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Burden of Sisyphus (Brink of Distinction Book 1) [Kindle Edition]

Jon Messenger
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (90 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Between the alien Alliance and the Terran Empire, a neutral zone stretches between the galaxies, a demilitarized zone that was established 150 years previous, following the Great War. The peace accord granted a semblance of peace to the universe. The peace, however, is a facade, and it is the responsibility of Michael Vance and his covert operations team to maintain that illusion.

Recently, the Alliance lost contact with one of their outposts near the neutral zone. Surveillance scans show an abandoned city and no signs of life. The Alliance does what it always does: send in the best. But an unexpected betrayal leaves Vance and his team stranded. Worse, the city that was supposed to be dead is quite alive. And the monsters that now roam its streets are slaughtering his team, one at a time.


Editorial Reviews

Review

"As far as the action goes, this novel hits the ground running. First chapter presents us with the Alliance covert team's attack on a Terran base. Human is the least interesting species in this story, as the Alliance members are of different races of aliens. I was absolutely enthralled with the Wyndgaarts' initiation ritual with their Voice. Jon Messenger has written a story that is set in a familiar ground but still excels in its originality. I found no flaw in its tight plot. I consider myself lucky to have read the first book of the series, as I would feel left behind if I started reading from Book 2 or 3. Though there ia a large cast of characters, each one in put his or her own rightful place. They are all well-developed and have so much room to grow. Book 2 and 3 of the series are already available, and I can't wait to read more about my favorite character, Keryn Riddell." - Readers' Favorite

About the Author

Jon Messenger (Born 1979 in London, England) serves as an United States Army Captain in the Medical Service Corps. Since graduating from the University of Southern California in 2002, writing Science Fiction has remained his passion, a passion that has continued through two deployments to Iraq, a humanitarian relief mission to Haiti, and an upcoming deployment to Afghanistan. Jon wrote the "Brink of Distinction" trilogy, of which "Burden of Sisyphus" is the first book, while serving a 16-month deployment in Baghdad, Iraq.

Product Details

  • File Size: 3284 KB
  • Print Length: 360 pages
  • Publisher: Crimson Tree Publishing (September 4, 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00EZV85WK
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #13,385 Free in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Free in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
24 of 26 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Waiting for the next one, somewhat patiently June 15, 2011
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This is an e-book by a new author that will likely appeal to fans of science fiction or military novels. It is a fast read; I found myself at the end of the book, surprised at how quickly I got there, and disappointed to have the experience over. I am looking forward to the next book enough that I sent an email to the author asking for his anticipated release date for the next installment (June, 2011). I hope to provide honest impressions in the space that follows.

My first impression in turning the pages on my reader was that the author has spent time in the military lately. He accurately depicted the esprit-de-corps, forced bravado, and ambivalence towards going on high risk missions that are true of my own military experience. The interactions between squad members could easily have been modeled after Soldiers I know, and the almost incapacitating responsibilities of commanders balancing mission with love for his men is present in this text.

The next thing I noticed were some spelling errors- not of the sort picked up by spell check. Likely transparent to the less anal-retentive reader, I am sure these five or seven errors will be corrected in the next revision or when the book goes to print.

I was pleasantly surprised at the maturity the author demonstrated in character development. I expected an ingenue writer to introduce his main characters, and then spend a great deal of time introducing them. I was shocked and dismayed to see some of my favorites killed off, and some that I thought to be sub-characters rise to the focus. It worked- but I really liked some of the folks who didn't make it.
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Eager for the next book... July 17, 2011
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This book is truly an enjoyable read. I finished the book quickly, as it captures the reader's attention and interest with great ease. I immediately wanted to read more by the author, and found that this was Mr. Messenger's first book. Luckily, another is set to release in June 2011. A quick synopsis of my opinion is below.

The pace, character and story development are spot-on. Messenger introduces a series of characters and alien races without the burden of extreme detail. Yet, I found myself remembering each character's race, quirks and military role with ease. The author has certainly served in the military or has been embedded with them. His ability to express the camaraderie, devotion and swagger that military personnel embody is evident in his writing. I felt as if I knew many of the characters and actually compared them to those that I have served with in my own 24 year military career. Messenger also challenges the common occurrence in many novels that keep likeable characters alive. He depicts the realistic aspect of the battlefield where good Soldiers die regardless of their level of training. This does not detract the reader at all, but transfers the hope of survival to other equally interesting characters.

Messenger's style pulls the reader into the conflicts within the book. I found myself choosing sides during rivalries, whether between the students at the Flight Academy or the competitiveness between infantry and special operations. The characters and situations are very personable and summon past experiences from the reader. I highly recommend this book for any genre, since the character development transcends the sci-fi and military realms. I eagerly await the release of the remaining books in the Brink of Distinction series.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Delightful Burden September 5, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition
It takes a lot of work to be an Indie Author these days...

Even with that hard work, and a generous application of patience, it can still take a long time to be discovered and build a following. People simply don't know which books to choose amid the million or so available out there.

And, that's a shame, because there are good writers out there who should be discovered by more readers; Jon Messenger is one of them.

Jon and I both have short stories that were published in Paranormal Anthology With a Twist. We don't know each other very well, but I enjoyed his story TRUTH OR DARE (my favorite of that book), and decided I would give one of his full-length novels a try.

Perpetually busy with work, family, and life...it took me a few months...but I finally found some time and read Burden of Sisyphus.

The first 2-3 chapters were decent. I liked the ideas, but the setting and some of the character interactions didn't appeal to me. Maybe because it had a sort of YA feel to it...I'm not sure.

I kept reading though, and soon enough, I found I had really gotten into the story and the majority of the characters. Sure, there are battles and some military-centric scenes, but they aren't overbearing. They work perfectly for the story, much as some battles in Star Wars work perfectly for it, but I wouldn't think of Star Wars as "primarily" a military movie...it's just a great story.

The characters are great; they're real and quirky and imperfect.

The plot is good, the pace is good, and there are some surprises in store for the reader. It gets better and better through the book.

As others have said, if you like the Sci-Fi and military blend, this is the book for you. But...
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Awesome beginning to a great story!
Published 2 months ago by Steven H.
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
arrived as described and in good condition, and ready for use. Will make a great gift.
Published 3 months ago by John Eagen
5.0 out of 5 stars What an amazing story teller!
This book had me entranced from start to finish. This is not a genre I would not have expected to like, but can honestly say it is amazing. Read more
Published 3 months ago by esther elisabeth manes
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic
Either I am becoming more emotional and/or Jon is one hell of a writer. I would like to think he is a hell of a writer. Never had tears in my eyes reading Sci-fi before. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Ray Steele
4.0 out of 5 stars Neat read
This is an interesting, addictive sci-fi novel I recommend to anyone who just wants a quick relaxation read. Read more
Published 5 months ago by hatless
5.0 out of 5 stars Forget Sci-Fi from the human perspective, let's hang out with the...
I was really taken aback when I started this book, because for once the protagonists are aliens, while most of the humans are enemies. Read more
Published 5 months ago by ADremelineJunkie
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book
Fantastic engaging story. It sucked me in and kept me up late reading it.
Published 6 months ago by Amazon Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars Good sci-fi, had a little trouble following the different ...
Good sci-fi ,had a little trouble following the different life forms in my mind but at the end of book renderings of them helped clarify.
Published 7 months ago by L. Adams
5.0 out of 5 stars I am now a fan!!!! Very ...
I am now a fan!!!! Very well written with likeable characters and full plot and story. It kept me glued to my IPad!!! Now to get the rest of the series!!!
Published 7 months ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Page turner! Once you started reading, you don't ...
Page turner! Once you started reading, you don't want to put it down!
Published 7 months ago by Amazon Customer
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More About the Author

Jon Messenger (Born 1979 in London, England) serves as an United States Army Major in the Medical Service Corps. Since graduating from the University of Southern California in 2002, writing Science Fiction has remained his passion, a passion that has continued through multiple combat and humanitarian deployments. Jon wrote the "Brink of Distinction" trilogy, of which "Burden of Sisyphus" is the first book, while serving a 16-month deployment in Baghdad, Iraq.

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