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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good - a bit odd at the end
I read this quickly as it was gripping from start to finish. The main characters were well crafted, the peripheral characters were just names on a page and character of 'Nail' was a total big, bad man cliché. The plot is a fairly straightforward: world plague leads to hordes of zombies leads to mayhem for the (isolated) unaffected. What gave this a bit more bite is...
Published on 27 July 2012 by Emmster

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34 of 38 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Arctic outpost
The book tells the tale of a skeleton crew marooned on a drilling rig in the Arctic Circle as the rest of the world succumbs to a mysterious plague. As the Arctic winter draws in their hopes of escape are raised and dashed (and raised and dashed...).

The evocation of the bleak environment, both within the rig and out on the ice, is handled pretty well, and the...
Published on 26 Jan 2011 by Marand


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34 of 38 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Arctic outpost, 26 Jan 2011
By 
Marand (Warwickshire) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Outpost (Paperback)
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The book tells the tale of a skeleton crew marooned on a drilling rig in the Arctic Circle as the rest of the world succumbs to a mysterious plague. As the Arctic winter draws in their hopes of escape are raised and dashed (and raised and dashed...).

The evocation of the bleak environment, both within the rig and out on the ice, is handled pretty well, and the central idea of whether you want to be the first to go or the last to survive when your world ends is a recurrent theme of the dialogue between the characters. My main problem is that virtually all of the characters are so sparsely sketched that it is hard to care about any of them.

The writing style is spartan with lots of short sentences. By way of example: "Bitter. She grimaced. She scooped more painkillers. She didn't want to fall asleep before she ate enough pills to kill herself outright. She didn't want to wake.". Depending on your tastes, this is either invigorating or irritating. For me, it was irritating and interrupted the flow of the story.

There are a number of big set-pieces which help to keep the story moving along, and the survivors' reactions to the approaching plague are reasonably well framed, if not exactly novel. Personally, I think bringing in the sci-fi aspect was a mistake - a case of trying to tick too many genre boxes? Overall, this comes across as a plot treatment for a disaster movie, with some of the set pieces seemingly chosen for how they will look on-screen, rather than as a coherent development of the storyline. If you're not looking for anything deep or meaningful, it's an OK way to pass an evening or two, but overall I'd rate it as average.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good. But somethings missing, 5 Jun 2013
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This review is from: Outpost (Paperback)
I'm going through a zombie apocalypse mood right now, so when I saw this book, I thought I'd check it out. It didn't really deliver.

The book starts off pretty well, its very quick paced, but it just doesn't have that fist in the air kind of feeling to it.
The book is written at such a frantic pace in places, that you don't actually know what is going on. It can be quite hard to follow.

okay, the characters aren't great, but you still care for them & want them to succeed in their plight to find humanity. The main character is very weakly written. She goes from an overweight priest, who has no confidence & is on the brink of suicide. To this athletic ass kicking hero, in what seems like a matter of days. It isn't very believable.

The main villain is not very good either, you just feel let down by this persons actions and reasons for doing what they do.

The character of Ghost was pretty cool and the character Nail, was pretty good, but other than that, there is no-one else worth mentioning.

The zombie's or infected are very different here. They turn metallic, imagine a more fleshy version of the T1000 from Terminator 2, if he had a bad cold. Although this is different, I prefer my Romero/Snyder/Danny Boyle kinda zombies. These zombies weren't scary.
In fact, the isolation/setting of the book, is the scariest thing about this story. And at times, the characters isolation from mankind proves to be a bigger threat than the infected are.

This book is not awful, but if you are looking for depth, then read Stephen King. If your looking for a powerful story, then read Dean Koontz. If you want sick & twisted, read Tricky Laymon.
I know my views so far have been pretty negative, so I'll put it this way.
This book isn't scary at all, but if you want a bit of fast paced action, with the odd bit of gore & the odd set piece. Then this is for you. It's definitely a book to read by the pool while on holiday (Unless your holiday is in the arctic circle)

Not bad, not great, just kinda good.

Its something to read to help pass the boring hours of life.

If you want more excitement, then watch Aliens, or go listen to Slayer and imagine a crazy brush fighting a shoe with a beard.

IWC 5/6/13
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22 of 25 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Don't go outside....., 25 July 2011
By 
RM/TM (UK.) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Outpost (Paperback)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
When a strange infection takes hold of most of the world's population, a small group of refinery workers in the Arctic are initially protected from the pandemic. But they soon tire of waiting for a rescue that never comes, and eventually decide to make their own way south to establish contact with whatever might be left of civilisation.

The disparate bunch - a suicidal female vicar, a sikh handyman who seems to be maintaining the rig single-handedly, a body-building thug, a failed medic, a bank cashier looking for a bit of excitement, and various 'Star Trek'-like bit-part extras (i.e doomed to meet a bitter end!), always manage to take the least sensible or safe option (wouldn't you be more likely to stay put in your heated refuge with 6 months of food and no sign of the undead?!). However their foolhardiness admittedly does keep the action and excitement ticking along nicely. And this is probably the book's greatest strength - the incredibly fast pace and constant changes of scene. On the flipside, most of the characters are not fleshed out properly, and potentially tense and exciting situations often resolved without explanation (such as the crew member who exits the plot in the first half of the book, yet inexplicably reappears toward the end with no detail of how or why they engineered their own return).

The number of high octane explosions, crashes, fights, and treks through the frozen wastes convince me that the author had a screenplay in mind from the outset with this book. And it probably would translate quite well into a sort of polar '28 Days Later'. But it's a shame that someone who I think probably is capable of writing a slightly more highbrow novel (as evidenced by the convincing descriptions of the inhospitable frozen environment) has opted for action over substance or suspense.

In summary, tersely written and a very easy read, but probably more public transport fare than Pulitzer prize.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good - a bit odd at the end, 27 July 2012
By 
Emmster "the book wurme" (Hampshire, England) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
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This review is from: Outpost (Paperback)
I read this quickly as it was gripping from start to finish. The main characters were well crafted, the peripheral characters were just names on a page and character of 'Nail' was a total big, bad man cliché. The plot is a fairly straightforward: world plague leads to hordes of zombies leads to mayhem for the (isolated) unaffected. What gave this a bit more bite is that the setting is an oil platform/refinery anchored in the freezing Barents sea, not too far shy of the north pole. The setting gives good scope for lots of zombie shenanigans but also weaves in the dual perils of freezing to death or running out of ever-dwindling supplies.

The only gripe I have is with the final chapters. Properly crazy things start happening, liberties were taken with my "willing suspension of disbelief" and one massive thing was left almost completely unexplained. I was waiting for a decent explanation of both items - but it never came.

All that being said - I thought it was a perfectly good read and really enjoyed it overall. If you like zombie apocalypse material and want something a little bit (but not too) different - then I'd definitely recommend it.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Fairly entertaining if you don't think about it too much, 24 April 2012
By 
Trevor Willsmer (London, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Outpost (Paperback)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Outpost is one of those books that's driven by a premise rather than characters or logic, which is just as well since characterisation and characters behaving logically are in short supply here. Everything is sacrificed in the interests in keeping things moving, and if that means stereotypes have to behave stupidly to get to the next big setpiece or sentences becoming ever shorter to give the illusion of ever faster pacing that's clearly not a problem for the author. The tendency not to flesh anything out much or to think it through too much, often giving the impression that this started out as a screenplay and has been reformatted as a novel, and it's the sort of thing that could make for a much more enjoyable film than a novel. As it is, it's an okay read if you want to cut to the chase and aren't too bothered about the mechanics of getting there.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars apocalypse by numbers, 3 Feb 2012
This review is from: Outpost (Paperback)
If you want to sum up this book, it's '28 Days Later' meets 'The Thing', but being nowhere near as good as that might sound.

Other people have gone into detail here, so I'll just say that it felt tired, very familiar, and all the characters speak in the same macho-speak you know from Hollywood action films.

Things happen to propel the plot rather than because they make any sense. None of the characters seem particarly bothered that the End isn't just nigh, it's happening right now, and the actual nature of the apocalypse is pretty daft.

It's not a terrible book by any means, and will pass the time if you have nothing better to read. Just turn off your brain and don't expect any originality or believable characters on the way
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Largely Disappointing, 2 Jan 2012
This review is from: Outpost (Paperback)
Liked the idea behind the story but the delivery was really quite disappointing. When I learnt the name of the principle characters were the likes of Nail, Punch, Ghost. I thought to myself oh no what have i let myself in for.
I felt the story was really very slow and a bit too macho in places, I guess only to be expected with the likes of Nail et,al
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars "B" Movie book., 29 Nov 2011
This review is from: Outpost (Paperback)
I love post-apocalyptic fiction. I was hopeful this was going to be a classic, I love the setting of a few people stuck on an oil rig at the end of the world. I was hopeful this book would conjure feelings of desolate isolation due to this setting, perhaps something like Alien or The Road. Unfortunately there is, possibly, too much going on in this book and it gets more and more unbelievable. One of the things I just couldn't get my head around (apart from the metallic themed pandemic) was that one of the main characters is a Vicar. She somehow becomes involved in the top level of decision making at the rig with the captain. I was also kind of hoping she was going to follow a darker "losing my religion/survival of fittest" type story line. Instead she becomes a kind of all round action hero and the source of a lot of the holes in the plot. I agree with the other reviews on here- reads a bit like a bad American sci-fi movie script.

Overall- I think teenagers would like it, and It kept me reading all the way through with the multiple changes in the plot (you're not short of cliff hangers when you put it down), but if you love the genre I doubt it will satisfy the hunger.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars bleak end of the world novel (with zombies), 10 Aug 2011
By 
Nick Brett (Wiltshire, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Outpost (Paperback)
This is a bleak `end of the world' tale and is a promising debut,

Skeleton crew on an oil rig off the coast of Norway become aware that something significant has happened and are cut off. With a limited supply of food, drink and power they must decide what to do next.

This starts off well with an easy style and it throws you straight into life on the rig, mainly through the eyes of a female on board vicar. What starts off as a survivalist/rescue story then diverts to a sci-fi/zombie novel with a strange and slightly odd change of pace. Those who are not into sci-fi may not like this although the sci-fi elements are not that complex, they are more a vehicle to explain the zombies.

But the characters do develop, especially our vicar, and although consistently bleak there is pace and something to keep you turning the page. Have to say I liked the simple style and was sufficiently engaged to overlook minor weaknesses in what I thought was a pretty sound debut from author Adam Baker.
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35 of 42 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Ripping Yarn, 25 Jan 2011
By 
Paolo Sammut - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Outpost (Paperback)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I love "end of the world" senarios. They are always fun, especially after a very congested drive home when I start actively wishing the population down. The apocalypse described in this book is a perennial favourite of journalists that is often featured in horror stories of this sort; that of the global pandemic. The one in this book is just slightly more nasty that swine flu was supposed to be and much much nastier than it actually was.

So, we have the end of the world, everyone dead and our cities experiencing better traffic flow but no people. Luckily all is not lost, one small group of 15 people survive in a semi-abandoned rig in the arctic ocean. These people (all somewhat disfunctional) need to get through the arctic winter then make their way back to civilisation (not being aware that civisation has been wiped out by the flu). As we find out they are all in for a less than fun suprise.

The adventure is very fast paced and this book is quite a page turner (370 odd pages in one afternoon and evening as I recover from a case of Swine flu). The plot is (like this genre) fairly convincing as long as you dont think too deeply; but then it is supposed to be fun (in a horrific kind of way).

I am not sure that I like the writing style however for this book as i find it overly morose and morbid. When the first line begins "Jane woke, stretched, and decided to kill herself" you know that you are not going to meet bunnies and puppies on this trip. Seriously though this is the sort of thing where each reader needs to decide for themselves. I enjoyed the story and found it fast paced and exciting; I just didnt like the characterisation very much, although once the story got going (which was quick) this ceased to be a concern of mine.

This is a solid enjoyable read which I am sure many people will really enjoy. It would make an excellent film so I hope the book gets optioned by a film studio.
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Outpost by Adam Baker (Paperback - 4 Aug 2011)
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