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Krakenstein VS. Koalatron

Narrated by: Paul-Alexandre Petit
Length: 5 hrs and 54 mins
5 out of 5 stars (2 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Cleaning up is dirty business. 

Especially when you're Argiss Valance, a ruthless corporate magnate, and you want the world to see you as its ultimate philanthropist...even as you secretly plumb the ocean's depths for the key to immortality. Enter Koalatron, a towering garbage-munching mechanical marvel, the brainchild of Valance's brilliant wife, Deanna, and a cutting edge genius, Dr. Max Shepperton. 

When Shepperton goes missing and an unspeakable, relentlessly growing sea-horror rises, Deanna, her journalist half-sister Key Sharlayne and renegade eco-vigilante Jeremiah Savage find themselves in a terrifying showdown between titanic machine and irresistible leviathan: Krakenstein vs. Koalatron!

©2017 Kevin Candela (P)2018 Kent Hill Productions/KHP

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Cthulhu vs Mecha-Godzilla styled action.

Kevin Candela has quickly flown up in my estimation of what it means to be a writer. I follow him on facebook, and sometimes he seems to think that all he does is refit old ideas, but I disagree. The author cand creator of DC's amazing Sandman run, Neil Gaiman said that "Storytellers pick up bits and pieces from here, there and everywhere all the time as they create original works. " And that is how I see Candela. He just grabs a smattering here and an idea there, and then performs some sort of cold fusion and creates a wholly new and unique creature that he is reponsible for. In fact, I'd say that what he has done so far is even harder than creating something brand new. If you create a universe you get to say how things work. If you go to someone else's sandbox, then you are limited to what you can and cannot do. He imposes some tough restrictions on himself, and somehow still manages to create a product that pays a venerable homage to the source material, and yet has a powerful new and stand alone creation that has a life all its own.

Such is the case here. I can see numerous influences from various literary sources and movies, I could see Mecha-Godzilla or even Johnny Sokko and His Flying Robot as influences, but a giant robotic koala pretty much speaks for itself, as for Krakenstein, yeah I totally get the Kraken reference, but I also see Cthulhu or just a Kaiju in his place. Either way, the work is fast, fun, and full of fuel that gets set off every ten pages or so. Candela infuses wit and humor into what could just be another giant robot versus a giant monster story. It sure as heck isn't boring, and it sn't something youve seen somewhere else.

I love the cover art from Bradley K. McDevitt. I've been a fan of his since he was working for Stellar Games, and I think it is apropo to the story's style. Excellent choice, personally, I think it would make for a great phone case.

Paul-Alexandre Petit does a good job narrating. He plays sincere just as well as his smarmy, and really gets into the action scenes. His voicework is good, and you can distinguish all of the players when he speaks. I have never heard anything else by him, but he seems to be on the march towards greatness if he maintains his pace.

If you are looking for a fun book that isn't too deep but will make you laugh, smile, and cheer on a giant robotic bear, then this is the book for you. Candela does deep, too, but this book is light hearted, so take a chance and pick up this winner now. Even though I did receive a promo code for this review it in no way influenced my considerations of the material, and in fact, inspired me to be more honest. In fact, getting a code generally makes me harsher as a reviewer as I am more often concerned what someone like Me will decide based on my review.

If this review helped, please press the YES below. Thank you immensely!!!

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A fun homage of a Kaiju vs. Mecha story!

When an industrialist decides to create a giant robot to help clean up the oceans trash, starting with the trash islands leftover from the Japanese tsunami disaster, he is hailed as a philanthropist. The fact his companies were some of the ones creating the trash islands has been overlooked by all but a few, those few including his soon to be ex sister in law, a reporter, and his soon to be ex wife, a scientist working on the project. This giant robot is revealed to the world as, Koalatron! A huge, Godzilla sized Koala shaped trash eating robot. Have to keep the marketing channels open, after all.

Meanwhile, in another section of his floating lab, another set of scientists is studying the animal life being dredged up by the robot and their explorations. They are mutating fast due to radiation. So fast, in fact, that they have become a danger to to everyone around them, and are isolated. That is, until one escapes, and being surrounded by all sorts of natural and unnatural radiation, grows to gigantic size, and after having eaten a scientist on the project, going after the industrialist's holdings. As the epic sized Kaiju, goes about wrecking an economic empire, plans are brought into play to try and stop it, and result in the biggest clash of Kaiju and Mecha since Godzilla took on Mecha-Godzilla and wrecked Tokyo for the hundredth time!

This was a really fun story. the various characters kind of fit into particular molds, i.e., the greedy, duplicitous industrialist, the plucky girl reporter, the clueless scientist, the adventurous activist, but it all worked, since the author realized you can have fun with the tropes if you do it right. The plotting was well done, and there were no lulls in the action. The setting was well described, and the you really got a good sense of what the Kaiju and Koalatron looked like. Definitely a story that draws you in.

Paul-Alexandre Petit did a good job narrating. He gave each character a unique voice, and he played on the various tropes himself in voicing them. He had a good grasp of the various accents, and his tone shifts were good. His narrative pacing was solid, never devolving to a monotone. All in all, a solid narrative effort.

This is not normally a book I would have tried out, but it turned out to be a good listening decision. Kevin Candela is a talented writer, and created a fun story homage to the old Kaiju/Mecha movies of yesteryears. I very much recommend it for people looking for a lighter hearted version of the kind of thing Jeremy Robinson writes.