The Joe Ledger series combines military fiction and speculative fiction bordering on horror. Listeners can expect a lot of ordnance, martial arts and all sorts of monsters, all set within a context of fighting a world threat. It’s a lot of “hoo-rah” action, somewhat tempered by Joe’s introspection and flaws. Maberry divides Joe’s personality into three parts: The Civilized Man, The Cop and, The Warrior and; for the missions that Joe and the Echo Team are assigned, it is essential that the Warrior become the dominant aspect. As The Warrior is called upon time and again to go forward and The Civilized Man and The Cop are put on the back burners, the core – maybe even the soul – of Joe is being chipped away at. I think every boy blogger on the planet will rave about the high octane thrills to be had in any given installment of the series and in the series as a whole; but oddly, while many talk about the action hero, I think we’re actually seeing the fracturing of a man from the inside out; and this is what I think sets Joe Ledger apart from and above many mil-fic stories. Added to this, Ray Porter is quintessentially Joe Ledger and definitely makes these stories live and breath.
“Material Witness” (Joe Ledger series, Book #1.2)
2011, Blackstone Audio, Inc.; 1.3 hours
“Material Witness” takes place early in Joe Ledger’s career, but after the first-in-series, Patient Zero. The Echo Team of the DMS (an elite and secret military arm of the US) is sent in to secure an author who has become a security risk. Joe and his comrades-in-arms find themselves in Deep Pines, the setting for Maberry’s YA Rot & Ruin series, encountering strange allies and long odds against…
“Deep, Dark” (Joe Ledger series, Book #1.3)
2011, Blackstone Audio, Inc.; 0.8 hour
In “Deep, Dark,” Joe and his unit are sent to Colorado to an underground lab facility to eradicate a terrorist infiltration; but to say that things are not what they would seem would be something of an understatement!
The Dragon Factory (Joe Ledger series, Book #2)
2011, Blackstone Audio, Inc.; 16.2 hours
The Dragon Factory is a full-length novel that has Joe and the Echo Team racing against the clock as they try and stop an evilly mad scientist from implementing an Extinction Wave – a genocidal plan that would be executed through specially designed pathogens. There’s a lot going on in this story: genetically engineered pathogens, transgenetic coding, gene therapies… and one could credibly argue that it’s pretty over the top; but It’s a lot of fun if you’re in the mood to kick a lot of ass!
“Dog Days” (Joe Ledger series, #Book 2.1)
2011, Blackstone Audio, Inc.; 1.0 hour
In “Dog Days,” Joe wraps up a loose end from The Dragon Factory and; a canine comrade, Ghost, is introduced 🙂
Joe Ledger: The Missing Files (4.1 hours)
2011, Blackstone Audio, Inc.
“Material Witness,” “Deep, Dark” and “Dog Days” are interstitial stories in the Joe Ledger series and can be found in both short story collections, Joe Ledger: The Missing Files and Joe Ledger: Special Ops. They are also available individually.
OTHER: I borrowed the MP3-CD editions of Joe Ledger: The Missing Files and The Dragon Factory (both by Jonathan Maberry; narrated by Ray Porter) from Blackstone Audio, Inc. I receive no monies, goods or services in exchange for reviewing the product and/or mentioning any of the persons or companies that are or may be implied in this post.