The Real Story: The Gap into Conflict

The Gap Cycle, Book 1
Narrated by: Scott Brick
Series: Gap Cycle, Book 1
Length: 5 hrs and 58 mins
3.9 out of 5 stars (566 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Author of The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant, one of the most acclaimed fantasy series of all time, master storyteller Stephen R. Donaldson returns with this exciting and long-awaited new series that takes us into a stunningly imagined future to tell a timeless story of adventure and the implacable conflict of good and evil within each of us.

Angus Thermopyle was an ore pirate and a murderer; even the most disreputable asteroid pilots of Delta Sector stayed locked out of his way. Those who didn't ended up in the lockup - or dead. But when Thermopyle arrived at Mallory's Bar & Sleep with a gorgeous woman by his side, the regulars had to take notice. Her name was Morn Hyland, and she had been a police officer - until she met up with Thermopyle.

But one person in Mallorys Bar wasn't intimidated. Nick Succorso had his own reputation as a bold pirate and he had a sleek frigate fitted for deep space. Everyone knew that Thermopyle and Succorso were on a collision course. What nobody expected was how quickly it would be over - or how devastating victory would be. It was common enough example of rivalry and revenge - or so everyone thought. The REAL story was something entirely different.

In The Real Story, Stephen R. Donaldson takes us to a remarkably detailed world of faster-than-light travel, politics, betrayal, and a shadowy presence just outside our view to tell the fiercest, most profound story he has ever written.

©1991 Stephen R. Donaldson (P)2012 Audible, Inc.

What listeners say about The Real Story: The Gap into Conflict

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Unique concept for sci-fi; but a bit dramatic.

This is an interesting story: it goes beyond the common plots and ideas of sci-fi: alien race invades earth, or youth struggles to survive in a post apocalyptic dystopia, etc. He introduces three main characters and weaves them together in a deranged mixture of treachery, avarice and corruption that slowly changes over the course of the series: he teaches that appearances can be very, very deceiving.

Donaldson grabs you and then hurls you deeply into the twisted and damaged souls of his characters.

I love it...but it got to be just too much: too much angst, too much navel gazing, too much self recrimination; it almost became like a soap opera: a really deep soap opera, yes...but still....

Scott Brick did a great job at narrating; he captured the emotions so well, that I actually got tired just listening to two of the books...not bored by any means: just tired. I still would recommend the book for a sci fi lover: but if you have read the Chronicles of Thomas Covenant, then you might know what I'm talking about.

23 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

The Real Story

I'll preface my review by saying I haven't read the rest of the series yet, but I'll be purchasing book two right after I submit this review.

This is a very raw and gritty story. It's not a pretty one either. If you've read Stephen R. Donaldson before, see Chronicles of Thomas Covenant, you'll know he doesn't shy away from uncomfortable topics. Rape, physical and mental torment, and questioning the grey area sanity are all things he exposes the reader to and this "short" novel contains them all.

You won't feel comfortable listening to portions of this book but I do think you will come to the same conclusion I have. If this book's quality is indicative of the series to come I think you're going to be in for a great ride.

Scott Brick's narration as always was great, no complaints there.

21 people found this helpful

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Rape and Domination

My thoughts are this borders on worst book ever. So much potential for story. Repeatedly raping a woman, sexually & mentally tormenting is not a story line I meant to purchase or even approve of. I finished the book so I could give it a fair rating. I would not recommend this book to anyone. It was disturbing and well beneath Stephen R. Donaldsons abilities.

2 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Super Start!

Would you listen to The Real Story: The Gap into Conflict again? Why?

I can't believe I missed this five part series. But, to be honest, its likely because I didn't want to pay the price for a six hour Book-1. Maybe I've learned a lesson about quality versus quantity (or maybe the price for the 1st book should have been discounted more).

What other book might you compare The Real Story: The Gap into Conflict to and why?

I would compare this story to the Dune series. Maybe this because Scott Brick also narrated the Dune series; but, the writing style is also similar.

Any additional comments?

I already know I'll listen to the whole series.

8 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

A Bit Too Depraved For My Tastes

Stephen Donaldson is very good at telling a story about a truly wretched man, a half-crazed female captive and a would-be hero and Scott Brick's narration provides an excellent voice in which to explore the demons and passions that each character are both tortured by and benefited from.

Regrettably, the cruelty and perversity explored in the novel was not something I found any inspiration in.

Note: I did find the author's honest discussion on the haphazardness of tuning in his muse. In addition, his telling of Richard Wagner's music dramas was likably appealing.

I'll not continue on with the series,

8 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Dark, but worth it as the setup for what follows

If you've read Donaldson, you know he can be dark.

Well, this is *dark.* The plot is interesting, and if some of the techie ideas are dated, conceptually, they make sense and have analogs to what might be out there today (script vs. 'batch' files, whatever). It's strong work.

But cripes, I understand why some call this misogynistic. I don't think it is, but that's because it's Donaldson and I've read the whole series. There's some brilliant writing in this book, but overall, reading it is sort of the price of admission to the series as a whole.

It's worth it. Remind yourself of that when you squirm and contemplate bagging it. It's worth it.

1 person found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Dark

I haven't begun the next books in the series, but this book is interesting, but has absolutely no lightness to it. It is humorless, and the characters are all dark. Interesting, but I needed to read some comedy relief before attacking the next one.

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

A disturbing series read by a brilliant actor

This review is really about the entire series, which should be read to its conclusion to capture the author's purpose behind its creation.
The story is dark. Anyone familiar with Donaldson's work knows how intimately he weaves the threads of despair on a loom of lost hope. I would not be surprised if many people could not finish this series because it is so visceral; the story seems to reach fetid tentacles into the reader from the pages themselves. I could see this story negatively affecting people that have oppression or depression in their lives. While I have neither, it left me hollow and forlorn for several days after finishing it.
It is hard to say that I 'liked' this story. That it is well written is beyond question. Donaldson has that knack of rhyme and meter that few today can equal, but it pummels the reader like a physical assault.
The intimacy of violation is significant, not only to the characters in the story, but also to the reader. Be warned.
The tale itself is well written in regards to environmental and technical development and their impact on the milieu the characters find themselves in.
Few people could have done this story the justice the narration by Scott Brick has given it.

1 person found this helpful

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very dark,very entertaining.

this is just what I was seeking,something with a ton of real artistic story set in space,the darkness was an unexpected bonus. I'm in on the rest of the series & the authors other works

1 person found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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All Tell, No Show

This felt like an essay. The viewpoint of the story is the authors, not the characters. The narrator was over dramatic and annoying.

9 people found this helpful