• by Jeff VanderMeer
  • Narrated by Bahni Turpin
  • 12 hrs and 10 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

In Borne, a young woman named Rachel survives as a scavenger in a ruined city half destroyed by drought and conflict. The city is dangerous, littered with discarded experiments from the Company - a biotech firm now derelict - and punished by the unpredictable predations of a giant bear. Rachel ekes out an existence in the shelter of a run-down sanctuary she shares with her partner, Wick, who deals his own homegrown psychoactive biotech.
One day, Rachel finds Borne during a scavenging mission and takes him home. Borne as salvage is little more than a green lump - plant or animal? - but exudes a strange charisma. Borne reminds Rachel of the marine life from the island nation of her birth, now lost to rising seas. There is an attachment she resents: in this world any weakness can kill you. Yet, against her instincts - and definitely against Wick's wishes - Rachel keeps Borne. She cannot help herself. Borne, learning to speak, learning about the world, is fun to be with, and in a world so broken that innocence is a precious thing. For Borne makes Rachel see beauty in the desolation around her. She begins to feel a protectiveness she can ill afford.
"He was born, but I had borne him."
But as Borne grows, he begins to threaten the balance of power in the city and to put the security of her sanctuary with Wick at risk. For the Company, it seems, may not be truly dead, and new enemies are creeping in. What Borne will lay bare to Rachel as he changes is how precarious her existence has been, and how dependent on subterfuge and secrets. In the aftermath, nothing may ever be the same.


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful


This book was a joy to listen to. As a SciFi & fantasy fan who particularly likes books about human connection, this book hit all of my marks. A fantastic book with post apocalyptic relationships & science fiction. Easily listened to & enjoyed.
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- Matthew T.

Decent book, awful narration

Definitely play the sample before spending credits in this. The narrator sounds like the machine-voice of a GPS guidance system, which is a surprising choice for a novel about a scrappy female scavenger in a post-apocalyptic wasteland.

As for the rest of the novel it is interesting, but Vandermeer keeps the pace a bit too brisk at times. I would have welcomed more time spent on Rachel exploring the city, with or without Borne, but instead we get told a lot more about the city than we are shown, which is limiting. Suspicions that this was written ultimately for the screen are confirmed in the Acknowledgements when the author thanks Hollywood producer Scott Rudin for his input and creativity. Why sell people just a movie when you can sell them a pseudo-novel and a movie ticket down the line?
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- J Gupta

Book Details

  • Release Date: 04-25-2017
  • Publisher: Blackstone Audio, Inc.