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Publisher's Summary

In the second book of the Blue Gemini trilogy, air force majors Scott Ourecky and Drew Carson continue to fly highly classified missions to intercept and destroy suspect Soviet satellites. But after experiencing numerous close calls in orbit, the astronauts soon discover that not all perils reside in the sky.

With his marriage already at risk because he cannot explain his frequent absences and strange activities to his wife, Ourecky learns that his unborn child may be in grave danger as a radiation consequence of his flights into space.

Even as Ourecky and Carson accumulate successful mission after successful mission in space, other crucial events occur much closer to home. Interservice rivalries reach new heights as a caustic but highly influential navy admiral schemes to steal control of the project from the air force. Realizing that a Soviet GRU agent is operating in their midst, a shadowy team of counterintelligence operatives scramble to shield the project's secrets from discovery, leading to a confrontation that bears fatal consequences.

As they train to accomplish more difficult missions against complicated targets, Ourecky and Carson are asked to volunteer to risk their lives one more time in an extremely hazardous rescue mission. The stakes are high; even as they leave the launch ad, there is no certainty that either man will return.

©2016 Mike Jenne (P)2016 Audible, Inc.

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Matthew
  • SEATTLE, WA, United States
  • 05-04-17

The 70's Space Cold War continues!

If you could sum up Blue Darker than Black in three words, what would they be?

Detailed
Dynamic
Dramatic

What was one of the most memorable moments of Blue Darker than Black?

The last few chapters are very intense and fascinating.

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

Kevin owns these characters and their individual nuances. He is consistent and the performance is honest and compelling.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

At times the book made me research and think. Nothing dramatic, but I will be sure to get the next iteration.

Any additional comments?

This series covers a close to reality alternative history of the US military space program from the 60's onwards. It is very well researched , and this 2nd book of the series is , to my ear, better in all aspects than the original. A 3rd is out now. Highly recommended .

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Taylor
  • Birmingham, AL, United States
  • 02-03-16

This is a wonderful book.

Complete with period details, a great plot and intrigue. Second in a series of three, both draw the reader into a world, albiet fictional, which could (or may) have been. Great work Mr. Jenne!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Alternate Space History Retro-Tech Thriller

Now that the Blue Gemini Project is operational the stakes are much higher, both for the Cold War and for the characters that we learned to love so well in book one. As the Blue Gemini program lists off this second book also launches the intensity level into orbit. There are scenes in this book that are as exciting as the Apollo 13 crisis. I am beginning to realize that this book by Mike Jenne is a undiscovered treasure that needs to be widely heard. Also Kevin Stillwell is top notch. I am quite impressed with this Audible Studios production. This deserves a much wider audience.

I was describing the plot of this series to one of my friends. After outlining the main plotting my friend asked if the book got into the public NASA space program. I told him that the only references to NASA was the periodic news reports of the Apollo Moon landings. My friend then said that it would be good to learn about the secret military space program. It was then that I realized that I had not adequately stressed the fact that this was fiction. My simple description of the story sounded so plausible that my friend thought it was real. And that is the feeling I got myself while listening to Blue Darker than Black. I wanted it to be real and my willing suspension of disbelief brought the realistically recounted events startling to life.

Kevin Stillwell is wonderful in this series. He retains his calm narration throughout and his character voices are spot on. I particularly enjoy Stillwell’s portrayal of the retired general and full-time cowboy Vergil Walcott. It is clear that this audiobook production was well planned and executed. The production values are high. I noticed no glitches.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Captivating!!

one of Nelson Demille's best! I would love to see something new from him!! the narrator was excellent as well.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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The Blue Gemini Cold War Intrigue Intensifies

Mike Jenne’s ‘Blue Darker Than Black’ (BDTB) is much more than a sequel to his ‘Blue Gemini’. Although BDTB can stand by itself, I’d recommend listening to ‘Blue Gemini’ first to get the solid foundation upon which BDTB builds.

Blue Darker Than Black is by no means, just more of the same. The shared alternate history is there, of course, along with the same endearing characters as well as those less so. But, Blue Darker Thank Black is a crucible, a proving ground of sorts, that tests and tries the very fundamental makeup and relationships of the characters, most notably, Scott Ourecky, the unlikely math savant turned astronaut.

I very well could describe at greater length the Blue Gemini and Gemini-I black world variants of NASA’s public Gemini spacecraft, the equally secret Soviet manned space efforts, the UFO fringe and the other ingredients that make BDTB such an intense, intriguing read. Instead, though, I would simply state that Mr. Jenne is a superb storyteller. Reading his work is very similar to the immersion one experiences while listening to Frank Herbert’s Dune. Mr. Jenne provides a wonderful richness, a thorough and credible presentation of the universe inhabited by characters who live, love, strive, scheme, strain, break and succeed. His sentences are substantial but never bogged down by jargon, superficial dialog or contrived circumstances. The tech is well researched and highly credible. The plot flows well with ample surprises. The characters ring true.

I highly recommend reading both books (so far) in the Blue Gemini trilogy. Blue Darker Than Black is a tight, solid listen. I anxiously await the release of Pale Blue, the last volume of the trilogy, due very soon.

At first, the narrator's telling feels a bit off. Kevin Stillwell also did Blue Gemini, the first book in the series, and I gave him an excellent review. However, it doesn't take long for him to regain his traction and pacing. The story moves quickly and embedded in the sentences are acronyms and foreign words and names. Mr. Stillwell handles these in stride and does a good job of voicing each character differently and believably, as he did in the previous volume. Overall, another good performance.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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Fantastic follow up

What made the experience of listening to Blue Darker than Black the most enjoyable?

It was a great continuation and the story picked up and built on previous happenings. There are several embedded stories in the book. I particularly liked the development of the capsule recovery unit story and how Haiti and its culture were used in the book. It really added a lot of depth to the book overall.

What did you like best about this story?

The continual battle and balance of personal life and professional life for the good of the country. There are lots of highs and lows throughout the story and the 3rd iteration should be a great close to the story.

What about Kevin Stillwell’s performance did you like?

Kevin continued to do a great job of bringing the characters in the book to life.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Absolutely first rate Science Fiction

Reading this book you have to wonder, "did this really happen?" The author presents the story in a contextually accurate manner that renders the story highly believable. This novel is about not only technology, rockets, and space ships but also about human struggles and adventure.

To make the story believable, the author also creates and describes all the underpinnings of the Gemini Interceptor space program to include communications relays, emergency and contingency rescue teams and counter espionage personnel. This all adds to the excitement of the story.

Great story and great performance!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Transported back in time!

The depth of characters and the intricate details of the space race transported this Boomer back to the late 60’s! I love the way Mike intertwines the personal challenges of the major and supporting characters within the storylines of the main plot. In the first book, we met the characters...but by the end of the second book they are our friends. You begin to identify with them. And with all this personnel development the accuracy of the technical details in the text are spot on! I’m downloading Pale Blue as I type this review!!!

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The Trilogy in General

Wow, can't wait until his next book(s) come out. Rather than review each of the books, I shall address all three. His characters are developed wonderfully. Kevin Stillwell is excellent in his performance. I won't give up the plot, but the last 1/4 of the last book had me in tears. It was that emotional. I don't give many reviews, but these books were so great, I would recommend them to anyone. Take the time, and you won't be disappointed.

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This is a 5 star book

One of the few really good series to come along recently. I'll be watching for anything by Mike Jenne in the future.

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  • Derrick
  • 09-08-16

Builds solidly on the first book in this trilogy

These books take place in a late '60s/early'70s space race world where the secret militarisation of space is a reality (as indeed, almost happened). This book carries straight on where the first left off, continuing with the same cast of characters, with a few walk-on additions to mix it up a little. The story is more space-focused, but continues to have a tremendous sense of time and place for the era, and the science feels right for the period. This is another well-paced, absorbing story that I enjoyed very much.