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Publisher's Summary

The Dark River opens in New York City with a stunning piece of news. Gabriel's father, who has been missing for nearly 20 years, may still be alive and trapped somewhere in Europe. Gabriel and his Harlequin protector, Maya, immediately mobilize to escape New York and find the long-lost Traveler.

Simultaneously, Michael orders the Brethren, the ruthless group that has been hunting Gabriel, into a full-scale search. Gabriel yearns to find his father to protect him; Michael aims to destroy the man whose existence threatens his newfound power.

The race moves from the underground tunnels of New York and London to ruins hidden beneath Rome and Berlin, to a remote region of Africa that is rumored to harbor one of history's greatest treasures. And as the story moves toward its chilling conclusion, Maya must decide if she will trade everything to rescue Gabriel.

Listen to the first book in this series: The Traveler.
©2007 John Twelve Hawks; (P)2007 Books on Tape

Critic Reviews

"Engrossing....Part A Wrinkle in Time, part The Matrix and part Kurosawa epic." (Publishers Weekly)
"John Twelve Hawks has drawn upon both pop-cultural and literary touchstones and modified them to create a cyber-1984." (The New York Times)
"The stuff that first-rate high-tech paranoid-schizophrenic thrillers are made of." (Time)

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Average Customer Ratings


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  • Overall

Not as good as the first book

I thought the first book of this series was very good. I couldn't wait to get the second book. However, the second book just doesn't have that "quality" to make the listener want to keep listening. It is not worth 2 credits. That is like paying for a so-so book twice.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

I Liked It

The other reviews are lukewarm but I liked it. It had been 2 years since I heard the first one so I went back and listened to it again before I started book 2, maybe that helped.

It was great to meet Mother Blessing and to see the Hollis character develop. I love all the character development with Maya through both books. I'm wondering if Michael is who he seems or does he have more up his sleeve? Of course we're rooting the most for Gabriel and wondering...where is their father? I like that we don't know who is going to come through the battles.

The book also gives the reader food for thought with modern technology and the way we live 'on the grid' and under surveillance...some things are a little far-fetched...but still enjoyable.

For me, The Dark River went very fast and I'm looking forward to the last's hard to imagine how it will end. I agree that it is dark and it doesn't look good for the good guys..I'm hoping for some positive light to shine through at the end.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Lacks substance

The author has one good idea and tries to make a novel out of it. If it weren't on my iPod when desperately needed a diversion, I would never have finished the book. You can't even begin to care about the characters, and the plot is one note - go to the next world. Very trite. Certainly doesn't live up to the possibilities of his first book.

And the narrator: yawn...takes himself too seriously since there's nothing to the story.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • garyyac
  • New Market, MD United States
  • 07-20-07

Not horrible...

The Traveler series is a strange one, indeed. The author's call-in at the beginning of book 2 is hilarious. He is presumably on a cell phone, calling us from "off the grid" to warn us of a coming world bereft of love and compassion. But the series is chock-full of one-dimensional characters and gratuitous violence from both sides. Not exactly an ode to love and compassion. The historical context is entertaining from a reverse perspective, sort of like Dan Brown without the benefit of research. I won't call it a stinker because it kept my interest, but listening to it's like eating a big bag of junk food.

Scott Brick, whom I consider to be a good reader, seems to have trouble with accents in this one. The Brits all sound like Crocodile Dundee and the Italian guy sounds like Count Chocula.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Bang
  • houston, TX, USA
  • 07-17-07

Middle Book Lag

I love the first book. Not as good as the traveler. But a must have if you want to finish the series. Less character development and less action.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Ronald
  • Webster, TX, USA
  • 02-04-08

off the grid

I wish I could go back in time and live off the grid myself, now I am too integrated there is no way! What a fantasy, sci-fi, non-fiction book! GREAT! So refreshing to see a new take on our modern world, a whole new conspiracy in an alternate universe but with the same earth and current events. Truly something to sink your ears into!

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Nicholas
  • FolkestoneUnited Kingdom
  • 08-04-07

The Dark River

This is a hugely disappointing sequel to the Traveller, not least because I was expecting it to be brilliant. I was hoping for a compelling story about an epic struggle between the ultimate conspiracy and its free spirited opponents. What was delivered was dull and bordering on clich?, the heroes were straight out of a ‘Die Hard’ movie and the villains just plain nasty. Scott Brick’s narration, usually fantastic, was also disappointing, his attempts at English regional accents we toe-curlingly bad. All in all I wouldn’t bother.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Kamal
  • Brampton, Ontario, Canada
  • 01-07-08

Reaching apogee

This didn't have quite the ride or the revolutionary new ideas presented in the first book. I had a hard time finishing this one, and there's definitely a cliffhanger setup for a sequel. I guess I have to finish it, but there's very little seeming hope for the hero's to come out on top in this one.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Marina
  • Darien, CT, USA
  • 08-27-07

Not quite like the first book.

I have to be honest - the second book was a bit of a disappointment after several years of waiting. The characters were underutilized for their potential and the ending felt like the author just ran out of steam. I will of course read the last book; however I now question the consistency of John Twelve-Hawks’ writing.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Should have read the reviews

I really liked the first book. It was exciting, fresh and dynamic. This book however, seems to drift along without much direction. Yes it moves but never really gets there. I found it hard to feel with the characters as they faced their trials.

The concepts explained in the book are very real. If they don't currently exist then there is a large possibility that they are being worked on in some underground lab, somewhere.

I am sure that this book is needed to get us to the 3rd in the series but I somehow feel that I may not be going that far.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful