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Publisher's Summary

Brought to you by Penguin.

The number one best-selling author of World War Z takes on the Bigfoot legend with a tale that blurs the lines between human and beast - and asks what we are capable of in the face of the unimaginable.

As the ash and chaos from Mount Rainier’s eruption swirled and finally settled, the story of the Greenloop massacre has passed unnoticed, unexamined...until now.

But the journals of resident Kate Holland, recovered from the town’s bloody wreckage, capture a tale too harrowing - and too earth-shattering in its implications - to be forgotten.

In this audiobook, Max Brooks brings Kate’s extraordinary account to light for the first time, faithfully reproducing her words alongside his own extensive investigations into the massacre and the legendary beasts behind it.

Kate’s is a tale of unexpected strength and resilience, of humanity’s defiance in the face of a terrible predator’s gaze and inevitably, of savagery and death.

Yet it is also far more than that.

Because if what Kate Holland saw in those days is real, then we must accept the impossible. We must accept that the creature known as Bigfoot walks among us - and that it is a beast of terrible strength and ferocity.

Part survival narrative, part bloody horror tale, part scientific journey into the boundaries between truth and fiction, this is a Bigfoot story as only Max Brooks could chronicle it - and like none you’ve ever listened to before.

The cast:

Judy Greer as Kate Holland

Nathan Fillion as Frank McCray

Kimberly Guerrero as Josephine Schell

With:

Jeff Daniels as Steve Morgan

Mira Furlan as Mostar

Kate Mulgrew as Hannah Reinhardt-Roth

Steven Weber as Tony Durant

and

Terry Gross and Kai Ryssdal as themselves

and

Max Brooks as the researcher  

©2019 Max Brooks (P)2019 Penguin Audio

What listeners say about Devolution

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  • Simon
  • 06-17-20

Character Breakdown!

We know that Max Brooks can do much better than this! Even with an excellent full cast thrown at it this feels well below his best. The setup of an exclusive and remote eco-village without compromise artificially introduces to as cliched a set of characters as I can remember. And that cast do damn well so there are no problems there, especially Judy Greer who puts in a genuinely excellent performance as the lead. She shows good changes of pace and tone and manages to inject a lot of emotion and energy into her delivery.

That lead, Kate Holland, is probably the most interesting character but it took a long while before I stopped finding her irritating and that was only because she suddenly transforms from a poor caricature of a 'millenial type' into something more like Ellen Ripley! Among the others are the arrogant professor who won't believe anything but his own opinion, a pair of hardline vegans who object to even the thought of harming animals threatening them and an impossibly attractive and successful couple. To me this is a really lazy and unnecessary setup which belies some of the occasional genuine quality in the writing that does shine through.

The story is presented through extracts from Holland's journal of her experiences in the eco-village, a tried and tested formula that works reasonably well but it is also interspersed with what I felt were low-value extracts from interviews, quotes and thoughts about the Big Foot legend. This made the story feel quite bitty at times and while some were very worthwhile a lot of them didn't seem to add much.

So, in summary, I don't feel Max made the best of his ideas in this one, the characters are just too cliched and a lot of it felt lazy in its construction. There are some quality moments in the writing and an exciting ending but I felt there was a lot to endure to get that pay-off despite an extremely good performance from Judy Greer.

4 people found this helpful

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  • lil
  • 11-21-20

Brooks does it again

Fine work. I was at first put off by the subject matter, I'm not from usa so the bigfoot is just a silly thing to me like other silly foreign things like trickle down economics or such , not part of a legendarium. But mr Brooks turned it into something else. Still don't care about bigfoot of course but a lot of the commentary that mr Brooks sneaked in is very insightful, and some themes, like the references to a certain siege and tragedy in my side of the atlantic or the sense of entitlement of so many westerners in general , are important to me.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Jonathan
  • 09-19-20

Not as clever as expected from Brooks

Struggled to get to the end even though its short and has an excellent narration cast... Although this cast list a bit of a fib, as most of the big names have a couple of minutes at most , a cameo, the main narrator is so 'happy american', so over emotive that her performance lends a false ness to the whole story - there wasn't a single moment that I was 'in' the story. The story is so B movie stupid that it hurts to think about it, for example, the first act of a group cut off in their forest commune would not be to plant seeds in their garage so they can 'survive the next two years', they have vehicles, they'd use them, and walk if they couldn't. The author read The Martian and wanted some of that 'survive through ingenuity' action. Just a C- at best, and very forgettable, not badly written, but certainly lacking in the layers present in the authors previous success WWZ.
The epilogue is woefully stupid, embarrassing... Really suggest that you skip this one.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Andrew R.
  • 07-09-20

narration extremely grating

This is probably just a personal preference but I really disliked the main narrators performance

1 person found this helpful

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  • caroline curley
  • 07-09-20

Amazing listen!

Thoroughly enjoyed this book! Max Brooks have done an incredible job at depicting at, in my opinion, how our creature comforts or lack there of can change our nature...

1 person found this helpful

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  • alexh
  • 07-02-20

Needs a different reader.

I don't know who was reading the diary parts of the book but she was awful with a whiny US accent and I lost count of how many times she said 'totally'! A waste of money. Can I get my money back on this?

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  • Anonymous User
  • 07-30-21

Max knocks it out of the park again!

Gripping from start to finish, some great world building and a phenomenal cast brings the story to life! a must for thriller and horror buffs!

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  • Rollotomasi
  • 06-29-21

Good action horror, decent if long build up

It takes a while to get going, but the build up is worth it. The inclusions of interviews with experts and other references build the horror of what is to come, and it doesn't disappoint. My only gripe is (and it's probably not just me) trying to get the image of 'Harry and the Henderson's' out of my head and replace it with a savage version of Big foot. The final chapters as heart stopping action and horror and as a filmmaker I could image the action. Let's hope the film version (and legendary pictures have picked it up) is not the same débâcle as the World War Z film version.

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  • MR A FIGG
  • 06-25-21

All engrossing story.

This story is excellent, just like World War Z before, it lends itself to an audio adaptation due to the series of interviews and journal extracts. The performances are great and following characters journeys from civilised people to survivalists to predators is engrossing. Right, I’m off to make some bamboo spears, just in case.

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  • Kerry
  • 04-26-21

not as good as I'd hoped

the performance of this Audible was amazing, if I'd read it I think I'd have been bored. It was an ok story and actually scary in parts but it took far to long to get going for me. Not bad, but not amazing

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  • Ryan Dalgreen
  • 05-06-21

nope.

female narrater was so over acting. 15 minutes in I'd had enough. Turned it off.

4 people found this helpful

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  • A. J. Brownhill
  • 08-31-20

So good that I restarted as soon as I finished.

I'll preface by saying that I'm a Max Brooks fan, but this was the first audio version of one of his books I have absorbed. Not only have a started Devolution again straight after finishing for the first time, but I think I may purchase the World War Z audio book as well to accompany my trusty paperback. The multi character and interview style lends itself perfectly for an audio book, other reviews regarding this not being a true 'full cast performance' is silly and short sighted. The majority of the content is taken from the main character's diary so it goes without saying that it should be read by the main character (played by Judy Greer).

The remaining cast in interview format and the researcher narration (read by Max Brooks) weave in and out of the linear narrative of the diary perfectly making for a gripping experience, where you always kind of know what's going to eventually happen but theres plenty of ways you are surprised along the way. A close to perfect audio book. If anything, my only criticism (if it can be called that) is that I didn't want it to end and I would have happily absorbed another 9 hours of content.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Jacob Coates
  • 06-21-20

Tremendous audio book, could not stop listening!

I was pretty worried listening to this after Max's World War Z, as I was sure quality would have to drop.

This is definitely of the same pedigree, it was great from start to finish.

Treat your self get this audio book!

4 people found this helpful

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  • MR PETER A RICHARDS
  • 07-27-20

Great performances, great storytelling, great ending.

I didn’t really know what to expect from the book, I was worried it would be some crazy Bigfoot story, but it is a really well written and well executed commentary on how we have become so reliant on technology and convenience, and what we have lost in that bargain with technology. Starts off slowly, but once it gets going you will find yourself still listening at 3am, and jumping at that noise outside your window...
Beautifully cast and delivered, my favourite book of the year.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Craig
  • 07-25-20

Not what I expected

This is not read by a full cast AT ALL. 99.999% of it is ready by Judy Greer with a few voices from other scattered here and there. It is so slow and painful to get into the story and then it seems like something a high school student wrote. Barely a character I cared about.
Interesting premise but just god awful execution.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Trace`
  • 02-10-21

I wanted this book to be better

The premise of the story was okay but the voice of the narrator was very irritating and at times the editing and jumping to other characters was disjointed and felt like it had been inserted afterwards. Disappointing.

1 person found this helpful

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  • James W. Matson
  • 01-31-21

Entertaining

Starts a little slowly, builds well, finishes brilliantly.

Being an Australian reader, Sasquatch felt less frightening than zombies. Not sure why exactly... but, great tale anyway.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Jay
  • 07-27-20

Haunting

This book got better the more I listened to it, with the tension escalating all along. The style is reminiscent of Brook's earlier World War Z works, told from the point of view of a mystery horror related through the entries in a diary. The protagonist starts off as naive, self-absorbed. Positively annoying. But as her story unfolds, the audience witnesses her cast her doubts aside as she is thrown into a deadly struggle to survive. By the time the inevitable conclusion came along, I really felt for her. Definitely worth the listen.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Nawwal
  • 07-22-21

Very disappointed

I was very excited for a bit of fun with this book, but it wasn't at all.
All the characters are cliché, one-dimensional carboard cut outs. I didn't care what happened to any of them. The whole group of people living at Greenloop were just silly.
The book is very predictable.
The main character (Katie) is a dribble of a human who 'grows' at an unbelievable rate. But she is stupid, naïve, judgemental, and a painful. I'm certain the narrator makes her sounds even more vapid than the author intended. It was downright painful to listen to. I shouldn't have tormented myself by pushing myself to listen.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Jayden
  • 07-18-21

Was hesitant at first buts it's great

I was looking for a good creature feature (which are becoming harder to find). When I seen this on the list I was hesitant because most Bigfoot stories are usually super cringey and more often than not involve some weird love subplot between the monster and protagonist but not this one.
It's told completely through journal entries, interviews and informative excerpts.
It puts a fresh twist on the "Bigfoot attacks a random cabin in the woods story" and the monsters themselves are much closers to 900lbs hungry chimpazees than misunderstood gentle giants.
generally it would take me a week or two to finish something like this but 3 days later and 1 minor midnight heart attack later when my partner snored in the bed beside me after I put the book down for the night and I can say I thoroughly enjoyed this story. I have already recommended it to a few friends who love them a bigfoot tale.