Exodus : Dead Planet

  • by Drew Avera
  • Narrated by Al Kessel
  • Series: Dead Planet
  • 5 hrs and 9 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Exodus is a dystopian science-fiction audiobook that takes place on Mars in the distant future. The world is full of corruption, and the government is run by an organization of businessmen called the Syndicate. Their aim is global domination through total control of the economy, health, and welfare of the people. They do not take human life as anything more than a potential profit, and once a person is deemed a burden to their pockets the Syndicate has them killed. The policemen are the perfect tools for their bidding. The policemen work for the Agency and are essentially political assassins. This is the story of one man against the world.
Can anyone stand against the Syndicate? Follow the story of Serus Blackwell and find out.

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Customer Reviews

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This is a simplistic story

It is far in the future and mankind has left the dying Earth to live on a terraformed Mars. Cruel syndicates (mobs) run commerce and government with an iron fist, murdering anyone who threatens their control. The main character is a hit-man who learns from his scientist sister that Mars is dying due to lack of maintenance of its nuclear power plants.

And that’s about it. This is a simplistic story of a one-dimensional character who kills his way through society to save his blubbering sister. She is being threatened by the mob who is letting Mars die so they can return to an empty Earth to build a bigger empire. If you are wondering why ruthless, megalomaniacal mobsters would destroy an entire developed, industrialized world to rebuild on one they previously abandoned, keep wondering; because you will not find the answer in this book. If you are wondering how a former hit-man can be threatened, tortured and captured multiple times, but always escape because his enemies neglect to take away his weapon, keep wondering.

Exodus reads like an outline of a story, without detail or texture. The buildings are “tall,” and night is “dark,” people get information from “media devices.” Of course this technique can give a sense of strangeness to a story, unworldliness, unfortunately in this case, the listener is simply given no soil for his imagination to grow. Mars and its inhabitants sound like a wire drawing done on a CAD program.

Al Kessel narrates Exodus and does a generally competent job. He seems to be trying hard to put excitement into the words that aren’t carrying it.

This reviewer knows the effort that goes into writing a book and respects that. Unfortunately, all that effort results in a book that is extremely difficult to listen to. If you are a fan of futuristic Sci-Fi mobster stories, you might give it a test run, but others should look elsewhere.

Audiobook provided for review by the narrator.

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- AudioBook Reviewer "All of my reviews are on my blog audiobookreviewer dot com"

Poorly executed

I made it to the one-hour mark in the audible version of this and that’s it, I’m done.
What killed the read for me:
1) RUE (resist the urge to explain). When RUE is not enforced the reader is left with several, “Thanks Captain Obvious” moments. Being talked down to is annoying, and in general it makes a read very self-conscious. Explaining a culture, a place we’ve never seen before, or the way an unknown technology works is fine. Explaining that a character loves his sister because she’s his sister is just a waste of word count.
2) One dimensional characters. Using exposition narrative/exposition internal dialog to tell the reader x,y,z about a character is fine, however using this as the only way to define a character makes them one dimensional. The tricky thing about a character telling the reader how super cool and smart they are in a first person narrative, is the reader will assess how big of a liar the character is based on their actions over the course of the book. If actions are not witnessed to support most of the characters super cool and smart claims, then the reader will feel detached from the character and the ongoing plot.
3) The futuristic cultural elements failed to meet my common sense thresh hold. Mars has been colonized but its run by a tyrannical government. There’s no crime because if you commit a crime assassins will be sent to kill you. Wow, how does that work? The people selected for assassin roles are removed from their families and not allowed to get married or have close relationships with anyone. They also can’t own property and are rigorously tortured before being given a role that makes them the social pariah’s of their society. Why do these guys want to participate in life at all? It goes against some pretty basic fundamental facts about human phycology, and I couldn’t listen to Serus Blackwell try and rationalize why he was motivated to do anything anymore.

This is the kind of read where I sit amazed at the writers willing to figure out how to self publish and promote a book to the masses, but aren’t willing to fund a basic copy edit or read a few books to improve their writing craft. If a writer doesn’t take the occupation of writing seriously enough to spare readers from copy edits and several adverbs, then I can’t in good faith recommend the work.
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- Andrea Luhman

Book Details

  • Release Date: 01-21-2015
  • Publisher: Drew Alexander Avera