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Publisher's Summary

"We're about to cross the point of no return. God help us; we're flying in the dark, and we don't know where the hell we're going."
Facing down an unprecedented malevolent enemy, the government responds with a nuclear attack. America as it was is gone forever, and now every citizen - from the president of the United States to the homeless on the streets of New York City - will fight for survival.
Swan Song is Robert McCammon's prescient and shocking vision of a post-apocalyptic nation, a grand epic of terror and, ultimately, renewal.
In a wasteland born of rage and fear, populated by monstrous creatures and marauding armies, earth's last survivors have been drawn into the final battle between good and evil, that will decide the fate of humanity. They include Sister, who discovers a strange and transformative glass artifact in the destroyed Manhattan streets... Joshua Hutchins, the pro wrestler who takes refuge from the nuclear fallout at a Nebraska gas station... and Swan, a young girl possessing special powers, who travels alongside Josh to a Missouri town where healing and recovery can begin with Swan's gifts. But the ancient force behind earth's devastation is scouring the walking wounded for recruits for its relentless army, beginning with Swan herself.
Please note: Two chapters were originally missing from Part 2 of this book. We were alerted to the problem on 11/21/11 and have corrected it. We're very sorry for any inconvenience. If you had already downloaded the book, don’t worry - your library has automatically updated with the corrected version. Simply re-download from your library, at no additional cost, to get the complete book.
©2009 Robert McCammon (P)2011 Audible, Inc.
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Amanda H. on 06-21-12

Simply an Amazing Story

Where does Swan Song rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

I was hesitant on buying this book because of the mixed reviews and the length of the book. After the first part of of the book I was sucked into Swan and Sister's apocalyptic nightmare. The book is simply amazing, frightening, funny, sad, brutal, and inspirational. I am for once at a loss of words to describe this book of fear I might not do it justice. If you like The Stand by Stephen King you will IN FACT LOVE Swan Song.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Sister and Swan

What does Tom Stechschulte bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Listening to the tone of voice in certain conversations allowed me to experience the characters emotional distress, love, and sadness.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

Both.....I laughed and cried...and sometimes yelled!

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108 of 109 people found this review helpful

4 out of 5 stars
By Tim on 12-20-11

I would do it again

Good story, a touch of magic but not too much. It's rated R so kids should stay clear probably. It kept me listening without much of a break. That's a good book to me. Top 100

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48 of 49 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Rob on 11-19-12

Long but worth the effort

This is my second Audible book, and the first time I have been driven to write a review (of any kind). I have to say that this would not be my choice of book to read. Too big and not my normal genre. I have far too many books and not enough time to read them all ( oh woe is me!). I joined Audible to broaden my tastes with something different whilst walking the dogs, and I found that this lengthy (30 hours) story became an evening obsession for a month or so.

Yes, it is a dark tale of a post nuclear apocalyptic America and is sometimes difficult to hear of the destruction and long term suffering...but that really is the point. How can you explore the possibility of redemption and survival without the descent into evil and chaos in the first place?. And it is like The Stand in that it is an exploration of good verses evil, with groups of characters on each side.

But... the similarity ends there.

The author has created a compelling story where each of the 90 or so chapters follows the POV of groups of people on either side of the moral divide. The main characters soon become familiar, and their individual stories inexorably and sometimes painfully progress to a satisfying and exciting series of confrontations at the climax of the book. I liked the ending.

The big thing for me though was the experience of having this book, that I never would have read normally, delivered as a professional spoken performance through my earphones in the Ashdown Forest every day for a month. Really quite surreal!

I was not convinced at the start, but was soon drawn into the timbre of Tom Stechshulte's voice. His vocal interpretation of each of the characters became to be "just right". This is not simply someone reading aloud. (erm Librivox anyone?) This is a proper job! I could not wait for my next daily instalment!

Great stuff....

Now...what to listen to next?

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23 of 23 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Simon on 09-07-15

More of an Opera than a Song!

When I got this book in a special offer I didn't expect too much from it despite the positive reviews. However, when I got round to listening to it my expectations were far exceeded. Sadly for me several of the existing reviews make many of the points that I would like to make. It is indeed very much like Stephen King's The Stand in many ways. The post-apocalypse setting, the fight between good and evil. It's also similar in the large cast of characters and the depth which the author gives to them. They stand out because they are drawn from all levels of achievement within our existing society. They carry the burdens of how current society treated them into this post-apocalyptic world and some discover the merits and strengths that were buried under its negative judgement.

It's a harsh book set in a harsh world but it carries messages of hope both on a personal and global level. You'll have to listen to it though to find out whether those slender seedlings of hope triumph over the brutal evil of a lawless world.

The narration is very impressive, particularly for a book of this length. As a result of the fine writing and the fitting rendition from Tom Stechschulte the length of the book is a positive without doubt.

Try this one, it has real quality.

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17 of 17 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Ricky on 08-27-15

A brilliant listen!

A slightly slow start but persistence definitely pays off. Swan Song is an excellent story and the narration was absolutely first class. For a single male narrator to pull off such a variety of differing voice tones for male and female characters was a top effort - I truly felt like I was feeling each characters different personalities the way Tom bought them to life.

This was definitely a story for mature listeners as it touches some adult topics, but I enjoyed the inclusion and the handling of those topics. Its refreshing to see a novel include real-world, gritty plot points instead of treating your book like a cartoon for kids.

I still find myself wondering 1 or 2 things from the supernatural portion of the plot - what exactly was the ring/crown? What was Sister's mirror? How did they come to be? But, for me, these questions have not detracted from the enjoyment of the story as a whole.

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

3 out of 5 stars
By darkestred on 08-22-17

Nowhere near as good as The Stand by SK....

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

Yes - it is a good listen however the Stand by SK is sooo much better if you're looking for apocalyptic supernatural thrillers. Some of the plot points are not explained at all and you're itching for the author to take it that bit further to conclusion. The supernatural components of the story are not explained or really explored at all - they just occur in the background. The whole book seems to lead up to *spoilers* Sister getting the crown to Swan and then when she has it... she doesn't use it! What is the point! Does the crown have healing powers? How could she use it as a weapon to defend herself? The end seems very much of a fizzle (unlike The Stand which is just epic). Also the cold war plot point is a little dated now in 2017. I love the *idea* of this novel but the execution left me wanting a bit more. Still, a good listen overall.

If you’ve listened to books by Robert McCammon before, how does this one compare?


What does Tom Stechschulte bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

He is a very talented reader - you forget one person is doing all of the different voices of the characters!

If this book were a film would you go see it?


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