A Review of Alien: Out of the Shadows by Tim Lebbon

The events of Out of the Shadows take place right after Ellen Ripley is rescued from hyper sleep on board the Nostromo. This story is a canonical story that takes place in between the Alien film franchise installments 1 and 2, Alien and Aliens. It is now 37 years later and all Ripley wants to do is get back to earth to see her daughter who was 11 when she left. It is quite apparent after she is revived that the android that let the alien escape aboard the Nostromo has infiltrated the computer system after his body was destroyed. He is now hell bent on getting a xenomorph into a new human host so he can bring it and Ripley back to the corporation he works for on Earth, Weyland-Yutani.

I listened to this book in audiobook format. The first chapter is kind of slow as characters are introduced and background is established but after that this book is a non stop roller coaster thrill ride. It has every element of an Alien movie without the visual. But in this dialog driven story, you have the film running through your mind in real time. I was highly impressed.

As a full cast audio drama this works perfectly. Sigourney Weaver did not reprise her role of Ellen Ripley but the woman they got to voice the character was phenomenal and I had a hard time believing that it wasn’t Sigourney. I’m still not sure if I do. The characters were well developed and I began to like them enough to be affected if one of them died. I would say that the only real problem with the audio is that they used some radio transmissions and those were not clear enough. Some were obviously meant to be unintelligible but some had vital info that was really hard to understand.

Overall, I would give it a 5 out of 5. If you are a fan of the Alien franchise you will love this. It was fun, fast paced, and suspenseful. It ends on a cliffhanger and I absolutely can not wait to get the next audio book. This is one that I think would definitely be better in audio rather than book format. It’s set up like a radio program and puts me in mind of the suspense of classic radio programs like War of the Worlds. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

 

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