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Into the Black

Odyssey One, Book 1
Written by: Evan Currie
Narrated by: David de Vries
Series: Odyssey One, Book 1
Length: 14 hrs and 59 mins
5 out of 5 stars (1 rating)

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Publisher's Summary

This edition of Odyssey One has been completely edited and remastered to correct the typos and content issues that reviewers commented on in the original edition. 

Beyond the confines of our small world, far from the glow of our star, lies a galaxy and universe much larger and more varied than anyone on Earth can possibly imagine. For the new NAC spacecraft Odyssey and her crew, the unimaginable facets of this untouched world are about to become reality. 

The Odyssey’s maiden voyage is an epic adventure destined to make history. Captain Eric Weston and his crew, pushing past the boundaries of security, encounter horrors, wonders, monsters, and people, all of which will test their resolve, challenge their abilities, and put in sharp relief what is necessary to be a hero. 

A first-rate military science-fiction epic that combines old-school space opera and modern storytelling, Into the Black: Odyssey One is a riveting, exhilarating adventure with vivid details, rich mythology, and relentless pacing that will leave you breathlessly awaiting book two.

©2011 Evan C. Currie (P)2019 Brilliance Audio, all rights reserved.

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
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  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Dee McCracken
  • 2019-11-06

Inconsistencies and lots of unanswered questions

Was an interesting book once you got past the inconsistency. The Colony crew lieutenant that they rescued was in an escape pod with a RADIO emergency beacon. Later in the read the planetary admiral was unable to communicate with the Odyssey because they no longer used Radio signals. The Drasin did use radio waves to send three pulse transmission which is also interesting or may prove so in later books.
There are a large amount of secrets still being withheld. And why was there a break in the colonies that created “The Others”? Why are the Drasin all of a sudden attacking the colonies? Why is the Drasin origin so close to earth?

4 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • M. F. Hampton
  • 2019-09-17

Great space opera

I loved the story. I had a bit of trouble following the characterizations the narrator used and sometimes confused who was speaking. Fortunately, I also have the print version and was reading that when I could and listening when that was more convenient. I'm eager to read the rest of the series now. Great non-cliffhanger ending with enough to tempt me to keep going!

3 people found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 2019-09-15

I’ve listened to this book a lot over several years; The new performer is great!

This book is one of my favorites to read and listen to. I enjoy the unique technologies and setting, as well as how the characters interact with both in compelling ways. It is a very different first contact scenario than those encountered in other sci-fi books I have read. I always found the performer, Benjamin L . Darcie, to be good despite the lack of an expected amount of... vigor in his performance. I decided to listen to the book again, through kindle unlimited as I usually do (is is probably my 5th listen in 3 years), and was surprised to hear a different performer. This performer, David de Vries, did a fantastic job! There is energy, emotion, and technical expertise throughout his performance, which really took my experience to the next level. The quality of the recording has also improved. I am pleasantly surprised to find that even my purchased audiobooks of this series, which I bought last year, have been updated to the de Vries version, so I can now experience familiar stories in a new way without additional cost. If you would like to try this book without using an audible credit, I recommend checking it out though kindle unlimited, as the entire series is available to read and listen to for $10 a month. This is cheaper than the cost of a credit, even if you don’t like the book. If you do like the book, you can binge listen to all the currently released books for $10 in that month instead of having to wait a month for your next credit or spend ~$90 on enough 3 credit packs to listen to the entire series (which is still ongoing). I hope you give this series a go!

6 people found this helpful

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  • Edward A Steinshouer
  • 2020-01-24

Interesting read, however

The story is interesting and "de Vries" does a great job with voices and identities, but I assume that the director or whoever was in charge of the narration should have noticed that from start to finish the lack of a break in the reading at the end of a sentence. It required a close listen to notice the shift from one focus to another without any pause.
I do not think the extra second pause would have been a big problem but it would make the listening much better.

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  • Mike
  • 2020-01-21

Enjoyable

Very good, lots of twists and turns. Great story and well read. Good characters and great quick transitions from different character view points

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  • Steve
  • 2020-01-17

Into the Black Review

Excellent story with interesting characters. Lots of action to keep things interesting. I never felt the story was dragging or wordy.

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  • K. Evers
  • 2020-01-17

Not a great selection

Book just sort of rambled on… And on… And on… And jumped from scene to scene with muddled transitions. Got lost so many times I decided to end it and go find another book

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  • Kindle Customer Not Needed
  • 2020-01-16

A good read

World War III didn’t turn into a nuclear apocalypse and has been resolved somehow. The pan American nations have managed to build the first interstellar warship and are sending it out to explore the galaxy. It is manned by a bunch of highly skilled (American) military personnel and a smattering of scientists, including an apparent CIA ESPer. On their maiden flight they detect a life pod in a far-away location and go investigate. This leads to their involvement in a war between some form of insectoid alien monsters and an ancient offshoot of humanity run by a benevolent fascist AI (maybe).
The Terrans are in a ship all of the aliens consider to be so low-powered that it is inconsequential. The alien humans’ basic weapons use enough power for a city to operate for a year, while the “power curve” of the Terran ship is nearly undetectable. This being the case the Terrans still manage to destroy multiple “bug” ships and survive multiple hits from them, while the alien humans can’t even damage them and may as well be made of tissue paper when attacked by the “bugs”. There is a good literary reason for this but that would be a true spoiler and this book is still worth reading.

The indifferent

The story is told from multiple points of view but the primary is the captain of the Odyssey. This is done to build characters, show what is going on in the background, build suspense, and nudge the main plot along. It really is not a detractor and is well done.

The Pros

The characters are interesting and the combat sequences hold the attention. The author does a good job of building suspense and making you wonder what happened while you weren’t “in view” of part of the action.
For the most part, the author does a very good job describing the real time and distance of space. This is done through explaining how long it really takes for light to get between point A and B. This is most demonstrated by avoiding laser shots at multiple light second ranges using simple logic and observation. If you can see the ship lining up at 30 light seconds then you know what axis do dodge on to avoid a “sweep”.

The Cons

This book is a good read but it kept breaking my suspension of disbelief.
The technology shown for the Terran humans is far below our own current technology in many aspects. The ship has virtually no zero-gravity or acceleration concessions even though it has no artificial gravity. “Null mass” does not mean “null momentum”. The furniture is not attached to the bulkheads, there don’t appear to be any kind of handholds or other attachment points and there are no protocols about loose articles. Even operating on a boat on the water there are more safety protocols. All this does is cause a dichotomy of “The best of the best of the best” vs incompetence on a grand scale. I understand it is meant as a literary attempt to add environmental depth but it just breaks me out of the story.
The military protocols are incomplete. When a ship goes into battle aren’t the bulkheads closed to prevent air loss on a space ship or flooding on an ocean going vessel? They stated that they only had so much air with no means of replacing it and only so much capacity to recycle what they had, yet all the doors are open during combat?
Several times the author uses AU as a unit of measure in regards to light speed sensors. 1AU is approximately 499 light seconds out. That is approximately 8.3 light minutes or in general would take 16.6 minutes for a “ping” from LIDAR to give a reading. In the next sentence the LASERs used are stated to only be useful at about 100 light seconds (1.6 light minutes)

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  • Anonymous User
  • 2020-01-15

so great!!!!

it was amazing. love the characters, some great space fights, some great on the ground fighting. an intriguing 1st book to a series. what a great surprise this book turned out to be

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  • CM
  • 2020-01-03

Just a Lot of Fun

There is a classic approach to this space opera story and I loved the simplicity of it. The Odyssey has been designated as the first ship to use a transition drive system to allow faster-than-light travel. It’s mission was just to go to a predetermined area, scope it out a little, and come home. Except, when they transition to their predetermined star system they pick up a distress beacon and feel obligated to look into it, which in turn leads them to make first contact with a human from another planet (Priminae colonist) and eventually helping them fight to overcome spider-like ugly creatures who are intent on destroying all the Priminae colonies.

The book and story is just fun – it’s space opera and space battles. The heroes are obviously those of Earth and the Priminae colonies and the bad guys are the Drasin (the spider-like ugly creatures). It’s set up where you can easily understand everything including the overall approach to the plot and story as well as the battles and build-up to the battles, which is key in this type of story.

Audio Book Review

So, I started with the follow-on series, Archangel One, which uses a different voice actor than this series does, which is David de Vries. I was ok with the Archangel One narrator and had gotten used to his style and found myself having to adjust a little at first to this series narrator. But the adjustment didn’t take too long because I came to really enjoy this narrator. Every character has their own unique voice and different accent, which to me is very key for a good audio book performance. And I never had any issue identifying if it was Steph and his southern accent and relaxed manner of speaking or Milla and her Priminae accent, which sounds like a mix of different European accents.

But one thing was very apparent to me in the audio book – space battles and space fight scenes are a ton of fun to listen to when there are many different, unique characters to listen to. It was like being part of the action – a fly on the wall – as all of them go back and forth giving each other a hard time, or giving orders, or directing attention to specific issues at hand. They are all stressed due to the conflict and you can hear it in their voices, which kept me engaged and on the edge of my seat.

Overall, a great start to this series and look forward to picking up the next one.

Rating: 5 stars – mostly because the book was just a lot of fun.