This is a story dealing with space and the celestial bodies in it. When celestial bodies communicate, humans scream - except for a lucky few who live without regrets and journey beyond ordinary understanding.
Jaunty little piece about our first encounter with alien intelligence. Imaginative and well put together if a little formulaic at times. It felt almost like classic Heinlein. Jack Voorhies puts in a wonderful performance. As any audio book listener can attest, the narration is as important as the content. His reading made the whole experience a delight.
The Warm Hello by Dylan Brody is an enlightening and rather unique story that is played out over a relatively short period of time. The cover page is simple yet quite beautiful as opposed to the written book cover which is rather cheesy. Basically, a celestial entity of enormous proportions is seen in space and seconds later it says “HELLO!”; the repercussions of that kind word are extraordinary. The narration and production are off the charts excellent and I don’t say that lightly. With the voices, complicated scenes and rather complex lingo Jack Voorhies did a fantastic job keeping all aspects of this story and production in order.
I must admit I had to listen to the full story twice and fortunately it’s only 4 hours, 50 minutes in duration so easily redone in a day. Quite happy I decided to listen the second time as I had missed something small in the prologue but it created a lot of confusion in the chapters ahead and might have tarnished my review. There are many intricate scenes in the story and multiple perspectives, meaning you will hear a scene played out several times from the different characters….including the cat and various planets, so keep your ears tuned in or you will miss the character and in turn what the scene is doing.
After the “HELLO” life changes, not only for Earth and her people, but also for the entire galaxy. Senses, not just the five we know about but many more are coming to be in not only humans but also wildlife, plant life, rocks and planets.The “HELLO” from the entity was so devastating it was considered a threat rather than a friendly greeting and naturally the idea is to destroy the thing, but that’s supposed to be a secret……
It’s a story about war, peace, how regret harms us, and what true well-being could look like. In a world caught up in greed, pleasure and deceit the outcome is rather pleasant. On a gently funny note, there are a few moments when I’m sure the entity is a 1960’s hippie whose only motivation is to find other entities to play with. Even with the often times confusing scientific lingo the story is one I think many will enjoy. I hope to read more from Dylan Brody in the future.
Audiobook provided for review by the narrator.
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Would you consider the audio edition of The Warm Hello to be better than the print version?
Absolutely. While I would still really enjoy curling up with a hard copy of this book, Voorhies' performance is the perfect compliment to writing as sharp and excellent as this. It enhances the experience to have a story read to you with so much passion and care.
What other book might you compare The Warm Hello to and why?
This reminds me of Douglas Adams' Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. It deals with the genre of science fiction in an insightful and humorous way, making it instantly engaging and easier to understand and therefore really enjoy the subject matter. Which is great, because while being light-hearted, this book also deals with some very serious and timely issues in society, and as such speaks about them both intelligently and enjoyably.
Have you listened to any of Jack Voorhies’s other performances before? How does this one compare?
Yes. Jack is an excellent audio book reader, (one of my favorites of the many I've heard) but the quality of the material here really allows him to shine, and really shows off his talents as an actor. Voorhies gives it his usual stellar performance, but the subject matter lends itself to his style of narration rather excellently.
Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?
When the Marine was able to work through his father issues and then make a meaningful sacrifice for humanity, after initially misjudging the aliens. I was so glad for him when he was finally able to let all his anger and mistrust go. I also loved how, once the blobs had met the humans and engaged with them, they took the time out to play and just enjoy each others' company.
Any additional comments?
This is a truly lovely book, and the narration is superb. As a Christian, I may not have agreed with all the author's assertions about religion, but I still found the ideas presented here very interesting, and strongly agreed with the author on the importance of the subject matter. Brody examines some questions and problems that humanity has been ignoring for far too long, (aging, death, resource management, care of the Earth, etc.) and I really resonated with the conclusions drawn about what the most pressing issues are that our time and society is facing right now. This is a wonderfully interesting and enjoyable book, and well worth my time, attention, and thought. Voorhies' performance is the icing on the cake and ensures this is a book you will not want to stop listening to until the story is finished! It is funny and thought-provoking, and the end result is truly entertaining. I hope to see future collaborations with this author-narrator pair, as they make the perfect match for telling such an intriguing story and keeping you fully engaged in the subject matter.