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Displaying 1 - 30 of 53 reviews
Profile Image for Estevam (Impish Reviews).
194 reviews16 followers
February 14, 2020
This was different, it had a lot more terror and body horror than on the previous novels and I liked it a lot, in this story, we follow Joe Ledger as he is called to clean up the mess made by some scientist that was trying to develop super-soldiers by crossing human DNA with a strain of insect DNA that they thought was quite resistant, the objective is to create a kind of soldier that could fight in any environment even if it was affected by nuclear waste, so as you can already imagine they dropped the ball, Hard, and so the DMS is called and our story begins.
This one was very good because it had some dubious morale by the part of the scientists and by some decisions that are taken by our protagonist by the end of the story it is as the previous ones very quick but not as action-packed as I mentioned at the beginning of the review this one has a lot more horror elements that usually are seem in the paranormal sub-genre of horror so it was different but it was different at just the right amount and again i recommend to any fans of this series and people who like horror and action.
Profile Image for Zade.
326 reviews32 followers
June 26, 2023
As a prequel to the Dragon Factory, this story is perhaps a bit too close to the novel to really work. What are the odds that Echo Team would encounter this particular threat only a short time before running into another variation on the same thing? But really, who cares? The story combines a scary situation with some great wise-acre humor and more than a little humanity.
Profile Image for Sinisa Mikasinovic.
136 reviews26 followers
January 11, 2017
Deep, Dark was... different. More in line with Material Witness, previous short story, than general feel of Joe Ledger novels.

Less "pew pew", more "I'm going to scare you!". I absolutely loved it.

I'm not claustrophobic any more than the next guy, but man this was tense.

Secret government underground laboratory where things went to hell due to an ongoing terrorist attack is indeed dug in quite deep. And it was also very dark. And in that same dark they patiently waited.

It's good that Echo team went in, because I sure as hell wouldn't!

Remember that underground lair in the 4th novel in this series Assassin's Code?
It had nothing on this research facility! Maberry did well to instill feeling of dread with each new page. Damn him for writing awesome books.

Oh, and it's a perfect intro to the next book in the main series, The Dragon Factory!

Just like Maberry, Ray Porter was nothing short of epic again, either.
I hope they both live forever and never get bored of doing this!

Clean sheet.
Profile Image for Jen.
1,882 reviews159 followers
May 24, 2019
Yikes. Genetic mutation at it's worst - bugs! Ewwwww!

But Joe Ledger is always fabulous and so is Ray Porter.
Profile Image for Cam.
1,079 reviews2 followers
March 18, 2022
Gene splicing on soldiers that turn into something else besides killing machine for the army oooo my!!! I need to pick his books up again and start reading them.
Profile Image for Storm.
2,022 reviews3 followers
April 14, 2022
Collected in Joe Ledger: Special Ops and Joe Ledger: The Missing Files, this is short story #1.3 in the Joe Ledger series, it is the immediate prequel to The Dragon Factory. Joe Ledger, Top and Bunny have been called in to handle a terrorist threat at The Vault, an Ultra High Security Biological Research Facility that happens to be located underground. Already I am getting a bad feeling about this.

The briefing is scant on details except the 4 dead were "bitten" to death, by ... the supposed terrorists. Before more questions can be asked, klaxons sound, the lights go off and everything is plunged into darkness. A vent has been pushed out ... there are strange, scratchy, clicking noises in the dark tunnels, and something BIG seems to hunting them. The scientist eventually admits that they performed gene sequencing genetic engineering experiments on soldiers that have been discharged from the army due to injury, but hey the soldiers signed all their rights away.

The goal is to create a super soldier, able to with stand pollution and radiation, so the country will still have military superiority in case the planet's ecology is hosed. The genes used were from insects. By now I'm completely creeped out, picturing the claustrophobic survival horror lab tunnel movies/games like Doom, Resident Evil or Dead Space.

It doesn't take Joe long to figure out WHAT really happened, and as a soldier, he ends up sympathizing with James Collins - a young soldier injured in Afghanistan, who signed up for the super soldier program due to his patriotism but ended up becoming nothing but a glorified lab rat. The passage with Joe's internal monologue is one of the most moving things I've read in military sci-fi.


By now Joe's moral compass has asserted itself and he's not wrong either.
"It was the dirty end of a dirty job."

This might have been short, but it's a great story especially on audio book. The narrator, Ray Porter, does an excellent job voicing the characters and making the click and scratching sounds that made me feel the fear and horror of being underground being stalked by monsters. Joe's inner moral compass really sets him apart from the run-of-the-mill military action heroes, and that's what makes Jonathan Maberry's books a cut above most others.
Profile Image for Garrett Fisher.
26 reviews1 follower
May 18, 2019
Simply the Best

Before I got into the hundreds of zombie and post apocalyptic/dystopian thrillers I read patient zero. This whole series is the bar, in my humble opinion, I rate all other books. Deep Dark brought back all those feelings when your immersed in a truly great story. I lost my complete collection and everything I owned, another story, guess I’ll have to rent purchase them now. Thank You for reading this and thank you for giving us Joe Ledger!!!
Profile Image for James Biser.
3,041 reviews17 followers
July 22, 2021
So far, this is my favorite, although most horrifying of the Joe Ledger stories. He and his team continue to hunt the zombie-like mutants. In this story we discover that the mutants are much more advanced than simple zombies. We also learn that the American military is researching and creating the mutants. Joe and his team are being sent to kill ALL of the mutants, even the American monsters.
Profile Image for Robert Chapman.
501 reviews47 followers
June 23, 2017
This is the third short story follow-up to Patient Zero. As with the preceding short story, this story isn't directly related to Patient Zero other than it involves the DMS's Echo Team.

This story features Echo Team and Joe Ledger at their best and let's just say has a fitting ending.
Profile Image for Benjamin  Thomas.
408 reviews68 followers
October 9, 2018
Jonathan Maberry writes some of the best short stories I've read so far. Full of action, plot, tension, suspense, character. This one was a good lead into the next book, THE DRAGON FACTORY - Joe Ledger #2. Great series.
34 reviews
June 20, 2019
I don't know about anyone else but I got a feeling of claustrophobia reading this. Great story that is a prequel to The Dragon Factory and involves the locker that is mentioned in Code Zero. I loved this story!
Profile Image for Bryan .
336 reviews
June 6, 2021
This short episodic is an excellent little contribution to the Joe ledger series. It had the emotional power of patient zero and fit perfectly into the horror genre that contributes to oddities he faces.
Profile Image for David.
608 reviews1 follower
July 24, 2018
Deep, Dark Gets Better Everytime I read it! Government Lies that change the lives of unknowing citizens with the idea they are helping all citizens are the worst lies.
Profile Image for Angela.
1,773 reviews23 followers
June 9, 2021
Listened to this as I did my errands today - creepy, and a little sad- also a bit of a commentary on how our (US) government treats their soldiers - they are NOT property.
Profile Image for Nancy.
574 reviews5 followers
November 20, 2021
"Deep Dark" was a dark short story and worth the read. Excellent.
Profile Image for Emma.
373 reviews2 followers
February 1, 2023
Very much enjoying this series. This short story was fun.
Profile Image for Mike.
67 reviews
July 6, 2023
He is so good at balancing creeped out with your heroes barely surviving.
Profile Image for Michelle.
305 reviews8 followers
May 3, 2014
Question: When will scientist stop trying to play god?

Answer: Never. For it is because of this we've had many breakthroughs, not just medically but technologically as well.

While this may not necessarily be a bad thing in the 'real world', in storyland its a whole different ball game. Especially when it comes to the Government intervening in hopes of garnering more sound ways to fight in/against war.

In this particular story our hero Joe Ledgar is once again called in. As thee reader you automatically know its not for anything good. He seems to be the go to guy when someones butt needs kicking and if necessary, put down in that eternal rest. In Deep, Dark he not only does this but it's up to him to clean up a mess made by our very own government.

It seems that scientists have been tasked to create super soldiers. Using the very people who fight for our freedoms, soldiers, as human test subjects, the scientist look to gene splice their DNA with certain insect traits and of course things don't go as expected thus horror ensues.
Profile Image for Steph.
1,950 reviews274 followers
February 4, 2016
Read as a part of anthology: Joe Ledger: The Missing Files
Rating: ✮✮✮ ½

Before former Baltimore cop Joe Ledger goes up against competing geneticists looking to continue the master-race program in The Dragon Factory, he must battle another foe using human test subjects for his sinister plans.

A quick look at just how twisted scientists can be when they believe what they're doing is for the best for humanity.
16 reviews
January 26, 2014
Great short story. I would love to see this fleshed out into something a bit longer though. Maybe a novella. What I didn't quite get was how this was a prequel story to The Dragon Factory, unless it's just set before that book chronologically. Again, the author makes the reader wonder what might really be happening in our world that we don't know about or want to know about. Genetics manipulation is quite a hot topic and a great starting place for Jonathan's type of fiction.
Displaying 1 - 30 of 53 reviews