Trust No One (X-Files Book 1) by Jonathan Maberry

Posted June 10, 2016 by michaelhicks in Reviews / 0 Comments

Trust No One (X-Files Book 1) by Jonathan MaberryTrust No One by Jonathan Maberry
Narrator: Bronson Pinchot, Hillary Huber
Series: X-Files (Maberry) #1
Published by Blackstone Audio Inc on 28 July 2015
Length: 15 hrs and 23 mins
Genres: Paranormal, Science Fiction
Format: Audiobook
Source: Purchased
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We all want to believe. The truth is still out there.

The X-Files have been reopened. IDW Publishing and series creator Chris Carter have authorized new investigations into the weird, the strange, and the mysterious. New York Times best-selling author and multiple Bram Stoker Award winner Jonathan Maberry brings together some of today's top storytellers for a series of anthologies featuring all-new stories from the X-Files. Scully and Mulder continue their journey into darkness as they face aliens, monsters, shadow governments, and twisted conspiracies.

This first volume includes stories by Kevin J. Anderson, Tim Lebbon, Max Allan Collins, Heather Graham, Brian Keene, Peter Clines, Ray Garton, Stefan Petrucha, Gayle Lynds and John Sheldon, Aaron Rosenberg, Keith R. A. DeCandido, Paul Crilley, W. D. Gagliani and David Benton, Tim Deal, and Gini Koch.

©2015 Jonathan Maberry (P)2015 Blackstone Audio, Inc.


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I’ve been a fan of The X-Files since it premiered on FOX way back in 1993. I remember, quite fondly, watching the premiere with my mother and then, later, with friends as a trio of us creeped-out teens went for a walk around the neighborhood in the dark following the initial airing (and only airing on FOX) of the episode “Home.” Wandering the quiet, moonlit streets had not felt like the best of ideas so soon after meeting the Peacock family. The X-Files was one of the few shows I found myself religiously tracking on then-young America Online message boards, and then, many years later, I found myself tweeting #XFiles3 along with many other fans, begging 20th Century Fox for a third movie to wrap things up and properly celebrate the show’s twentieth anniversary. A third movie never happened, but the TV show did get a small reboot on-air, with the promise of more to come. I found myself in a rare spot for a man schooled by The X-Files and Agents Mulder and Scully, as we appeared to be recapturing the cultural zeitgeist that gave rise to the series and suddenly had new material featuring the intrepid agents in the form of comic books from IDW, a fresh batch of TV episodes, and, now, this first book in a series of anthologies – I found myself believing and trusting that The X-Files was alive once again.

Trust No One, edited by Jonathan Maberry, presents fifteen short stories from various authors, each opening up a new X-Files case that finds our intrepid FBI’s Most Unwanted chasing after, or being on the run from, paranormal activity and black-suited government agents of ill repute, some of whom leave behind the strong odor of cigarette smoke. Tim Lebbon starts the book off in strong fashion with “Catatonia,” about a group of missing teens who have returned and are catatonic. My favorite, though, was Brian Keene’s “Non Gratum Anus Rodentum,” a Skinner-centric story that involves were-rats and his history in Vietnam. Like most other anthologies, Trust No One is a mixed bag. I didn’t love every story here, but there are a number of truly worthwhile X-Files investigations that deserve exploration. Other standouts includes “Paranormal Quest” by Ray Garton and “The House on Hickory Hill” by Max Allan Collins, a pair of haunted house stories with a welcome twist in each. Kevin J. Anderson, who wrote a number of The X-Files books back in the day, is a welcome and familiar voice to the anthology with his story “Statues.”

Tackling these stories are narrators Bronson Pinchot and Hillary Huber, whose duties are divided between Mulder’s and Scully’s points-of-view. Pinchot carries the bulk of this book’s fifteen-plus hours run-time, but the two narrators occasionally work together on a single story that shifts between Mulder and Scully, and Huber narrates the handful of Scully-centric stories solo. Both Pinchot and Huber deliver a solid enough narration, with Pinchot showing a dynamic range in character voices and regional accents. And while Pinchot handles Mulder’s deadpan dialogue well enough, it does take some time getting used to new, different actors inhabiting the roles that Gillian Anderson, David Duchovny, and supporting cast members like Mitch Pillegi and William B. Davis, have made so iconic and familiar. On the production end of things, I have no complaints. The sound quality is fine, and the audio is crisp and clean, making for an easy listen.

Trust No One may not completely capture the glory days of The X-Files, but it does provide a number of intriguing avenues for investigation. The best stories here were a delightful reminder of why I fell in love with this series and these characters way back when, and perfectly capture the tone of the series, balancing the agents’ quirkiness and skepticism, and humor and horror. Those stories alone make this worth the price of entry.

About Jonathan Maberry

JONATHAN MABERRY is a New York Times best-selling and multiple Bram Stoker Award-winning horror and thriller author, magazine feature writer, playwright, content creator and writing teacher/lecturer. His books have been sold to more than a dozen countries.

His novels include the Pine Deep Trilogy: GHOST ROAD BLUES (Pinnacle books; winner of the Bram Stoker Award for Best First Novel in 2006), DEAD MAN’S SONG (2007) and BAD MOON RISING (2008); the Joe Ledger series of action thrillers from St. Martin’s Griffin: PATIENT ZERO (2009, winner of the Black Quill and a Bram Stoker Award finalist for Best Novel), THE DRAGON FACTORY (2010; now available), THE KING OF PLAGUES (March 2011), ASSASSIN’S CODE (March 2012), EXTINCTION MACHINE (2013); THE WOLFMAN (NY Times bestseller from Tor, based on the Universal Pictures film starring Benecio Del Toro, Emily Blunt and Sir Anthony Hopkins; winner of the Scribe Award for Best Adaptation); the forthcoming standalone zombie thriller DEAD OF NIGHT (Oct 25 2011); and the Benny Imura series of Young Adult dystopian zombie thrillers from Simon & Schuster: ROT & RUIN (2011; named in Booklist’s Ten Best Horror Novels for Young Adults, a Bram Stoker and Pennsylvania Young Readers’ Choice Award finalist; winner of the Cybils Award, the Eva Perry Mock Printz medal, Dead Letter Best Novel Award, and four Melinda Awards), DUST & DECAY (Aug 30 2011), FLESH & BONE (2012) and FIRE & ASH (21013).

Jonathan was an expert on the History Channel documentary on zombies scheduled to air October 26.

His nonfiction works include: VAMPIRE UNIVERSE (Citadel Press, 2006), THE CRYPTOPEDIA (Citadel, 2007 –winner of the Bram Stoker Award for Outstanding Achievement in Nonfiction; co-authored by David F. Kramer), ZOMBIE CSU: The Forensics of the Living Dead (Winner of the Hinzman and Black Quill Awards and nominated for a Stoker Award; 2008), THEY BITE! (2009 co-authored by David F. Kramer), WANTED UNDEAD OR ALIVE (2010; Bram Stoker nominee; co-authored by Janice Gable Bashman), and THE VAMPIRE SLAYERS FIELD GUIDE TO THE UNDEAD (2001, written under the pen name of Shane MacDougall).

He writes a variety of projects for Marvel Comics involving CAPTAIN AMERICA, BLACK PANTHER, DOOMWAR, WOLVERINE, DEADPOOL, THE X-MEN, FANTASTIC FOUR, the NY Times bestselling MARVEL ZOMBIES RETURN, MARVEL UNIVERSE vs THE PUNISHER and MARVEL UNIVERSE vs WOLVERINE. All of Jonathan’s comic book collections are released as Graphic Novel collections within a month or two of individual comic publication.

Recent short stories include “Pegleg and Paddy Save the World” (HISTORY IS DEAD, Permuted Press 2007), “Doctor Nine” (KILLERS, Swimming Kangaroo Press, 2008; and reprinted in THE STORIES (in) BETWEEN Edited by Greg Schauer, Jeanne B. Benzel, and W.H. Horner. Fantasist Enterprises, 2009), “Sherlock Holmes and the Adventure of the Greenbrier Ghost” (LEGENDS OF THE MOUNTAIN STATE 2, Bloodletting Books, 2008), “Clean Sweeps” (AND SO IT BEGINS, Dark Quest Books, 2008), “Family Business” (THE NEW DEAD, St. Martin’s Press, 2010), “Like Part of the Family” (NEW BLOOD edited by Patrick Thomas and Diane Raetz, Padwolf Press, 2010), “Zero Tolerance” (THE LIVING DEAD 2, Night Shade Books), “Flint and Steel” (GI JOE: COBRA WARS, 2011), “Saint John”(THE MONSTER’S CORNER, 2011, St. Martin’s), “The Death Song of Dwar Guntha” (Under the Moons of Mars: New Adventures on Barsoom, 2012, Simon & Schuster), and “The Wind Through the Fence” (an original e-story available for all e-readers). His essay, “Take Me To Your Leader” will be included in the nonfiction book, TRIUMPH OF THE LIVING DEAD: Robert Kirkman’s Zombie Epic on Page and Screen edited by James Lowder (BenBella Books/Smart Pop, 2011).

About michaelhicks

Michael Patrick Hicks is the author of the science fiction novel Convergence, an Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award 2013 Quarter-Finalist. He is also the author of the short horror story, Consumption, and his work appears in the science fiction anthology, No Way Home. He lives in Michigan and is hard at work on his next story.

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