installment of wonder-cat adventures here). And I really hope that the "love interest" hinted at in the next book is not the same one hinted at in this one because I am really tired of male authors assuming that 17 year old girls would be as interested in 30 year old men as these men are in teenage girls.

    It isn't overly gory, there is no sex, and I don't recall any excessive swearing. The narration is good and I think the translation to English was accurate enough. Overall it is a reasonable/average entry in the zombie genre. I won't, however, be reading the next in the series since the best part of this book was how the virus/information spread, and how the world initially dealt with this spread.

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    R. Mitchell 12-31-12
    R. Mitchell 12-31-12 Member Since 2008

    I love good books.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Typical Z Book"

    Not as good as I hoped. I did finish to see how it ended, and I did like the main character and some of the other minor characters. The characters were developed fairly well in spite of the style of the audiobook. The "journaling" style of the book was grating after a while. It is better in written form.
    I would have returned the book but I did like the character and had interest in how it turned out. I think the author should have expanded the hospital stay in more detail. Although there was a bit of creep factor there..but it was the end of the world after all. This may have enhanced the book...if it were not in the journaling style.
    I bought the "whisper-sync" kindle book and audiobook, and I did like the kindle version better so you may try that if you love zombie books.
    I think the book would really appeal to the reader/listener who is familiar with the story area. I looked up the places on google earth to get a feel for the some of the geography.
    The audiobook was pretty good, but the style (journaling) was very distracting. The reader was very good and may have helped me like and care about the character. There were unanswered parts of the plot which may be answered in the next installment. Be aware there there is massive levels of profanity and gore as in any Z story.

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rolando West Valley City, Utah, United States 03-05-13
    Rolando West Valley City, Utah, United States 03-05-13 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Overly dramatic"
    What would have made The Beginning of the End better?

    The narrator is reads every sentence as if it is the end of the world. Please pardon the cliche and pun. The problem is that the narrator doesn't give the listener a chance to rest. Everything is "gripping" or "shocking" or "unforgettable". I know that you can blame it on the author, however, I am reading the book along with the narration via Whispersync and reading the book is much more enjoyable and makes it easy to forgive some of the author's flaws. Halfway through the book I decided to stop listening to it and just read it. The narration made it unbearable.


    6 of 8 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Richard Arkansas City, Kansas 04-10-14
    Richard Arkansas City, Kansas 04-10-14 Member Since 2011
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    "Manel Loureiro Makes You Believe"
    Any additional comments?

    The writing was compelling and the read by Nick Podehl was phenomenal. What terrified me most was the possibility that this was a stand-alone work. Just found out there are two books in the story. While I do not believe in the supernatural, I surely enjoyed believing for the duration of the listen.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Maryann Cleveland, OH, United States 01-03-14
    Maryann Cleveland, OH, United States 01-03-14 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "good book"

    I enjoyed this book. Simple and well written. It kept my interest. I liked the narrator. I'm looking forward to the second book. I can't believe it is so cheap now. Well worth the price. I would just pay the price not even use one of my credits.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    MB Airmont, NY, United States 01-02-14
    MB Airmont, NY, United States 01-02-14 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Good Stuff..."

    I'm an AVID listener to this genre. Great narration and overall great experience. .

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Shaina TALLAHASSEE, FL, United States 12-27-13
    Shaina TALLAHASSEE, FL, United States 12-27-13

    Are you Ready?

    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
    ratings
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    "Kept me listening"
    Would you listen to The Beginning of the End again? Why?

    Yes because the performance was great and delivery was spot on.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The narrator


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

    he brought personality to all the characters


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    when 2 characters were trapped in a store together with a dead mother and toddler


    Any additional comments?

    I will be getting the next one!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    shane DUNEDIN, New Zealand 12-04-13
    shane DUNEDIN, New Zealand 12-04-13 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
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    11
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    "Could not stop listening to this book !!"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes i have already recommended this book to my friends, and they are hooked too ! This author introduces you too an average bloke in this story that could be just like you , and takes you on a wild ride !!


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Beginning of the End?

    A memorable moment in the book is when the main character looses his cat, his friend and companion throughout this terrible ordeal , and is desperately looking for him and you as a reader identify with the emotion for a pet thought lost .


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

    I really enjoyed the narrator i thought it was a clear and emotional narration ,and would definitely listen to more by Nick Podehl.


    Any additional comments?

    have listened to the sequel, and waiting on the third installment !!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
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