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Publisher's Summary

Evan Gabriel wasn't always a feared and respected North American Federation Navy Commander. Before dangerous missions to the ice-bound planet of Poliahu, the deadly jungle world of Eden, and politically corrupt Mars, he was a simple recruit, fighting to make his mark in the elite Naval Special Forces…and was part of a top-secret military experiment that would change his life forever.

Zero Point tells the tale of a young man faced with difficult choices and dangerous trials. Fans of the series will see part of the mysterious past Evan Gabriel carries with him, while listeners new to the series get a preview of what is to come in a military man's haunted life. Zero Point is the true beginning of Evan Gabriel, and his story is just getting started.

©2012 Steve Umstead (P)2013 Podium Publishing

Critic Reviews

"Umstead can write an action-packed adventure story better than most. He is an artist in designing a high-tech battlefield and weaving in the human element with his character's depth and color. If you like action in a science fiction setting then you really need to listen to this audiobook and give it a shot." (Tom Clementson, The Kindle Book Review)
"This series brings me back to the old days when sci-fi was about ass kicking, great friends, loyalty and action." (Amazon Reviewer)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • 3.8 out of 5.0
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Story

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THE FLICKER OF THAT MEMORY

FLICKERED
You can't get too upset when something is free, it just cost your time. It was a good way for me to find out I don't want to continue the series. The writing is a little stilted. The characters are card board cut outs. The story is old hat. If you like Gordon Dickson, you will love this.

I hope the whole series is not read by this narrator. He reads in a very sing song way, which I found distracting.

32 of 33 people found this review helpful

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Review: Zero Point, by Steve Umstead

*Please note that I haven’t read the rest of this trilogy, so I went into this novella with a blank slate. The description mentions this could be read before or after reading the other. I’m sure my reaction would be a little different had I read it after the other books.*

Gabriel: Zero Point was a pretty good novella. There isn’t that much to it in terms of building the futuristic world that it’s set in, but it does a great job of setting up Gabriel, the main character. Being that he is the main character of the trilogy that follows this novella, I think getting the story of where he started is probably better than getting the grander world view. The novels have more room for that. Still, this is only, for the most part, a small glimpse into what is to come and I felt like maybe just a little more info would have made it that much more enjoyable for me.

Overall, it’s filled with action, there aren’t any lulls to the story, and it’s gotten me interested in the other books. I think Umstead has much in store for me, once I start the trilogy. I’m looking forward to it.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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100% Narration Failure

Take care here readers, there might be a story in here, but you will not be able to enjoy it with the incredibly bad narration. I deeply regret my failed attempt to make it through this short introduction to the series.

Ray: I know you don't speak anything like this in your life. And you have never heard anyone speak like this. How did this book make it out into the world without anyone mentioning that your use of falling intonation renders the book into an unbearable experience?

Steve: Get this redone. Please. I want to experience the series, but as it stands, that is not possible.

Audible: Letting this happen hurts your brand.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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not for me

Just not my type of literature. Could not hold my interest. I did not finish.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Cheryl
  • Douglasville, GA, United States
  • 07-28-14

A Military Science Fiction - not for me.

All I can say is, "Glad it was free!"

I listened to about 1 and a half hours of it and finally gave up on it.

I was also annoyed by the narrator, Ray Chase. I just did not enjoy his narrative style.

I will not be reading the sequels.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • Lia
  • Sutton, Australia
  • 01-01-14

I love a free beginning

Gabriel:Zero Point is a prequel novella to the Evan Gabriel Triology which can be listened to before or after the other three titles. A recruit in the elite Naval Special Forces, Evan Gabriel strives to be the head of his class and is soon chosen for a top-secret military experiment that will force him to make critical choices and a dangerous situation while coming to grips with who or what he has become.

As I have mentioned before,I'm never been a huge fan of Science Fiction and military type stories but Steve Umstead and Michael K. Rose in particular are changing my views. I hate to compare this to movies but "Zero Point" is a mixture of "Universal Solider" and "The Bourne Identity".

Umstead's writing is clear,engaging and the characters are well defined. Action within the novella is handled and described well finding a perfect balance. As with Rose's "Sullivan's War" series the technology used in "Zero Point" is realistic and described well enough that there is no doubt how they operate. Overall "Gabriel: Zero Point" was a great read that has peaked my interest in the "Evan Gabriel Trilogy".

14 of 20 people found this review helpful

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  • karen
  • Christchurch, New Zealand
  • 12-30-13

A big Thanks for this intriguing freebee

Any additional comments?

Wow, i wasn't sure what to expect really but i was very pleasantly surprised with this capturing short story. Most grateful for this free and exciting introduction to this new series. Narration was fabulous by Ray Chase :))

5 of 7 people found this review helpful

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Great Book

Any additional comments?

alert("Great Book Great Book Great Book Great Book Great Book Great Book Great Book Great Book")

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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very good story.

great story. want the next. book. I didn't. want to turn it off. Will send it to my son.

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Has potential

I liked the authors forward thinking about implants and improving the human body. The story line reminded me too much of a Jason Bourne meets super hero though.

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  • UsefulThings
  • 02-17-15

Entertaining if a little predictable

I enjoyed this - a bonus that it was free but I thought the performance was good and the story entertained me , even if it was pretty obvious what was going to happen.
I'll consider carrying on with the series.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 01-27-15

thrilling

Well read, a gripping story. Recommended read. A good basis for the series. Looking forward to the rest of them.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Salter
  • 12-01-14

Thoroughly enjoyable....

Where does Gabriel: Zero Point: The FREE Prequel Novella rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

For a short story, it is well worth a listen. Will certainly listen to others in the series

What about Ray Chase’s performance did you like?

Well read. Chase portrayed the characters effectively.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 02-11-14

Can't listen to it!

Is there anything you would change about this book?

The voice actor has a great voice, dont get me wrong. But he is trying to be a bit flighty with his voice. I can't really explain it but I just found it irritating. It is like he is trying to do an impression of Morgan Freeman, but not very well. The cadence is just all wrong. When he voices the characters he is very good but I just can't get past the rest.

How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?

I think that the story has a lot going for it and if i could just get past my irritation of the narator i might enjoy it.

How could the performance have been better?

Maybe if he didn't sound so bored/breathy? It feels that this is more of a performance than a book reading.

3 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 08-21-17

great

this is a really good listen and even better thst it was a free one:) i will be getting the gabriel trilogy as my next audio books.

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  • Andrzej Lengiewicz
  • 06-13-17

Concentrate!

I think the person who was reading should pay a bit more attention or do some pre-reading. Sometimes it seems like he doesn't know what character lines it is. Not major problem, but a bit annoying.

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  • Yaya Nick NDeath17
  • 05-30-17

Very enjoyable and free.

Where does Gabriel: Zero Point: The FREE Prequel Novella rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

I have been looking for something new to listen to while sat a the PC. Sci fi is a genre I would have liked to of read more of in the past.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Gabriel and the doctor. I look forward to a growing relationship.

Which character – as performed by Ray Chase – was your favourite?

Gabriel.

If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

"Zero point, Beyond the threshold"

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 03-10-17

A Goodread

Quite enjoyed listening to the book would listen to it again and would recommend it to everyone who's in to science fiction

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  • Culwen
  • 01-16-17

Had a promising start but ended with indifference.

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

The initial set out was interesting and suspenseful once he got to the out of the lab but it soon became quite on obvious cliche. The battles afterwards become a repetitive engagement so I lost concentration near the end. As well as the preview.

What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

Lost concentration. It's hard to dscribe an engaging scene when the protagonist has such high systems in his control. Neurotics this, neurotics that.

What aspect of Ray Chase’s performance might you have changed?

He has a habit of twinging his narration at the end of each sentence. Narration can be a bit more varied and less monotone and predictable.

Do you think Gabriel: Zero Point: The FREE Prequel Novella needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

It should and it has. What Zero point is, is a prologue.

Any additional comments?

There is some parts of this book that I liked but from the the reaction of my attention span near the end, I feel like I would not continue to listen the follow-up series.

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  • Tim
  • 11-17-16

Sounds Brilliant So Far

Loving it, can't wait until I can sit down in a nice comfy chair and finish !

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  • KCP QA AU
  • 08-28-17

Free

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 02-06-17

Surprisingly excellent!

If I was reading it, it would have been a page turner! :)

Not usually accustomed to listening to military intelligence style, action packed Sci - Fi but definitely worth a listen! It's free so why not?!

I knew the lingo pretty well due to a military upbringing. Therefore, I found I could follow the story & plot well & also appreciate the authors research (and/or his background?), into military language, tactics and so on. This gave the it a convincing & genuine feel even though it was set in far into the future. However, watching a hell of a lot of this genre helped too! :)

Nevertheless, even if you're not used to this genre, the narrator Ray Chase, read extremely fluidly, with excellent articulation & rhythm at the right moments!

Am thinking now to read the whole series so nice work! You've succeeded to suck me in. Hehe. :p

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 12-19-16

Gcf

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 12-02-16

Rduyf

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  • Sauel
  • 08-29-16

A nice meaty short - now I want to read the series

Solid plot, good performance, enough to work alone but hooks you for the series. Exactly what you look for in a free short story.

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