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Ashes of the Unspeakable – Audiobook Review

Review/Post Reading Time: 5 minutes

Ashes of the Unspeakable Book Synopsis / Plot Intro

Ashes of the Unspeakable is book two of The Borrowed World series. After wide-scale terrorist attacks brought down much of the United States’ infrastructure, including our electrical grid and the ability to produce fuel, society broke down fast.

Theft, killing and hiding in fear became the “new norm” in populated areas. Police were no longer controlling any of it. Inmates were released since there was no way to feed the incarcerated criminals.

After Jim Powell, Gary and Randi left Richmond on their 300-mile walk home, they made it to Jim’s friend’s house in Crawfish, Virginia. The three of them still need to make it home. Time is running out.

Jim’s family, back home, had to move into a fortified cave Jim had prepared on their property. Charlie Rakes, one of the released prisoners, was terrorising the neighborhood. He was killing families, burning their homes down and taking whatever he wanted. It has truly become a lawless society.

Alice and Rebecca made it to the FEMA camp. They soon realized that the camp more resembled a prison camp than a helpful safe haven and quick ride home.

The two co-workers wished they had gone with the trio led by Jim. Alice and Rebecca would now have to devise a plan to get home without Jim’s help or the gear he and Gary had in their get-home bags. It won’t be easy – or safe.

Brian’s Overall Book Rating

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Horton is a fantastic writer and I can feel good about an easy four and a half stars.

The characters in this book became people I knew well and felt I had a vested interest in seeing them get what they deserved, whether that meant them getting home to their families or bleeding out in the dirt.

I loved the pace of the story and how the author took care to avoid bouncing from scene to scene like a Yo-Yo. Horton allows us to move along with the team, feeling the aches, pains and desperation sprinkled with a little real-life humor in order to make things a little more manageable.

I didn’t want to stop listening to the Ashes of the Unspeakable. I had to see Jim make it home and see how his family had fared without him. I needed to see if Gary and Randi would make it home to their families.

Ashes of the Unspeakable is an essential part of The Borrowed World series. As I mentioned in book one, The Borrowed World, I’m of the opinion that Ashes of the Unspeakable should have been part of the first book but it is what it is. Had Franklin done that, it would have been a five star read – hand’s down.

Ashes of the Unspeakable Roll Your Eyes Moments

Boyd waited beneath a car waiting on Alice to wake up. A Mercury Cougar? Unless that car had a six-inch lift like an off-road jeep, no one is sliding under that car.

Get this book on Audible. If you’re not an Audible fan, get it on Kindle or paperback. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.

Book Quote

He knew that he was selfish. Selfishness was at the very heart of survival. He was grateful to have another day.

Jim Powell, Chapter one in Ashes of the Unspeakable

Previous Book Of The Series Recap – Book #1: The Borrowed World

After ISIS attacks on America, the grid was collapsing across the country. Total anarchy was barreling straight into every community like an out of control raging bull.

Rather than waiting weeks to panic, the overwhelming majority of the public was in a state of desperation within days.

The corrupt set out to rob, pillage and even kill, taking advantage of the lack of law enforcement. Stores closed and were ransacked.

No one could expect a life of safety, even in their own homes. Travel was a potential deadly prospect. Only the strong and prepared had a chance. Only those willing to kill as to not be killed would make it.

It’s a complete societal collapse.

The president issued an executive order restricting all public fuel sales and fuel seizure for the military and first responders.

Jim Powell, his friend Gary and four female coworkers were stranded in Richmond.

Gas was no longer available. They were forced to walk home.

One of the woman, Lois, was killed in a travel plaza, struck by a stray bullet.

Just minutes later Jim had to shoot a man that was going to hit his friend with a tire iron in an attempt to take their car.

After staying in a hot and smelly hotel room, Alice and Rebecca decided to wait on buses that would take them to a FEMA camp.

Gary, Randi and Jim headed out on foot to hike the Appalachian trail home.

Mature Subject Matter:

Violence: You bet there is!
Profanity: Absolutely.
Sex: Nope.
Alcohol/drugs: A little drinking.

Ashes of the Unspeakable Main Characters

  • Jim Powell – Lead character – Prepper trying to get home
  • Ellen Powell – Jim’s wife
  • Pete Powell – Jim & Ellen’s thirteen-year-old son
  • Ariel Powell – Jim & Ellen’s eleven-year-old daughter
  • Pops and Nana – Jim’s parents
  • Gary Sullivan – Jim’s friend and coworker – IT Director
  • Alice Watkins – Jim’s coworker – Human Resources Director
  • Rebecca Dowdy – Jim’s coworker – Ran the drug treatment center
  • Randi Ward – Jim’s coworker – Ran residential programs for folks with disabilities
  • Lloyd – Jim’s best friend from high school and the mayor of Crawfish

Other names and mentions in Ashes of the Unspeakable

  • Masa (Tojo) – Friend of Lloyd’s staying with him from Japan.
  • Frank Hollister – One of Lloyd’s guests.
  • Steve Wright – From York in the U.K.
  • Gerald – Guy that shot the two from England
  • Lawrence – Gerald’s challenged son
  • Wild Bill – Crawfish cop
  • Henry and Kathy Sullivan – Jim’s neighbor
  • David Sullivan – Henry and Kathy’s son
  • Charlie Rakes – released prisoner
  • Angie – Charlie Rakes’ sister-in-law
  • Sammy – Charlie Rakes’ brother – Angie’s husband
  • Robert – Angie’s teenage son
  • Boyd – Alice and Rebecca’s escapee companion

Ashes of the Unspeakable Author: Franklin Horton


Ashes of the Unspeakable Audible Narration By Kevin Pierce


Ashes of the Unspeakable Book Trivia

Get this book on Audible. If you’re not an Audible fan, get it on Kindle or paperback. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.

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Brian Hawkins

I'm a blogger, avid reader and daily audiobook listener. This is my second book review website and I'm excited to see how well it works out for the Audiobooks I consume.

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