Review: Man of War by M.R. Forbes, read by Jeff Hays



Man of War is the 1st book in the Rebellion series by science fiction writer M.R. Forbes and brought to life in audio format by the tallented voice over artist Jeff Hays. This is my first contact with both author and narrator and I can say that I’m impressed. Although I’m not a Sci-Fi fan, I enjoyed this story a lot and in the following lines I’ll tell you why you should give it a try.

The Book

The story in Man of War takes place long after humanity finds a way of traveling to the Stars, but there we encounter other intelligent life forms. There we meet The Dread, a species of aliens, more powerful than we are, more advanced,  and they are not friendly! After a war in which we can’t even defend ourselves, losing bilions of lives, Earth is abandoned by the few thousands remaining alive and a some are left behind, forming some sort of a resistance to keep the Dread busy while the others escape.

The actual plot picks up after 52 years from these events and switches between those fortunate enough to have escaped in the starship Magellan, who formed the New Earth Alliance somewhere far from the planet and the few survivors of The Resistance, left to fend for themselves on ruined Earth as they fight an unwinable war. Both factions are lead by heroes, by men of war who never stopped hoping, who never stopped planning, who want Earth back.

This is their story! The story of Starfighter pilot Captain Gabriel Saint Martin and of Major Donovan Peters. We get to know them, we get to care for their wellbeing, we discover dramatic stories. We see them fight, we see them cry, we see them hurt and we see them as they find hope and cling to it. They have to work together to win back their home!

Author M.R. Forbes delivers a compelling story, driven by a great plot and filled with rich and deep characters. From the first sentences the book pulls you in and it doesn’t let go until the end, at which point you are left wanting for more. The personal dramas each main character had endured, the indestructible enemy, called The Dread that lives on Earth in cities made from spaceships, the brilliantly written dialogues and the tense actions scenes make Man of War a sure hit for fans of the Sci-FI and Military thrillers genres alike.

The Narration

As I said in the beginning of this review, this is the first time I experience an audiobook performed by narrator Jeff Hays and I liked his solid performance. Straight from the opening sentence he immerses you into the great story, pulling you in with a full range of voices and accents. He is one of those actors that can switch between characters in a way that you’ll think that you are listening to a full cast recording. Jeff has that very rare talent to give life to male and female characters without becoming ridiculous or pathetic in the process. His narration style reminds me of MacLeod Andrews‘s, but Mr. Hays has his own tricks up his sleeves and he is original in his own personal way.

Yes, this was the first time I listened to a book read by Jeff Hays, but I can assure you that there are many more to come. I enjoyed his performance tremendously and I will hunt his works down and listen to more of them… Who knows, maybe I’ll even review them as well…


I finished listening to Man of War about five days ago, but the story, the characters and Jeff‘s performance are still lingering in my mind. I took this time to put my thoughts in order and I realised that I’m willing to give more chances in the future to Sci-Fi books. My experience in this genre is limited to the Star Trek tv series of which I’m a big fan, to the Mass Effect video games series and to Dune, the movies. I need to listen to the books some day.

As a parting remark, I suggest that you listen to the sample from Man of War on  and I’m sure you’ll like it. After that, if you prefer Science Fiction books filled with vivid characters and with thrilling action you can’t go wrong with this one.

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Man of War: Rebellion, book 1

Author: M.R. Forbes
Narrator: Jeff Hays
Genre: Science Fiction
Duration: 11h 8 Mins
Publisher: Podium Publishing

Get it Now – Kindle / / Print   Get 2 Free Audiobooks


About the Author

M.R. Forbes is the creator of a growing catalog of speculative fiction titles, including the epic fantasy Tears of Blood series, the contemporary fantasy Divine series, and the world of Ghosts & Magic. He lives in the pacific northwest with his wife, a cat who thinks she’s a dog, and a dog who thinks she’s a cat. He eats too many donuts, and he’s always happy to hear from readers.

Publisher’s Summary 

In the year 2280, an alien fleet attacked the Earth. Their weapons were unstoppable, their defenses unbreakable. Our technology was inferior, our militaries overwhelmed. Only one starship escaped before civilization fell.

Earth was lost. It was never forgotten.

Fifty-two years have passed. A message from home has been received. The time to fight for what is ours has come.

Welcome to the rebellion.

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Man of War: Rebellion, book 1

$ 20.99
Man of War: Rebellion, book 1








        • Great Story
        • Deep Character Development
        • Immersive
        • Atmospheric
        • Perfect Narration


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        I am an avid Audiobook listener. I started to celebrate the industry's Golden Voices and to review my favorite books. Audiobooks represent a huge part of my life. I love the industry, the writers and the amazing narrators.

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