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Publisher's Summary

At the gates between worlds...

In a war outside of time...

He fights for us.

Reclusive college student Jonathan Tibbs wakes in a pool of blood, not a scratch on him. His life is about to undergo a massive shift. A violent and merciless otherworldly enemy unleashes slaughter in the streets, calling out in a language only he understands.

And it is seeking its challenger.

In order to defeat the threat, Jonathan must become a temporal weapon...while remaining completely anonymous. Unfortunately, harnessing off-world powers has its own special challenges...

The Never Hero is the first installment in The Chronicles of Jonathan Tibbs - a mind-bending, genre-crossing action-adventure trilogy.

©2014 T. Ellery Hodges (P)2015 Foggy Night Publishing

What listeners say about The Never Hero

Average Customer Ratings
Overall
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Story
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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Crap

I am beginning to believe in the existence of paid fake reviews. How can anyone who is not a) a teenager or b) into "young adult" literature score this highly. Halfway through I finally gave up. Lousy storyline (monsters attack earth, young unsuspected earthling forced to become protector of the realm), unengaging characters, no sense of pacing, inane dialogs, irrational behavior ("look I have this glowing thing in my chest, but why would I go to the hospital, they can't help anyway"), a narrator who sounds (rightly) bored reading it, etc etc. What pushed me over the edge was the seemingly endless chapter on watching Rocky movies so the unwilling hero finally accepts his destiny. Barf.

316 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Urban Fantasy my (Bleep)!!

Any additional comments?

Make no mistake, this is a Super Hero story. Most super hero stories are urban so, yes you could make a case for urban fantasy, but it's not. That being said, you'll see what I mean cause I recommend the read.
I don't usually read super hero stories. Too shallow; too predictable; too hard to believe; something like that. This series has good character development, the author actually has a talent for writing. The world development is thorough enough that I don't have to work as hard to suspend my disbelief as much as I normally do with super hero stories. Go read it already, just don't expect urban fantasy.

38 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Good Story

It started kind of slow but really built up in plot. The narration was done very well. I am about to start on the sequel The Never Paradox.

13 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Wait for it... wait for it.... Bam!

I enjoyed this book like few others I've listened to simply because it pulls you along with satisfying well timed pockets of discovery and action! it has elements of the modest hero, the warriors will to fight with everything he's got, and the sense of discovery in using power never before known.

It has qwerky movie references from the 80's that I enjoyed immensely and made it feel relatable. There is depth to the development of the primary and secondary characters given by insightful but subtle description.

the narrator, I have to say, did a fantastic job of expression. he seems to capture inflection and meaning in the right way at the right time. some narrators are monotone or seem to put odd qwerks on their sentences that seem unnatural. not the case here. I found myself able to absorb the narration with the story so completely that I could focus on visualizing the story... while mowing the grass, walking the dog, washing the dishes, vacuuming the house, etc. seriously well done performance.

I would put this book on my shelf with: the codex alera series by Jim butcher, ready player one by Ernest Cline, and the bobiverse series by Dennis e taylor with a twist of marvel comic book heroes thrown in.

I would buy it for you if I could but I can't. invest. you won't regret reading or listening to this book.

93 people found this helpful

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Worthy read

A good take on the “power ranger” theme, unlikely hero with the weight of the world on their shoulders. Not quite a super hero, just a guy doing the best he can. The author does a good job, in my opinion, of capturing the struggles and emotions one would expect the protagonist to be facing, or at least that I can relate to as a disabled veteran myself and an awkward geeky guy. It’s a good story with a great deal of psychological truth to it for someone interested in peering into the mind of someone dealing with PTSD. I am very interested to see how this story unfolds.

11 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Different than my usual fare

I consider myself an urban fantasy buff, but I like sci-fi so I figured I would give this a shot since the reviews were so good. I enjoyed the book, but it was a little slow to get started for my taste. The characters were real and the plot was very interesting. Interesting enough I feel like I could use some of it in a new DnD campaign I have been kicking around in my head.

That being said I wasnt impressed with the narrator but if you like Sci-fi and superheroes you will probably like this.

9 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Good read. The average guy hero

I enjoyed this book because there are a lot of practical issues that are covered. A reluctant hero spends a great deal of time building himself both mentally and physically into what he needs to be, and he faces many uncertainties and dilemmas along the way! I adored his supportive friends, whose loyalty is inspiring. There were plenty of plot twists along the way to keep me guessing. I do feel like many are waiting the next book anxiously! Lots of loose ends to wrap up. However, I did feel like, in general, there was some closure.

Things to know for children potentially reading or listening to this:
There is language, though never the f-bomb, thankfully. There is a bloody scene that was handled tastefully (I tend to be extremely sensitive to blood). There was violence, but it always felt like it was out of necessity or defense of others. Much thought has been given to whether it's okay to kill or hurt others, and it's not the hero's first preference. Sex: unfortunately, there are several sexual references: he wakes up next to her, bare skin, a few more details like that. However, as these things go, it was handled tastefully. Spoiler--we also get a glimpse into the mind of someone who might have the potential to be a rapist. This could be disturbing to children and open up doors we might not want them to be aware of yet.

Overall, a good read!

44 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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What the Positive Reviews Don't Tell You

Yes, it's a great book as the top reviews state, but only if you make it to the second half. It starts out feeling like a young adult superhero type of novel with characters that have boring archetypal motives. I was thinking about returning it at a couple of points. I kept listening because I was using it to kill time walking our dogs and didn't want to search for another book. But, by the end, the author has made things complex, interesting, three-dimensional enough that I'm going to get the second book.

171 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Tip: clear your schedule first.

What did you love best about The Never Hero?

A really good listen, an easy-to-follow narrator, realistic inter-character interactions. An intelligent book which doesn't "dumbify" the listener/reader.

What about Steven Barnett’s performance did you like?

First time for me listening to Barnett. He is easily one of the best I've listened to. He does female voices well, in contrast to other narrators who just make them sound "whiny". Perhaps a bit more contrast to the different male characters' voices to make it perfect. Sometimes some male character's would have the same voice as a female character, thus making a little bit confusing at times. This was mostly in the beginning, later it was easier to differentiate. Great narrator!

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yes, absolutely yes. Will definitely aim to disrupt normal life as you might have to show immense will-power to turn it off.

19 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Amazing Book

The Never Hero, by T. Ellery Hodges, is the first installment in the story of Jonathan Tibbs, a normal, reclusive college student who is assaulted by a blond man in his house while his roommates are out. He wakes later in a puddle of his own blood without a scratch or any other damage to his body. His life undergoes a huge shift when an alien beast begins wreaking havoc in the streets, killing left and right looking for its challenger. Jonathan must become a weapon, fighting the monster while remaining completely anonymous. This book is a mix of sci-fi and action/adventure that I personally couldn't put down. Many great scenes occurred throughout the story, but my favorites were definitely the epic fight scenes. I loved every moment I spent listening to this audiobook, and when it ended, I was all the more eager to read the second book.

I thought the book was very suitable for audio narration, and that the narrator, Steven Barnett, did so much with the opportunity presented to him. There were some parts of the book that called for voice modulators, which he used flawlessly. All of the characters were extremely well-voiced, and I could always tell who was speaking. I especially enjoyed the voice of the tall, blond man, as Barnett gave him an interesting accent and unmistakable voice tones. Barnett enunciated his words very well throughout the duration of the book, but sometimes I thought he enunciated almost too well, distracting from some of the dialogue. All in all, though, he was an excellent voice actor and I look forward to listening to more of his work.

As far as production and sound quality go, I thought Barnett maintained a pretty consistent pace throughout the story. He lowered his voice during moments of intensity, which added a lot to the novel. I didn't notice any technical flaws or edits during my listening experience.

I would definitely recommend this book to anyone looking for a thrilling read voiced by a very interesting narrator. The plot was exciting and always kept me guessing through its entirety, and Barnett did an excellent job with both reading the story itself and voicing the characters. I already have the next book purchased and I can't wait to listen!

27 people found this helpful

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  • Amy
  • 07-06-19

Amazing!

Fantastic story from Todd and amazing narration from Steven! Be sure to check out the second book "The Never Paradox" and the third one "The Never Army" when it comes onto audible in about a month!!!

3 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • M. B. Jeffs
  • 01-29-16

Tropes are good!

Would you listen to The Never Hero again? Why?

The Never Hero was a good balance of fun and realism, also the interesting world building will need reviewing before book 2.

2 people found this helpful

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  • YourPetEevee
  • 02-04-20

Worth your time

I managed to listen to the whole book in the span of two days. So I'd think it's safe to say i really enjoyed it. The story was captivating and kept my interest the whole way through.

1 person found this helpful

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  • oli
  • 10-28-19

Entertaining listen

Interesting plot and nice characters. With good humor and seriousness in a nice balance. I recommend this book.

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • James
  • 10-13-18

If you love fiction, you should love this book.

A breezy meditation on why we tell the stories that we do, that knows exactly when to play into the tropes it's mulling over and when to subvert them. It's also enjoyable on the occasion that it remembers to take a break from dissecting hero media and gives some actual plot. Not the most eye opening deconstruction, but it does choose to focus on unique aspects in it's telling, in that it's mainly about the changes that have to happen between the first and second act of a male hero.
And the narration, was absolutely spot on, to what the story needed it to be; the potency behind the word 'challenger' will be burned into head forever.

1 person found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Natasha
  • 04-10-18

Edge of Tomorrow Meets Independence Day

I enjoyed this a lot. I won't be able to properly judge it until I've read the whole series but I grew to really like these characters. Of course there's bits and pieces I didn't like, e.g. took me a while to grow to the characters and I hate it when the reader finds out stuff the MC doesn't know but overall I thought the themes were good and I'll definitely recommend it if you want a sci fi that's actually ethical.

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Justine
  • 12-04-20

This is a wonderful story

I loved this book so much that after reading it as an e-book, I decided to get it as an audio book too. Steven's wonderful reading gives this book a totally new aspect. This book (and I am not going to put any spoilers in) is the first in a trilogy - the books are wonderful and really hard to put down.
Although it was written as a YA (young adult) book, there are absolutely no age limits for those who love this genre. I couldn't put it down when I first read it. A couple of recommendations - don't start any of this series if you have other stuff to do - you will never get to the other stuff! And start the series with this book - it is essential to read this one first. Enjoy!

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  • Louise Milton
  • 04-11-16

First book to ever give up on

I frequently listen to audio books and this is the first book I have ever had to give up on.

The story is badly written and immature. I could have ignored most of this but when the attractive girl next door
was sat on her balcony thinking about Romeo and Juliet I gave up.

The story is very American teen which isn't normally a negative but with the book trying to be deep comparing Jesus and superman, it left me feeling like I was listening to a story written by someone at high school.

The story may have got better and I'm annoyed I gave up but I just couldn't continue listening.

1 person found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Tallisman
  • 08-05-15

deep

I felt for the lead character and the story is well carried and Steven did a great job narrating the story. Keep it up!

2 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • glyn
  • 01-03-16

brilliant

this audiobook brilliant it has a really good backstory and full of action packed drama and it has really good plots also the main character has a lot of deaths not like books out there. he thought a lot about the character character this author have thought about the main character things that make him tick and it's a really odd book as it tells of two worlds one trying to save themselves and the other in desperate need

2 people found this helpful

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  • Barry Vella
  • 02-24-21

excellent story and storytelling. really enjoyed

loved it. read it and now listened to it. would recommend it to anyone who likes hero books.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • thomas postlethwaite
  • 04-02-20

great concept

loved the concept, well written, a little dark, very different to a standard scifi fantasy read

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Cassandra
  • 06-20-18

its a page turner

I don't normally like Chronicle style books but for this one I'll make an exception it's very exciting

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 03-13-18

great story realistic characters

I read this going to and from uni and enjoyed every second. Johnathan feels relative and I don't want to spoil anything but I got surprised by the reveaks

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Jennie
  • 05-09-17

Wow...

I loved this! I was pleasantly surprised at how drawn into this story I became. The characters are well written, the story well paced and the narration impeccable. Can't wait to hear more.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Tabitha Oliver
  • 09-01-16

Great Read

Totally enjoyed this book and am looking forward to more! Definitely recommend this to everyone!

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • fenella
  • 07-26-16

fantastic

I realy love this book. i enjoy the story line and the way T. Ellery Hodges has exploded story telling with the charicters

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Ross
  • 12-17-15

Very interesting book

A very original story. The book is so good I wish I hadn't found it until there were more already written, I don't want to wait.