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Alt Truths

There Are Two Sides to Every Story. Even Genocide.
Narrated by: Jonathan Keeble
Length: 6 hrs and 18 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (8 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

What if you knew an entire race of people was being systematically slaughtered but had to cover it up? 

Fake news. Alternative facts. Truth, lies, damn lies, and statistics. Just who are we to believe? In this near-future dystopian thriller, that will be the United Nations Police “moderators”.  

Thirty-year-old UNPOL officer Richard Warren has been embedded with the BBC, and not seeing eye-to-eye with journalist Sarah Dyer is just the start of his problems. News of an Ebola pandemic is being withheld, and when it’s discovered Sarah’s artistic savant brother is involved, Richard’s determination to get to the truth takes an unexpected turn. But what if the truth must never be known?

And Richard thought Sarah was a challenge. The very concept of right and wrong is about to be tested and in a way that’s going to make fake news look like quality journalism.

©2018 Nick Smith Author (P)2019 Nick Smith Author

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Alt Truths

Getting fed information about viral diseases and pandemics can be quite scary, especially when these viruses are known to be widespread and very deadly. What would happen if someone knew more about the outbreak than they were telling the public? What if someone was trying to spread false news as a scare tactic to cover up something even bigger? Is that possible? Birri has an interesting—and quite frightening—perspective to government and the political prowess over war, which will leave readers questioning the lengths that man will travel to see a change in culture.

Richard Warren and Sarah Deyer are both truth seekers. Richard, a UNPOL officer has his cover blown after a mini explosion occurs while having coffee at the local café. Both Richard and Sarah are arrested and then bailed out by Richard’s boss, only to find himself at Sarah’s house with her family and a bunker full of nuclear weapons. What starts as mutual distaste for one another, surges into somewhat of a romantic relationship between the two. When Sarah’s autistic brother leads Richard to some questionable activity at the day center he frequents on the weekends, both Richard and Sarah agree to team up in search of the real story behind his cryptic drawings and personality changes. What is discovered to be a laboratory divested in curing the Ebola pandemic, turns out to be a cover for a much larger scheme that involves not only his boss, but even some individuals in powerful government and political positions. Only when they realize the severity of their discovery, do they find themselves in danger—danger of the genocide kind. Everyone states that they’ve not yet reached a war, but war has begun to wage on their consciences and they are faced to either speak out about what is happening or accept an alternate truth that they have been given.

Birri has a fantastic story, filled with creativity, originality and intriguing characters. The pace is very quick and the first few chapters may provide some difficulty with understanding; however, there is a turning point. Birri creates a sense of foreboding that leads up to a very detrimental plot meant to blatantly question the reader’s loyalty and ethical evaluation of themselves. The story appears to be written fairly well. Since this review compliments the audiobook, Keeble does provide a very speedy voice relay; but, it is enjoyable and differentiation in characters is present. If you are a reader of medical or scientific thrillers, this may be perfect for you.

An audiobook was provided to Turning Another Page by Audiobookworm Promotions and in no way affects the honesty of this review. We provide a five-star rating to Alt Truths by Alec Birri.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

A great creative journey

Alec Birri does it again in this fascinating story of government secrets, medical conspiracies and the human condition. A wonderful read full of highly memorable characters, international intrigue and a strong thought-provoking premise. The story was truly a journey that left me wanting to know more.

As with other audiobooks narrated by Keeble, I was far from disappointed. He as always delivers a stellar performance only he can deliver. Wonderful voice acting and brilliant pacing. I was kept interested throughout. Highly recommend!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Something for Everyone

Having consumed Mr. Birri’s earlier trilogy, Condition, as fast as I possibly could, I really was excited to have the opportunity to listen to this new book, both for the story and for Mr. Keeble’s narration and I wasn’t disappointed although I didn’t connect with it quite as much. I think that’s because there are an awful lot of ideas and plotlines here, not that that’s necessarily a bad thing, mind you. I just tended to get a little confused at times.

From the morass of political correctness to a literally explosive attack to biowarfare (of sorts) to the wonders and dangers of being a savant to fake/manipulated news…it’s all here and more, something for nearly every reader who loves the what-ifs to be found in a well-crafted story. Add to that a narrator who is a master at what he does with a collection of voices that almost make you think you’re listening to a bunch of different people and you’ve got what we all want, a book you just can’t stop listening to 😉

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Satisfying and thought provoking story

ALT TRUTHS is the fourth book I have read by the talented Alec Birri, but it’s the first of his books that I have read in print. I enjoyed The Condition Trilogy with my ears and was barely recovered from fan-girling over the amazing narration by Jonathan Keeble when the audio book of ALT TRUTHS published. JOY! Listening to ALT TRUTHS is just as satisfying as reading it.

Told in short, highly interesting chapters, ALT TRUTHS keeps the reader engaged and the story moving along at a fast clip. The character building happens quickly, too, so readers not only meet the main cast of characters, they also see them fleshed-out early on. This is not to say that Birri gives away the goods. Many of the characters are not exactly the what-you-see-is-what-you-get kind of people, so there are plenty of times that readers will be taken aback.

“Stop apologizing. Americans are so annoying like that.”

It is those “WHOA” moments that really force the page-turning pace to increase and induce some philosophical deep thinking for readers. Birri’s novel explores the what-ifs of savants, science, germ warfare, political agendas, and even mind control all in a very near future scenario (just barely futuristic given it’s only the 46th United States president in office, at times making it difficult to discern that the book is dystopian). Honestly, I had some trouble reconciling that some of the elements were feasible. Perhaps feasible is the wrong word – possible? Yes. Probable that soon? Doubtful to me. Sadly, fake news and bad cell signals are still a thing in the future, but there wasn’t a mention of selfies, so small victories there.

Birri’s writing is very good, and he does an excellent job with his descriptions of setting, allowing readers to visualize everything from the defunct amusement park and its West World-ish (original) occupants to the re-purposed military compounds and their hidden agendas. For those who are squeamish, look-out. Birri also masterfully and vividly describes the devastating and deadly effects of a virus that is ravaging the world. ICK! (But, ooooooh, so cool/gross/fascinating!)

ALT TRUTHS is divided into two parts, and it’s almost like they are two separate books. Where part one gives us realistic characters and a realistic world, part two dives deeply into the sci-fi realm and went a bit too out-there for me with the droids and the robots and the transcendental trips. Strangely enough, within the advanced technology, global crises, and conspiracies happening, ALT TRUTHS manages to infuse the strength of family bonds, romance, humor, and even witchcraft into this crumbling world. And it works! Admittedly, these elements work better in part one than part two, but the second half of the book does circle back around and grounds itself by the end for a satisfying and thought-provoking story.

ABOUT THE NARRATION: Jonathan Keeble could read a recipe card and I’d be hooked. In ALT TRUTHS, his performance of all the characters – male and female, young and old – is stellar. There is never confusion over who is speaking because Keeble manages to differentiate them so that each has a unique sound and cadence. However, for me, there’s nothing more delightful than an international accent, and sadly, there’s a lot less of that in ALT TRUTHS since so many important characters are American. I am less enamored of Keeble’s American accent, particularly Richard’s, which is supposed to be southern. (As a Texan, every time I heard “ma’am” mispronounced, it took me right out of the story.) I eventually acclimated to the peculiarities of the American accents, and Keeble knocks it out of the park with the others, so my fan-girl status is still firmly in place.

Thank you to the author and Audiobookworm for providing me an eBook and audio download in exchange for my honest opinion – the only kind I give.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Michael
  • vacaville, CA, United States
  • 02-01-19

Best sick day I have had in a while.

Not feeling well enough to go to work yesterday, and feeling far to blah to do anything more energetic then Laying in bed and feeling like crap,May seen like a poor plan listening to a new audio book.
However This book was a perfect way to take my mind off my troubles.
I genuinely suck at trying to say why a book is great, without giving away spoilers.

This book had interesting people , that were believable and easy to relate to.
and anyone who has listened to an audio book should be able to tell that Jonathan Keeble, is one of the greats.

The story was just gripping, and made me think about politics in a new way.

I have received a free copy of this book and am writing this review voluntarily.
But i would gladly spent an audible credit,on the next book Mr. Birri writes.



1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Fee
  • Scotland
  • 05-03-19

ALT Truths

The Story:
Birri is back with yet another story that will get you thinking, and wondering if this is really what is in store for us all in the future. Richard Warren & Sarah Dyer are out unwitting main characters in this book, and the first part of the book sees the relationship between the two build up. This story is full of so many plots and twists featuring bio warfare, and the political agenda for world peace. What I love most about Birri’s books is the sense of realness about it, how you can actually envision this world turing out this way – maybe it all ready is happening but the sheeple just can’t see discern it from all the fake new…. Definitely a book to get you thinking.

The Narrator:
Jonathan Keeble is back and once again a tremendous job of bringing Birri’s characters to life. I am do glad he was narrating this book as it is in keeping with the Condition Series. His ability to discern the characters was yet again flawless and the accents were on point. Once again the recording was crisp and clear, with no background or white noise, and the narration flowed seamlessly.

I received this audiobook as part of my participation in a blog tour with Audiobookworm Promotions. The tour is being sponsored by Alec Birri. The gifting of this audiobook did not affect my opinion of it.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Great action story with deeper undertones

This is my fourth Alec Birri book, having read his Condition trilogy. While I liked his trilogy better than this novel, it is still an interesting story. I like the mix of action & deeper moments. The tale follows Richard (who’s from good Southern stock – USA) and Sarah (a cis-gender 3rd generation witch) in some near future set in Britain. While I sometimes felt that the political points being made were the jagged backbone of the tale, I still found the story engaging. I would have liked the political points to be more in the background. I’m reading for pleasure & if I happen to find deeper meaning in the book, that’s great, but I don’t need it to be so.

I loved that Richard and Sarah seem to be such opposites and yet they are forced through circumstance into this crazy adventure. Sarah took a bit longer for me to warm up to but that’s OK. I don’t have to like a character to find her interesting. At first, Richard seemed a bit of a push over but we later learn that he’s just being polite… until a greater need forces him to set politeness aside while he takes care of business.

Sarah’s brother, Perry, is a young savant with autism and he’s very important for the plot. I did find it amusing that he kept bringing Richard stuff to make him happy, like ammo. In this near future Britain, that’s far more alarming than current day USA (for several states). That leads to other discoveries, and starts this adventure off as Richard and Sarah dig deeper into things.

The mix of biological weapons and politics becomes the driving factors for the tale and I quite enjoyed watching Richard try to navigate his way through it all, blustering a bit here and there. Sarah manages it with more finesse. However, this whole witchy bit and the love potion were overboard for me. I didn’t need them for the story and I felt they detracted a bit from the more serious elements.

There’s plenty of twists and turns too! The big theme I got out of this book was whether higher intelligence automatically means greater moral character. This book left me entertained but with some good things to contemplate as well. 4/5 stars.

The Narration: Jonathan Keeble did a great job. He was especially good with Richard’s Southern drawl. One of the Cornish characters sounded a lot like Hagrid to me, so I kept picturing that character as a hairy half giant. Keeble’s female voices were feminine and his kid voices also worked well. His bubbly AI robot voice for Becca was spot on disturbing. There were no technical issues with the recording. 5/5 stars.

I received this audiobook as part of my participation in a blog tour with Audiobookworm Promotions. The tour is being sponsored by Alec Birri. The gifting of this audiobook did not affect my opinion of it.