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Crash Dive: The Complete Series (Books 1-6)

Narrated by: R.C. Bray
Series: Crash Dive Series, Book 1-6
Length: 29 hrs and 11 mins
Categories: Fiction, Historical
5 out of 5 stars (129 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Now you can download the entire Crash Dive Series - here!

Crash Dive: The Complete Series chronicles the adventures of Charlie Harrison as he fights the Imperial Japanese Navy during WW2. Gripping, action-packed, authentic, and filled with larger-than-life men and women of the Greatest Generation, Crash Dive puts you aboard a submarine during the war. 

You'll stand alongside Charlie as he proves himself time and again by keeping his wits and being decisive in crisis, though each encounter leaves him more heavily scarred for it. You'll attack a convoy in a daring night surface attack, emerge in a sea fog to ambush a battle group, and charge the battleship Yamato during the decisive Battle of Leyte Gulf. All the while, you'll live with the crew in the cramped, noisy, and challenging machine that was a diesel-electric submarine. 

Crash Dive: The Complete Series puts together for the first time all six episodes in Craig DiLouie's highly acclaimed historical military fiction series: Crash Dive, Silent Running, Battle Stations, Contact!, Hara-Kiri, and Over the Hill.

©2015, 2016, 2017, 2018 ZING Communications, Inc (P)2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 Blue Heron Audio

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What did I just go through?!? So many emotions!

- Josh here

- Book one


This is a book that makes me wish my Navy recruiter would have called me back after I sought to enlist as a submariner working in the nuclear field. This book was action-packed and filled with interesting factoids that I found myself looking up as the book continued playing, forcing me to slip back a bit and catch up on parts I missed. Having worked in the joint military community for some time now, this was a great lesson about the tactics and methods used on a submarine, along with the positives (comradery, the desire to do anything for your fellow teammate, the tight-knit relationships which form and never dissolve despite years apart at different duty stations) and at times gruesome realities of military (deaths, time away from loved ones, the impacts that acts of war can have on an individual).

This was such a powerful story and I can't wait to continue with the audiobook version of book two. Bray, as always, did a wonderful job and I don't think the author could have picked a better narrator.

- Book two


Charlie does it again!

I went straight from book one into this sequel and am about to proceed into book three. This series really makes me wish I had pushed my Navy recruiter harder so I could have joined into the submarine corps as a nuclear plant operator.

This is another action-packed entry in the series that kept me clamoring for more time in my car so I could listen. Craig really hits home at some of the same points I have heard from sailors that I've worked with who served on subs. The grime, the smell, the close quarters and frequent battle station alerts. As an Army soldier, I can only imagine what life is like aboard one of these machines.

Another fantastic job by Craig and my personal favorite narrator R.C. Bray. 5/5 and now on to book three!

- Book three

And the awesomeness that is the Crash Dive series continues. I am so glad that a full collection of all six books was just put out on Audible as I snatched that the day it was released. Now I get to binge this series like I would something on Netflix.

Craig continues with a great series related to a job I wish I could have taken in the Navy, a submariner. This particular instance deals with a core concept of military service and that is succession in the chain of command. The pressures, trials, and tribulations of being in charge of the lives of others, being tasked to command a multi-million dollar war machine, and making life or death decisions that could have positive or negative impacts for all of those under your command. This is a pressure I could never fathom being placed in and is one that I have the utmost respect for those who find themselves in such a situation.

Craig continues to nail it with this series while hitting on the nitty-gritty portions of military life. Bob, as usual, continues to hit a home run with his out of this world narration style.

- Book four

This is the first series I have listened to from beginning to end and I love the fresh twists and challenges introduced in each. Charlie really showed some courage during this entry that is one of the often unexpected requirements of military service, even for services that typically don't engage in ground-based combat.

On a side note, I finally drew a connection that has been gnawing at me since the start between Braddock and Stepanek from Down Periscope. This book also goes to show you that some basic military skills can become a necessity regardless of job, afsc, mos, or rate - in this case, basic rifleman training. I also enjoyed the backtracking and acknowledgment provided of the accomplishments by other sailors on the boat by Craig as is seen at the end of this volume of the Crash Dive series.

Bray, as always, did an awesome job. Now on to book five!

- Book five

What can be said that hasn't already been said about every entry in this series? Wow, just wow. I am utterly amazed at the depth and diversity of realistic scenarios that Mr. DiLouie throws into his stories. The dynamic and challenges faced by military service members across all branches are thrown together in this series in a way that I have not previously encountered. To say that I want more would be an understatement. Bray's performance adds even more tension to the story and really helps drive home some of the more impactful moments in the story.

That ending though...as much as I hate cliffhangers, I can honestly say I couldn't imagine a better way to leave this entry in the series. Now to move on to the final book as I eagerly await the resolution of some critical plot points. 5/5

- Book six

Oh my goodness, what just happened to me? I just concluded what I can easily say is my favorite military audiobook series. Craig really did a number with these six books and I honestly never thought that six little words, uttered at the end of the book, could bring me to tears. What an ending and what a series.

Prison of war, earning several top military decorations, and a tribute to the many different aspects of war, Craig nailed so many different scenarios that, while I've never pesonally encountered them, hit home for me as I know many who have.

As someone who sought to join the Navy as a submariner, but alas ended up in the Army because the Navy recruiter lost touch and didn't return my calls, I got to live, vicariously, some of the lifestyle that has been described to me by many of my sailor friends. This is a series I will definitely go back and re-listen to, especially given the complete omnibus in a single collection, and one I will also recommend to many folks who enjoy this genre.

Fictional and not based on real events, or not, this is a fantastic listen and one that, if you are a fan of military or WWII fiction, you should give a shot. R.C. Bray brought me to this series, Craig kept me hooked from very early on in book one.

An easy 5/5 for the entire series.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • david
  • Sausalito, CA, United States
  • 12-20-19

I Got Your SEAMEN Right Here Baby!

I rarely listen to naval adventure novels but I'm a fan of Craig DiLouie's "Retreat" series and the "Crash Dive" novels got really good reviews on Goodreads.com so, what the hell, I'll take a 29+ hour break from my usual genres. I hear people say, "I couldn't stop listening" but because of my wandering mind that rarely happens with me Well, with these books, I couldn't stop listening. The writer did a very good job giving all the characters, good and bad, strong personalities. All 6 books are awesome. There is not 1 weak link in this series. There's a lot of action in this series but I think it's more about the characters than the battles. I learned a lot about World War 2 submarines but not in a "info-dump" kind of way. Trust me, these books are too short for massive info-dumps. R.C. Bray's narration was excellent as always. Good job to Craig DiLouie for all the research he must have done to make this series feel so real. I'm very excited after writing this review so, uh, I'm gonna go play with my seamen right now....oh ya!

Highly recommended everybody!

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Connie
  • Spring Branch, TX, United States
  • 12-14-19

Wow

Terrific saga the Pacific war in submarines. The characters are completely fleshed out and the narration is compelling.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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great series

I have over 800 books in my Audible library, this is a top 10.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • CM
  • 12-25-19

Excellent Series

The author did such a great job writing this series and of course RC Bray was RC Bray. Not many books make me emotional but this was one

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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outstanding book series

incredible well written well read book. I really enjoyed it. keeps you on the edge of your seat, not normal war book. more like the real life of being in military

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Fun series with great narration

Fun series with great narration by RC Bray. A very engaging main character with emotional turmoil that makes you you feel your getting depth charged, pretty sure I could smell the diesel in the air.

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One of the best books

One of the best audiobooks that I have ever listened to. Great story with lots of action. Another great performance by RC Bray.

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Outstanding

I haven't listened to much historical fiction but this was truly amazing to experience. I would highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys good books - whether it's your typical genre or not.

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This was a great series of books great characters

This true account of World War II submarine action was a great series. It was well written characters very well portrayed and offers traffic insight to submarine life in World War II.

The summary at the end of the series into the characters really lets you see why this was America's greatest generation.

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  • S. Morris
  • 12-23-19

Almost Perfect

Some of the best and most enjoyable books I've listened to on Audible have been those I stumbled across. The Crash Dive series was one such instance of this. One of the emails from Audible featured this title and, as I'm a keen submarine buff, this series looked to fit the bill perfectly. I had never read anything by Craig DiLouie nor had I heard of him, but he is now a firm favourite after reading this superb collection of short stories.

The Crash Dive series takes place during the second World war and follows the career of one Charlie Harrison as he progresses up the ranks in the U.S navy submarine service. There have been many books and films depicting real and fictional stories of daring do in the second World war, but very few of them focus on the silent service''s contribution to the war effort. Most writers focus on land campaigns and so do does Hollywood. This is perhaps understandable, yet both the mortality rate and impact on the Pacific war the submarine service had were amongst the highest of any service, so it's surprising to me that there isn't much more fictional material out there dealing with this branch of the military.

Anyway, I will go into more detail later, but for those wanting the short version of this review; Crash Dive is a superb series. Craig DiLouie has penned a truly masterful depiction of the U.S Silent Service and life aboard a World war II submarine. DiLouie has to be one of the best character writers I've come across. Each of the characters in his stories are so well defined, credible and developed. You could really believe they are real people. Each one has their own unique traits, strengths and weaknesses - it really is like reading about very real people. To date, I've only come across such character writing from Stephen king.

To add to this writing strength, DiLouie is able to grip the reader with pulse quickening action. I recall how brilliantly he would suck me into his vivid prose during battle stations action scenes. I felt like I was there in the thick of it when targets were being tracked and approaches made. In addition, counter attacks by the enemy really came across as completely authentic, with the ability to get my adrenaline going! I've come across so little in this specific genre, it's a wonderful find for me to discover Craig DiLouie's work. To me, it's the American equivalent of the seminal 'Das Boot' and in it's own right worthy of a properly adapted movie or TV mini series, especially considering the material coming out of Hollywood these days.

I cannot stress enough just how well written these stories are. Everything about them is credible and characteristic of the Pacific campaign against the Japanese Empire. Craig DiLouie's Crash Dive series is a real oasis in a desert of submarine based fiction. The only other author I can recommend, albeit set in the modern era, is Michael Dimmer curio. Alas, when last I checked, Audible only had a single Dimmer curio title. I've read a Douglas Reeman book which was disappointing and despite Tom Clancy's reputation, apart from the Hunt For Red October, there really isn't anything submarine focused enough to get your teeth into.

One thing DiLouie has done that reflects his superb character writing abilities, is to provide us with a post script at the conclusion of the series, in which he details the remainder of the main characters lives. This is done so well, so believably and with the backdrop of six books behind it, that I found myself with a lump in my throat as I listened to the fates of the key players.

So, why only almost perfect?

For most listeners, the technical details are not that relevant, but to those like me who are submarine enthusiasts, the multitude of incorrect information grates just a little. Especially so as DiLouie has quite clearly worked hard to make these stories accurate from a technical standpoint. yet, he got the hard stuff right and some of the simple stuff wrong! In addition, inconsistencies or continuity errors were present too.

For example, Charlie suffers 3 broken ribs by the end of book 1. By the start of book 2, he is recovering from 2 broken ribs! His new submarine mentioned at the end of book 1 is stated as a Tambour class submarine, but then becomes a Gato class in book 2. The Sabre Tooth and Sand Tiger, both Gato class boats, were stated to have 4 screws - the Gato class has only 2 in fact. Strangely, DiLouie corrects this when stating much later in the series that the Sand Tiger has 2 propellers.

I puzzled over how a hard left rudder could result in a clockwise turn or why an officer would light a cigarette when oxygen is very low on the submerged submarine. Another thing DiLouie seems to think is that the flooding of torpedo tubes is accomplished by simply opening the outer doors to the tubes!

I also noticed that units of measurement appear to be confused as 14.5 Knots was stated as being about 13 mph, when it's more like the other way around. On more than one occasion, DiLouie refers to a ship as being around 6 football fields long. This would be about right if a football field was 100 feet long and not 100 yards long! The Mark 14 torpedo did indeed leave a wake pointing the enemy to where the firing submarine was. However, submarine commanders would routinely turn hard off the track of the torpedo once launched to avoid this, but not done so in this series.

In September, 1944, another submarine, the USS harder, is featured with its relief crew. however, this boat was lost with all hands the month before in actual fact, something very easy to find out on Wikipedia.

OK, I could go on as there were other things, but anyone still reading this far will have got the point.

Despite all that, I very much enjoyd this series as it's otherwise so darn good! :) If you happen to be a sub buff, like me, don't let my picky observations put you off this excellent series.

Finally, to complete the quality of this series, the superb R.CBray narrates throughout. He really is one of the best narrators featured on Audible and must, by now, be very much in demand. Bray captures the changing voice of Charlie Harrison toward the end of the series where he is irrevocably changed by his experiences,so a really nice touch.

Crash Dive is an overall superb series and one I shall enjoy listening to again .... and again .... :)

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  • Joshua holloway
  • 01-21-20

awesome!

Just finished this series and it was amazing, got me quite emotional towards the end, would highly recommend it

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  • Jumpin' Bean
  • 01-18-20

Wonderful

A fabulous story read by an exceptional narrator.

I can't imagine what I can read next that won't feel shallow or irrelevant by comparison. I feel bereft now this book is over. I can't recommend it highly enough.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Dave
  • 01-07-20

A true vision of the war under the sea

This wouldn't normally have been one of my first choices for a book, I'm glad I downloaded it though.
An excellent narration of a very well written story. Made all the more real by the postscript. If you do download this book stick it out until the end. It'll be worth it.

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  • Joanne B
  • 01-06-20

Outstanding series

Fascinating stories, I thoroughly enjoyed the ride that each book took me on. Interesting characters and superb narration had me hooked.

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  • AmazonCustomer
  • 01-05-20

Simply stunning

One of the biggest surprises ever. I’d heard the series was as good as the narration, but to find myself consuming 30 hours of audio inside of a week tells of how addictive it is.
The books are short, but that’s by no means a criticism; there simply aren’t any wasted words and no distracting side quests to waste a reader’s time.
Not often am I left feeling as though I’ve met, gotten to know, and then lost the characters I’ve been with through the journey.
The post script elicits a response like few others, and the brutal, simplistic descriptions of one of the greatest scientific achievements of mankind which was also its darkest hour in many respects, was done so without any unnecessary grandeur.
Well done, Craig. Bravo.

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  • phil taylor
  • 01-03-20

Got lost in this story

absolutely loved this book, felt involved from the first minute and wished it did not end.