If you are a fan of Jake Bible’s previous works, a book like Mega is what one expects from this author. It is a book packed with action, adventure and mystery, yet the author does not skimp on the important elements of telling a tantalizing story. The audiobook is well narrated by Neil Hellegers who is no stranger to the narration scene with nearly one-hundred titles at the time of this review. So, all-in-all, with Mega, the listener is presented with a fun and at times horrific tale of a prehistoric mega-sized creature terrifying the depths of the ocean and those who ravel upon it. If you felt that after reading Jaws you did not want to swim in the ocean again, Mega will simply reinforce that feeling all over again. Mega is the first book in the Mega Series, so if you do not get enough from the first book, rest assured there will be more; the second in the series is also in audiobook format. I’m mostly familiar with Mr. Bible’s science fiction space series Roak and his fantasy Level Dead series, but I can say that Mega fits right in there as a contemporary sea monster horror thriller. If this at all sounds interesting, I recommend you pick up a copy and give it a listen.
As with all of the previous Bible books I have listened too, this one opens with a fair amount of action, intrigue, and suspense. Because it is in the horror genre, there is quite a bit of graphic and descriptive violence along with some strong language use throughout. What could go wrong when you have a behemoth-sized creature desiring to remain undiscovered, modern-day pirates, and a ship’s crew who will stop at nothing until they can either capture or at least be the ones to reveal this monster to the rest of the world. In many ways, this book will be compared to a smash-up of both Jaws and Moby Dick, however this book is told in a more modern setting. And for me, it worked quite well. However, the similarities apart, this story felt unique and well-done in a sea of other monster-type tales. In some ways, it brought back watching Godzilla, but in full color and without the voice dubbing. You will need to suspend belief throughout most of the story, but that is what makes Bible’s stories more entertaining and bigger than life. When you face a creature that is large enough to easily consume not only sharks but can take sizable bites out of whales, you have a major problem on hand. And, I think in future books this will only get worse.
I enjoyed the more modern spin on the regular monster story by including contemporary technologies such as iPhones, YouTube, and references that would only be known to our generation. As with most of Mr. Bible’s other works, this book has people dying in gruesome and painful ways. The action is on the scale of heroic, yet the book felt like it had a purpose and direction. I also liked that the characters struggled with their own personal issues along with the common problem of being given the wrong intel of the situation they were being dropped into. There was always some feeling of mystery and suspense as we not only have the Mega creature to deal with, but a number of corporate mega suits who needed to ensure all aspects of the project did not violate any of the corporate insurance policies; nice. Even though it was quite suspenseful there were times of humor and more light-hearted scenes. Again, it is what many of us have come to expect from Bible’s work.
The audiobook’s narration by Neil Hellegers was professional and overall performed well. The audio itself was crisp and clear of any audio artifacts that would distract the listener. There were no pops, background noises or swallows I could recall. At times, I would have liked to have had a bit more inflection or feeling instead of the narrator simply reading. Inflection was used at specific scenes, yet it was not consistent throughout the book making the places it laced more noticeable. I also would have liked to have had a bit more distinction between various characters. A few times I found it difficult to tell who was speaking and it took a bit of conversation to get back into the story. I did think the use of accents helped better distinguish characters and they also gave the book both life and depth.
For parents and younger readers, as mentioned in the second paragraph, this book contains a fair amount of vulgar language, sexual subject matter, and quite graphic violence. Nothing that would be considered excessive if you are a listener of the author’s other works. If any of the above is offensive to you, I suggest you find a different series to listen too. This book is targeted as more mature listeners.
In summary, if you are a fan of Mr. Bible’s other works, I would say that picking up Mega is a no-brainer. It is full of action, adventure, and fun, but it also has elements of horror and suspense woven in. Although the story is a series, as with many of Bible’s other works, this one can be enjoyed as a stand-along piece. Nearly all of the plot-lines are closed at the end of the book, but if you feel you want more, you can pick up Mega 2 which also currently available in the Audible store at the time of this review. If you are a fan of Jaws or Moby Dick, this story will also keep you out of the water!