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Summary

What would happen if a viral agent was released on American soil? How would local agencies react? How would the military respond? What if it was one of their own? Would they own it or attempt to cover it up? If a major operation was jeopardized because of the release, would that alter any of the decisions? A potent viral agent, created to destabilize a region for forces to move in and clean up, is accidentally spilled in a metropolis. Those infected serve only to afflict others through any means.

As forces move in on the beleaguered city, Sergeant Brown has to make his way through roving bands of the infected in order to escape. Will the ring close before he can reach safe grounds or will he and others he finds be added to the final tally?

©2017 John O'Brien (P)2017 John O'Brien

What members say

Average customer ratings

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Butch women

Although a good narrator, there is no differentiation between characters.
You can go from a tough marine, to a 10 year old girl with no change in pace or volume. I found myself jumping back to see if I missed a bit of the story

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Great book

I'm a big fan of John O'Brien's A New World series. For fans of that series I'd say this is similar but has a stronger emphasis on the military side of things. I enjoyed the story. It had great characters and an interesting arc. I recommend.

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  • Al
  • 17-01-18

Rarely write reviews anymore but....

Would you try another book from John O'Brien and/or Mark Gagliardi?

Not sure. It would have to have been out a while and have received rave reviews from the large majority of listeners.

What do you think your next listen will be?

After it Happened set 3.

Did Mark Gagliardi do a good job differentiating all the characters? How?

Not at all.

Was ARES Virus worth the listening time?

No. I've actually stopped with 3 hrs to go.

Any additional comments?

Didn't like the narrator at all. There was zero relationship built between the characters. Every male character sounds exactly the same. Hard to tell when the story switched from one person to another as they all sounded the same.

Obviously i'm in the minority as many readers love this book but it really just did nothing for me.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Annie The Audible Addict!!!
  • 29-08-17

SCARY PREMISE FOR THE ZOMPOCALYPSE!

Any additional comments?

First off let me say I love John Obrien...he is a talented writer, and a very nice man...This was a great premise and shows you how scary the government could get..deceitful and careless...and really cruel! However this book is written in 3rd person...and that ruined it for me...John's other wonderful series is written first person..and its great..so I was disappointed that this book was written in 3rd...and that just does not do it for me...I struggled till about half way through this book and it finally hooked me enough to adjust to the writing style...Most people will love this..but even though the story is completely terrifying...it was not my cup of tea!

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Neva
  • 16-09-17

Silent But Deadly

I wasn't sure where the story was going at first but I can't wait to continue. At first I thought it was going to be about a couple of cadets trying to get out of an infected town. Then it turned into another plot twist on top of that one and now we see into the mindset of the person responsible for the virus. Then the virus spreads.
Then on top of that one we go to a story about one admitted terrorist (?) just trying to survive after being unfairly blamed for the whole thing going from country to country to country. Then the virus spreads.
Starts out with a lot of action and doesn't stop. Just enough character build to get into the thinking process of the people involved. I really want to know how these stories evolve as I am beginning to care about each one.
Virus versus people versus government versus survival - all good!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Connie
  • 06-09-17

Something Different

Not exactly Zombies, but something to be feared non the less. This book is filled with action, compassion, and giggles. O'Brien sure did his homework from the CDC to the Military. The only complaint I have is that I have to wait for the next book.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Erin Koepplinger
  • 31-08-17

Terrifyingly realistic

Another John O'Brien story to scare the crap out of me. This zombie tale starts at Ground Zero and shows just how easily thus could happen. I couldn't stop listening!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 30-08-17

Couldn't Stop Listening

You did it again. Awesome book! I can't wait for the next book to come out on audio.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Amanda Felix
  • 23-08-17

Another hit

Wow....I have read the book but I always like to listen to the Audible version as well. I was not disappointed. As usual, something horrific begins with a beautiful sunny day where everyone is so engrossed in enjoying the sun, friends, a good read under a tree or bench or even an impromptu picnic. A misread label leads to the unthinkable occuring, the release of an experimental, extremely virulent virus that quickly infects those within the immediate vicinity. The infected become enraged carriers of a hybrid rabies virus that has only one goal, to perpetuate it's existence with the host as the carrier attacking everyone it sees. Those that are bitten rise and continue the infection spreading it with horrifying speed. Sgt Brown, a soon to be retired has taken a simple assignment as the ROTC instructor for the small university. It's easy and he is looking forward a quick year and retirment. Unfortunately he is caught in the midst of those infected and his only hope to remain alive and uninfected is to leave the campus and possibley the nearby town. Along with him are two ROTC cadets that managed to also evade the ramapage. Along the way, he also finds a little girl and convinces her to tag along. Brown knows what is happening and what will happen next once the government and military decide on the best course of stopping the virus and it will not bode well for an survivor in the town or anywhere close to it. He leads them out, avoiding the hordes of infected and the military and all their might as they attempt to contain the problem they created. John O'Brien has once again given us a character we can like if not relate to as he quickly takes steps necessary to ensure their survival as well as the knowledge of what can and will happen if they are found close to the town.
Meanwhile the one man that had warned against the move of the virus is now under the gun to stop it from spreading regardless of the consequences to any survivors. He cannot afford for the virus to get past his blockade. Great story with good storyline and scary enough to make you think.......like I said, I loved the book, the audible just brought it that much closer to home...great job John O'Brien...

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • M. Philo
  • 17-08-17

excellent

I love the Middletown Books. This was one of my favorite stories from the book. I'm glad it has been expanded and narrated.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Naioa
  • 03-07-18

Johm O'Brien did not disappoint!

I really enjoyed this book and cannot wait to get to the second one.. Enjoyed the characters and the story line and of course the narration!

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  • AudioBook Reviewer
  • 14-06-18

Men in Black Delivers Virus to Wrong Address!

John O’Brien has crafted a new world from his previous works in this genre. This time around our government has gone a step too far in its biowarfare program and created the unthinkable called the ARES Virus. In true government fashion with congress critters and oversight committees all calling for transparency, they have to send everything out to independent labs for testing and verification or lose those black budgets they depend on to thrive on. Even the worst virus including ARES must be tested or bad dog no biscuit. True to the government employee stereotype men in black deliver the virus to the wrong address at a college campus. The well-meaning person attempts to take it to the correct address on a nice sunny day across campus loses containment and the nightmare begins.

The infected become enraged carriers of a hybrid rabies virus that has only one goal, to perpetuate its existence with the host as the carrier attacking everyone it sees. Those that are bitten rise and continue the infection spreading it with horrifying speed. The government’s theory is they should die off after three days of dehydration and go into a hibernation state with no more to infect. In one of John O’Brien’s rare Meta moments Sgt. Brown is reading a series of books on the lawn on his Kindle. He is the ROTC Instructor for the University and just returned from deployment and mentions the New World order fast zombie series. Just as the virus contagion begins. Sgt Brown is caught in the middle of the infected and the only way to survive and remain uninfected is to leave the campus and possibly the nearby town. He picks three up three cadets at his office but only two survive the exodus out of the city, Cadet Clarke and Cadet Hayward. Along the way, they also find a little girl named Emily and convinces her to come with them. Sgt. Brown knows that with this level of the outbreak the extremes the government and military decide to use to stop the virus and it will be scorched earth for anyone surviving in the town or anywhere close to it.

Attention Holding

The audiobook does a good job of holding the listener’s attention through the entire story. The story is filled with plenty of action, adventure, violence, and horror. If you are a fan of Mr. O’Brien’s previous work this will for sure hold your attention. There are enough twists and turns in the story that it does keep things interesting.

Narration/Production Value

Mark Gagliardi provides the narration for this audiobook. This reviewer did not enjoy Mr. Gagliardi narration style through this audiobook. There are some narrators who do not change pitch for male and female characters and it works for them. In this instance, I was just not that big of a fan of his narrating style He just did not connect with me as a narrator. I have nothing personal against the narrator just a personal preference. It did not draw me out of the story though. The production value was of the highest quality.

Please find this complete review and many others on my review blog.
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