Welcome to Brian’s Book Blog’s weekly New and Notable Post for the Week of December 29th.
We share the 10 books from this week that caught our eye featuring Post-Apocalyptic, Horror, Sci-Fi, Thrillers, and more. Enjoy!
Comment below on any I missed or what you’re excited about!
Authors, narrators, producers, and publishers — any of the books featured here are prime candidates for review.
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All Dark by Boyd Craven III
Narrated by Kevin Pierce
Westly and Raider are coming to grips with the new world and the tremendous changes since the solar storm caused the nationwide power failures. The problems in the Flagg household seem to focus on a coming confrontation between good people and those at the Crater of Diamonds.
Wes, in the process of warning others of the danger, realized sometimes in a world gone mad, doing the right thing for the right reasons is not good enough. Sometimes, he has to do the wrong things for the right reasons to fix what’s gone wrong.
As Wes and his girlfriend, Jessica, finally have their first date, Wes learns that not all of his friends are friendly. There are hidden agendas and ruthless power plays that make it difficult to tell friend from foe. Finding himself in a bind he can’t get out of, Wes needs to ensure he has the will to still survive with the consequences of his decisions, or risk losing his humanity.
Off Message by A. C. Fuller
Narrated by Annie Ellicott, Jeff Hays, Peter Colton, Halon Dixon
Mia Rhodes was on the verge of transforming American politics. But when you take on the establishment, the establishment pushes back.
Six months ago, Mia Rhodes was a Seattle office manager, toiling away from nine to five and spending her weekends managing her online political competition, Ameritocracy. Now, that competition is spreading across the American political landscape, making Mia a celebrity and giving Ameritocracy a real shot at upending the two-party system in the 2020 election. But as the final voting draws near, Mia is betrayed by one of the people she trusts most, throwing Ameritocracy into disarray, and possibly ending her dream of changing American politics forever.
The Soundbooth Theater team for this production: Annie Ellicott – narration; Jeff Hays; Peter Colton; Halon Dixon; and the rest of the male cast; Dalton Lynne – editing and proofing; Griffin Malnar – editing and mastering.
Penitence by Mark Campbell
Narrated by James Romick
In a small poultry farm located in Delaney, Georgia, an antigenic shift causes the H7N9 virus – also known as the deadly bird flu virus – to jump species. The contagion burns through everything in its path despite the federal government’s ham-handed efforts to mask the mutated virus’ true nature. Its unprecedented mortality rate soon paralyzes the nation – paving the way for martial law to be established across the country.
More than 1,000 miles away at a maximum security penitentiary south of Tucson, Arizona, inmate Teddy Sanders’ world of structure and routine crumbles to dust, as the virus starts spreading within the confines of the prison’s walls. As circumstances force Teddy to step out of his comfort zone and form precarious new alliances, will he be able to adapt and survive or will he succumb to the inherent dangers of the new world?
Badge Bunny by Nick Russell
Narrated by David Stifel
When Somerton County “bad girl” Leona Darling goes missing, Deputy John Lee Quarrels is ordered to find her. How hard could it be? Just look in the nearest gin mill, right?
But Leona was nowhere to be found. As he begins asking questions, John Lee discovers that Leona was a badge bunny, a cop groupie who was well-known on a less than professional basis by many of his fellow lawmen.
He also discovers that asking questions can get you into trouble, especially when the people you are asking wear badges, carry guns for a living, and have something to lose. John Lee quickly discovers that he doesn’t know some of his coworkers as well as he thought he did.
And John Lee isn’t the only one looking for Leona. A big, bad-tempered repo man with a penchant for violence wants to find her, too, and he isn’t hampered by the same rules John Lee must follow. Before long, two more young women disappear, blood flows, and somebody will die. By the time the story reaches its tragic end, John Lee will learn secrets he never wanted to know and will never look at his fellow man the same way again.
As sultry as a Florida back road in August, as mysterious as the South’s live oak trees dripping with Spanish moss, and as deadly as a copperhead strike, the third book in New York Times best-selling author Nick Russell’s John Lee Quarrels series will keep you listening late into the night.
Martian Sands by Lavie Tidhar
Narrated by Keith Szarabajka
1941. An hour before the attack on Pearl Harbour, a man from the future materializes in President Roosevelt’s office. His offer of military aid may cut the war and its pending atrocities short and alter the course of the future.
The future. Welcome to Mars, where the lives of three ordinary people become entwined in one dingy smokesbar the moment an assassin opens fire. The target: the mysterious Bill Glimmung. But is Glimmung even real? The truth might just be found in the remote FDR Mountains, an empty place, apparently of no significance, but where digital intelligence may be about to bring to fruition a long-held dream of the stars.
Mixing mystery and science fiction, the Holocaust and the Mars of both Edgar Rice Burroughs and Philip K. Dick, Martian Sands is a story of both the past and future, of hope, and love, and of finding meaning-no matter where-or when-you are.
The Accord by D Stalter
Narrated by J. Scott Bennett
Be careful who you bring into your home. Not everyone is who you think they are.
After a solar flare takes down a large section of the American power grid, Allison opens her doors to friends and neighbors in order to build a sustainable community. But not everyone who claims to be her friend is one.
Looking for a strong woman to take on the apocalypse? Give Allison a try.
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse by Marvel Press
Narrated by Cary Hite
In this full retelling of the upcoming film Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, listeners are introduced to Brooklyn teen Miles Morales as he juggles his normal high school life with the infinite possibilities of the Spider-Verse, where more than one can wear the mask.
What Happens Next? Conversations from MARS by Adam Savage
Narrated by Adam Savage
The most innovative minds in science and technology reveal a vision for the future of life on Earth – and beyond.
Every year, 200 experts across machine learning, automation, robotics, and space arrive in Palm Springs for MARS – the yearly, invitation-only event hosted by Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos – to share new ideas about how these four fields will shape our future.
In What Happens Next: Conversations from MARS, TV host and maker of things Adam Savage (MythBusters) takes listeners deep inside the MARS conference. In interviews with more than a dozen leading scientists and thinkers – including former astronaut Mike Massimino, iRobot co-founder Rodney Brooks, Dava Newman (former deputy administrator of NASA), Oren Etzioni (CEO, Allen Institute for Artificial Intelligence), futurist Kate Compton, and Caleb Harper (director of the Open Agriculture initiative at MIT) – Savage explores the mind-blowing and often misunderstood ways in which science and innovation are transforming the way we live, work, and play.
Full of wonder, optimism, and plain old awesomeness, What Happens Next will be a revelation for anyone who’s ever wondered about what our future will look like and how we’ll get there.
Watching You by Lisa Jewell
Narrated by Gabrielle Glaister
Simon & Schuster Audio
New York Times and number-one Sunday Times best-selling author and “brilliant storyteller” (Shelf Awareness, starred review) Lisa Jewell weaves another suspenseful thriller about a shocking murder in a picturesque and well-to-do English town, perfect for fans of Big Little Lies.
Melville Heights is one of the nicest neighborhoods in Bristol, England. It’s the sort of place where doctors and lawyers and old-money academics live. It’s not the sort of place where people get stabbed in the back 30 times with a kitchen knife in their own homes.
Someone must have seen something.
Newlywed Joey Mullen, for example, recently returned from four years of working in Ibiza. She and her husband, Alfie, are eager to find a place of their own in her hometown. But Joey finds herself distracted by the man next door, Tom Fitzwilliam. He’s the principal of the local high school, twice her age, and devastatingly attractive. What starts as an innocent infatuation soon escalates into fixation, and before long, Joey can’t keep her eyes off of Tom.
Or the principal’s son, Freddie, who dreams of working as a spy and has been developing his surveillance skills by keeping meticulous logs of the coming and goings in the area. And, as he approaches his 15th birthday, his attention – and his lens – are turning more and more toward the local women.
Or perhaps single mother Frances Tripp, who has long been convinced she is being stalked. Her teenage daughter, Jenna, is worried these delusions are signs of her mother’s deteriorating mental health, particularly now that her paranoia has found a specific target: Tom Fitzwilliam. Frances is determined to keep an eye on him until she can prove he is behind her persecution.
Twenty years earlier, a schoolgirl writes in her diary, charting her doomed obsession with a handsome young English teacher named Mr. Fitzwilliam.
Nobody knows why this horrific murder was committed, but someone in Melville Heights knows who did it. As the community’s fearful eyes turn on each other, the question remains:
Who else is watching?
House of Dolls by Harmon Cooper
Narrated by Neil Hellegers
Hate your job. Win the lottery. Get a superpower.
Roman Martin is a normal guy until he happens upon a winning lottery ticket that grants him an incredible superpower.
Unfortunately, Roman has to keep his new power a secret, and in a society that separates superpowereds from half-powereds, that’s a big deal.
There’s also his troubled past, a dark secret that constantly looms over him, his coworker’s mysterious death, and the fact that Roman is being blackmailed by two beautiful female spies at war with one another.
So Roman does what any down-on-his-luck partially exploited office worker would do in his situation: get women, get good, and get ready to fight back.
Contains mature themes.