Earth's Ultimate Conflict is the Science Fiction Award Winner in the following:
* National Indie Excellence Book Awards
* Best Book Awards
* International Book Awards
Rosa De Angelo and Ellen McCarthy are about to become two of the newest victims of SEAS - Severe Environmental Allergy Syndrome. Haunted by dreams of orbs in the night, they wake up to news reports of UFO swarms and alien abductions by the thousands.
Separated from their families, Rosa and Ellen are ushered into isolation tent cities established to prevent the public from having any further exposure to the growing number of SEAS victims.
Ellen, Rosa, and thousands of other victims of SEAS discover that they have been transformed to adjust to life on the alien Grays' planet. Worse yet, they realize they have been covertly used to create and give birth to the Grays' hybrid children.
Rosa and Ellen, along with all SEAS victims, are forced to make the gut-wrenching decision of whether to flee Earth with their love-starved hybrid children or fight for their freedom and escape, even if only to die with their human families.
With Earth headed on a catastrophic course, United States President Barbara Unger is searching for human salvation when she is contacted by two alien species, the Grays and the Guardians, both offering conflicting methods of action to save Earth.
The Grays offer to transport one million humans to their planet, Nuur, mostly women of childbearing age as a safety measure to save humanity. The Guardians insist the Grays plan to use humans to create a dangerous hybrid species that the diminished state of Earth is only temporary, and it will survive this crisis.
Knowing the Grays have manipulated us while the Guardians ulterior motives are unknown, President Barbara Unger will ultimately have to decide who is friend and who is foe. Will she place the fate of the human race into the hands of the Grays.
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" Humans make us laugh."
Undoubtedly, the best part of Earth's Ultimate Conflict was the production, the continuous sound track which accompanied the narration. Mostly providing a quiet background of appropriate soundscape or gentle music, it gave a greater depth to the overall picture being woven. This did occasionally become irritating but was mostly unobtrusive. The exception was when the aliens were 'speaking': a clever echo device certainly made them sound other worldly but at the expense of making it difficult to determine what was being said.This felt far more like a book produced for radio listening rather than a continuous story. As it progressed, it seemed to be divided into largish bite sized pieces, each of which had to contain a new twist or excitement and end with a hook to carry through to the next part - very reminiscent of old mid twentieth century radio serials like, Dick Barton, Special Agent, so, for this listener, there was a definite loss of continuity in the need to pack something special, new or thrilling into rack individual part. The gaps between the chapters, too, were sometimes disconcertingly long.
It came about one and a half hours too late. There is a point where lots of uplifting music is played and patriotic speeches are given which seemed to herald the ending of the book. And it felt right - still unresolved in part but nevertheless quite satisfying as well as leaving the potential for a continuation book should the reader want to know more. But, after a long pause, the story started up again but really added little to the book in terms of completion.
This is the first narration by Peter Jude Ricciardi that I have heard and I will now be looking out for further books by him.. His reading voice is warm, mellow, well modulated, clear and his range of individual character voices is distinctive and wide ranging. He particularly impressed me with the naturalism of the conversations. His performance was strong enough to easily hold it's own against the background distractions. Excellent.
The story is unusual, not the standard alien invasion at all. As Earth's ecosystem seems to be slowly tearing itself apart with natural disasters increasing and a strange new plague, one of allergic reaction to the environment, sweeping across the world, swarms of alien craft are increasingly seen in the skies and contact is made with the U.S.President (Barbara) Unger. The listener is led into the growing awareness of the universal problem by following the interconnected lives of several couples. This is extremely well done, the characters given a reality which calls for great empathy and really draws us into the ongoing story.Nice to see the appearance of Men in Black, too. But, given the world wide nature of the problems, the reader could be forgiven in thinking that nowhere else exists outside of America.and, in the latter part, there is more Ra Ra for our wonderful culture talk than actioñ.I was gifted my copy of Earth's Ultimate Conflict by the rights holder via Audiobook Boom. My thanks for that. It was a very easy and enjoyable listen with some nicely innovative ideas, a superb narrator and overall production. But somewhere in the journey it lost it's way, failing to live up to the brilliant promise of the earlier chapters. Worth a listen, if only for the original soundtrack and Mr.Ricciardi's conversations. But do it in bite sized pieces, a chapter a day, not in one continuous sitting.
- Norma Miles
An interesting story of alien meddling on earth.