Every 26,000 years the Earth experiences a magnetic reversal or pole shift. These reversals are always accompanied by disasters of catastrophic proportions. They also coincide with two other events: an ice age and species extinction.
We are, at this time, 50,000 years overdue.
Darius Cobb wasn't thinking of man's extinction. He honestly never gave it a thought. A college professor and part time country singer, Darius worried only about teaching and playing his guitar until the day he is attacked by cockroaches and is placed into a special government quarantine.
There, he and the others start piecing together the inevitable. Using his knowledge, he begins predicting the events that unfold. Together he and his group plan and then implement a long term survival plan.
If the world is going to end, they will survive.
Torn is a fast paced, scientific, character driven and sometimes comical novel.
In a "docu-drama" fictional style, it follows the tragic events that unleash upon the Earth and the attempts by Darius and the others to defy the odds as they strive to survive man's extinction.
©2011 Jacqueline Druga (P)2012 Jacqueline Druga
Torn is a present day "end of the world" apocalypse done in the laid back style of a sit-com. The end starts innocently enough with carnivorous ants and cockroaches and from there proceeds to solar flares and killer snakes and finally to massive snowfalls. Along the way we follow the exploits of several scientists putting the pieces together along with their eclectic band of unusual people that they accumulate along the way while trying to craft a plan to survive.
While the underlying premise is reasonable (a magnetic reversal of the planet) and the strategy to survive is sound, the story suffers from overdoing too many elements. The government coverup is never fully developed. The notion that only these three scientists would figure out what is going on is just not reasonable. The absence of more survivalists is unlikely. The intermediate plan to wait out the initial killer wave only made sense in order to introduce another plot element just to add another dramatic scene. This element also required a separate introduction, quite late, of an independent character that disturbed the pace. Finally, the epilogue only serves to highlight the abject failure of all these heroic efforts.
The narration is good, although a bit hurried. Some of the characters are portrayed a bit too flip or overly dramatic, but the tone is well suited to a lighthearted, slightly comedic approach to the end of the world.
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Other reviewers have done an excellent job of telling us about the story itself so I won't try to reinvent the wheel. You are better served by reading a plot review here:
So I will limit my review to other aspects of the story like narration. The narration does remind me a bit of a Seinfeld episode. It is pleasant but does make it a little difficult to experience any sort of tension. The complete opposite to a narrator like Kevin T Collins (who is great at adding tension to a scene by his voice). The narration speed on this title can easily be increased to 1.25x with no problems. I listened to it at 1.5x mostly and the only draw back was that at some places the voices seemed a little too high pitched (narrators pitch was already high to start with). The increase speed does of course shorten the total listening time of the story, if you are like me and consider the length of the story in your purchasing decision; please keep the speed factor in mind. Personally, I wasn't worried it was shortened by increasing the speed, because I didn't really enjoy this one.
This audible story had the misfortune of following my listening of “The Undead Situation” my review can be found here:
So it had a tall order to compete. Sadly it didn’t reach such heights but it still wasn’t all bad. It started slowly and I considered returning it during the first hour. But I am glad I didn’t, it got better. It isn’t a story I would recommend to someone who might be interested in ‘end of the world’ type thing, nor is it good enough to recommend to anyone sorely on a ‘listen to this and you will want to buy more audible books’. But it did kill many an hour of a boring commute of break time.
I did find myself wishing that there was a bit more character development between the relationship of the main characters, as a result on a couple of occasions I thought 'what just happened here?', 'how did he/she?', 'why did he/she?'. The story itself could lead to further reincarnations maybe a mini-series. I do like the ideas and the possibilities this story has. The author does have other titles which seem as interesting. I just wished this one was better executed, and I am going to give her other work a go. I really do hope her other titles do a better job at bringing life those interesting plots!
In summary this could have been a great listen and read. But sadly it just seemed to be poorly executed. It is another 'wait for it to be on specia'l so you don’t feel ripped off type of thing!
This story is certainly worth a listen, however be warned it is very sit-com in it's style and depth. It's a bit like " Gilligans Island" for those who know that TV show. I found the narration a bit hard to tolerate but eventually i got past it and was able to enjoy the some- what thin tale. I think the story has great potential and may inspire others to rewrite the tale with greater depth and stronger character development. The narration was too hurried and at first i found it difficult to absorbe the information as it poured out at a blistering pace. It has some qwirky end of the world ideas and covers many just not very well. Overall the story still holds up and is worth a listen.
If you always have a book with you...
I love the way Jacqueline puts so much comedy into her stories. I wouldn't say this was believable at all, but that's not why I read it. Different and interesting ideas on how the end of the world might come about. Each event, (on the surface at least) is plausible in its own way. The characters are entertaining and the narrator grows on you. Thanks for another fun listen Jacqueline!
the various scientists as that was what was interesting to me
anybody - he is the worst narrator I have ever heard - I always wondered why people complained about a narrator as basic reading skills was fine by me but this guy made it hard to listen to the book - the pace was way too fast, the voices he used too often did not ring true
yes, i like this genre of book
the author is weak in building interpersonal relationships which just don't make sense or rather don't ring true but the background story of superstorm and how to plan for it was interesting - the ending was a hoot!!!
Odd pauses and cadences. Mr. Wehrlen needs to work on his delivery. Character humor was lost in delivery several times. The story seemed a bit disjointed but the narration may have contributed to that impression.
I know way to much about nothing.......
I bought this audio book thinking that there was going to be some action. I waited and waited, thinking that there was going to be a payoff at some point which never came. I would have been ok with it had I thought this was going to be a series and this book was just setting up the next one. I would not recommend this book. I will say that I have purchased several of this authors books and have enjoyed them, however this one just didn't do it for me. The Zombie Battle series is far better and recommend that if you haven't already purchased it.
The reader is channeling Christopher Walken. He managers to read the characters as versions of Walken! Even the women! be funny if it wasnt to terrible! Makes listening very difficult.
The narration was so bad that it was almost comical. I can't believe I listened to the whole audio book. I kept thinking, wrongly, that it had to get better. Don't waste the credit or the time.
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