Columbus Day Expeditionary Force Book 1 by Craig Alanson – Review With Audiobookworm Promotions

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Author: Craig Alanson

Narrator: R.C. Bray

Length: 16 hours 23 minutes

Publisher: Podium Publishing⎮2016

Genre: Science Fiction

Series: Expeditionary Force, Book 1

Release date: Dec. 13, 2016

Synopsis: Nominee, 2018 Audie Awards — Audiobook of the Year

We were fighting on the wrong side of a war we couldn’t win. And that was the good news. 

The Ruhar hit us on Columbus Day. There we were, innocently drifting along the cosmos on our little blue marble, like the Native Americans in 1492. Over the horizon came ships of a technologically advanced, aggressive culture, and BAM! There went the good old days, when humans got killed only by each other. So, Columbus Day. It fits. 

When the morning sky twinkled again, this time with Kristang starships jumping in to hammer the Ruhar, we thought we were saved. The UN Expeditionary Force hitched a ride on Kristang ships to fight the Ruhar wherever our new allies thought we could be useful. So, I went from fighting with the US Army in Nigeria to fighting in space. It was lies, all of it. We shouldn’t even be fighting the Ruhar; they aren’t our enemy. Our allies are. 

I’d better start at the beginning.

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THE REVIEW

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book for review.

First I’m going to say I give this audiobook an enthusiastic four stars.  Why do I specify audiobook?  Because I abhor books told from the first-person point of view and I never would have read this book in paperback form.  But…

What sold this book to me was the way the narrator told it.  The narrator easily captures the humor and wry wit the story is told with.  He expresses an enormous range of emotion and vocal acrobatics; male voices, female voices, deep voices, higher pitch voices, clear voices, husky voices, various human language, and alien language accents all seem to be performed effortlessly.  The main character, Joe’s, voice is husky and a little gravelly.  It was pretty amazing.

The first chapter had left me wanting, but I was left curious that I was willing to keep listening.  I didn’t really get into it until the story left Earth and headed out into space.  The story follows Joe, a little slowly but not so slowly that I got bored, through his acclimation from being a U.S. Army grunt into being a grunt in a united Earth military forces and learning how to use alien weapons.

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The main character Joe is charmingly relatable in an incredibly average way.  He’s got a chivalrous sense of honor, which he even admits on a few occasions interferes with him seeing the women in the military as women (to be treated chivalrously) first and (he is aware they are perfectly capable) soldiers second.  This changes as the book progresses and his female compatriots work effortlessly with the male soldiers under his command to fight against their alien enemies.  He is admittedly failable and devastatingly human, with hopes, fears, love interests, and unease with responsibilities which he knows are far beyond his training.

I can’t speak to the accurateness of the military aspects of the book.  The rest of the story is delightfully engrossing.

Columbus Day is not a “fast-paced” story.  But it’s not slow either.  It’s a nice moderate pace with an adventure that unfolds evenly and consistently.  There’s no dead space in this story because even when there’s no action there’s still revelations of information that is critical to the story and development of the character. Still it is the incredible performance of the narrator which pushes this story from three point five stars up to four.

Definitely worth 4 stars.

Buy on Amazon through my affiliate link.

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Tour organized by Audiobookworm Promotions

Tour Schedule

Book One

Feb. 25th:
Delighting Delilah (Review)
The Real Audiospy (Review, Spotlight + Audio Excerpt, *Author Interview)
The Writing Train (Review, Spotlight + Audio Excerpt)

Feb. 26th:
4 the Love of Audiobooks (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt, Author Interview)
Dab of Darkness Book Reviews (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt, *Author Interview)
2 Girls & A Book (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt, Author Interview)

Feb. 27th:
Eileen Troemel (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt)
Super Booked! (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt, Author Interview)
Krit’s Book Reviews (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt, Author Interview)

Feb. 28th:
I’m Shelfish (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt, Author Interview)
Audiobook News Blog (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt)
Teatime and Books (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt)

Feb. 29th:
Nesie’s Place (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt, Author Interview)
Books, Tea, Healthy Me (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt, Author Interview)

Mar. 1st:
Willow Writes and Reads (Review, Spotlight + Audio Excerpt)
Jazzy Book Reviews (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt, Character Profiles)
A Wonderful World of Words (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt)

Mar. 2nd:
The Clipped Nightingale (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt, Author Interview)
T’s Stuff (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt)

Book Two

Mar. 3rd:
Delighting Delilah (Review)
The Real Audiospy (Review, Spotlight + Audio Excerpt)
The Writing Train (Review, Spotlight + Audio Excerpt, *Author Interview)

Mar. 4th:
4 the Love of Audiobooks (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt, Author Interview)
Dab of Darkness Book Reviews (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt, *Narrator Interview)
2 Girls & A Book (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt, Author Interview)

Mar. 5th:
Eileen Troemel (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt)
Super Booked! (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt, Author Interview)
Krit’s Book Reviews (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt, Author Interview)

Mar. 6th:
I’m Shelfish (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt, Author Interview)
Audiobook News Blog (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt)
Teatime and Books (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt)

Mar. 7th:
Nesie’s Place (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt, Author Interview)
Books, Tea, Healthy Me (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt, Author Interview)

Mar. 8th:
Willow Writes and Reads (Review, Spotlight + Audio Excerpt)
Jazzy Book Reviews (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt)
A Wonderful World of Words (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt)

Mar. 9th:
The Clipped Nightingale (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt, Author Interview)
T’s Stuff (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt)

Book Three

Mar. 10th:
Delighting Delilah (Review)
The Real Audiospy (Review, Spotlight + Audio Excerpt, Narrator Interview)
The Writing Train (Review, Spotlight + Audio Excerpt, Narrator Interview)

Mar. 11th:
4 the Love of Audiobooks (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt, Narrator Interview)
Dab of Darkness Book Reviews (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt)
2 Girls & A Book (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt, Narrator Interview)

Mar. 12th:
Eileen Troemel (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt)
Super Booked! (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt, Narrator Interview)
Krit’s Book Reviews (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt, Narrator Interview)

Mar. 13th:
I’m Shelfish (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt)
Audiobook News Blog (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt)
Books, Tea, Healthy Me (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt, Narrator Interview)

Mar. 14th:
Willow Writes and Reads (Review, Spotlight + Audio Excerpt, Narrator Interview)
Jazzy Book Reviews (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt)
Teatime and Books (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt)

Mar. 15th:
Nesie’s Place (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt, Narrator Interview)
A Wonderful World of Words (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt)

Mar. 16th:
The Clipped Nightingale (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt, Narrator Interview)
T’s Stuff (Spotlight + Audio Excerpt, Narrator Interview)

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