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Gears of War: The Slab [Hardcover]

Karen Traviss
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Book Description

May 8 2012 Gears of War

Ten years after Emergence Day, as the Locust Horde advances on humanity’s last defended area—Ephyra—in a bloody war that has seen billions die, Marcus Fenix does the unthinkable: he defies orders and abandons his post during a critical battle in a bid to rescue his father, weapons scientist Adam Fenix. But Adam is buried in the rubble during a ferocious assault on the Fenix mansion, and Ephyra falls to the enemy. Marcus, grieving for a father everyone believes is dead, is court-martialed for dereliction of duty and sentenced to forty years in the Coalition of Ordered Government’s brutal maximum security prison, known simply as the Slab.

But Adam is very much alive, snatched from the destruction by the elite Onyx Guard on Chairman Richard Prescott’s orders. He’s now a long way from home and in a prison of his own—a COG doomsday bunker on the tropical island of Azura, a place hidden from the rest of Sera since the Pendulum Wars. His own guilty secret has been exposed: Adam knew the Locust existed deep below the surface of Sera long before Emergence Day, and were being driven from their tunnels by a lethal parasite known as the Lambent. Now he has to find a way to destroy the Lambent while the dwindling COG forces fight to hold back a growing Locust army that’s threatening to overrun the city.

As Adam struggles to find redemption in his comfortable island jail, Marcus seeks his own atonement in the squalid, closed world within the Slab’s granite walls. While Dom Santiago and Anya Stroud fight to get him released, ready to make any sacrifice to free him, Marcus gradually finds unexpected kinship among Sera’s most dangerous criminals—and a way to carry on his personal war against the Locust.

 “Adam, you knew this day would come.”

It was a familiar voice: silky, imperial, polished, and utterly human.

“Hello, Myrrah.” Adam Fenix found himself thinking of the terrible Locust food again. “You got my message, then.”

“And how right you were. We do need you. And we shall take you. I hope you’re not planning anything foolish. You have responsibilities, Adam.”

It would be a living death. The Locust Queen would never release him, even if he developed a countermeasure. But he didn’t deserve any better.

“I also have my service pistol.”

“And I can take your son at any time.”

He had the measure of her, then, and she had his. “You leave Marcus out of this. It’s a condition.” He opened the desk drawer and took out the handgun, a 9mm officer’s weapon. It made a distinctive clunk on the wooden desktop as he slammed it down. “If anything happens to him, I don’t care what happens to the rest of Sera.”

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About the Author

#1 New York Times bestselling author Karen Traviss has written four previous novels in the Gears of War series: Aspho Fields, Jacinto’s Remnant, Anvil Gate, and Coalition's End, and is the writer of Epic Games’s 2011 blockbuster video game sequel, Gears of War 3. She’s received critical acclaim for her award-nominated Wess'har series (City of Pearl, Crossing the Line, The World Before, Matriarch, Ally, and Judge) and for her groundbreaking Star Wars novels in the Republic Commando series (Hard Contact, Triple Zero, True Colors, Order 66, and 501st) and the Legacy of the Force series (Bloodlines, Sacrifice, and Revelation). Her novella, Human Weakness, appeared in the Halo anthology Evolutions. A former TV and newspaper journalist and defense correspondent, she lives in England.     

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5.0 out of 5 stars Must-have for Gearheads July 27 2012
By Stacie
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
If you've read the other Gears books then this one is a must have. The book is well written(as always) and has some interesting twists that are sure to make it difficult to put down.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.7 out of 5 stars  56 reviews
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars And the hits just keep on rolling... May 15 2012
By Tim L. - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Karen Traviss pens another superb entry in the Gears of War saga. This book is a prequel to the first Gears of War game, dealing none whatsoever with any time period after the opening scenes of the original game release. Traviss once again delivers a paramount performance, balancing the raw emotions brought about by war and death against hope and the sheer will to survive.

This is a book any Gearhead will enjoy, with plenty of backstory to connect certain plot lines, and make the reader rethink events that they witnessed in the previous GOW games. Loyal fans of the franchise will be rewarded with sly, often subtle hints of foreshadowing scattered throughout the book, and will have a few "Aha!" moments along the way. For example: the origin of the scar on Marcus Fenix's face is finally revealed. Traviss does a good job of fleshing out minor characters and giving them a history in the Gears universe, not just a recurring name in the series of books.

Basically, if you're already a fan of Gears of War--you need to purchase this book immediately. I would recommend playing the games and reading Karen Traviss's other work in the GOW universe before reading The Slab, but this book can still be enjoyed as an entry point for new readers.

Well worth the price. Any Gears fan needs to read this book, and the rest of Traviss's work.
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Another excellent addition to the Gears of War series. May 17 2012
By Jay M - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Karen Traviss has done an excellent job with the Gears universe so far, and The Slab is no exception.

The story is one of the best yet, detailing Marcus' time in the infamous Slab. It's dark, gritty, and has an air of hopelessness to it even though those who've played the videogames know the best result.

The book is easy to read and follow. Fans of the videogames be warned, this is more of a character-driven story. There's action scenes (including a nice little nod to the first game at the end,) but most of the book focuses on the characters. I found no problem with this, however, and couldn't put it down until the end.

I would give the book five stars, but what's holding me back is one tiny thing; we are teased answers to two of the big questions left at the end of Gears of War 3, but not given them!!

All in all, a great read. Hoping for a sequel, set after Gears 3! Please Karen!!
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Book May 12 2012
By John Dylewski - Published on
For anyone who has enjoyed the other books, you will love this one. Another great story for the series. I just hope these books keep coming out
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Purchased for the boy June 22 2012
By Dee - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
My boyfriend loves the Gears of War books and games, it only made sense for me to by him the last one (I believe...) ! He's rationing out the pages until the game comes out, but he's told me so far it's good !
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It was a great read. May 24 2012
By Play - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I am a huge fan of the game. So if you are too then you need to pick this book up. It fills in alot of the missing pieces the game leaves out. I can not say enough good things about Karen or her writing style. Its a must buy for all Gears fans.
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