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Publisher's Summary

2016 Editor's Pick

2016 Audible's Best in Science Fiction

The New York Times and USA Today best-selling series

More than two centuries after World War III poisoned the planet, the final bastion of humanity lives on massive airships circling the globe in search of a habitable area to call home. Aging and outdated, most of the ships plummeted back to Earth long ago. The only thing keeping the two surviving lifeboats in the sky are Hell Divers - men and women who risk their lives by skydiving to the surface to scavenge for parts the ships desperately need.

When one of the remaining airships is damaged in an electrical storm, a Hell Diver team is deployed to a hostile zone called Hades. But there's something down there far worse than the mutated creatures discovered on dives in the past - something that threatens the fragile future of humanity. 

©2016 Nicholas Sansbury Smith (P)2016 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

What listeners say about Hell Divers

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
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    4 out of 5 stars

Cool premise, great action and it's not steampunk

For some reason when I read the description (very casually) and saw that humans lived in airships my mind immediately thought steampunk and that's not a genre I'm into so I left the book on my wishlist for a while. I recently looked at it again and I realized my mistake, the story takes place in our future so I took a chance on it and loved it.

I love the idea of floating over the apocalypse, where survival depends on elite teams diving down to scavenge and keep humanity floating. The story has a nice pace to it, there's a good amount of action, interesting world building and lots of room to expand this universe.

Will definitely get the next book in the series and recommend this one.

#Audible1

7 people found this helpful

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Pretty solid

Doomed to forever find power cells and pressure valves. Someone please tell the author other things can also be needed sometimes.

Otherwise not a bad audiobook.

4 people found this helpful

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Great listen/read

Really enjoyed this book. It is a different take on the EOW genre. I really enjoyed the idea of how they live and survive in a world completely changed by the ravages of war. The characters are well done. I just can't say enough other than if you have to have this in your collection. RC Bray does a great job of voicing the characters and Nicolas did a great job on the story. Can't wait to listen to the rest.

3 people found this helpful

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Great Start

Very interesting start to the series. Well written and good characters, I like this twist on the post apocalyptic world, living high above the dangerous ground below

2 people found this helpful

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  • Rob
  • 2019-10-20

Belief unsuspended

I didn't like this and couldn't finish it. There are too many issues with the logic.

Sci-fi and fantasy are my bread and butter, and I'll forgive a lot, but it just doesn't make sense. Simple things like growing up in a population of a large high school and not knowing absolutely everyone on board broke the suspension of disbelief. Or, a dystopian future with limited resources, yet a character has black nail polish.

It's like listening to Waterworld in the sky. Hard pass.

Great performance by RC Bray as always.

3 people found this helpful

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Better than i expected!!

I put this book off for far too long.
I had an extra credit and thought I’d give it a shot. And oh boy am I happy I did!!

1 person found this helpful

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A great start to an excellent series!!!

This series just gets better and better!!! It all starts here...great background and the action REALLY ramps up. A MUST listen!!!! You won't regret it!!!

1 person found this helpful

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GREAT series

This has quickly become one of my favourite books and I'll be buying the rest of the series. Great story and narration.

1 person found this helpful

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Awesome book!!

This book was fantastic! This one got me hooked on the series. READ IT! Seriously do your imagination a favor.

1 person found this helpful

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a tale of heroism and sacrifice

great story for reflection
tale of caution for today and enduring honour for those with vision

2 people found this helpful

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  • Jillian Noone
  • 2019-09-04

A little cliche action hero-y but damn good story anyway

You know how it goes. The Hero who is tragic and damaged, he (insert self destructive vice) too much and can barely hold himself together. He has a chip on his shoulder and is something of a loose cannon - both characteristics that keep him from rising in the ranks while also ensuring he's called on for the most dangerous deploys.

....but it's actually still pretty good. Solid character development, an actual female captain (who's main character arc is actual leadership not a romance with aforementioned Loose Cannon), and it's got plenty of nail biting moments while not being overly predictable or relying on jump scares (can books have jump scares?)

I was mad when it was over and now I'm gonna go download the next in the series.

219 people found this helpful

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  • Ben
  • 2018-09-11

Came for the dystopia, left with derivation

RC Bray does a wonderful job with introspective strong male protagonists. His narration was spot-on as always.

The plot to hell divers is exactly what you'd expect from the synopsis and cover art. It immerses you in a world not too unlike our own, with little glimpses of how the players of this world view our privileged existence. Beyond the basic premise, I found the writing derivative and expository at times. Lots of plot points are nothing more than they appear on the surface. I couldn't get into any intrigue beyond the fate of the protagonists. The world building ends at the surface level.

That said, the world building is still masterful. Without getting into too much detail, it differs so much from our own that it's shallow skin might make it more believable, avoiding unneeded complication in a very cut-and-dry existence. I look forward to picking up future books to find out if there is more than meets the eye hidden in the next installment.

82 people found this helpful

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  • Camellia
  • 2019-08-26

Like listening to an apocalyptic action movie

I tried this book on a whim — I love apocalyptic stories but there are a lot of mediocre books out there. This is not one them! The Hell Divers series is original, exciting, and addictive. I’ve literally had to buy more credits as I’ve plowed through listening to the whole series to date in the last month. Be warned: this story will grab you and you won’t want to let go!

108 people found this helpful

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  • tribald
  • 2020-06-05

Pure entertainment

I can tell you my review of the book, but you may have different tastes in books. So, here is a little of what I like to read... I love Sci-Fi, Fantasy, Mystery, Post-Apocalyptic, and Thrillers.

As a kid, many years ago, I loved reading Piers Anthony's; Battle Circle, the Xanth Series, and Bio of a Space Tyrant. I also loved Orson Scott Card's Ender's Series. Fast forward a few decades and I can say my taste in books has not changed too much. Some of my favorite books are from Author’s like; Blake Crouch, Joshua Gayou, and Andrew Fukuda.

Since the COVID-19 stay-at-home order, I have read or listened to 20 books. Some books were good, and some were ok. But I wanted something entertaining. I stumbled upon the Hell Divers series. I was immediately drawn into the story and enthralled into the action. I do not want to give anything away from the story, but this first book will leave you wanting more. I finished all six books within two weeks.

As a side note, I have read some of the negative reviews and many of them attack the probability of the various things. Or how scientifically the survivors could do this or that? Now if you are one of those people, this book may not be for you.

However, if you enjoy action, a fast-paced story that makes you want to listen just another hour, then this is the book f

41 people found this helpful

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  • Brent Casey
  • 2020-01-02

Best narration I've ever heard for any book.

Just finished book 5 after downloading it yesterday. All of the books are like this.
Post apocalyptic sci-fi was never really my thing, but I guess I can't say that anymore.
The dedication at the beginning of book 5 is to narrator, R.C Bray for giving voice to "X", Xavier Rodriguez - a major character. But R.C. does the same for every character. He's the Jimi Hendrix of narration and absolutely brings this series to life.
Trust the other reviews, saying, "Just buy the book", and appreciate not just the barn burner of a series that could easily make its way into a screen adaptation - but also for the masterful talent of the narrator, who is clearly in his element.

27 people found this helpful

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  • Tracy P.
  • 2019-01-11

HELL DIVERS: A HEAVENLY THRILLER!

"Hell Divers #1" was even better (based on all the great reviews I read prior) than expected. An absolutely amazing thrill ride, start to finish, with well developed, multidimensional, realistic characters.

I was familiar with Sansbury Smith's work from his "Extinction Horizon" (Zombie) series, and went through them, one after the other, till I had to wait for his newest release, and preordered that one.

This book had it all. . . mystery, suspense, nonstop thrills, and horror all perfectly mixed in. I did not read the synopsis for book #2 for until I finished this one, so was surprised by the ending, and thought it was perfect!

Looking forward to moving onto book #2 in this series soon, and cannot recommend Mr. Sansbury Smith's work highly enough. He is definitely not a one hit wonder, and is (quite honestly) just terrifically talented, and gets what readers/listeners seek in thriller/horror books.

It goes without saying that R.C. Bray was as amazing as the narrator. Whenever I see his name listed as the person who narrated a book, I know the listening experience will be well beyond expectations! :)

85 people found this helpful

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  • Cindy
  • 2020-10-01

This Book Opens with an Explosive Salvo

This book made me feel something, and that is what I look for in a story in any genre!

As for a story synopsis, the Amazon and publisher's information is very good, so I want to focus on the quality of the characters and the writing in general.

I have gone on to buy and read this entire series. It is phenominal! Nicholas Sansbury Smith is so good at creating characters that move you and bring a passion for their world to life.

I find myself emotionally rooting for our all-too-human heroes and mightily "booing and hissing" at the all-too-evil villians and monsters.

These stories are always a roller-coaster ride of thrills, chills, and hairpin turns, big scares, and narrow misses.

Smith is a master at writing and creating a multilayered story with extreme plot twists (upon twists). He blind-sides the reader with GREAT surprises...like at the end of this book! No plot spoiler here!

The narration is amazing as is this book and the series itself.

Do yourself a favor and buy this book! I promise you'll start a new adventure and stick with a new series that never disappoints!

19 people found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 2020-03-22

Supreme!!

This book was amazing. R.C. Bray is one of my favorite narrators, he really brought the characters to life.

18 people found this helpful

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  • Jessica
  • 2020-01-02

Unlike any other post-apocalyptic

This was my first Nicolas Sansbury Smith read/ listen, and Ioved it! This is a unique post-apocalyptic story and with the market being completely flooded really says something.

17 people found this helpful

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  • Gavin
  • 2020-09-23

New Favorite

I had never heard of Hell Divers before, and nobody recommended it to me. I stumbled across it while looking for something to listen to and thought the premise was interesting.

And man this story was amazing. It held my attention 100% of the way through, and got me attached to the characters, especially the dynamic between X and Tin. Definitely sinking time into the rest of the series.

15 people found this helpful