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Summary

The critically acclaimed author of Alien: The Cold Forge takes listeners to a rogue colony where terror lurks in the tunnels of an abandoned Weyland-Yutani complex.

“Shy” Hunt and the tech team from McAllen Integrations thought they’d have an easy job - set up environmental systems for the brand new Hasanova Data Solutions colony, built on the abandoned ruins of a complex known as “Charybdis”. There are just two problems: The colony belongs to the Iranian state, so diplomacy is strained at best, and the complex is located above a series of hidden caves that contain deadly secrets. When a bizarre ship lands on a nearby island, one of the workers is attacked by a taloned creature, and trust evaporates between the Iranians and Americans. The McAllen Integrations crew is imprisoned, accused as spies, but manages to send out a distress signal - to the Colonial Marines.

©2021 Alex White (P)2021 Blackstone Publishing

What listeners say about Alien: Into Charybdis

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Brilliant Story - Surprises and Twists

Thanks to AlienTheory for informing me about this book.

Great story, interesting characters, and lots of twists and surprise deaths. Not sure how this book had me rooting for the Xeno's at one point.
The Narrator was great, she really got into the characters and personallities I felt.

recommended book to any Alien fan.

1 person found this helpful

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Listen to Cold Forge instead

I had high hopes for this book after listening to Alex White's previous novel - The Cold Forge. I understand that there is a process in building the story and creating suspense but it takes 3.5 hours before an Alien makes a brief appearance. For me it never really got going. I found it difficult to follow in places, there are a number of interludes dispersed throughout the book and I found that they didn't really add anything to the plot. I did listen to the whole book, just in case it improved but I was left disappointed. It was a slog and a very boring one at that! If you haven't listened to it already the previous book to this - The Cold Forge - I highly recommend that you do.

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Worst of the worst

Aliens Cold Forge was awesome both in story and narration
but unfortunately the Narrator is terrible here

1 person found this helpful

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Excellent thanks

Really great stuff
The ALAN universe lives on
With a real good twist I look forward to yet more!
Thanks again
The ship's Cat

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A quirky take on Aliens that is a bit like marmite

The biggest flaw right off the bat is the lackluster narration. Most of the characters sound the same which made for awkward listening. It was difficult to tell who was speaking to who in certain sections. Why are 95% of the Americans from Texas? A stark contrast to its predecessor, The Cold Forge, which had excellent narration throughout.

Spoilers ahead:

The story was interesting and put a new spin on the classic formula, but I have a feeling some people will love what they did with Blue being an Alien, while some will hate it. I was very disappointed with the main character death of Chy half way through which knocked points off for me. I get going for shock factor but it sucks following a character for that many hours just to have them offed in a pretty lame way. What's worse is that the doctor doesn't even ask about her upon reuniting with the Americans in the bunker. If anything I feel like the author killed off too many of the key characters, often in unsatisfactory ways. Also, what the hell happened to the Bishop synth? They pack him up and he's never heard from again. Seems like he would have been useful during the final hive assault, no?

It's still an enjoyable story, but don't go into it expecting greatness.

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Servicable and somewhat original.

I wasn't a huge fan of Cold Forge, which I found to be a little one-note in terms of a certain villain (fun at first, but outstayed his welcome around the halfway mark) - and I never really connected with any of the characters. That said, it was decent in terms of building atmosphere and the setting was novel.

As for Into Charybdis - I think it's pretty clear that it suffers from being too long without what I would consider narrative justification. There just isn't that much to the plot that needs such verbosity - and while I appreciate the amount of characters that have something to do in the tale, I must admit I struggled to empathize with - or care about most of them. They pretty much all lack the kind of interesting arc that I prefer for characters in a very long story, and they're all somewhat stereotypical in their roles. Not all of them, mind you - but most of them, including both the main antagonist and most of the protagonists.

Once again, there's a very one-note villain - and while featured less prominently, it's a similarly tiring character for me. Obviously, that's highly subjective - but I like my villains to be a little more nuanced and not quite so.... over-the-top.

Also, I must say that a certain character which serves as a call-back to the previous novel, did NOT work well for me. In fact, I found it downright silly and working against the tension and horror that's appropriate for the setting and the Xenos. If these novels are ever made into movies, this is one character that would never work without it becoming something of a comedy, which would probably demonstrate my point better than my words here.

That said, I must praise the book for having more than a few surprises in there. I appreciate not being able to predict what will happen, and - in particular - what will happen to what character, and when. I definitely couldn't predict that for many of them, including all the leads.

The most praise I will lavish upon the setting itself. I found it compelling and quite detailed. While I have zero knowledge of that sort of structure, theoretical or otherwise, it certainly seemed more plausible than it might otherwise have, with less effort and research.

It's clear that the author spent some time with the right people to establish some of the facts, which is always nice.

Anyway, I would probably rate Cold Forge a 6/10 - and this is more like 5/10 - overall. I can't bring myself to round it down to 2 stars - as it did have enough quality elements to go beyond that low a score, so I'm rounding up instead.

But note that I'm probably an outlier - in that I dislike some of the more popular Alien novels, like Phalanx (which I found utterly terrible).

So, keep in mind that tastes differ and all that.



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A decent Alien story.

Another enjoyable slice of science-fiction horror from Alex White. I didn’t enjoy this as much as his first Alien story, The Cold Forge (which is easily my favourite Alien novel and I’ve read all of them) but it was solid nonetheless. Well worth your Audible Credit if you’re not sure what to get this month.

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Another must listen!

Alex White returns to the Alien mythos with a loose sequel to the superb Cold Forge. Alien Into Charybdis offers a broader scope than its illustrious predecessor (this time aligning closer to Aliens) but still contains plenty of abject horror including a particularly gruesome chapter that had me wincing with dread.

White's novels are head and shoulders above all other Alien related material, his background as a military contractor allows for meticulous world-building with a unique and authentic edge. Onto this stage White expertly breathes life into a plethora of well painted characters, that interact with snappy and convincing dialogue. It's also very well paced, taking time to pad things out before ominous mystery shifts into full-blown terror.

Whilst Into Charybdis might not be as tightly wrapped as The Cold Forge, sheer ambition pushes it to the same lofty heights. The only slight criticism I have is the final act is possibly a little too long, and does leave some unanswered questions, though presumably these will lead into a third novel (yes please!).

Shiromi Arserio's narration took a little time to get used to, but ultimately she does a fantastic job offering a well rounded selection of voices with excellent cadence.

Must listen 5/5.


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  • Mike
  • 27-02-21

ruined it

i in no way am trying to be offensive but the extremely feminine female voice for a bunch of male manly fighting aliens character's absolutely ruined it so mutch i couldnt even follow what was even happining or what the story was about this was a huge disappointment for me .

7 people found this helpful

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  • Kenneth Dusek
  • 03-03-21

another great alien book

from the author of the cold forge comes a somewhat of a sequel and it is a great one I loved all the characters they were written so beautifully I wish I could see this as a TV show

3 people found this helpful

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  • Cody bowen
  • 26-02-21

It's entertaining, but not great

Was an entertaining book with cool moments. Although the author couldn't really decide on a main character. returning characters from the last book are great, but it left me feeling like there was just something missing at the end.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Margaret Marystone
  • 02-03-21

Just OK. Should be called Cold Forge part 2.

This should have been marked as a sequel. I read cold forge recently, and don't see how the main plot elements could fit properly without it. Even having read the prior book, the way it connected was confusing. The reading was fine. The story was ok.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Wes
  • 04-03-21

ok

If you really like aliens than it’s worth it if you have nothing else but by far the weakest of the new aliens stories. The reader wasn’t part talent wise she is actually a good reader i think. But was a very strange choice when it seemed like there were 3 main characters and 2 were male.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Arthur Brown Jr.
  • 01-03-21

The Alien franchise just hit a new high!

Since a far too young little boy stayed up well past his bedtime to watch a movie his parents refused to let him watch, Alien and the franchise it spawned have been a constant part of my life. While not as blown away by Aliens years later as many others of my generation were I did enjoy the movie. The idea of humans having a way to fight the xenomorphic threat was enticing but never felt quite right to me. I preferred the original movie to the sequel. This book by Alex White has made me come around to seeing how the colonial marines fit into the Alien universe and how truly and utterly the presence of the xenomorphic alter the universe for humans. Alex builds complex characters and sets them in a complex universe where right and wrong, good and evil are so very dependent on survival. This is his second book in the Alien franchise I enjoyed that book and look forward to another book by Alex set in this universe.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 27-02-21

Every ingredient in a masterful sequence.

The introduction to the characters, the politics, the environment and the technologies were crafted in such a way as to bind me into the universe well beyond the alien lore. This was reminiscent of the original alien’s slow pace into the plot, with a clever rotation of what importance a character may have in the end goal. Some stunning techno-architectural detailing brought life to a world which fascinates without even a trace of the xenomorph, and a very long awaited technology was presented in a brutally impactful way which gives an almost philosophical reflection on the possible evolution of the human specie, progressing into pan galactic exploration. Altogether a brilliant episode of the alien universe which really needed some respite from the invasion of leftist sentimentality which the author morphed so subtly that the leftist would nod to the sarcasm unknowingly so.
Faithful to the concept of the female hero, but also exposing the shortcomings of overtly promulgating pussy power while advancing the more implicit qualities of the beautiful women in our lives by distilling the pains into unconditional love and healing, filtering out to die the tendencies that make us men cringe through that elaborate persona rotation within the cast.
Looking forward to the next creative push from this author.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 26-02-21

Embrace the maw !

Surprises at every corner returning characters well defined story. Look forward to the black star

1 person found this helpful

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  • jensim
  • 01-03-21

Couldn't stop listening

Definitely one of my favorites now. Would recommend to any alien and Alex White fan.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 28-02-21

It was okay

Wasn't huge fan of how they bridged the gap between this and Aliens: The Cold Forge.