Podcast Review #78: The God Conspiracy

Title: The God Conspiracy
Author: Derek P Gilbert
Genre: Science Fiction/Conspiracy Theory
Released: 15 October 2009 – 10 November 2009
Located: Author’s SiteiTunes, Podiobooks
Formats Available: podcast, e-book, dead tree
Rating: PG-13 for violence

For one of the first times in a long time, I went browsing at Podiobooks simply to find something I hadn’t had recommended or heard a lot about. The God Conspiracy fit all of these requirements, so I subscribed.

So, on to the review.

Synopsis:

One e-mail. Five lines. 4,000 dead.

And it is only just beginning…

When a small boy in Iowa forwards a mysterious email from ‘God’ to a small group of friends, he unwittingly releases a trigger that sends blood pouring throughout his farming community.

Thousands more are dead across the country in dozens of simultaneous terror attacks and the government blames fundamentalists who want to trigger the Apocalypse.

FBI Agent Joe Unes reluctantly teams with reclusive Internet radio host Barney Ison (from Sharon K. Gilbert’s The Armageddon Strain) to expose the plot — and discovers that he’s not contending against flesh and blood. (stolen from Podiobooks.com)

Production: When you randomly pick a podcast, you never know what you’re getting yourself into in any of these categories. Simply stated without much camouflage, the production quality on The God Conspiracy was exceedingly well done. Minimalist in many ways, with musical intro and outro, with read lines in between. The audio quality was crisp and clear and there was no real issues with the production. Except one. One BIG one. If you notice from my description of the production above, something is missing. It was missing from the podcast as well. There was simply no audio cue, or any other way of telling, when the author jumped from one scene to another. One moment you’re listening to one story line and literally in the next breath your transported to something completely different. This was distracting, for me, in the extreme.

Only one area of concern, but it truly lowered the listening experience for me.

Grade: B

Cast: Mr. Gilbert does The God Conspiracy as a self read. The number of characters in the book are of a medium large quantity, and Mr. Gilbert kept the number of special voices to a minimum. Most of the cues to the action were received simply by the reading. I didn’t really have an issue with this at all and the story never really suffered for it.

Grade: A

Story: The God Conspiracy is unique in the podiofiction I’ve listened to in that it is the first that is overtly Christian in its delivery. Scott Roche’s Archangel series is more about Christian mythology where The God Conspiracy is continually rooted in biblical scriptures. I know I’ve all ready lost some of you with that statement. I guess that is fair. I hadn’t expected this level of Christian theology as I really hadn’t gleaned this from the synopsis. However, if you’re still with me, this story is in a strange ‘no man’s land’ for me in that it is also conspiracy theory and definitely not something I’ve heard before.

Grade: B

Verdict: The God Conspiracy is not heavily supernatural, page after page. There is a fair amount of conservative Christian theology presented. This story, well not for everyone (and what is?) will appeal to fans of Frank Piretti all the way to Janette Oke, and in my opinion, Mr. Gilbert is better than either.

Don’t forget, if you send an audio comment to me at Odin1eye at viewfromvalhalla dot com, I’ll include it in the podcast version of this episode next weekend. You can also leave voicemail, for this or any other story, at the Valhalla Hotline simply by calling 956-307-ODIN (6346)

Disclosure: I do not follow Mr. Gilbert on Twitter (indeed, I don’t know if he is even on Twitter), I’ve never conversed with him (at the time of this writing) and was offered nothing in return for this interview.

Comment Pages

There are 8 Comments to "Podcast Review #78: The God Conspiracy"

  • What? You mean you can just browse around Podiobooks.com and find good podcast novels? Who’d thunk it?

    Of course a lot of people may not be up for a novel with conservative Christian theology, but there is a place for all kinds in Speculative Fiction, IMHO. It is O.K. that all of it isn’t for everyone, authors just need to be aware when and where they may be limiting a books audience.

    • odin1eye says:

      I couldn’t agree with you more. A strange comparison perhaps, but i see this type of story being little different than erotica: they both have very targeted audiences. Q

  • Not having listened to this myself, I have read the description in Podiobooks and decided against it. Once I read that the forwarded email was from God and a fundamentalist group was getting involved, I assumed scriptures would be flowing. Seems that I was correct.

  • Thanks for the review. This is on my short list of titles to listen to. Time is so hard to come by that I usually read instead of listen, but this seemed intriguing. There are relatively few non-horror and non-science fiction thrillers on podiobooks that I always take an extra look at those, my favorite genre.

    The conservative Christian angle could very well wind up making me not finish it, but I usually don’t avoid a book just because of it. If it’s otherwise well done and doesn’t feel preachy or forced, it won’t be an issue.

    • odin1eye says:

      While listening NWO came to mind several times. The conspiracy/non horror thing definitely is a bridge between the two. However, the biblical angle is pretty strong, it didn’t bother me, but then again, that might just be me.

  • Scott Roche says:

    Thanks for the shout out.

    I’ll definitely have to give this one a listen.

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