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Audio Book Review


Army of One


Author: Ian Edginton
Read by: Kai Owen
RRP: £10.20
ISBN: 978 1 4458 7192 9
Available 08 March 2012

Washington D.C., post-Miracle. The city has been hit by a spate of very unusual serial killings. The victims are different ages and genders and their locations vary, but each body has one thing in common - it has been reduced to a dried-up, desiccated husk. Special Agent Lucas Avery has dealt with some tricky puzzles in his time, but this is stranger than anything he’s ever encountered. His one lead is a pair of names: “Gwen” and “Rhys”... For Gwen Cooper and Rhys Williams, still recovering from the recent traumatic events that shook the world, life is about to get difficult and dangerous again. For it’s not just Homeland Security on their trail, but something else - something alien, terrifying and deadly...

With no sign of Torchwood returning to television, AudioGO is releasing a selection of original talking books to tide fans over. Each one-hour release takes place after the events of Miracle Day, and features a different character or set of characters from the series - those characters that are still left standing, that is. Army of One focuses on Gwen and Rhys, and is read by Kai Owen, who played the latter on screen.

Despite the Washington setting (Rhys says that he and Gwen are on holiday, though it is likely they are actually still in the USA following the funeral of Esther Drummond, given their actions in the opening scenes), this story feels more like an episode from the first couple of seasons than Miracle Day. The plot is a stand-alone affair, though it is loosely connected with the effects of the Miracle. The villain of the piece knows Gwen from her old Torchwood days, and there’s a flashback to a time (probably during Series 2) when Owen, Tosh and Ianto were still alive.

The mixture of accents is uneasy on the ear at times - Owen uses his native Welsh inflection for the bulk of the narrative, but he has a go at several American characters. His impersonation of Ianto is good, though.

Jack is due to reappear in a couple of audio books’ time, but it’s a shame that we don’t get to hear what he’s up to here, not even a description of how he and Gwen parted company following Esther’s funeral. Similarly, there’s no word on how Rex is coping with the recent deaths of so many colleagues and his own new-found immortality - he gets a name check, but does not appear.

Ian Edginton’s story is a gruesome but slight affair, but it at least shows that Torchwood has more life left in it than a dried-up, desiccated husk.


Richard McGinlay

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