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Haywire by [Macumber, Justin R.]
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Haywire Kindle Edition

4.3 out of 5 stars 73 customer reviews

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Length: 278 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Editorial Reviews


"A riproaring adventure through the galaxy, full of sound and fury, yet at its center it is a surprisingly touching commentary on what it is to be human."
-- Philippa Ballantine, author of "Geist" and co-author of "Phoenix Rising (Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences)"

"Justin Macumber's HAYWIRE is a thrill ride from first blood to closing sigh. I found it difficult to put down."
-- Nathan Lowell, creator of the "Golden Age of the Solar Clipper" and the "Tanyth Fairport Adventures"

"HAYWIRE is sure to satisfy cravings for Saturday matinee high adventure space fantasy."
-- Matthew Wayne Selznick, author of the "Sovereign Era" storyworld

"A thrilling chase through a superbly realized solar system. Enhanced warriors, space pirates, galactic threats and more make this a powerful debut from a strong new voice in speculative fiction."
-- Alan Baxter, author of "RealmShift" and "MageSign"

"An action-packed sci-fi thriller that will keep you up late into the night!"
-- David Wood, author of "The Zombie-Driven Life" and the "Dane Maddock Adventures"

"HAYWIRE is filled with epic battles, plot surprises, and extreme-but-believable science fiction ... a rock `em, sock `em, thrill ride that would make a great film or multi-part TV drama. Reminiscent of early Star Wars in terms of fun and intensity."
-- Lloyd Ritchey, author of STORMDRAGON

About the Author

Justin Macumber is the author of STILL WATER, HAYWIRE, and the BORN OF FIRE urban fantasy series. When not hard at work on his next story he hosts the popular Dead Robots' Society podcast. He and his lovely wife live in the Dallas/Fort Worth metroplex along with their motley pack of dogs and cats that they think of as their children. Visit him online at and

Product Details

  • File Size: 960 KB
  • Print Length: 278 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1470099152
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Gryphonwood Press; 3 edition (December 12, 2013)
  • Publication Date: December 12, 2013
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B007HVVC7A
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #991,834 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Hello Justin Macumber... I think I love you.

Of course, I mean that in a completely platonic, hero worship kind of way. Actually, I've been a faithful listener to his Dead Robots Podcast for a year or so now, and so I was getting regular updates about the release of this novel and what he thought about it as he went through and edited the thing before its release.

Now, I've done the thing before where I either follow an author online, or listen to them via podcast before I read anything by them and it puts me in a weird position as a reader. I think diving into all the minutia of an author's online persona after you've become a fan is one thing, but to become a fan of the personality first can taint my enjoyment of what they write. It can also make me feel conflicted if I don't enjoy their story.

So, when I got this novel, I did put off reading it for a few weeks because I just didn't want to read and be disappointed. It would be horrible for me if that happened.

I needn't have worried. Justin Macumber is a pro. A real pro. This novel is tight, action packed, well plotted, and emotionally satisfying. It doesn't feel like a writer who still has a long ways to go to tell a compelling story. He's arrived.

The plot itself is great. The Titans, super-soldiers created to fend off a alien force that threatened to destroy humanity a century ago have gone off into the larger galaxy to hunt down and destroy those that tried to exterminate humanity. But while out there, they become the victims of a nano-virus that turns these super-soldiers to to rampaging mad men, and they return to the Sol system hell bent on destroying everything here.

All that is backstory, and doesn't serve as a spoiler I don't think.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
HAYWIRE is a fun, fast-paced sci-fi adventure populated with compelling characters moving through a detailed, believable world. I truly enjoyed it from beginning to end, and would love to see further novels set in this same world.

First up on the list of things I enjoyed are definitely the characters. I bonded with them all immediately, and felt like they came to life easily and smoothly. Even the minor characters who only stuck around for a few chapters were enjoyable. Meanwhile, I was surprised by how quickly the main characters all became dear to my heart, carrying me along with them as they journeyed through terrible conflicts that, in some cases, they did not come out on top of. (There may or may not have been some teary-eyed moments while I was reading.) I also enjoyed how easily the author balances an unusually large cast of characters without neglecting any of them, or focusing overmuch on characters that weren't central to the plot. A lot of times authors will spend so much time "fleshing out" a minor character I don't really care about that it makes me lose interest in reading. Not so with HAYWIRE.

Next, we have the world. I absolutely loved the fact that it seemed what I term "practically futuristic". A lot of sci-fi fans love worlds that are heavily laden with intense techno-babble and detailed schematics for every little thing that people use. Me, not so much. While I have no problem with the occasional bit of techno-jargon, I prefer a world that feels natural, like the world I've grown up in, where technology follows human needs and hobbies just as much as it follows scientific pursuits. Additionally, the technology behind the Titans was simple, and at the same time amazingly cool.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I've known about Justin Macumber for a couple of years, having been a fan of the Dead Robots Society podcast that he co-hosts. Until this year though, I hadn't read any of his fiction. When I found out that he had a book called Haywire coming out I was naturally interested in what it was like. He had spent two years or thereabouts talking about writing, his progress and process, and interviewing some truly excellent people in the business. I wanted to know if any of that wisdom had rubbed off on him. I'm happy to say that it looks like it did.

Before I get into the why and wherefores, let me tell you a little about the book. Humanity was on the brink of destruction thanks to a race known as the Hezrin. Thanks to one man's brilliance and the bravery of a host of men and women they were able to push them back. The invention of nanites turned these soldiers into practically unstoppable forces known as the Titans. A century passes and the Titans have passed into memory. A band of space pirates, wannabe young rocker Shawn Campbell, and his Titan obsessed mother Dr. Alicia Campbell discover that forgotten does not mean gone. One of the Titans returns with a horror story. The Hezrin were defeated, but left behind a virus that has turned the quasi-deities into bloodthirsty monsters and now they're on their way home with destruction on their minds.

From there, chaos, explosions, chases, and general mayhem ensue. If this were a movie it would be a balls to the wall action set piece, but that's not all. There's a heart under all of the spectacle. The relationship between Shawn and his mother is anything but healthy. It's complicated by divorce and a new boyfriend in her life (and by all the impending doom). Watching them rebuild it is believable and touching.
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