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Existential

Crucible, Book 1
Written by: Ryan W. Aslesen
Narrated by: Jeffrey Kafer
Length: 10 hrs and 2 mins
5 out of 5 stars (2 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

The Alaskan wilderness holds a nightmarish secret that threatens all of humanity in this epic sci-fi horror thriller. An audiobook so scary that it requires a warning label and a global phenomenon that is on track to sell more than one million ebook copies. 

It was supposed to be just another mission. 

Buried deep in the rugged Alaskan wilderness lies a secret that could alter the future of mankind - a secret that billionaire Elizabeth Grey has invested millions in solving. But when the dig goes silent and all attempts at making contact fail, an elite team of battle-hardened military contractors is brought in led by former Marine Max Ahlgren, a warrior haunted by his past. 

While the mission to make contact and rescue a team of scientists and engineers working on an “archeological” project seems like an easy payday, once on ground, the team discovers the grizzly truth that this is no ordinary rescue. Max and his men find themselves in the fight of their lives against a nightmarish enemy like nothing they have ever seen. In what quickly becomes a struggle for survival, the world’s greatest soldiers will encounter the universe’s ultimate terror in a battle that puts all of humanity at stake. 

No backup. No escape. No hope. 

Terrifying, visceral, and deeply moving, Existential is a novel that will haunt you forever. 

Pick up your copy now and embark on an epic journey that will leave your heart pounding with every chapter. The perfect combination of science fiction, explosive action, and intense horror, Existential is a roller-coaster ride of terror! 

Warning: This audiobook contains intense scenes of violence and horror. It isn't for the faint of heart. Listener discretion is advised.  

©2018 Ryan W. Aslesen (P)2018 Podium Publishing

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Ronald
  • Ukiah, CA, United States
  • 2018-10-17

Action Action Action

This one will keep you listening. The action never stops. Now some times it is a bit impossible but still fun and it keeps you guessing about some things but some others are a bit to obvious. But you will enjoy it. Monsters Monsters Monsters!!

16 of 16 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Amazon Customer
  • Joshua Tree, CA
  • 2018-10-09

Techno military Science Fiction...

Enjoyed it very much, captured me early, made me want more... Blends Aliens, Predators, Phantoms, The Blob...lol. Can't wait for more Max Algren...

13 of 13 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Mike tauss
  • 2018-10-10

Very Exciting Read!

This book is an exciting and successful blend of two of my favorite fiction genres, Sci-fi and Spy/Military thriller. It does a really great job of pulling you in right away and making you feel connected to the characters. The action is immediate and doesn't let up. I definitely had a couple sleepy mornings from staying up too late to listen to what happened next. Can't wait for the next one!

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Kelli A.
  • 2018-10-04

Captivatingly brilliant!

I truly enjoyed listening to this SciFi horror novel by Ryan W. Aslesen. I must say that the author's ability to describe such terrifying gore in such detail really shook me to the core! The story told in this book is so epic and even grips on your emotions. I highly recommend to all readers. I can't wait to read the next one!!!

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • Bri
  • 2018-09-28

bloody but surprisingly poignant

I've read/listened to a lot of horror featuring a cast of ex-military professionals. It has slowly become a favorite sub-genre of mine, and there is a lot of great stuff out there. Existential is no exception, and actually went above and beyond my expectations. This story is exceptionally gory without being exploitative, and packs an emotional punch without compromising smart storytelling and the integrity of a surprisingly large cast. It is grim and bleak with a purpose, managing to inject realism into a plot that could otherwise fall into cheap Hollywood blockbuster fare. The story went places I didn't expect and IMHO pulled it off. And I am a hard sell when it comes to anything dealing with extraterrestrials. The characters are imperfect and nuanced, and the author took care to flesh out villain and hero and minor character alike, allowing the audience to form their own opinions via gray area motivations, with no decisions condemned or lauded. Just explained, and sometimes in contrast to the narrating character's POV.

For me, the hallmark of a quality genre novel is the inclusion of seemingly extraneous genre atypical details that enrich and texture- things that the author didn't need to include to have a serviceable story. Plot twists and character quirks that were clearly included with care, not to pad out generic writing. This book had oodles of immersive character details and plot points so that I came away feeling satisfied and somehow more involved than stories twice as long and thrice as complicated. Most importantly there is a deep respect for those who serve our country, written without a hint of blind fanaticism or glorification of warfare. The main character is not a superhero everyman with a heart of gold, and the skeletons in his closet are not neatly eradicated via important life lessons akin to a bloody after school special.

I very much look forward to the next installment. I needed a break from by the book zombie outbreaks and EMP induced collapses of civilization!

10 of 11 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Jay H.
  • 2018-12-27

All book long is like this...

The whole book is read almost one sentence at a time. And it's fairly annoying. i just wasn't that good for me.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Customer
  • Orlando, FL USA
  • 2018-10-13

awesome

loved it. fast paced, twisted, sci fi meets real world, a testament to our fighting troops. narrated beautifully.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 2018-10-09

A good book

This book is a mix of aliens predators and the thing all role up in to one. I enjoyed the book but wondering where book two will be taken us because alot of new story line s popped up at the very end of the book.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Adam
  • 2018-10-14

Personally, I wasn't a fan.

I'm not sure if the narrator was the biggest issue for me but I had a very hard time maintaining focus on this book. The narration was definitely one of the issues as he didn't seem to bring any real life to the read. To me it seemed he read in a very monotonous voice with little inflection or emotion. This made it very difficult to build any relationship with any of the characters.

However the characters themselves did not really bring enough to the table to build any relationship with to begin with. They themselves feel very bland, with all the secondary characters feeling like after thoughts. Even the main character himself was difficult to bond with as he seemed very repetitive and vanilla.

The premise seemed good enough and the depictions of some of the more gory elements were pretty decent however, personally, I was not a fan overall of this book or the performance.

13 of 16 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Jerry A. Ryder
  • 2019-04-09

THIS NEEDS TO BE MADE INTO A MOVIE!!!

Great story, very good narrator, this would make a better movie than Alien or Predator hands down and I really like them! What a story. Keep going with your arc of storyline and it will not fail. I will search for the next book in the series. Thanks to all of you who brought this to life.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful