Immobility

Narrated by: Mauro Hantman
Length: 6 hrs and 32 mins
Categories: Fiction, Horror
4 out of 5 stars (62 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

You open your eyes for what you know is not the first time and you remember nothing. You find out that a catastrophic event known as the Kollaps has destroyed life as we know it. Someone claiming to be your friend tells you that you’re needed. Something crucial has been stolen - but under no circumstances can you know what or why. You’ve got to get it back or something bad is going to happen. And you’ve got to get it back fast, so they can freeze you again before your own time runs out. Paralyzed from the waist down, you’re being carried around on the backs of two men who don’t seem anything like you at all. Who inject you regularly and tell you it’s for your own good…to stop the disease, or else they must cut directly into your spine. Welcome to the life of Josef Horkai….

Critically acclaimed and O. Henry prize-winning author Brian Evenson turns his literary eye to a post-apocalyptic earth in this dazzling science fiction novel.

©2012 Brian Evenson (P)2012 AudioGO Ltd.

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

A sensation of coming back to life, only...

"A sensation of coming back to life, only not quite that: half life maybe."
- Brian Evenson, Immobility

My first exposure to Brian Evenson was a stack of his short stories (Altmann's Tongue: Stories and a Novella) at the BYU bookstore my sophomore year that was there and then, just as suddenly, wasn't there. I had recently returned from my mission and Evenson was a professor at BYU who that year got into trouble because his stories were too violent, weird, funky for the placid BYU English department [some of my best and worst memories were related to the BYU English department].

My second exposure to Brian Evenson was discovering a good friend of mine was also good friends with Brian's dad Bill. My third memory of Brian Evenson was discovering another friend (a professor of English now at William & Mary) is a friend of Brian's. So, I've been collecting Evenson's books, and surfing two degrees away from Brian Evenson since college. But those books of his. Somehow, they would get boxed, lost, rediscovered, reburied, hidden, moved, etc.. But recently, I felt pushed to find, unbox, and read one. I was expecting it was going to be a hybrid of early Orson Scott Card and later Dan Simmons. But after finishing Immobility, I felt more like I walked into a strange amalgam of Samuel Beckett, Walter M. Miller Jr., and Cormac McCarthy.

Anyway, I loved Immobility. It was stark, moody, and always plagued with the shadows of both the similar and the sinister. One benefit of living in Orem and going to BYU is I could have easily drawn a map of the story's main journey from the BYU Library to the Granite Mountain Records Vault and back (complete with roads traveled). That said, this isn't Mormon fiction. It is post-apocalyptic fiction built on the ruins of Utah. It is as Mormon as Post Malone.

2 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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A paralyzing journey to survive

Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

A fascinating post apocalyptic journey for human survival. Josef Horkai is brought back to consciousness and finds he is unable to walk. Stuck in a foreign environment with strangers with an odd culture doesn't recognize he is immediately sent on a mission to recover an artifact from the wasteland. Twists and turns kept coming as the plot unraveled at a fast pace. Crisp dialogue, short sharp descriptions of a world long dead keeps the plot moving. Readers looking for something different and scary will love this gripping sci-fi thriller. I thoroughly enjoyed Immobility and I look forward to more novels by this author.

2 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Existential Post Apocalyptic Tale

Any additional comments?

This is a terrific post-apocalyptic tale that can be summed up as 12 Monkeys meets The Road. An amnesiac superhuman survivor is used by the survivors of a nuclear war to obtain something stolen from them -- lots of Kafkaesque type scenes with multiple existential tangents -- with a great twist at the end. Perfect for that 8 hour car ride.

2 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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CATASTROPHIC !

Ar first I took this book to be another post-apocalyptic yarn and that I preferred 'The Road'. Then there evolved a philosophic perspective, religion, free will, morality and then some twists and turns took the book in a new direction. I found myself caring for characters that shouldn't warrant too much attention. The Qs were so innocent. This novel is an interesting scifi or is it horror scifi?

2 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Dreadfully Daunting

It's a bizarre and strange story, with helplessness and hopelessness consistent throughout. Reminiscent of hell.

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Understated but Powerful

Small details elevate this simple but cyclical story with meaning beyond the narrative. Not satisfied with mere allegory, those small details function to expand the mundane series of movements into a work of speculative fiction that is anything but escapist. Life carries on, but it has changed and is changing. In the middle of this gradually revealed tableau is human nature, and The State and Nature... but that might be my reading 'beyond there narrative.'

Readers looking for a post apocalyptic adventure might not enjoy the narrow path the story follows, but I found it harrowing and compelling to the end. That ending is not a surprise, per se, but it hit hard and felt honest.

The writing is tight and sparse, but muscular, and... relative newby that I am to Audible.... this was the first narrator that I would seek out his other work.

Highly recommended.

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    4 out of 5 stars

Interesting story.

Any additional comments?

Wish it was longer for story details, but at the same time it stands well on its own. Going to test out more of the writers work.

1 person found this helpful