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Winter Dark

Audible's Thriller of the Year 2019
Narrated by: Ell Potter
Series: The Winter Series, Book 1
Length: 11 hrs and 31 mins
4 out of 5 stars (1,679 ratings)

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About Winter

Master hacker, highly intelligent, combat trained: Winter is a very modern spy. Worlds apart from the straitlaced characters created in the minds of Ian Fleming and John le Carré , Alex Callister's lead protagonist wouldn't dream of playing the part of the impeccable agent. However, despite her intimidating skillset, Winter is delightfully human and often prone to prioritizing her libido over her employer. Undeniably sexy and exceptionally accomplished, Winter is a true 21st-century heroine.

A thrilling performance from rising star Ell Potter

Introducing the Slashstorm website
Winter goes Russian
Meeting the Marquise (explicit)
Winter gets into the ring

Winter brought to life

  • Winter Dark
  • Introducing the Slashstorm website
  • Winter Dark
  • Winter goes Russian
  • Winter Dark
  • Meeting the Marquise (explicit)
  • Winter Dark
  • Winter gets into the ring

A note to our listeners

She's terrifyingly quick-witted and intimidatingly sexy with a superhuman skillset: Winter is a woman to be reckoned with. Everyone on the Audible team was immediately drawn to Winter, and we didn’t hesitate in naming this our Thriller of the Year 2019. Alex Callister has perfectly captured today's mood, so cast aside all your current preconceptions of traditional spy novels because Winter Dark puts you right in the middle of a terrifying near-future world plagued by perverse online crime.

Ahead of the audiobook's release on 21st March, we put some of our thoughts on film.
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About the Narrator

Ell Potter is in her final year at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art (LAMDA). She has appeared in the school’s productions of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, playing Helena, and New England, playing Alice Berry. She is also a writer and comedian, and in 2018 took her two-woman show HOTTER to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, where it enjoyed a sellout run and was named an Evening Standard Best New Writing of 2018. It has since secured a transfer to the prestigious Soho Theatre. She has been entered for the 2019 Carleton Hobbs BBC radio drama competition. Ell has devoured audiobooks for as long as she can remember, growing up on Harry Potter and His Dark Materials during long car journeys. Winter Dark is her first audiobook.

Meet the author of Winter Dark

Alex Callister is the pseudonym of an industry expert on media, telecoms and internet stocks. She studied history at Oxford and the British School at Rome and was set for a career in academia until the beginning of the tech boom woke a lifelong interest in internet shares. Alex has spent her career visiting high security web hosting sites and speculating on what might go wrong. Winter Dark is her debut novel and the first in the Winter series.
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What members say
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Fabulous!

I really enjoyed this book, and I can’t wait for the next instalment, love the characters. A thrilling read!

7 people found this helpful

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Gripping, enjoyable and fun

I really enjoyed this story. It was great to find a book with such a powerful and charismatic female protagonist. I would love to meet Winter in person, she's right up my street. The reading pace was a little slow at times, so I found myself listening at 1.5x speed. Overall, a great book and I have pre-ordered the second in the series.

7 people found this helpful

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brilliant listen

excellent.
cant wait for the next one. and hopefully will get read by the brilliant ell potter once again

6 people found this helpful

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Slow start but really enjoyed it

I very nearly stopped this book after about 2 chapters. But really pleased I persevered.

Performer was enjoyable.

6 people found this helpful

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Amazing, gripping, thriller read!

I really enjoyed this extremely well narrated thriller by a new and up and coming author.
If I had been reading and not listening it would be a page turner for sure. It is like a female Bond, Jason Bourne, Lisbeth Salander type character in my option. I can't wait to start Winter Rising when it arrives as I have pre-ordered.
Very well written and expertly described by Ell Porter as Narrator.

6 people found this helpful

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Winter superb action thriller

Winter is a brilliantly big action thriller. Great settings London, Paris etc and a sexy hard female character lead who fizzes from one situation to the next. Definitely would make a great film or Netflix series. Sex scenes should be a bit more graphic the sanitised approach does not fit Winter’s character and we are in 2019 after all. Looking forward to the next book.

5 people found this helpful

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fantastic!

This is absolutely addictive, thoroughly entertaining and excellently performed. I can't wait for the next installment.

16 people found this helpful

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AWFUL !

Complete drivel, the story is contrived and predictable, the characters are totally unbelievable. Like a teenage boys wet dream absolute rubbish, can't believe I finished it !!!

10 people found this helpful

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Winter is bad ass!

Best book I’ve read in years!! Can’t wait for the next one. Ell is the best thing that happens to this series and wish she did more.

10 people found this helpful

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Winter in Spring Isn't Quite Thriller of the Year!

Okay so let's not worry too much about the odd idea that we can declare a book the Thriller of the Year 2019 before we've all chomped our way through our Easter Eggs! It's an odd idea but as Audible say they didn't hesitate to do it let's just go with it for now.

What they did promise though was a ' gripping, fast-paced ride through a disturbingly plausible technological future' and certainly they make good on some of that. This is fast-paced with plenty of action but working as I do in the IT industry I'm going to baulk a little at the 'disturbingly plausible' part. Although Audible are keen to differentiate Winter from Bond & co she is actually remarkably similar in many ways. She's just as joyously implausible, maybe lacking the refined charm but still entertaining, bold and full of spunky bravado. Similar to Artemis by Andy Weir WInter will appeal to many but annoy some as seeming as much like a teenage boy's caricature of a powerful female character as a truly genuine persona. The author gives very little background as to how this gorgeous, super-skilled martial arts fighter with insanely good computer hacking capabilities develops above and beyond being brought up in a tough boarding school . . . enough said! Hopefully, as the series progresses we'll get more of this.

Okay, so I still enjoyed it well enough, if you can short circuit the reality-check circuits in your brain this is a fun story and certainly some of the ways that Winter extricates herself from dangerous situations would genuinely make even Bond raise a Roger Moore eyebrow heavenwards. Ell Potter is a more than capable narrator with good changes of pace, tone and tempo and she carries this roller-coaster ride of a story with real aplomb.

So, overall, this is a fun piece of fiction if you are in the mood for the Audible equivalent of a popcorn action flick with lots of action and a hero with more sauce than HP! Is it a "thriller of the year"? Well, I suspect there will be quite a few other authors gritting their teeth over that one but the rest of us can enjoy it for what it is regardless!

98 people found this helpful

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  • Tammy
  • 30-03-19

Didn't live up to my expectations

I really wanted to love this book based on the fantastic reviews from others. But the truth is I "liked it ok". I'm being generous with 3 stars because if 2.5 were an option, that would have been my choice. For me, it was like a Jason Matthews cheaper knock off that is oversexed when the sex has little to do with the story.

15 people found this helpful

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  • Avila
  • 18-04-19

Self Indulgent

I regard myself as open minded but the explicit and gratuitous sex was irrelevant to the story. Why? The book reads or should I say sounds like a recording of a fantasy session with the author's therapist.

14 people found this helpful

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  • JMc
  • 12-04-19

Ell Potter’s performance... Brilliant!!!

The story itself was great and Ell Potter’s performance made this - hands down - the BEST audio book I’ve listen to yet.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Paul Ballard
  • 08-04-19

great listen

the book is awesome and the narration is excellent...can't wait for the next one in October.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Pamiam
  • 06-04-19

Great story Great Listen

I listen to audible books while driving long distance, as I was coming to my destination I stayed in the car to listen a bit more. I cant wait until the next book comes out. The narrator was perfect.

2 people found this helpful

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  • melissa
  • 02-04-19

Strong female protagonist

Clever and soulful with a kickass main character who happens... to be a women. It’s sexy in a way that makes it fun; and paced so that we can all take in how messy action heroism can be. Loved it and especially loved the narrator!

2 people found this helpful

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  • Jessica Cancino
  • 30-03-19

Amazing 👌

Loved the book. The narrator was fantastic and the story was truly engaging. can't wait to hear what's next.

5 people found this helpful

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  • Dawn
  • 29-03-19

Ell Potter, narrator, Makes this story outstanding !

The story is gripping and features a badass queer woman ! Ell Potter does several accents and is easy to follow character to character . Her voice is smooth and adds dimension without being too breathy or distracting. I’d like to buy more books from this narrator ! I listen to 2-4 books per month .

2 people found this helpful

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  • Old n'tired
  • 15-09-19

Worked for me!

Unlike a few of the recent reviews I thought this book was well paced and consistent throughout. I didn’t skip any chapters or start paying at a higher rate, which is something I find myself doing about half the time.

1 person found this helpful

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  • JMabie
  • 28-03-19

Returned

It's not what I was looking for. I was hoping for more of a cyber-thriller, and though it had that aspect, it was very sexually graphic. I don't have an issue with that, but it's not what I was looking for so, I returned the book.

15 people found this helpful