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The Extinction Cycle Boxed Set

Extinction Horizon, Extinction Edge, and Extinction Age (The Extinction Cycle, Books 1 - 3)
Narrated by: Bronson Pinchot
Length: 25 hrs and 31 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (44 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Here are the first three books of the best-selling, award-winning, and top-rated Extinction Cycle series.

Extinction Horizon

The worst of nature and the worst of science will bring the human race to the brink of extinction.

Master Sergeant Reed Beckham has led his Delta Force team, code named Ghost, through every kind of hell imaginable and never lost a man. When a top secret medical corps research facility goes dark, Team Ghost is called in to face their deadliest enemy yet - a variant strain of Ebola that turns men into monsters.

After barely escaping with his life, Beckham returns to Fort Bragg in the midst of a new type of war. The virus is already spreading. As cities fall, Team Ghost is ordered to keep CDC virologist Dr. Kate Lovato alive long enough to find a cure. What she uncovers will change everything.

Total extinction is just on the horizon, but will the cure be worse than the virus?

Extinction Edge

A new threat that will bring humanity to the edge of extinction.

The dust from Dr. Kate Lovato's bioweapon has settled. Projections put death counts in the billions. Her weapon was supposed to be the endgame, but it turned a small percentage of those infected with the hemorrhage virus into something even worse.

Survivors call them Variants. Irreversible epigenetic changes have transformed them into predators unlike any the human race has ever seen. And they are evolving.

With the doomsday clock ticking, the fractured military plans Operation Liberty - a desperate mission designed to take back the cities and destroy the Variant threat. Master Sergeant Reed Beckham agrees to lead a strike team into New York City, but first he must return to Fort Bragg to search for the only family he has left.

At Plum Island, Kate discovers Central Command may have considerably underestimated the Variant population in New York. As Operation Liberty draws closer, Kate warns Beckham that Team Ghost won't just face their deadliest adversary yet, they may be heading into a trap.

Extinction Age

On the eve of extinction, all seems to be lost, but there is still one final hope.

Operation Liberty has failed. Humans are losing the war. With no other option, General Kennor decides to pull back the troops and give science a second chance.

Trapped in the extensive sewer system beneath New York, Master Sergeant Reed Beckham and the survivors of 1st Platoon must battle through the tunnels - where they make a grisly discovery in their attempt to escape.

At Plum Island, Dr. Kate Lovato is working on a new bioweapon to destroy the Variants. But when a derelict Navy destroyer crashes into the Connecticut shoreline, she is forced to deal with a nightmare she thought had ended.

As the doomsday clock ticks down and military bases fall across the country, the human race enters the age of extinction.

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

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Disjointed Narrator

The story is good, but the narrator rushes his performance. He also does a whiny toddler voice for some characters that is just annoying enough to make you want to stop listening.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Entertaining story, terrible narration.

There seems to be an interesting story here but the narration is so bad. Not a lot of variation in voices, times where the narrator uses the wrong characters voice. Almost everyone (especially women) sound like their whining or the verge of tears all the time. Slightly disappointed after listening to Helldivers. If you're looking for something as exciting as Helldivers with RC Bray don't get your hopes up.

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    2 out of 5 stars
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Not a good series, definitely NOT for me.

This wasn't a good series. I imagine that this would be enjoyable for some, but it quickly got to the point where it was grinding and I couldn't even get half-way through the second book. Contains no spoilers.

Positives:
Narrator was okay,although, as described in the negatives, some stylistic choices didn't work for me.
Some of the core concepts of the series could've been a lot of fun and could've been an enjoyable horror listen.

Negatives:
Poorly written characters, all the female characters came across as anxious and semi-helpless, I'm not sure if this was due to the narrator's orations or the writing.
General poor character constructions. No real character development.
Poor tempo of the story-lines. Author spends a great deal of time describing set pieces in what I suppose would be action sequences, only to have them conclude quickly.
Terrible dialogue with frequently repeated phrases uttered or thought, by the same character throughout, I'm wondering, were they the characters catch phrases?
Glaring plot-hole within the first book that is never addressed and severely limits suspended belief for the whole series, or at least until I stopped listening.

There are better zombie/horror books out there, and better military/strategy ones as well. A very light and not satisfying listen.


1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Enjoyable

I thought the first 3 books were well written and read. It’s always nice to get a turn on post apocalyptic movies. A lot of Zombie/monster movies leave out how it all started. This book did a good job, which added a lot to the story. Already have the next three books and Will start them soon

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

A good story but poor performance.

I enjoyed the story but I found the reading was the weakest part. Bronson made the characters sound like sour wimps and his female voices make them sound weak even in moments of great courage.

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couldnt get through it

not my kind of thing I guess. Looking for more of a prepper fiction. This isnt it. More si-fi.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Horrendous book, good narrator

If you have to listen to bad, and I mean bad science fiction, may as well enjoy the narrator. I have always loved dystopian Sci-fi, so I thought let's give this series a hook. One of my favourites to this day is the excellent Lucifer's Hammer. I read it way back when I still had good sight, and have it permanently on audiobook.
One of the most distinct things about dystopian fiction, is in how survivors of the end of the world, learn to overcome huge odds. Imagine a world with no wifi, no cells phones, no electricity, no medication, no technology.

This series starts with a great idea--a super flu knocking out much of the world. Those who survived, knocked over stores to survive another day--no long term goals.

Then, the dead become zombies, and it lost me. I don't do zombies. Killer clowns, fine. Hyperion's Shrike--no problem. Zombies--problem. They don't scare me, I just can't do the mindless. It was just a dumb book with absolutely childish prose and some bad editing.
Self publishers should at least know how to edit.
If you haven't sat and thought how people are going to survive AFTER they've plundered all the damn big box stores in a city, you really should not write this type of book. Not everyone lives in cities, some have farms, skills and abilities.
People have to learn new skills or at least have some way to survive after "the end of the world" in order for it to work well. Like in Stephen King's The Stand. (Still one of the best books ever.)

Unlike this book, which I listened to painfully for days, before finally giving it up. It's bad.
But, Bronson Pinchot was worth listening to for the first 7 hours. Then I gave up. After being unread for 6 months, I'm just never going to finish this one. It's that bad.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Melissa and Josh
  • USA
  • 2017-04-11

A great twist on the zombie genre - Well worth it!

These reviews were written for Amazon.com and have been consolidated here for the first Audible omnibus. Great works all around!

EXTINCTION HORIZON

Where to begin with this fantastic story. As someone who grown to be addicted to Nick's writing, I can say that, without a doubt, this story kept up the tradition of drawing me in and leaving me wanting more. I am writing this review based on the audible omnibus edition (which included books 1 through 3, but my review for this portion only includes material, I am hoping, from book one).

While I will admit that the story started out a bit slow for my taste, I stuck through it as I have not been disappointed by Nick in the past. Man, am I glad that I did. What happens when a secret military experiment goes awry and results in mutations that seek to feed and spread? That is where this story takes you. Starting out with an experiment set back during the Vietnam War, the story gradually unfolds with what is clearly well researched science and thought. Reed Beckham leads Team Ghost through a mission to recover a sample from a gone-silent medical research facility as USAMRIID (pronounced u-sam-rid, minor nit-pick on my part as it is spelled out phonetically quite frequently during the narration).

As someone intimately familiar with Fort Bragg, I loved the details about the base as Reed leads his team to search for survivors throughout the now overrun base. The roads and locations called out easily helped me to picture what was going on and Nick clearly did his homework with regards to the base. Likewise, the details which go into Kate and Ellis's research into curing the infected fro the initial outbreak. All of the details make this story feel very real and help draw you in to the various situations which impact the human condition of each of the characters in the story.

The details on the infected and variants definitely give this a very unique feel (not typical zombies, not resident evil mutations, but a good and scary mix which also reminds me of a creature from an X-Files episode).

I am very glad I invested in this story as, like Hell Divers and Trackers, this story has me as another hooked reader (listener in my case). Great work and highly recommended!


EXTINCTION EDGE

Already on to book 2 of this amazing series. As is my history with Nick's writing, I am absolutely addicted to his style of storytelling (and that of Bronson Pinchot's narration as I am listened to the audible edition of this book).

Book two takes place in a situation where team ghost and the survivors across the world, to include Plum Island, must now figure out how to deal with the variants created by the bio-weapon designed by Dr. Lovato which was designed to eradicate the Hemorrhage virus. After all, “to kill a monster you have to create a monster.” The modified VX-99/Ebola virus combo which infected humanity has now been modified once more resulting in some truly terrifying sounding creatures.

The research into military culture which Mr. Smith has done for this series is truly admirable. I love the shout-out to the wounded warriors out there in this series. I also greatly enjoy the from-the-front leadership style of Beckham and how he seeks to continue to encourage his team and the other members of Plum Island to continue to fight for humanity (they fight so humanity survives. For those who have read Hell Divers, do you see what I did there?)

The details that went into the fight between those at Plum Island, the members of Team Ghost, and CENTCOM really hits home as it highlights a key aspect of military life; the battle between those on the ground doing the fighting and those making the decisions. While not taken to the extremes seen in the book, some of it hit home for me. Operation Liberty fails miserably, despite warnings from the experts who are studying the variants and those infected with the hemorrhage virus, and Team Ghost is left to pick up the pieces.

I will say the most memorable portion of this entry in the series was the opening side story which expanded later in the book. The encounter in the lair was truly horrifying and gave me an Aliens style vibe akin to when the team on LV-426 first encountered those which had been cocooned. And, once again, the way the lips/mouths morph for these creatures is perhaps one of their most terrifying characteristics.

Book two was just as good, if not better than, the first and I am really glad I got to dive into this series.

EXTINCTION AGE

Book three has already come and gone for me and I continue to be drawn into this story line. With Operation Liberty resulting in a beyond failure status, Team Ghost now faces the risk of dwindling supplies, a lack of appropriate guidance from their parent command, and the task that the science team now faces to eliminate the variant threat. Like my other reviews from the series, I am reviewing the audible edition (namely the first omnibus of books one through three).

Like in other books, Nick’s research clearly shines through in this series, as others have pointed out, with very well developed characters and well researched technology, science, and military tactics. He really has a talent for painting a story that is deep, well-developed, believable, and feels very realistic. The audio editions of these books bring the story to even greater life in my eyes and make this series that much better.

Like in the last book, I am really drawn to the leadership style of some of the characters in the book (Beckham, Jensen, etc.). Jensen is the leader every soldier hopes for as they go into combat, one that leads by example and is not afraid to join his men. Beckham has a fatherly quality about in the way that he leads his team and continues to develop them.

As supplies begin to dwindle and the hopes of a re-supply are tarnished by General Kennor’s short-sighted vision of how this battle should be fought, key military locations begin to be overrun. An attack on Plum Island takes this threat and amplifies it as the science team seeks to research and understand the variant threat. Likewise, the threat of those infected with the original hemorrhage virus re-surfaces, requiring a re-look by Dr. Lovato. This all culminates as a rogue destroyer happens by Plum Island and opens up the next chapter in this highly addictive series.

As I’ve said in my other reviews, this series is worth every minute I have devoted to it. Easily 5 stars.

17 of 18 people found this review helpful

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  • Lovie
  • 2016-10-10

Awesome series

Absolutly terrifying, tense, and thrilling. The best sci-fi end of the world book out there. Bronson Pinchot crushed the narration.

16 of 18 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • John Davis
  • MINOT, ND, US
  • 2018-12-06

Simply Fantastic

I'll be honest. At first I had little to no intrest. I am a little tired of zombie novels, but the monsters in this story just did not appeal to me. The story moved at a steady pace, which made it hard to focus with out interest. About 1/3 of the way through book 1 the monsters are scientifically explained and their nature are revealed. From that point on, it has been a non-stop thrill.
There are plenty of characters that you will get connected to, and some you can watch develop. The action is top notch and Bronson Pinchot bring it all life. My only complaint with Nicholas Sansbury Smith is that his novels tend to be on the shorter side, but he is a very talented storyteller. With box sets such as this and cheaper price tags his pros far out weigh the cons.

9 of 10 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Dennon
  • South Africa
  • 2017-10-23

Be patient!

When starting this series you need to exercise some patience. The first book starts of slow and i felt it lacked in character development. You never really feel like you know any of the characters by the end of book 1, but you really get caught up in everything from the second book and you never look back from there! Narration is good! Anyone who enjoys these types of zombie / monsters apocalypse storie will love the seried as a whole!

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Now you see me
  • 2017-01-20

Should have been narrated by R.C Bray

Loved the story but Pinchot didn't bring enough differentiation between characters. Accents would come and go and most sounded the same which was unfortunate because I loved the story. The entire time I kept thinking that R.C Bray should have handled this series and would have done so with ease.

76 of 91 people found this review helpful

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  • Salvatore
  • 2016-11-01

good good good

was excellent. nice split between action and story. just when you start to think alright enough story, it goes straight into well written action. captivating, engrossing, found it hard to find a point to pause and do other stuff. only complaint is that occasionally the jump from story line to story line makes it feel like you are missing information. that aside , get it, listen to it, love it. also the narration is spot on.

13 of 15 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Allen Anthony
  • 2016-05-30

Guns A'Blazin

Where to start?...make sure you like some of the following : this is a 3book set for one credit, it's a cliff hanger in other words the saga goes on, medical experiments gone wrong on a world wide epidemic level, millions of rounds of ammo being shot, mutated people that are difficult to kill. Not zombies but maybe the next level up because they continue to evolve, there are heroic rescues, did I miss sex, yea there is some of that also, then there are handicapped heroes , oh and I almost forgot a dog. And in the end you find out some higher score have very questionable agendas.
This set will keep you listening for 3 or 4 days for only one credit, and it is no stopped action.
Hope you enjoy this one

29 of 35 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • BlkButterfly
  • 2019-06-12

Will keep you interested...

....if you give it a chance. Initially, I kept falling asleep on the story but that is because of the pace and timbre of Bronson’s voice. Once I became used to it and familiar with the characters it was easy to listen to. A good take on the zombie genre that is unexpected.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Valerie G.
  • 2018-06-21

Great series!!!

Can't wait to get my hands on the next book in this series. The ending of book three is awesome.

10 of 12 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Robert Jennings
  • Florida
  • 2018-06-16

Nonstop action

The first three books
This series is fast paced! It gets better as it goes!

10 of 12 people found this review helpful