Gone to Ground

Written by Cheryl F. Taylor ⎮ Narrated by Rhett Samuel Price

Gone to Ground

Author: Cheryl F. Taylor
Narrator: Rhett Samuel Price
Length: 11 hours and 53 minutes
Publisher: CT Communications
Released: Jun. 19, 2019
Genre: Science Fiction

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Synopsis

Following a deadly outbreak of influenza which decimates the population of the planet, the government issues orders that all remaining citizens are to report to designated authorized population zones so that resources may be fairly distributed.

Journalist Maggie Langton, determined not to let her son, Mark, grow up in the dangerous environment of the APZ, decides to run for the empty ranch land of northwestern Arizona. When she runs into O’Reilly, a fugitive ex-Enforcer, she grudgingly admits she needs help developing those skills needed to live on a small ranch camp. What she doesn’t expect, however, is that with knowledge of how to live rough, O’Reilly also possesses a darker knowledge: knowledge much more dangerous, and knowledge which the government will do anything to suppress.

Maggie and O’Reilly find themselves in a fight to keep their newly formed family safe and secure, and out from under the rule of the controlling new government. At the same time they discover a conspiracy much deeper than anyone had believed possible.

This audiobook was provided by its author, Cheryl Taylor, in exchange for an honest and unbiased review. Thanks, Cheryl!

Beverly's Review

3.5 Stars

I have read a lot of books in the post-apocalyptic genre and enjoy the different ways that authors depict a possible scenario. This book was pretty good, but really nothing that different.

Maggie Langdon is a journalist with a young son, Mark. Her paramedic husband has died in the recent deadly influenza outbreak. Although the government has ordered that all survivors report to designated Authorized Population Zones, Maggie isn't sure that is the thing to do. Instead, she heads out to a remote area in Arizona that she learned about from a rancher. This is first part of the book that makes me start shaking my head.

Shortly after they arrive at this hideaway, she encounters an ex-Enforcer named O'Reilly who grew up on the ranch (how convenient). Throw in some precocious teenagers and younger kids who escape from the APZ and you have a very unusual mix of renegades.

Some of the book was pretty entertaining, but it was often not that believable. Maggie has no knowledge of ranch life or livestock, but she is able to herd cattle, raise chickens and grow her own food, all without benefit of the Internet. O'Reilly seems to be a nice guy in a lot of ways, but I would have liked to know more about him. The APZ is supposed to be a highly secure facility , but our young fugitives seem to be able to get away pretty easily. And, of course, it is revealed that there was an evil government plot that started this whole apocalyptic event.

Narration Review

The narrator was another issue with this book. I had to speed it up to 1.5x in order to not nod off to sleep during the more mundane parts of the story. Part of that was the story, which bogged down a lot in some places with overly descriptive parts. And, his voice for the teenaged girl, Christina, was enough to make my teeth hurt.

All in all, not a bad book, but not worth nearly 12 hours of listening time IMHO. The story ended (in a way), but it also left the option open for sequels.

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Beverly loves reading and can never pass up books at fleamarket stalls, despite having full shelves at home. Her philosophy is just to "read and enjoy", not focus on nitpicking small details. She frequents libraries, bookstores, and bookmobiles.

Beverly listens to 10-12 audiobooks a month and primarily enjoys Mysteries and Fantasy, especially VampLit.

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