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Extinction Machine: A Joe Ledger Novel [Kindle Edition]

Jonathan Maberry
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (135 customer reviews)

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Book Description

In Extinction Machine, the fifth Joe Ledger book by Jonathan Maberry, the DMS must go up against someone--or something--in search of new technology that could bring about world war

The President of the United States vanishes from the White House.

A top-secret prototype stealth fighter is destroyed during a test flight. Witnesses on the ground say that it was shot down by a craft that immediately vanished at impossible speeds.

All over the world reports of UFOs are increasing at an alarming rate.

And in a remote fossil dig in China dinosaur hunters have found something that is definitely not of this earth. There are rumors of alien-human hybrids living among us.
Joe Ledger and the Department of Military Sciences rush headlong into the heat of the world's strangest and deadliest arms race, because the global race to recover and retro-engineer alien technologies has just hit a snag. Someone--or something--wants that technology back.

Books In This Series (6 Books)
Complete Series

  • Editorial Reviews

    From Booklist

    *Starred Review* Get ready to have your mind boggled. In the fifth Joe Ledger novel, Maberry provides explanations—plausible, logically consistent, tantalizing explanations—for alien abductions, UFO sightings, the 1947 “flying saucer” crash at Roswell, and those pesky rumors of secret technologies reverse-engineered from extraterrestrial devices. When Ledger and his Department of Military Sciences team—they defend the U.S. from science-based terrorism—are tasked to investigate a wave of cyberattacks, they wind up in a race against time to stop a brilliant and powerful megalomaniac. From the first Ledger novel, 2009’s Patient Zero, the author has tackled such subjects as zombies and bioengineered mythical creatures, but he never lets the fantastic elements get out of hand. The Ledger novels are exciting sf thrillers that just happen to involve stuff that’s a little out there (and Joe himself is a realistically portrayed soldier who, from time to time, has a hard time dealing with the weirdnesses that surround him). Readers familiar with the series will need no prodding to check this new one out, and newcomers, immediately upon finishing the book, will want to hunt down the earlier installments. --David Pitt


    The Ledger novels are exciting sf thrillers that just happen to involve stuff that's a little out there (and Joe himself is a realistically portrayed soldier who, from time to time, has a hard time dealing with the weirdnesses that surround him). Readers familiar with the series will need no prodding to check this new one out, and newcomers, immediately upon finishing the book, will want to hunt down the earlier installments. (Booklist, starred review)

    Maberry delivers plenty of action and intrigue. (Publishers Weekly on Assassin's Code)

    A fast-paced, brilliantly written novel. The hottest thriller of the New Year! In The King of Plagues, Jonathan Maberry reigns supreme. (Brad Thor, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Athena Project, on The King of Plagues)

    While Joe has announced his retirement, eager readers can look forward to one more volume in this humorous, over-the-top cross-genre trilogy. (Publishers Weekly on The Dragon Factory)

    Like a video game on steroids mixed with The Island of Dr. Moreau. (Booklist on The Dragon Factory)

    Product Details

    • File Size: 832 KB
    • Print Length: 448 pages
    • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0312552211
    • Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin (March 26, 2013)
    • Sold by: Macmillan
    • Language: English
    • ASIN: B0096QZ6PI
    • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
    • X-Ray:
    • Word Wise: Not Enabled
    • Lending: Not Enabled
    • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #75,511 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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    Customer Reviews

    4.6 out of 5 stars
    4.6 out of 5 stars
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    Most Helpful Customer Reviews
    10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars Great Story in a Great Series!! April 9, 2013
    Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
    If you haven't read any of the other books in this terrific sci-fi action series, try to start with Patient Zero. Joe Ledger and company hook you from the first page and help explain some of the back-story.
    Extinction Machine is fast moving, shoot 'em up, blow 'em up, who dun it. One new character has a secret you can see coming a mile away, but she adds nicely to Joe's story. Mr. Mayberry comes up with some very interesting bad guys and he certainly doesn't disappoint here. The less dark tone of this novel (compared to some Joe books) was definitely a positive thing for me as well. I kept checking how far along I was on my Kindle because I didn't want it to end.
    If you like sci-fi, high action thrillers, there is no better series than this one. Check it out...
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    2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars Best of the Series June 23, 2013
    Previously, Ledger and his team from the Military Science Division have battled vampires, zombies, Genetically enhanced creatures and assorted terrorists. It seems almost natural for him to eventually have to contend with aliens. The central premise of the book is that the Roswell incident in 1947 was indeed a UFO crash and that there have been many other crashes over the years. Since then, all countries have been desperately trying to combine parts from different crashes to build one working model. However when the components are assembled, they inevitably explode in a spectacular fashion causing horrible death and devastation. China and America are the furthest along in this new arms race and secret leaders within each county will stop at nothing to assure that their county comes out on top.

    When the President of the US vanishes from the White House, it is unclear what has happened to him. Was he kidnapped by terrorists or a foreign power? Or, could he conceivably have been the victim of a UFO abduction? In either case, is this a declaration of war? Ledger must figure out what is going on and do what is necessary to prevent the death of over a billion people.

    I hope this series continues as each book is more exciting than the last.
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    2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars Ah Mr. Maberry has done it again February 12, 2014
    By E. Peck
    Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
    I have read all of the Joe Ledger series and love them all, currently anxiously awaiting the next.

    First let me say how much I ADORE Jonathan Maberry's writing. He keeps me engaged and I cant stop until it's done. If you like Military, INTENSE Fighting, Secret Gov't Agencies, Creatures, Zombies, Mad Scientists, Aliens etc then the Joe Ledger series (all of them) are for you. I recommend reading from book 1 to this but you dont HAVE too, each story is its own with some recollection of the last, I find it def helps to understand Joe's character better and the others if you follow from book 1.

    This book is along similar lines to others in the past with mad scientists but has more alien vibes (not gonna give anything away) That said my personal favorite of the series is Patient Zero, but thats bc I'm a zombie FREAK (I recommend his "Rot and Ruin" series and "Dead of Night" if you are into Zombies)

    Keep the books coming Mr. Maberry, I look forward to them.
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    2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars Loved it, what can I say? March 21, 2014
    Format:Kindle Edition
    It amazes me how Jonathan Maberry can maintain his level of quality with his Joe Ledger series. Each time I review his books, I sound like a broken record stuck on the same lyrics, but here I go again. Excellent story, great characters, outstanding pacing, blah, blah, blah, you see my point. Read this book... Better yet, read the entire damn series.
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    1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
    Of course, the President is going to be kidnapped when Joe is on vacation -- Of course. However, a tangle of floating lights and a crop circle on the Whitehouse lawn aren't the usual for even the Department of Military Sciences. And, with the Vice-President now in charge, Joe and the gang have got to save uncountable lives while being framed as public enemy number one. It's hard to stay ahead of the bad guys, when Mind Reader keeps fouling up.

    Jonathan Maberry's Joe Ledger novels have treated us to plagues, rabid terrorists, and zombies. Now, it's time to get the "truth" about Area 51, UFOs, hybrid humans, alien abductions, and many more topics that you've written off as "conspiracy theories" or "science fiction." Scarily enough, his explanations are plausable, and, if nothing else, will leave you wondering how the government exploits informational leaks.

    "Or was this one of those things, like the Seven Kings, where it was misinformation, layered over disinformation, layered over insane conspiracy theory mumbo-jumbo."

    Some portions of this novel pack a literal punch to the gut, they are so stunningly violent. Other parts are perhaps too full of drawn-out scientific explanations. The best part is the guesswork. What will the next chapter reveal -- explosive action or plot-pumping fact-finding?


    * Cameo interviews with Coast-to-Coast AM's host George Norry and author Bill Birnes
    * Mr. Church shows emotions
    * Amazing never-before-seen tech and big explosions
    * Ghost gets to "hunt"
    * Serious threat to the DMS that I can't over-exaggerate
    * Joe gets a new love interest: "I'm telling you man, she's like a hot version of Yoda.
    Read more ›
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    Most Recent Customer Reviews
    5.0 out of 5 stars Aliens?
    Fine story of Love of Death. The world is on the brink of extinction. Joe Ledger must overcome his psychological problems to accomplish the impossible, save the world..
    Published 3 days ago by Dad
    5.0 out of 5 stars I love the entire Joe Ledger series
    I love the entire Joe Ledger series. The stories are engrossing and i can't stop reading once I start them. Read more
    Published 5 days ago by Amazon Customer
    5.0 out of 5 stars a+
    As always- joe ledger satisfies! Loved the nod to Indiana jones! " Fall down 7 times, get up 8 "
    Published 18 days ago by NurseBecca
    5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
    Loved it !
    Published 1 month ago by Blaine Galster
    5.0 out of 5 stars Another masterpiece by Mr. Mayberry. Each book in ...
    Another masterpiece by Mr. Mayberry. Each book in this series brings us further down the rabbit hole along with the characters. Read more
    Published 2 months ago by Timothy J. Sample
    5.0 out of 5 stars Another great book in the series
    Another tale in the Joe Ledger series continues to deliver. The series is so much fun from Zombies, to vampires, to aliens I’m wondering what is coming next. Read more
    Published 2 months ago by Drew (@drewsant)
    5.0 out of 5 stars Another kick ass read.
    Another great read by Mayberry. Spoiler alert for those who believe in spoilers.

    This one starts with the Captain Joe Ledger and Echo squad of the DMS in Wolf Trap,... Read more
    Published 2 months ago by Claudette
    5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best yet - Jonathan Maberry is on fire
    One of the best yet - Jonathan Maberry is on fire! X-Files style events, and mysterious forces are no match for one of the biggest bad-asses on paper - Joe Ledger!
    Published 3 months ago by Steven McCullough
    5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome
    This is a refreshing series I love it
    The characters are well written and the action is excellent......much better than the romantic crap out now
    Published 3 months ago by Leah Perry
    4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
    Not bad.
    Published 3 months ago by M. Horn
    Search Customer Reviews

    More About the Author

    JONATHAN MABERRY is a New York Times best-selling and multiple Bram Stoker Award-winning horror and thriller author, comic book writer, magazine feature writer, playwright, content creator and writing teacher/lecturer. His books have been sold to more than a dozen countries.

    He writes in several genres. His young adult fiction includes ROT & RUIN (2011; now in development for film; named in Booklist's Ten Best Horror Novels for Young Adults, a Bram Stoker and Pennsylvania Keystone to Reading winner; nominee for several state Teen Book Awards; winner of the Cybils Award, the Eva Perry Mock Printz medal, Dead Letter Best Novel Award, and four Melinda Awards); DUST & DECAY (winner of the 2011 Bram Stoker Award; FLESH & BONE (September 11, 2012; and FIRE & ASH (2013). His thrillers include The Joe Ledger Thrillers from St. Martin's Griffin (PATIENT ZERO, 2009, winner of the Black Quill and a Bram Stoker Award finalist for Best Novel; THE DRAGON FACTORY, 2010; HE KING OF PLAGUES, 2011; ASSASSIN'S CODE, 2011; EXTINCTION MACHINE, 2013; CODE ZER0, 2014, and JOE LEDGER: THE MISSING FILES, 2011 from Blackstone Audio.

    His horror novels include The Pine Deep Trilogy from Pinnacle Books (GHOST ROAD BLUES, 2006, winner of the Bram Stoker Award for Best First Novel; DEAD MAN'S SONG, 2007; and BAD MOON RISING, 2008), as well as DEAD OF NIGHT, 2011 and its forthcoming sequel, FALL OF NIGHT, 2014. And the movie novelization, THE WOLFMAN, 2010, winner of the Scribe Award for Best Adaptation.

    He is also editor and co-author of V-WARS, a shared-world vampire anthology from IDW.

    Jonathan was an expert on the History Channel documentary, ZOMBIES: A Living History. He will also be featured in That $#(!'ll Rot Your Brain: How the Monster Kids Transformed Popular Culture, a forthcoming documentary on horror movies directed by Robert Tinnell.

    His many nonfiction works include VAMPIRE UNIVERSE (Citadel Press, 2006); THE CRYPTOPEDIA (Citadel, 2007 -winner of the Bram Stoker Award for Outstanding Achievement in Nonfiction; co-authored by David F. Kramer); ZOMBIE CSU: The Forensics of the Living Dead (Winner of the Hinzman and Black Quill Awards and finalist for a Stoker Award; 2008); THEY BITE! (2009 co-authored by David F. Kramer); WANTED UNDEAD OR ALIVE (2010; Bram Stoker finalist; co-authored by Janice Gable Bashman); THE VAMPIRE SLAYERS FIELD GUIDE TO THE UNDEAD (2001, written under the pen name of Shane MacDougall); ULTIMATE JUJUTSU (Strider Nolan, 2001); ULTIMATE SPARRING (Strider Nolan, 2000); JUDO AND YOU (Kendall Hunt 1991); and many others.

    He writes a variety of projects for Marvel Comics involving CAPTAIN AMERICA, BLACK PANTHER, DOOMWAR, WOLVERINE, DEADPOOL, THE X-MEN, FANTASTIC FOUR, the NY Times bestselling MARVEL ZOMBIES RETURN, MARVEL UNIVERSE vs THE PUNISHER. MARVEL UNIVERSE vs WOLVERINE and the upcoming MARVEL UNIVERSE vs THE AVENGERS. All of Jonathan's comic book collections are released as Graphic Novel collections within a month or two of individual comic publication.

    Recent short stories include "A Footnote in the Black Budget" (MADNESS OF CTHULHU, 2013), "Pegleg and Paddy Save the World" (HISTORY IS DEAD, Permuted Press 2007), "Doctor Nine" (KILLERS, Swimming Kangaroo Press, 2008; and reprinted in THE STORIES (in) BETWEEN Edited by Greg Schauer, Jeanne B. Benzel, and W.H. Horner. Fantasist Enterprises, 2009), "Sherlock Holmes and the Adventure of the Greenbrier Ghost" (LEGENDS OF THE MOUNTAIN STATE 2, Bloodletting Books, 2008), "Clean Sweeps" (AND SO IT BEGINS, Dark Quest Books, 2008), "Family Business" (THE NEW DEAD, St. Martin's Press, 2010), "Like Part of the Family" (NEW BLOOD edited by Patrick Thomas and Diane Raetz, Padwolf Press, 2010), "Zero Tolerance" (THE LIVING DEAD 2, Night Shade Books), "Flint and Steel" (GI JOE: COBRA WARS, 2011), "Saint John" (THE MONSTER'S CORNER, 2011, St. Martin's), "Spellcaster 2.0" (An Apple for the Creature, Ace Books, 2012), "Jack and Jill" (21st Century Dead, St. Martin's Griffin,2012), "The Death Song of Dwar Guntha" (Under the Moons of Mars: New Adventures on Barsoom, 2012, Simon & Schuster), "The Wind Through the Fence" (an original e-story available for all e-readers), "Property Condemned" (scheduled for the premier issue of NIGHTMARE MAGAZINE), "Chokepoint" (included in THE UNINVITED, Vol 2), and many others. His essay, "Take Me To Your Leader" is included in the nonfiction book, TRIUMPH OF THE WALKING DEAD: Robert Kirkman's Zombie Epic on Page and Screen edited by James Lowder (BenBella Books/Smart Pop, 2011).

    In 2012 Blackstone Audio released two collections of Jonathan's short stories: Tales from the Fire Zone and Hungry Tales.

    All of Jonathan's novels are available on audio, including the audio-only collection, JOE LEDGER: THE MISSING FILES (Blackstone), which includes the short stories "Countdown", "Zero Tolerance", "Deep Dark", "Material Witness" and "Dog Days". Another Joe Ledger short, "Mad Science", will appear in the audio anthology LIAR LIAR from The Liars Club.

    Jonathan is the co-creator (with Laura Schrock) of ON THE SLAB, an entertainment news show in development by Stage 9 for ABC Disney / Stage 9. He was also a 'blog correspondent' on Sony's zombie-themed web show 'WOKE UP DEAD'; and was a recurring character on Laura Schrock's 'IT'S TODD'S SHOW'.

    Jonathan's Big Scary Blog ( focuses on the publishing industry. Jonathan's interviews include Sandra Brown, Gayle Lynds, Alafair Burke, Charlaine Harris, James Rollins, Harlan Coben, Jeff Abbott, John Saul, Jonathan Kellerman, Barry Eisler, CJ Box, Laurell K. Hamilton, Jack Ketchum, Tom Piccarilli, Dale Brown, Kevin J. Anderson, Joe Lansdale, Peter Straub, Ramsey Campbell, Carrie Ryan, and many other best-selling authors.

    He is a frequent keynote speaker, guest of honor and workshop leader at genre cons, libraries, writers conferences and publishing industry events, including KeyCon, ThrillerFest, Zombie Fest, Heather Graham's The Writers for New Orleans, Central Coast Writers Conference, NeCon, NY Comic Con, Texas Library Association Annual Conference, Sisters in Crime, BackSpace, PennWriters, Dragon*Con, PhilCon, Horror-Realm, Boucher Con, HorrorFind, Monster Mania, Philadelphia Writers Conference, Balticon, Romance Writers of America, American Library Association, The Write Stuff, Hypericon, AnthoCon, KillerCon, NAIBA, LunaCon, and many others.

    Jonathan has sold more than 1,200 feature articles and 3,000 columns; as well as greeting cards, song lyrics, poetry, technical manuals, call-floor scripts, and two plays, including Tales from the Fire Zone. He is developing a psychological thriller novel based on that play.

    Jonathan is a Contributing Editor for The Big Thrill (the newsletter of the International Thriller Writers), and is a member of SFWA, IAMTW, MWA, SCBWI, SFWA and HWA, as well as a jurist for the Edgar and Stoker Awards.

    Jonathan was the Executive Director of the Writers Room of Bucks County (2005-06) and co-owner of the Writers Corner USA (2006-2009). Jonathan regularly visits local middle schools, high schools and colleges to talk about books, reading, publishing and the writing life. He is a board member of the River Union Stage, a professional equity theater based in Stockton, New Jersey.

    Jonathan is a founding member of The Liars Club, a group of networking publishing professionals that includes celebrated authors Merry Jones, Gregory Frost, Jon McGoran, Ed Pettit, Dennis Tafoya, Keith Strunk, Don Lafferty, Kelly Simmons, Marie Lamba, Solomon Jones, Stephen Susco, Chuck Wendig, Sara Shepard, William Lashner, and Laura Schrock. The Liars Club works to support booksellers, raise awareness and support for public libraries, and cultivate a joy of reading and books. The late NY Times bestseller L. A. Banks was a founding member of the Liars Club.

    On the last Sunday of every month Jonathan hosts the Writers Coffeehouse, a free three-hour open-agenda networking and discussion session for writers of all genres and levels of skill. The event is held at the Barnes & Noble in Willow Grove Pennsylvania. The Liars Club has begun launching additional Writers Coffeehouses throughout the region.

    Jonathan has been a popular writing teacher and career counselor for writers for the last two decades. He teaches a highly regard series of classes and workshops including Write Your Novel in Nine Months, Act Like a Writer, Revise & Sell, Experimental Writing for Teens, and others. Many of his students have gone on to obtain representation and/or publish in short and novel-length fiction, magazine feature writing, nonfiction books, TV, film, and comics.

    In 2004 Jonathan was inducted into the International Martial Arts Hall of Fame largely because of his extensive writings in that field.

    Jonathan lives in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, with his wife, Sara Jo, to whom he dedicates all of his published works, and their dog, Rosie. His stepson, Sam West-Mensch, serves a general manager of Jonathan's writing business.

    Visit his website/blog and sign up for his free newsletter at,

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