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Publisher's Summary

Captain Jacob Thomas, USMC, is a divorced combat veteran just trying to get his life back on track. Returning to the marine corps after a failed attempt at reconciliation with his estranged wife, Jake volunteers for a DARPA experiment that catapults him into a future where humanity has been stripped of 200 years of technological advancements and more than half its population. With the help of a faceless benefactor named Alice, he escapes the confines of an abandoned lab facility and starts a journey to put Earth back on a path to recovery. Jake's path begins in the rich farmlands of central California and eventually places him in orbit and face to face with the very evil that started it all.

©2014 CW Lamb (P)2015 Tantor

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4 out of 5 stars
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    525
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    283
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    127
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    35
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    32

Performance

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Story

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    127
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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

5 star sci-fi, 1 star lame romance novel

Narrator sounds like he should stick to reading to his grandkids. NO character differentiation. There is gender distinction, but everyone sounds the same, and the women are whiny and pouty trying to be sexy.

Absolutely hooked by the opening plot. Great sci-fi. Love Jake, love Alice, love the premise. I listened to the end just for that. I also love how it turned out and can't wait to read another.

That said, the conversion into a worse-than-B-grade romance novel destroys the quality of the story. It's like a 12-year-old trying to write porn. At this time in American history, there are more women than men so they are used to sharing. For some reason it is deemed necessary for Jake to reproduce, so he takes up with 5 or more women. They all handle it very well, they are not jealous (except when they are), rather they are supportive of each other (except when they feel they aren't getting enough of Jake). They cease being intelligent women and turn into sex kittens. All the women are beautiful and have perfect bodies with large busts, and no thigh lumps. It's okay for there to be love relations in sci-fi stories, but I didn't come here for Danielle Steel, and this stuff is so juvenile and over-written that you will roll your eyes, shake your head, and sigh.

I don't know who would enjoy this kind of stuff; it's not imaginative, not titillating, not grown up. For example:

* Jake (despairing of his responsibilities managing several computer sites): If we open more alien facilities, I'm screwed!
Female: Oh, I'm pretty sure that happened last night. [and the author can't leave it alone], and I was hoping it would happen tonight too! [still can't leave it alone] she said with a wicked wink. [sigh, shake my head]

*trite "sexy" lines like "I resemble that remark!" and "I barely rate "saucy wench"!

And. I get so tired of doing the editor's job. I get tired of talking to the recording, correcting grammar, tired of making word changes. E.g. He lay her on the couch. This writer uses only about 1/4 the past perfect tense and he should, even after allowing for individual choice. One of the worst examples: "Jake wore his flight suit that morning, and had not changed it all day." Any high school English teacher would change this to, "Jake HAD PUT ON his flight suit that morning, and had not changed it all day."

Anyway, I guess I have to accept that there are no editors anymore and that whatever sorry excuse for grammar the writer delivers is what gets published.

I really don't know how to rate this story. If the next one continues with such infantile, trite, gag-me "romance" drivel, I will have to go see Nora Roberts, or Lolita.

60 of 62 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Brad
  • JACKSONVILLE, ARKANSAS, United States
  • 09-29-15

Story limited by the booty call

Is there anything you would change about this book?

There is a large portion of the book detailing the main character's sexual escapades with multiple women that he recruits into "service" after he wakes up from stasis. I'm sure that "man from the distant past" meets "Earth rebounding from apocalypse" can generate some strange circumstances, but "Building a harem" wasn't one of them. The author even mentions "harem" and "booty call" in the book so I feel warranted in the headline for this review. I could even get onboard with the concept if he didn't make it such a main aspect of the book.

What could Charles Lamb have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

Beyond addressing the obvious, I would say that the author needs to present the motivations of the characters in a better way. Danger doesn't really present itself until the last 25% of the book. There seems to be no urgency for much of the story. It seems to progress as a function of the needs of the "AL:ICE" computer(?) system.

Which scene was your favorite?

No scene was my favorite. The sci-fi aspects were good. I really liked AL:ICE. Who wouldn't like an artificial intelligence with a self preservation agenda who was willing to manipulate people to get her(?) way? It might have been done before, but that part of the story was enjoyable none-the-less.

Do you think Alice needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

No it doesn't need a follow-up. Even if it were to explore some of the alien races and further push out mankind into space, I fear that were

Any additional comments?

I like the concept / premise. I like the sci-fi ideas. If you just want to put your brain on hold and don't mind a lot of teenage fantasy thrown in then this book is fun.

24 of 25 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Adolescent

Story is a collection of simplistic "perfect" scenarios working to elevate humanity ( US centric) toward galactic superiority. Thrown in is a healthy dose of adolescent soft porn scenes. I felt sorry of the narrator wading through much of that. Narrator was reasonable. Overall: Stay away from this unless you are a spotty teenager.

13 of 14 people found this review helpful

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

A little lighter than most.

Alice, as a book, reminds me of some of the fiction that Robert Heinleine wrote towards the end of his career. And I don't mean that in a negative way. This story is much more fiction and less science so requires a degree of acceptance that may be difficult for some hard-core science fiction types. And like Heinlein, there is a degree of misogynistic condescension.

The story is suitably fast-paced to hold your interest. If you don't mind multiple busty female characters fawning over the male lead character within a very accepting and cordial polygamist setting, this is an entertaining read. Don't expect literature and I think you'll enjoy the book.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Hollow, shallow, but only mildly annoying overall.

First off, I've read (or listened, as it were) far worse. For all of its inherent storytelling flaws, the actual wordcraft of the author is not at all bad. Additionally, even though this is a post-apoc piece, at least it's a positive rebuilding type rather than the doom and gloom hipster bull sjit that's so common now.

The primary failings of this story are: 1) Linear plot, 2) Male Mary Sue main character, 3) Cardboard characters, 4) Rote alien villains, and 5) Overall amateurish structure.

My assessment is that this author has some capability, but needs more learning and mentorship in the story crafting that goes beyond mere technique of words.

6 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Robert
  • Miami, Fl, USA
  • 08-18-17

Really Wanted To Love It, but...

In the first 10 min I was like "hell yea, new favorite series", then it went all down hill. I am a crappy sci fi fan...almost 200 audio books worth. Two other reviews hit the nail with two things that drove me crazy. 1)Narrator reads like a kids book; he has a mid west Minnesota type accent for all the character and it makes everyone sound ridiculous. 2) writer gives me the creeps...less sci fi and more so soft porn. He has a military officer sleeping with a half dozen women bc that's how it is in the future and some are pretty young. I am retired military and even it a typical military guy would totally take advantage of a situation where options are plenty, you really want your "hero" character to be honorable, not sleezy.
Aside from the creepy soft porn, the writer misses mark with regard to story...too many issues to list.
Bottom line, I wish this book was what it could have been...it was a really cool plot.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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

A good story thus far, but...

This story has vast potential. And we get it, the calculus of life and the savings of the human species. This being clear the amount and type of sexual oriented time spent could have been dramatically cut back and the main figure of the book is excessively unprofessional and claims to be from the military, yet, bends the rules to have multiple partners who ultimately wind up having very obviously spontaneous orgies with one another... That aspect of the story, in my opinion, CV cheapens the rest of the rather good story.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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

Sci Fi Trashy Romance Novel

Poor science, male fantasy, terrible writing.

Mix a teenage boy's fantasy mixed with some action and guns set in post apocalyptic USA.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Shawn
  • Central TX, United States
  • 12-12-15

skip it-prepubescent polygamist god wannaB fantasy

Mediocre writing, horrible characters. More time spent on divorcee protaganists sex life with a neverending line of big breasted bonds, than on story. New 17 yr old sex starlet every year, by an ex-marine turned super man (like the Hulk), while elected President, while being an instantaneous super pilot, also being made a King...etc. Huge plot holes. Touching brush with military tactics & heritage, no actual working knowledge of strategy or tactics. Appears to have been written by an author who has never experienced life, much less military service or an actual relationship with a woman. I'm a southern conservative and the rampant male chauvinism made me cringe. Comes across as a god-complex having, polygamy supporting, immature attempt of a meld of better authors works.

Plot: underneath, not a bad idea but done better by many others
Characters: shallow, meaningless, sex based. No humanity, everything always works out with one sentance fixes for any problems
Science: nothing new, nothing clever. moves things along. if you liked Will Smith saving earth from an intersteller species with an F-18...(Independence Day) then this will fit in your technological world view.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

Yawn

This series has very high reviews, I can only imagine that is because 11 and 12 year olds are enjoying it. The story is simply a string of uninterrupted victories for the protagonist punctuated by poorly written sex scenes between the same and his 8 wives...

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
  • Amazon Customer
  • 01-30-18

If you’re an 18 year old American male you will love it

Check list.

Team America saves the world 👍
Man unfortunately has to impregnate loads of pretty women 👍
Predictable will win story line 👍

If the above meet your requirements this is the book for you.

I’m British and ex forces so pretty much all about the American obsession with being the saviours of the planet read true here. It’s pretty much the usual brain washing so many unfortunates believe.

Overall not a bad read despite the clear singleminded focus of women and cool weapons that conveniently present themselves whenever a challenge is faced.

My advice. Download extracted by r r Haywood rather than this.

Strange thing is I now need to see how it ends so can’t be too bad.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Alexander
  • 01-31-17

Shallow and testosterone fuelled.

Tl;dr
Cool ships, cool guns, ai, future technology, lots of unnecessary sex, shallow, weak story.




A bit of a teenage boy's fantasy. Insignificant plot with problems mostly solved by things outside of the main characters control. Very little science in the fiction. More than a little white knight misogyny with the main character collecting a small Herem and having no emotional depth to his relationships with these weirdly loyal mothers of his children. The beginning was great, really interesting premise... but then it gets a bit dry with some fun (short) action scenes. There is minimal discussion of the culture of the societies that have developed since the apocalypse, the attacking aliens and there is minimal discussion of the infrastructure and economics necessary to restart a space aged US military from scratch. It held my attention to the end for the most part, but I'm not going to listen past this book.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Simon
  • 11-26-16

A chance to start again.

What a great listen, this novel is a fantastic gradual unveiling of a planet thought lost. With the resourcefulness of Jake and Alice and the rapid assimilation of available planetary resources the rebuilding of Earth can begin. I loved every minute!!!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Caz in Maspalomas
  • 11-26-16

is this a sex book or a sci fi book. more a sex bo

my 10 year old kid managed to download a copy. boy did I have to answer some awkward questions. That was before I had read it.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Liam Farrell
  • 06-05-18

Simple, sexist and shallow.

I lasted 5 chapters. There is such great potential for this story and the premise was really engaging, but it has no character depth or development and the sexist undertones are unbearable. If you enjoyed The Hunger Games, Divergent or similar stories, then you will not enjoy this.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • H-J N
  • 10-13-16

Great sci-fi story

A terrific book, and one of the best I've heard in years. Absolutely worth getting.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Book_joy
  • 10-06-16

Loved the ebooks. Bought to listen as well.

If you could sum up Alice in three words, what would they be?

Different take on the usual apocalypse novels, most of which I don't like. This has good AI's (artificial intelligences) who work with our hero to restore Earth. Given the author's world setting, the story line is believable, though helped (of course) by AL:ICE.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Alice?

The development of the A.I. into more than just a computer, but one who actively helps Jake (the hero and main character).

Any additional comments?

Despite being apocalyptic in nature, the AL:ICE series books are optimistic. Sure, with plenty of obstacles for AIs and humans alike, but with help from the AI's, ingenuity and hard work by the humans, all are tackled resolutely. Some characters are not the naturally 'gung'ho' types, but that only adds to the realism. Jake and his companions manage to overcome obstacles set before them, and as I say, hope runs through this series. Also, no nasty cliffhangers at the end of the books, even though this is a series.

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars
  • ruuman
  • 09-06-16

not sure what all the fuss was about

i thought the characters were pretty weak, very superficial and quite boring. the story was ok but ive listened to far better. try the FEAR sarga for a similar style but far superior.

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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
  • Dean
  • 10-31-16

Harem sci fi

Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

The writing is terrible. I don't know how old the author is but i can only assume he is a teenager that never had an editor go over the book. Its beyond me how it became an audio book.

Would you ever listen to anything by Charles Lamb again?

No, he cant write worth a damn.

The main character spends a decent amount of time arguing with the women about how he never wanted to create a harem and is 'uncomfortable' with it happening. I can only assume the author wrote this in to try and imply that the main character is a decent moral person who was pushed into the situation because the women all fell in love with him and just want to make babies with him-as well as how he can justly have a semblance of a relationship with each one based on the grounds that he is moral and not taking advantage of them. Its ridiculous. A teenagers sci-fi wet dream.

What aspect of David Drummond’s performance might you have changed?

His vocal inflections and ques are a bit of a mess and monotone.

If this book were a film would you go see it?

Nope.

Any additional comments?

It just makes me sad that this book actually got through publishing. Sure - OK, if it wasn't so poorly written it wouldn't be quite so bad, but i'm so sick of the 'just and moral' hero who needs to be seen as good by everyone. One dimensional characters all around

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Bradley
  • 10-13-16

Cpt America and his Harem

Ok so I was expecting a top selling sci-fi but instead I get a pandering poorly written teenage wet dream.
The narrator was ok but no way near as good as say Simon Vance.

If you want to read some decent sci-fi steer clear of this book and instead try something by Jack Campbell, Peter Clines or James S. A. Corey.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Ian F
  • 06-17-18

Like Benny hill in space , total sexist crap

This is the first audible book that I could not finish , the writer barely bothers naming women mostly just the blonde the busty auburn haired women etc .
Some idiots one man and his many women wet dream , do not bother with this soft porn/romance Novel - total waste of time and money

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars
  • matthew
  • 01-19-18

Really?

Calling it a poorly written teenage wet dream is giving it too much credit.


Terrible plot justification for the main character to have a polygamist relationships with every young attractive female character. Its bad enough that it barely contribute to the plot, but half way through the book this flimsy justification is undermined so it's not needed at all.... I'd reccomend it as a romance novel but it lacks plot depth.