ABR's full Return of the Phoenix audiobook review can be found at Audiobook Reviewer.
I am fully expecting some sort of a reinventing of one of my favorite audiobook series, Monster Hunter International. A secret agency battling monsters in real life and protecting us regular people.
I want action, blood and gore, ridiculous monsters with plans to take over the world. I want a solid story that will help define this monster story sub-genre.
What I got was an epic tale of a secret military team that is trained to fight the horrors of the night. They are all given secret injection to help keep them safe from the “contagious” variety of monsters.
What I really liked was the hard core military action scenes, procedures and personalities. Full of subtle and not so subtle humor throughout. Instead of having the monsters be just monsters. Stallcup was able to give them all interesting back stories and agendas.
Where my interest started to wonder was in the love story between a monster and one of the military team. I always find myself becoming very uncomfortable when erotica pops unknowingly in a story. Sitting at my desk at work, hoping that no one will hear what I hear. Constantly looking over my shoulders to make sure that no one gets too close.
All in all this was a fun military story about fighting monsters. With several good plot twists that I didn’t see coming. I think for a first novel that Stallcup did very well and I look forward to hearing how his style progresses with future stories.
In the beginning I found the performance by Jack Voorhies to be a bit soft-spoken for my taste. This changed slowly as the story progressed. By the end I was not able to think of another narrator that would be able to give the story such a unique voice.
I didn’t care for the obnoxious blast of sound for the indicator of story switch. At first I thought there was something wrong with the recording and soon I realized that this was an intentional signal to the listener.
Audiobook provided for review by the Author.