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The MEG

Narrated by: Sean Runnette
Series: Meg, Book 1
Length: 10 hrs and 32 mins
Categories: Sci-Fi & Fantasy, Horror
4.5 out of 5 stars (156 ratings)

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Summary

On a top-secret dive into the Pacific Ocean's deepest canyon, Jonas Taylor found himself face to face with the largest and most ferocious predator in the history of the animal kingdom. The sole survivor of the mission, Taylor is haunted by what he's sure he saw but still can't prove exists - Carcharodon megalodon, the massive mother of the great white shark.

Written off as a crackpot suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder, Taylor refuses to forget the depths that nearly cost him his life. But it takes an old friend in need to get him to return to the water and a hotshot female submarine pilot to dare him back into a high-tech miniature sub.

Diving deeper than he ever has before, Taylor will face terror like he's never imagined, and what he finds could turn the tides bloody red until the end of time. MEG is about to surface. When she does, nothing and no one is going to be safe, and Jonas must face his greatest fear once again.

©1997, 2011 Steve Alten (P)2014 Tantor
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Meg-nificent! 🦈

Absolutely loved this gripped from start to finish I can't wait to listen to the rest of them, sadly it seem The Trench (book 2) is missing from Audible so I'm gonna have to stop being lazy and actual read a book.

8 people found this helpful

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Let's pretend Sex Trafficking is funny

I had to stop reading this book when I got to Jonas' reunion with his good ole buddy Mac, who is now a sex trafficker in Saipan, only the author would have us believe that Mac isn't exploiting his "girls". Unlike all the other traffickers in Saipan, Mac is a genuine employer, presumably paying a living wage, and no doubt also offering paid holidays and a pension plan. We are told they have families to support. How he competes with the other traffickers who infest the CNMI and don't pay wages, selling young women until they can be thrown away I have no idea, but hey, this is a work of fiction, isn't it? Let's pretend there are good brothel keepers and go along with this and ignore it, along with all the other deeply troubling red flags that keep cropping up. Except of course when he has Mac say about some women he was exchanging with another trafficker, "Girls, Philippe: you sent me livestock. The fat broad weighed more than me, and the older one had no teeth." In other words, you cease being a human being when you gain weight and lose your teeth? If you still think referring to trafficked human beings as livestock is funny, visit the "Unheard no more" website and read about the reality of buying and selling people for sex in the CNMI from people who escaped. This one passage in the book is far more nauseating than the previous description of a shark attack. At least that wasn't played for laughs.

5 people found this helpful

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Simply Brilliant

I had this book on paperback in the early 2003, it got me hooked, and much to my delight it turned into a series.

I have been waiting extremely patiently for this to come to audible, now if we could just have The Trench, and for Meg Generations to stop being pushed back and back and back I would be really impressed.

As for this Book it’s a true modern day epic, the new jaws, and yes, the film is coming out this year, so only 5 years later than was suggested!!

I love the effort that Steve puts into the research of the different elements, from marine life, to minerals and vegetation. The characters are nicely built up, with just the right amount of action and dialogue.

I have now bought all of Steve Allen’s books on audible except 2012 as I don’t speak German.

Many thanks for a great series, and really can’t wait for Generations

9 people found this helpful

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Fantastical fun to listen to on holiday

I loved listening to this on holiday, it was perfect poolside listening though I will admit I was a bit nervous when snorkling !! If you loved Jaws or any sea creature thrillers then its for you.

2 people found this helpful

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  • jb
  • 04-03-20

Painful narration

The book is as you'd expect - lots of teeth. Great idea for a story and enjoyable enough. The narration however was terrible. So monotonous that it was actually hard to follow what he was saying as there was no expression at all. And a weird timbre which was most distracting. Ruined the book for us unfortunately.

1 person found this helpful

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Decent story, questionable narrator

The narrator was not the right choice here, he barely sounded interested, was quite off putting in comparison to the narrator who does all the sequels.

1 person found this helpful

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No sMeg

I absolutely loved this audiobooks from beginning to end. And I even learned a thing or two about sharks. Never get into the boat or submersible for that matter. Loved the narration too.

1 person found this helpful

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Good book to get you're teeth into

If you like Jaws but need a bigger fish. Then this the book for you.

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A Fun - Though Flawed - Adventure

Following on from my viewing of what I consider to be the greatest cinematic achievement since Howard the Duck I decided the awesomeness of The Meg needed to continue; so I nipped over to Amazon and found myself a copy of the book, which was easy to do because - without realizing it - I'd had it on my to-read list for about a year.

Meg: A Novel of Deep Terror was published way back in 1997 and its author Steve Alton has managed to challenge both Nightmare on Elm Street as well as Friday the 13th with the amount of sequels he's squeezed out of this idea over the last twenty years.

Like most adaptations the film wanders pretty far from the plot of the book, taking many elements and doing its own thing with them in a kind of patch-work "best of". People who read a lot will know what I mean here; it's common for film adaptations to repurpose a dozen or so key moments from a book and basically write its own story around them; and this is pretty much the approach the film makers took with Meg.

This isn't meant in any way as an insult to them; personally I think they did a good job with their adaptation; obviously, else I wouldn't have bothered reading the book at all, but this does mean that book and film are VERY different beasts; and the Meg they both contain are very different beasts too.

Firstly though, if you thought the movie was cliché riddled then its probably best you avoid the book entirely as there's probably more cliché's per-square-inch than anything I've ever read. We have the man-who-sees-a-monster-and-who-isn’t-believed, who also happens to be the-jaded-gunslinger-who-reluctantly-straps-on-his-six-guns; we have the social-climbing-wife-who-doesn’t-understand-her-husband and the dodgy-lawyer-who-she-has-an-affair-with. There’s also the sexy-lady-scientist-who-hates-the-hero who predictably eventually sees that he’s-a-man-of-honor-and-falls-for-him. Not to mention the cigar-chomping-rogue-pilot and - of course - the huge-flesh-eating-dinosaur we all came to see.

Of course most of this is what the reader had come to see anyway. Generally speaking people who want to read about a giant prehistoric shark that eats people isn't on the lookout for high art; its questionable whether we're on the look out of any kind of art at all; so even though any criticisms concerning any of this would probably be fairly accurate they'd also be a bit beside the point.

You don't judge a Da Vinci by the standards you’d apply to a copy of Archie.

Not that I'm saying Meg: A Novel of Deep Terror is comparative to a Da Vinci, or a copy of Archie for that matter, just that, well... let’s not judge it by unobtainable standards shall we?

Based on this book, the only one I've read from him, Steve Alton isn't much of a writer. He writes cliché's and his dialogue seems rooted in the westerns of the 50's. There’s a tendency to write females based almost solely on their physical appearance and the men all tend to be only half a step up from Neanderthals. Based on these criteria Meg doesn't do all that well, but there are elements on which Meg, and Steve Alton, does shine.

Steve has a good imagination and knows what a pulp horror fan is after. He's also good with atmosphere and plots his book in a no-nonsense way that side-steps art in favor of sheer expedience.

There’s a lot to be said for this.

It seems to me that Steve Alton has aimed his books at those of us who grew up with the horror of the late seventies and early eighties. Horror then was much more home-spun in its approach and its main emphasis was on its basic effects rather than on any pretentions of "art". Personally I consider "art" to be almost, very nearly, a bad word. I'd prefer entertainment over art any day of the week; and I'd prefer imaginative failure to artistic excellence any moment of any of those days as well.

Based on these criteria Steve Alton does extremely well and I have little doubt that in the twenty years since the release of Meg he's polished his skill somewhat, and I'm sure to know if this is true or not because I'm certainly reading more from the man.

Over on the website Goodreads they do a challenge each year, and this year I set myself thirty books to read - Meg being one of them; and though I've read quite a few that I would consider much better books, better written at least, there have been very few I have enjoyed as much.

Ultimately this is the only thing that really matters.

Before I go I've got to mention what I saw as the biggest difference between the book and the film. Whereas Meg The Movie is a straight up story of man versus beast the book is a lot more nuanced in its approach, there a lot of effort NOT to kill the megalodon in the book. In fact if they wanted to do that the book would've been over in half the time. Perhaps taking his cues from Jurassic Park Steve Alton doesn't seem to just want write a monster, as there’s a lot of emphasis on the megalodon as a character in the book; and this - in my case at least - successfully muddied the waters on how I saw the beast. Halfway through the book many of the main characters views regarding the huge animal also change, leading to a conclusion very unlike the movie that was made from it.

When I watched it theatrically I enjoyed the film quite a bit, I realize that it’s a piece of digital cliché riddled nonsense but I thought it was a likable piece of digital cliché riddled nonsense. It made me think of the films I watched as a kid and it because a piece of comfort food because of it.

The book had a very similar effect.

Okay people, don't get eaten and if you brave either the book or the film please don't chew me out if you hate them either.

Remember that those of us who maintian low standards are rarely disappointed!

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Excellent 1000 times better than the film

Please read/listen to this and don't watch the film, you will not be disappointed at all.