Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Variant Effect” as Want to Read:
The Variant Effect
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Variant Effect (The Variant Effect)

3.44  ·  Rating Details ·  273 Ratings  ·  32 Reviews
The old furrier building in a rundown part of Metro was the perfect place to find a body, and Joe Borland knew they wouldn't have dragged him out of retirement to see it if something hadn't eaten its skin.

It's been twenty years since Borland battled the Variant Effect, and twenty since he let his partner get skinned alive.

Now both of them are ordered back into action to me
ebook, 256 pages
Published June 14th 2010 by Smashwords Edition
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Variant Effect, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Variant Effect

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Dec 03, 2011 Laura rated it liked it
Shelves: read-2011
If you can get buy the bad ebook formatting and every 2 pages a reference to the main character's hernias, then you will like this book. The story is plausible and enjoyable. It's action moves you and gets your pulse racing. You want the hero's to survived and succeed in their mission.

However, if you are like me and like things to look like a book and not a run on sentence then the formatting will drive you crazy. The constant referrals to the main character's hernias become like nails on a cha
Katherine Tomlinson
Apr 08, 2011 Katherine Tomlinson rated it it was amazing
The Skin-eaters are back and the city must call upon two men who hate each other to save them from the Variant Effect. Old-school horror done extremely well.
Feb 20, 2012 Falanor rated it it was ok
So a while ago I picked up a book on my Kindle called The Variant Effect by G. Wells Taylor. It was, from its excerpt, an interesting twist on the Zombie genre and being a sucker for a yarn on the idea of the Hungry Undead, and that it was a freebe, I picked it up to read. Some free books on Amazon are quiet good, actually. A large portion of them are free to stir up new readership for a series and others are to get a new author a quick and decent sized readership.

With Taylor’s spin, we have a n
Jun 29, 2012 Tasha rated it really liked it
I really liked this book. Based on the reviews, and the fact that it was being offered for free, I was honestly a little worried. It starts out kind of slow and mentions the main characters hernias more often than probably necessary. I actually almost put it down but stuck through it and I'm really glad I did.

The villains of the book (biters/skin eaters) are a nice change of pace. They embody elements of monsters we already know and love (like zombies) while still being unique to the author's un
This is my second foray into this author's works - I picked up "The Variant Effect" on a whim, wanting something unusual and quick and nasty. Taylor delivers yet again with our anti-hero Borland, a washed out, alcoholic, herniated dirty cop-turned-hero, whose claim to fame and heroic status is that he survived a nasty outbreak of the Variant Effect 'back in the day.' His survival, though, was not necessarily accomplished by anything other than that Borland is big, prone to violence and cranking ...more
Sep 13, 2016 Olethros rated it liked it
-Sssssssskin! Skin!.-

Género. Ciencia-Ficción.

Lo que nos cuenta. Joe Borland es un capitán retirado de las escuadras Variant, que para abusar del alcohol, sufrir de sobrepeso y estar lleno de achaques (a destacar, sus hernias) se conserva bastante bien y es reclamado de vuelta a su trabajo un par de décadas después de su jubilación cuando los incidentes Variant comienzan de nuevo. En el escenario de un crimen se encuentra con el también retirado capitán Eric Hyde que perdió la mayoría de su piel
Gunnhildur Rúnarsdóttir
I like this book. I found the story interesting.

A drug that is supposed to cure everything from mild anxiety to Schizophrenia but ends up turning people into monsters.

I know some people thought that the mention of Borlands hernia was a bit to much but it did not bother me. Borland is supposed to be the grumpy old squad leader that has nothing left but his hernias and booze.

I liked Hyde and how he found an escape from feeling sorry for himself in online gaming where he got respect and not the us
Ken Doggett
Dec 28, 2013 Ken Doggett rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: People who love to read about dystopian societies, the more gruesome the better.
I didn't finish the book, because it's too gruesome for me (and I find books about dystopian societies depressing), but I gave it 4 stars because the writing is good, although the formatting isn't. No table of contents, and needs better chapter separation, although that wouldn't have mattered so much if I had liked the book. The characters, however, are well portrayed, but not too likeable as far as I read. I didn't mind the constant mention of one character's hernias, but with each mention of i ...more
Jan 17, 2013 Jessica rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is one of the most original stories I've read in a long time. This takes the very real disorders of dermatophagia and dermatillomania to a whole new horrific level for the reader. Make no mistake: those conditions exist now in our time. Just imagine if a drug like Varion (and it's unintended consequences on those very real conditions) did exist? That would make for one very scary world to live in. I'm interested to read the next insallment in the series and I recommend this book to anyone l ...more
Nov 28, 2011 Jill rated it it was ok
Interesting and original story. Sort of gruesome in places. I liked the new world, with everyone's vices/mental issues becoming amplified by what is basically prosac. That was an interesting twist. The world was well thought through, the writing wasn't bad. It was hard to decide if I liked the protagonist who is deeply flawed. (Please get his hernias fixed they were becoming distracting!).
Stephine Yoshikawa
May 10, 2012 Stephine Yoshikawa rated it really liked it
Dark & Glorious. And makes you want to refuse every medication prescribed to you for the rest of your life. I, not so secretly, have a slight crush on Mr. Wells, and have read all of his works. If you pass this up, at least do yourself a favor and dive into When Graveyards Yawn; the entire Apocalypse Trilogy is AMAZING!!
Nov 15, 2012 Dimka rated it really liked it
Shelves: horror
I'll admit that it took me a few chapters to read me engaged but after that, I was hooked. The world after the effect seems very plausible in our pill popping world. The action's a bit slow in coming but when it comes, it comes with a lot of excitment. Some predictable twists & turns with the "good guys" but a lot of scary moments in between. A fun read!!
Richard Valle
Dec 18, 2012 Richard Valle rated it liked it
Strangely fascinating book. The writing isn't great and there are some of the logic seems forced to get the setting the way the author wants it. This is really a variation on a zombie story, but the variation is a good one and it was compelling to read to see what happens.
Jul 25, 2012 Robert rated it really liked it
I normally don't start a review by simply stating how much I loved the book or the characters in it - BUT I LOVED THIS BOOK AND THE CHARACTERS IN IT! Joe Boreland is my kind of Mike Hammer and he had my heart from the first mention of his hernias. Have a drink on me Joe. See you again when I can.
Pammy A
Jan 03, 2012 Pammy A rated it liked it
This book was pretty good, although I actually didn't finish it. I had a hard time keeping my head into it but I think that is mainly because I was distracted by too many other good books I wanted to read! Finally just gave it up.
Nana Watson
Aug 08, 2015 Nana Watson rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A great read

Fucking wow! Awesomeness, recommended to any and all. This free book a and sample the next in the series is a lot like the corner drug dealer shouting the first one's free!
Nov 09, 2013 Shelly rated it liked it
Very interesting concept, far too many hernia references. Seriously, I get it - his hernias bothered him. A lot. Take out 90% of said references and I'll up the rating to 3.5 stars.
Mark Gunnell
Feb 01, 2014 Mark Gunnell rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi
Thought the concept was good, but I just couldn't get into the book and how the author chose to present it.
Drew Smith
Feb 17, 2016 Drew Smith rated it really liked it
Great read! Premise is kinda freaky, stayed away from making the obvious Z connection...I see tho how some may make a connection or comparison to Resident Evil...but so good!
Allan Ashinoff
Feb 19, 2014 Allan Ashinoff rated it it was ok
Unique concept. But for me, too much friction between the primary characters. Every person was so tainted/damaged that I couldn't grow to care what happened to any of them.
Claire Richardson
Tolerable but not great. The main characters were not likeable with ruined an otherwise great storyline.
Aug 04, 2013 Cindy rated it liked it
I'm kind of stuck in the middle of this book right now, I needed a change of pace and it didn't hold my attention. I do plan on finishing it. Just don't know when...
Apr 09, 2012 Danielle rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: fans of sci-fi / military
This was surprisingly enjoyable. At the beginning I worried that it may be confusing, as there were lots of world basics that weren't explained, but the author wove them into the story quite well!
James rated it liked it
Jan 01, 2014
Heather rated it really liked it
May 02, 2013
Sarah rated it liked it
Feb 11, 2012
Sheila Myers
Sheila Myers rated it really liked it
Jan 15, 2016
Cin Whtie
Cin Whtie rated it really liked it
Aug 24, 2011
Jimmy Logelin
Jimmy Logelin rated it liked it
Jul 04, 2014
Robyn rated it liked it
Sep 11, 2013
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 next »
  • Necrophobia (Zombie Apocalypse #1)
  • The Night Library
  • The Mountain and The City, Part I
  • Valley Of Death, Zombie Trailer Park
  • Vampire Apocalypse: A World Torn Asunder
  • Within (LZR-1143, #1.5)
  • The Zombies: Volume One
  • Dying to Live (Zombie Overload, #1)
  • The Sickness: Monte's Story (Rise of the Plague Series)
  • The Dead Road: Vol. 1 - Isolation
  • Once Upon A Zombie Apocalypse- Jade
  • 13 Drops of Blood
  • Anything can be Dangerous
  • Vermin
  • Graveyard Blues (Night Blues, #1)
  • Cain's Apples
  • Surviving the Fog (Surviving the Fog #1)
  • Where the Dead Talk
The Night Once More: A Wildclown Novel by G. Wells Taylor is NOW AVAILABLE. Visit to purchase this $3.99 sequel to 2008’s Menagerie, and download FREE updated editions of Taylor’s popular Horror titles: When Graveyards Yawn (A Wildclown Origin Novel), The Urn (Dracula of the Apes Trilogy Book 1), Skin Eaters (The Variant Effect Series Book 1) and Painkiller (A Variant ...more
More about G. Wells Taylor...

Other Books in the Series

The Variant Effect (4 books)
  • The Variant Effect: Painkiller
  • The Variant Effect: GreenMourning
  • The Variant Effect: Blood Angel

Share This Book

“Borland never watched much broadband anyway. Getting drunk and arguing with a blue screen made as much sense as yelling at the news. But hooking it up in the first place seemed like something that a normal person with responsibilities would do.” 2 likes
“Sophistry!” 0 likes
More quotes…