• Alternate Routes

  • By: Tim Powers
  • Narrated by: Bronson Pinchot
  • Length: 11 hrs and 9 mins
  • 4.1 out of 5 stars (115 ratings)

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Alternate Routes  By  cover art

Alternate Routes

By: Tim Powers
Narrated by: Bronson Pinchot
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Publisher's Summary

A new novel from award-winning master of fantasy and science fiction Tim Powers. A modern ghost story as only Tim Powers can write it. 

Something weird is happening to the Los Angeles freeways - phantom cars, lanes from nowhere, and sometimes unmarked off-ramps that give glimpses of a desolate desert highway - and Sebastian Vickery, disgraced ex-Secret Service agent, is a driver for a covert supernatural-evasion car service. But another government agency is using and perhaps causing the freeway anomalies, and their chief is determined to have Vickery killed because of something he learned years ago at a halted Presidential motorcade. 

Reluctantly aided by Ingrid Castine, a member of that agency, and a homeless Mexican boy, and a woman who makes her living costumed as Supergirl on the sidewalk in front of the Chinese Theater, Vickery learns what legendary hell it is that the desert highway leads to - and when Castine deliberately drives into it to save him from capture, he must enter it himself to get her out. 

Alternate Routes is a fast-paced supernatural adventure story that sweeps from the sun-blinded streets and labyrinthine freeways of Los Angeles to a horrifying other world out of Greek mythology, and Vickery and Castine must learn to abandon old loyalties and learn loyalty to each other in order to survive as the world goes mad around them.

©2018 Tim Powers (P)2018 Recorded Books

Critic Reviews

“Powers continues his run of smashing expectations and then playing with the pieces in this entertaining urban fantasy...this calculated, frenetic novel ends with hope for redemption born from chaos. Powers’ work is recommended for urban fantasy fans who enjoy more than a dash of the bizarre.” (Publishers Weekly)

What listeners say about Alternate Routes

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
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    5 out of 5 stars

Audible perfection!

Tim Powers AND Bronson Pinchot??!! I've died and gone to heaven ..This book is an incredible homage to LA, noir, mythology, ghost stories and what it means to be family - all wrapped up in Tim Powers' multileveled and multilayered storytelling. It's action packed, intellectually challenging and poignant. Obviously, I'm a fan girl and this book will take place along my other Powers favorites. As far as narration goes - more fan girling over Bronson Pinchot's pitch perfect delivery of this complicated tale ..simply amazing.
Powers may not be everyone's cup of tea - he really does give the imagination a workout - but if you like meat on the bones of a good story - I'd spend that credit!

24 people found this helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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Malignant dystopia, the authors words not mine.

Lets start positive. Bronson Pinchot is awesome as always. He breathes life in to poorly written and uninteresting characters. In another review I said Bronson could read an Ikea furniture manual and make it interesting...I might have to retract that. He is really really good...but not even his talent could make this book interesting.

It starts slow and then wanders off to into the aimless land of boredom. The characters are two dimensional at their peak and spend most of the time whining and rambling. I get that is part of where they are at in the story but MY GOD it got old fast and seemed endless.

I have read and listened to some of Tim Powers other books and was quite pleased with all the others. This is my first negative review of a book in a long time but I was compelled to write a review of this book.

Make sure you listen to it right away so can decide to return it or not. Yeah its that bad. I rarely return books but I had to. I literally felt cheated out of 11hr and 9 minutes of my life.

3 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars

Average Powers, exceptional compared to most

Powers excels with his signature style of incorporating big ideas, history and mythology into a thriller format.

1 person found this helpful

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Another great story

This is another great book from a great author. There are several twists and turns. The very premise it is based on is intriguing. I recommend it!

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WOW just let go and believe it's real

There is no way to explain the story in just a few words. It's a wild burst of imagination with constant action. Speed up to 1.25 or so as it helps keep the story rushing on. You get dumped right into the story and learn as you read.

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Interesting ideas, but a bit slow

The performer was whispering through most of the book, making listening in the car difficult, but not so much that I was motivated to give up on the book. Tim Powers always has original and interesting ideas, but as with some of his other work the story is slow to build. Overall a decent addition to his library and worth reading, but maybe better off on paper.

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Hard story Great Performance by Bronson Pinchot

The story is hard to get into. Takes off a little before half way through, then gets muddled toward the last 1/3. It’s a very hard story to tell and Pinchot does a great job.