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Publisher's Summary

We were wrong about the origins of our species. 

For eons, the truth has remained hidden. 

Until now... 

Geophysicist Jack Greer believes he may finally have found the resting place of the meteorite that wiped out the dinosaurs sixty-five million years ago. A few miles off the Yucatán coast, Jack and a team of scientists tow an aging drilling platform over the impact crater with the aim of securing a sample. But buried deep beneath the earth lies a shocking discovery that threatens to shatter everything we think we know about the origins of our species. 

A world away, geneticist Dr. Mia Ward receives a mysterious delivery from her former boss and mentor, Alan Salzburg. In it are clues of a dire warning hidden inside the human genome, one which foretells man's very extinction. 

His instructions to Mia are simple: keep the information safe and, above all, trust no one--words all the more chilling after Alan turns up dead. But who wrote the message and what does it mean? Jack's recent discovery just may hold the answers, but can she reach him in time to save the human race?

©2017 James D. Prescott (P)2017 James D. Prescott

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

the story is solid and entertaining

“Extinction Code” is the first book available in the “Ancient Origins” series, and I’m looking forward to the rest to come.  The book is written by James D. Prescott and the audiobook edition is narrated by Gary Tiedemann; a prolific and well-liked narrator of mine.  Let me say up front, I enjoyed the book and it often kept me on the edge of my seat while listening.  It is an action-packed adventure where two seemingly parallel events converge in an attempt to save not only the individuals but the world itself.  As I listened to the book, it reminded me of a blending of “The Sphere” with portions of “The Abyss” including pieces of “The Da Vinci Code”.  Place on top of this, the Twilight Zone episode “To Serve Man”, if you liked any of these you will like this book.  Also, if you like stories having intrigue, suspense, and mystery, I think you will find this book enjoyable.

The author does an exceptional job making the characters and scenes feel three dimensional.  Each of the characters in the book are given depth and complexity which I found refreshing.  You will quickly find that the quote from the X-Files which says, “Trust No One”, is relevant to this book.  You are always wondering if you are rooting for the right side or not, and I found myself flipping many times and still surprised at the end.  What is even more exciting than to bring a team of scientists and clash them together with the U.S. military, is the discovery of a mysterious object during a drilling event which did not want to be uncovered.  Once you have opened Pandora’s box, it becomes very difficult to close it again.  Throughout the story, I like the level of research and scientific quips the author drops.  Not only am I enjoying a well-written story, but I’m learning along the way.  On a side note, I will say that at times the humor felt forced, but this was often required to relieve the built-up tension.

I’m more a technology person than a science one, but I felt the science was rather strong whereas the technology may have been a bit weaker then I prefer.  As with television, I understand that deep dives into technology can be tedious and boring for non-technical people.  Much of a person’s time spent on hacking is waiting; which is not very interesting.  However, I would have like a bit more technology to go with the level of science this book provided.  Maybe a bit more jargon or usage would have made the book more enjoyable.  How can you not like a book that has hackers, human desires, genetics, and aliens?  The author did a good job of keeping this all in check while making the book very interesting and suspenseful.

I liked the rather short chapters making the book easier to digest in smaller pieces.  Not until the end of the book do you find out who’s who, keeping the listener questioning?  The characters are mostly shrouded in mystery and each has its own issues making you think they are the good or bad guys.  The author does a good job of making you always question who you are loyal towards.  I felt the scenes and locations were well described, while also allowing me to include a bit of my own imagination.  I did not as much enjoy the flipping back and forth between the two teams, but the author did a good job of keeping me engaged during the transitions.  There was just enough geopolitical conflict to keep one wondering what could happen next.  I found the last chapter of the book quite informative as it lays out the science and other details the book was founded upon, and this was very interesting.

Gary Tiedemann did a wonderful job narrating the book.  I have previously reviewed a few of his other books and really enjoy his voice.  In a few places I would have like to have had more inflection, but this is more a personal preference then a requirement.  By no means do I mean the book monotone or plain, I just would have likes a bit more variety during times of action.  The story flowed very well, and the narration was clean and clear.  I found no issues with audiobook’s volume or other audio artifacts that can often jolt a listener out of a story.  The recording was professional, and the voicing of the many characters was done satisfactorily.

For parents and younger readers.  I do not remember, nor did I make note of, any vulgar language used in the book.  This does not mean there was none, but it was not prevalent enough for me to make note of it for my review.   There are a few elements in the book which could be considered anti-religious or poking fun at religious people, but this is limited and often used in the correct context.  There are a few scenes of graphic violence which may be intense for younger readers.

In conclusion, the story is solid, entertaining, and from a discovery perspective an engrossing adventure story.  When you have aliens, ASCII codes, and the anticipation of E.T., what could go wrong?  For me, the cover art drew me in to listening to the book, but the story itself kept me listening until the end.  I would recommend this to anyone who likes disaster type stories or people who like suspenseful and mysterious stories of unknown alien civilizations.

Audiobook was provided for review by the author.

Please find this complete review and many others at my review blog.

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29 of 29 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Jason
  • Sacramento
  • 04-18-18

Different take on an ancient origin!!!!

Great book. The story was interesting and goes in a different direction than most other books of this style. Kept me guessing as to the nature of what it was that was going on. Very well paced with a bit of intrigue and conspiracy. The science was based off real techniques although taken in a fictional direction. I am already looking forward to the next book.

Gary Tiedemann did a superb job with the narration. Managed to pull off some minor emotional parts and made you truly care about the characters. I have already sought out and purchased other books narrated by him based on this performance.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful

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

An Arthur C. Clark inspired series

A team of scientists is sent to a remote place in order to investigate the meteorite responsible for wiping out the dinosaurs, but what they find there is much more surprising than what they expected. In the meantime a series of burst are causing a very rare disease in many people, and the only geneticist in the world with a clue about what could be happening is running for her life.

Technothriller is one of my favorite genre, and the premises of this book seemed so great that I could not let it pass. There are two main plots here, one about the team exploring the supposed meteorite, and another about the geneticist trying to find out what is happening with the world and especially with her daughter, racing before she gets killed.

It is clear that James D. Prescott is a fan of Arthur C. Clarke; not only due to Hall 9000’s mention, but also because this book reminded me a lot of ‘Rendezvous with Rama’, one Clark’s greatest novels. In both books the scientific team’s mission is exploring an object from outer space, and through observations and hypothesis they try to reach a conclusion. While Clark’s book lacked character development, ‘Extinction Code’ did a bit better. It is not that the main characters are ultra developed, but they are easily recognizable, and their motives and priorities in life are quite clear. What I missed in this book were more clear and detailed descriptions. At times I found the ‘meteorite’ interior a bit confusing. Some may think that ‘Rendezvous with Rama’ had too much level of detail, but I remember that was one of the characteristics that got me hooked.

I was very curious about several facts in the story, and whether they were just fiction or partially based on reality. Luckily Prescott thought about curious minds like mine, and answered these questions in the epilogue (thank you!).

Gary Tiedemann’s narration was compelling and to the point, not interfering with the story, and bringing characters to life. The audio production was perfect. The only aspect that did not completely convince me were Tiedemann’s female voices. They sounded like the male’s, and at times I had troubles identifying who was talking.

This is the first book in a series, and book 2 is expected to be released sometime this summer. I hope we will get an audio version soon enough, since this series looks really promising. I have so many questions, and I am quite impatient to see how Prescott will answer them.

I received a copy of this book in audio format from the author in exchange for an honest review.

5 of 5 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

What a narrator.....

So it took me a minute (figuratively not literally) to get used to the way the narrator Gary Tiedemann would speed up every time something suspenseful was happening. I learned to appreciate it. What I appreciated the most was his repertoire of accents!
There are many characters in this book and they are from many different nationalities. Gary nailed Australian, Irish, Southern, Indian, Russian, etc. It was very impressive!
The book itself I enjoyed. It was quick paced and suspenseful. The characters were mostly relatable. I had an issue with characters being....forgotten? Granted, there were many to keep track of but in some situations the author neglected to include characters that were in the situation, in the situation. Sven at the end is one example and he doesn't get mentioned until the next book.
Other than that, definitely worth a credit.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Enjoyable. Well done. Looking forward to Book 2.

Looking forward to Book 2.
I hope Gary Tiedermann also narrates that one. Enjoyable performance.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Fantastic

Really fun. Loved it
Can’t wait for the next one a real page turner!
Highly recommended

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

My Goodness

I am so glad that I got a chance to listen to this audiobook. Aliens, conspiracy, blinding lights, strange illnesses, genetics and secret agencies, need I say more?Who wouldn’t like this?? There is a lot of action in this story and it sucked me right in. There are almost 2 different POV or storylines in this book and both are very, very good. It would have been interesting if they decided to do a duel narration with our male narrator and an added female narrator. There is so much mystery surrounding this story and searching for an asteroid was definitely only the beginning of the fun. The action keeps coming and there are a few twists and turns that you won’t see coming. The performance was very well done. It was my second audiobook by this narrator and he does not disappoint. Everything about the performance is great: character’s voices, tone, sound quality it was all brilliant. The only reason I would have liked to see a female narrator take on the other storyline is to make it a different POV. This does not take away from the performance at all. This has the makings of being a great and mysterious new series for me. I cannot wait for book 2 to make it’s way to audio. **I received a free review copy of this audiobbok in exchange for an honest review via Audiobook Boom, this in no way affected my opinion of this work**

9 of 11 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Engrossing tale of the origin of mankind

The story has many interesting twists and turns as our heroes unravel the mystery that started 65 million years ago.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Extinction Code

It is hard to pause listening to this audio book once I started listening. It's great. It's awesome. It's thought-provoking

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

A mix of fact and fiction

I really enjoyed listening to this book, the narration is well done with good character voices and a smooth natural sounding delivery.

The story is an interesting mix of fact and fiction. Many of the scientific facts presented in the book are real discoveries that have been used to make this wonderful story sound so believable. I found myself thinking that while this is fiction I can believe that it is true. I'm really interested to see where this story is going to go next, bring on book two!

The cast of characters are excellent, at times I wondered what the purpose was of some of them but this mostly came together as the story progressed but I was left with a few questions I'm hoping the next book will clear up for me.

I received a free copy of this book from the author and/or narrator and/or publisher and I voluntarily wrote this honest review.

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13 of 17 people found this review helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 09-12-18

It feels like half a story

I'm all for ending a book on a cliffhanger, but ending it on three separate cliffhangers without any resolution was a little bit ridiculous. It felt as though the publishers were demanding a book and he gave them whatever chapters he had available.

As always, the writing was fantastic and I really love Gary Tiedemann's narration, I just felt as though I received half of the story I was supposed to.