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Publisher's Summary

Set in a lethal pro football league 700 years in the future, The Rookie is a story that combines the intense gridiron action of Any Given Sunday with the space opera style of Star Wars and the criminal underworld of The Godfather. Aliens and humans alike play positions based on physiology, creating receivers that jump 25 feet into the air, linemen that bench-press 1,200 pounds, and linebackers that literally want to eat you. Organized crime runs every franchise, games are fixed, and rival players are assassinated. Follow the story of Quentin Barnes, a nineteen-year-old quarterback prodigy that has been raised all his life to hate, and kill, those aliens. Quentin must deal with his racism and learn to lead, or he'll wind up just another stat in the column marked "killed on the field."

©2009 Empty Set Entertainment (P)2014 Empty Set Entertainment

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SLAP MY FACE AND CALL ME SALLY

ENGLISH IS THE LANGUAGE OF FOOTBALL
I have been a fan of science fiction books for over 35 years, but a football fan for over 45 years. This is one great book for people like me. In the future the galaxy along with Earth will be conquered by three different races. They discover American Football and they love it. Scott Sigler has come up with a great three tier league which keeps football going all year around (talk about a utopia). The are a bunch of tier three teams which are farm teams. The two teams that go to the tier 2 championship game go on to the tier one league. The two bottom tier one teams drop to tier 2.

TENTACLES ON MY TESTICLES
Football is the perfect sport for different species to play, when you consider all the different sizes and shapes it takes to play the different positions. It is also a perfect platform for demonstrating racism without long lectures. Sigler shows without telling. One species' dominate gender is female which calls for WOMAN TO WOMAN COVERAGE in the game.

BACKWATER
The main character is a 7 foot tall human quarterback. He has been playing tier 3 ball since he was 16. He is your typical arrogant jock. Once again Scott does an excellent job of showing without telling. He captures the true personality of a jock, who has had his way all his life. With the help of Aliens, he becomes a better human, but it takes a long time.

PUREST NATION
The main character was born and raised in the Purest Nation. The Purest Nation is a racist fundamentalist religious society. They preach that they are pure and everyone else is evil. They, of course are shown to be the evil racist ones and religion takes a hard hit in this. If your a fundamentalist of any religion you will not enjoy this book. I wanted to write a short glowing review in hopes of being picked as one of the five star reviews of the week, but one aspect of the book bothered me and I felt compelled to mention it. The author mentions that the book is okay for ten and up. At one point the main character who has now turned good guy, chooses to get a team mate out of a jam by smuggling drugs and forcing his team mates to do so also. I have seen what drugs do to people and this really bothered me. Early in the book the main character shows disgust at such an act, but when in money trouble turns to it with a flourish. Other reviewers have mentioned the violence and it is very violent. Deaths and maiming are a big part of galactic football. I guess I should also mention that Sigler seems to think of all the beers in the world that Miller High Life will be the beer of choice in the galactic future. Just joking Miller fans, I hear it taste good with food.


JUST GIVE ME THE BALL COACH
Sigler does a great job narrating. He does all the voices well. While not doing the actual voices he does capture the speaking styles of How Ward Co Sell and Don Meredith. The production quality is top notch and help bring the story to life. Crowd noises and sound effects for sport shows etc. I really enjoyed this book and will be getting the sequels.

16 of 16 people found this review helpful

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Outstanding Book

If you love football and enjoy futurist fiction then this book is for you. The author really knows football and explains it well. He makes it easy to read and understand even if you are not a football fan. This book is action packed taking you through a roller coaster ride. I suggest this book to anyone!!!

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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You don't follow sports? You'll still like this.

I do not follow sports. I dislike American football (despite playing it two years as a teenager). I don't understand why people read the newspaper sports page. I still recommend you listen to this book. I admit the first chapter had me wondering if I made a mistake purchasing this audiobook. Then I realized that not only did I not need to pay attention to the details vis-a-vis football minutiae but ignoring it allowed me to appreciate the broader story. And that story is classic Scott Sigler. If you're a sports fan who knows what a "argle bargle pass long" play means you're likely to rate this even higher than I did.

The production values are the best of any audiobook I've listened to (more than 700 as I type this) till now. It's usually a mistake for an author to read their prose. Scott Sigler is the exception to the rule. Not to mention the background sounds help you feel you're actually at the events being described. Now that I've listened to the book I would have been happy to pay full list price.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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Supurb reading - Highly recommended

Where does The Rookie rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

The Rookie is one of the best audiobooks I have listened to period.

What did you like best about this story?

There are too many highlights to list. Basically I am a Sigler junkie and love this series. As someone who isn't from the US it also has me hooked on the NFL now too.

Any additional comments?

This sci-fi novel is "Even Given Sunday" meets "The Godfather" meets "Aliens". It's a fabulous romp which I first listened to as a podcast. Since then I have bought the hardcover and the audiobook.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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So surprised that I LOVED this

Someone I know who is an internet fan of Scott Sigler suggested I read this so I checked it out and have now listened to all 5 books currently available in the series. This is not the best writing in the world and I am not a football fan, but this is so entertaining, that I was really sorry to get to the end. (More, please ASAP Audible!)

I grew up in West Texas (Friday Night Lights) and was in high school marching band. I then went off to Texas A&M (home of the Fighting Texas Aggies - Gig Em'!) so of course I was a complete football fanatic in my younger years. However, as age and a little wisdom crept into my life I was more and more disturbed by the level of violence in football on and off the field (Michael Vick) and the serious injuries that resulted and have lost my taste for the game. However, I have to admit, that if I had a chance to see a Galactic Football game (can you imagine seeing a player leap 20 feet in the air to catch a pass?), I would be there with bells on!

The basic premise is simple if a bit silly - far in the future an alien race has conquered most of colonized space which includes 5 different sentient beings (including humans). They want to find a way to unite these varied groups of sentients, many of whom hate each other, and they do it through a Galactic Football League. The story is about the League, these many types of "people", a coming threat to all the sentients, and most especially it is a great coming of age story of one boy, Quentin Barnes.

If you only like "hard" science fiction, if your religious/political views tend to be fundamentalist, or you can't handle any violence in your books, you won't like this series. If you like soft sci-fi with some great aliens, lots of action, and some great characters, you're probably going to really enjoy The Rookie. Kind of goes without saying that if you love football, you will probably get a kick out of this book, but you really don't have to be a fan to enjoy the story. (It does help a little if you know the basics of football, but that probably isn't really necessary to enjoy the story.)

I had only two problems with the series:
1. Quentin Barnes is presented with many opportunities to expand his mind and make choices. He doesn't always make the right choices, but he eventually grows in ways that make him easy to like and understand. However, I draw the line at having to accept that other people's cultures are always OK. One group of aliens in the book eats live animals - not because their biology requires that just because that's what they like. I'm NEVER going to say that it is OK to inflict pain and agony on another living being just because that's what you like to do. I think the book takes accepting other cultures maybe a step too far - some cultures include child slavery, no education for girls, caste systems and that's just not OK in my book. Our own culture encourages eating and drinking to excess along with a lot of other ugly things and that's not OK either. I just don't think open-mindedness means you have to turn a blind eye to cruelty or stupidity or discrimination.

2. The books start out saying that they are "suitable for readers 10 and up" and I TOTALLY disagree. While the value systems portrayed are mostly quite positive and most parents would be happy with "moral messages" woven into the narrative, there is a LOT of violence both on and off the field in these books. Players are maimed (a guy has his leg bit off!) and killed during the games and there are murders, torture, and executions that take place off the field. I would never recommend the books for someone as young as 10 - I think older teens would be OK.

With those two issues said, the series is extremely entertaining, really funny (some great satire on sports journalism), and the audio presentation is wonderful - totally pulls you into the story. I was surprised how much I enjoyed The Rookie and all of its sequels.


15 of 19 people found this review helpful

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A most entertaining audiobook

The Rookie was certainly very entertaining . I especially liked the "radio drama" style production. A fun story, but with serious undertones.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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So good!

I struggle to finish audiobooks sometimes because of the narrator but Scott Sigler is amazing. This book was great and his energy that he put into reading this made it even better i would highly recommend this to anyone looking for something to read or listen to.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Really Good

The story itself is entertaining, it follows a self centered football rookie who through the course of the season pulls his out of the sand to become a leader for his team. What makes this book even better is the level of production that was put into the audiobook. The performance of the Narrator is fantastic, the different voices are great, the additional music wonderful and the sound effects make you feel like your in the story itself. I've listened to a lot of audio books and this was one of the better performed stories.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Never thought I'd enjoy football this much

Well written and intriguing story of character growth and maturity using a combo of the sport and sci-fi platforms.

Perfectly delivered by the author himself! A most enjoyable experience.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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LOVE IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Love the whole series of books, my favorite books! I will be encouraging my kids and their kids to listen to these books.🤗

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Profile Image for Malcolm Jamieson
  • Malcolm Jamieson
  • 12-30-17

Great book

Loved this book and I have never watched American football before but it did not mater. Worth listening to

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Profile Image for Christopher
  • Christopher
  • 09-02-17

superb.

story of a secular man thrown into his worst nightmare to get what he wants. amazing.

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Profile Image for Krzysztof Kolata
  • Krzysztof Kolata
  • 12-01-15

not for me

I can watch american football (that's right they don't play football ;) but listening is very hard. at the beginning was very hard to get to this book especially that in background there was fans cheering during the game (that is so annoying and the sound between scenes why why why )
with Unabridged Audiobook why they do all the sounds that are mostly annoying
we hear buzzer and then narrator read that we hear buzzer background noise is very irritating

funny thing the best thing from book was american football and i don't like american football

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Profile Image for Jeff Northam
  • Jeff Northam
  • 03-20-15

Great.. really annoying Scott..

Perfect now I have like 5 more books to buy..and I dont even like football. yet wow found I could not stop listening..