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Extinction Horizon

(The Extinction Cycle #1)

3.95  ·  Rating details ·  5,246 ratings  ·  478 reviews


Master Sergeant Reed Beckham has led his Delta Force Team, codenamed Ghost, through every kind of hell imaginable and never lost a man. When a top secret Medical Corps research facility goes dark, Team Ghost is called in to face their deadliest enemy yet--a variant strain
Kindle Edition, 351 pages
Published December 29th 2014 (first published December 6th 2014)
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Kelson Russell-Straka The books written by Nicholas Sansbury Smith are apart of the same series; however. on amazon there are many companion novels that expand the…moreThe books written by Nicholas Sansbury Smith are apart of the same series; however. on amazon there are many companion novels that expand the universe.(less)
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Average rating 3.95  · 
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 ·  5,246 ratings  ·  478 reviews

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Sep 25, 2017 rated it liked it
This guy, Nicholas Smith, certainly can write a fast paced SciFi thriller.
The plotting was realistically done on how a bio-weapon/virus can be created and then the accidental outbreak.
Also a good mix of medical vs. military follow through.
This is second time I've read this book, and for reasons I can't quite ascertain - I seem to have enjoyed it more than my first read- through.

This is a hybrid of military and medical horror. On July 10th 1968, First Lieutenant Trevor Brett and thirty one marines, are dropped off (via UH-1 Huey helicopters) into the swamps of South Vietnam; their target is a remote village. As they approach their destination, Brett and the other marines have orders to use an experimental drug (VX-99), which they
Mike (the Paladin)
Humm, well I'd say that this is a high 3. I considered a 4 but really couldn't quite go there. I do think I'll eventually try the next in the series, maybe not right away, but eventually.

So, what do we have here? The synopsis tells us it's an extinction event plague that turns some of it's victims into monsters. What we get is the zombie apocalypse... Well, not precisely as the people/monsters aren't truly the 'walking dead" except in the sense that they have the plague.

I said elsewhere (as I
Michael Flanagan
I am fast running out of superlatives to describe just how good Nicholas Sansbury Smith is. After being blown away by the first two books of his Orb series this year, this tireless author has crafted yet another exquisite read.

After showing us his mastery of the Science Fiction genre he has now turned his hand to a modern day tale of a truly apocalyptic nature. This books combines some my favorite elements of virology, genetic manipulation, horror, action, suspense and zombie like mayhem. One of
Dec 10, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Terrifying and thrilling, Extinction Horizon blends elements of genetic engineering and viruses that might be found in a medical thriller with the action you'd expect from a military sci-fi-esque book. The blending of genres and concepts made this an interesting ride through and through. While the suspense during the military portions of the book kept the pages turning, you can't help but be intrigued by the scientists' endeavors as well. If Michael Crichton wrote a "zombie" book, this would be ...more
Nikki "The Crazie Betty" V.
Loved it! Wished the 2nd book was out already. If you’re a sci-fi fan who has yet to read a Nicholas Sansbury Smith novel…well then, shame on you! Nicholas Sansbury Smith This is a must read for anyone who enjoys a good apocalyptic, zombie-esque, horror, suspense, or medical thriller. There isn’t too much of any one of these elements in Extinction Horizon that would lead me to believe a reader with interests in ANY of the aforementioned genres wouldn’t thoroughly enjoy this new series.

Nick gives
Ms. Nikki
I'm going to get straight to the point. This read felt recycled. Of course this subject has been written about a gazillion and 1 times, but a writer's voice should be able to change a read, even if it's only subtlety so.

The cadence of this story didn't seem to change even when voices were raised. There wasn't enough tension. Phrasing was amateurish. So were the military that didn't seem to know what to do or how to respond when things got real.

I read the Orbs series and I would have liked to
Willow Brooks
Mar 02, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This could REALLY happen!!! Now I'm all freaked out! I feel like I need to prepare myself because some idiot in power could really create a warfare virus that could turn this world upside down.

It took me a minute to get into this story and I thought I was not going to like it, but I think it was because my hubby kept interrupting me. Once I got into it and started getting to know the characters a bit, and reading about all the crazy crap that happened in the beginning, it took off.

Jun 14, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the first novel by Smith that I have read and will definitely not be the last. The book features a fast paced story line, enough blood and gore to scare off the squeamish, very credible science and characters that you just have to root for (though there are some you will come to hate). This is definitely not a zombie book, though the Variants do crave flesh and blood. Think of it as a cross between the rage induced humans in 28 Days Later mixed with the Plaga in Resident Evil, except ...more
Jul 29, 2016 rated it it was ok
Shelves: dnf, audio
After reading Hell Divers by this author I was expecting something more imaginative. This book was just a generic escaped killer virus thriller, with maybe more gore than usual. I've probably read too many of them to be impressed anymore. I also didn't care for the narrator of the audiobook so I abandoned the book about one third of the way in.
Jammin Jenny
I really enjoyed this sci-fi horror thriller. A new strain of the E-bola virus pops up - one that can keep mutating inside the body. So, it turns the people that get this virus into really fast running zombies. They can climb walls, climb ceilings and are really nasty. I do believe I will continue with this series and listen to the audiotapes. Brandon Pinchot narrates and does a really good job.
Aug 31, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Audible Audiobook

The Extinction Cycle series is read by Bronson Pinchot, and consists of at least four novels. This review addresses only the first two. In the area of ten hours each, the stories address the the extinction of the human race. The plot, characters, and story moves seamlessly from novel one through novel two; I cannot speak to the other books in the series. The fundamental premise surrounds the accidental creation of a bio-weapon intended to produce ‘super’ soldiers. An oops that
Shana Festa
May 06, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: zombies
The other day I opened my Amazon page to my first book and BOOM--I see this book is a number 1 bestseller. Of course, I did what any author would do. I stalked Nick Smith on social media and demanded he share the secret to his success.

Unfortunately, there was no secret. So I bought the book, and figured it out. Want to know what the secret is?

The book is excellent! So that best selling rank is well deserved in my opinion. Great job Smith!

Now, I may be giving away my age here, but I was
Sep 21, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Aaaaand I'm back to running up the stairs from my scary basement
The Nerd Daily
Published on The Nerd Daily | Review by Salima Bensalah

Extinction Horizon is the explosive first instalment of the successful Extinction Cycle series, and focuses upon the spread of a deadly strain of the Ebola virus as it sweeps across the world. As the infection response rates quicken and there seems to be no way of controlling the virus, it is only a matter of time to find a cure or destroy the infected.

Smith’s novel takes an interesting turn from the over-saturated market of zombie-esque
Michael Hicks
Dec 23, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: bought
[I received a complimentary copy of this novel from the author in exchange for an honest review.]

Reading a Nicholas Sansbury Smith novel is like watching an epic big-screen, end of the world action flick. The plot is high-concept, the story is visceral, and the heroes are nicely etched and worth rooting for. It's the sort of book that propels the reader forward with every page, and demands to be read in a single sitting because it's just so damn uncompromisingly addicting.

I came upon Smith's
Jul 13, 2017 rated it liked it
I've read so many zompoc books over the years that it really takes a lot to impress me. This book didn't impress. That's not to say that it was awful, because I liked the story. I just wasn't rushing through it like I normally do. I did like the science. I don't "science," but this worked for me. The military jargon was kept to a minimum, which I appreciate as all those initials for things that I don't know are too much at times. Mr. Smith did a great job with characters, and I'll admit that ...more
May 13, 2015 rated it did not like it
Shelves: end-of-the-world
Ok - not Zombies but something along the lines.
We've got researchers looking for a cure and of course the Special Forces team protecting them or getting in dangerous situations, or both.

There is nothing quite new in this Story that i've havent read many times before, the characters never get any depth even the Military guys which are supposed to be "Special" have an "amateurish" touch.
There where so many situations where you ask yourself if those are the best of the best, no wonder that the
Jan 13, 2020 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2020
My least favorite of his books so far. Not bad just a lot of repetition in elements of the story.
Empress Reece (Hooked on Books)
Just recently I read "Hell Divers," also by Nicholas Sansbury Smith and it was beyond fantastic! I'm seriously still thinking about that book today. I loved it so much I was determined to buy and read everything else the author has ever written, then lo and behold the next day, I received this awesome email from the author himself generously offering to gift this series to me if I was interested in reading & reviewing it. I was not only pleasantly surprised and ecstatic but I was thinking ...more
I gave this 2 stars instead of 3 stars because of the looming romance that starts in second act (but was blatantly telegraphed in the first few chapters), wrapped in yet another wacky engineered virus spells doom for human race (excepting the plucky ones and the sexy, single female characters). FFS, how BIG is the market for zombie apocalypse romance??!!
What really soured me was the illogical use of a SpecFor team in a urban war zone that contains hundreds of thousands of enemy combatants. There
Dan Schultz
Aug 09, 2015 rated it did not like it
The great thing about this book is that you can read one out of every fifty pages and trust that you will be told four more times what just happened.

The premise is unnecessarily over the top -- a virus that mutates people into super powered cannibalistic leeches and takes less than a minute to incubate. Two days to spread across the entire United States. There is simply no room for tension or any degree of interest.

Twist - (insert the only plot point here). Oh wait not a twist you told us that
Sep 27, 2016 rated it it was amazing
wow. this book was terrifying. there were many times where i couldn't put it down! I've already bought all the other books in this series, so I'll be reading the rest very soon
Jan 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It's the end of the world as we know it... Not really giving anything away there, this is dystopian fiction after all. But the book is well written, character driven, and very fast paced. Just don't expect things to wrap up in a single volume. It looks like this tale will run for numerous books... and I'm glad to see that. I'm jumping right into book #2!
Nov 02, 2018 rated it liked it
We enjoyed this book, but didn't think it was as good as Sansbury's Hell Divers. Really liked the connection between Beckham and Lavato--good but also daunting.
Sep 12, 2017 rated it really liked it
Not especially thought-provoking or emotionally-involving, but an exciting story with just enough science and military conspiracy explanations for the plot line to seem plausible (for fiction, anyway).

I'm repainting my house and this book kept me company though a lot of patching, priming and painting. You should all know how I feel about books with sequels by now but in case you don't, I was slightly less than overjoyed to find out that this series has six and 'a half' more books. I borrowed
Apr 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audio-book
I've had the ebook of this on my kindle for a few years, but kept putting it off, not sure why but I kept thinking it's a case of "same old, same old." Over the years, though, I started seeing more and more of this and the great reviews it was getting, and while browsing Audible, saw it was available. After listening to the sample, it piqued my interest enough to buy it. Over the course of a few months, I bought all of them with my credits and when I downloaded book 6, I started listening.

Brian's Book Blog
A great start to the series

4.75 out of 5 stars

They thought they had a cure for ebola -- what they did have was so much worse. The potential cure ends up turning the ebola patients into crazed monsters out for flesh and blood. Beckham and his Delta Force team thought they'd seen it all when they were called to check out an off-the-grid research center where the virus was being tested. They had no idea what they were walking into.

The narration of Extinction Horizon was done by Bronson Pinchot who
Dec 19, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I received this ARC from the author in exchange for an honest review.

First thing I have to say is that these are not zombies! They are infected individuals, there is a difference. I know it does not seem important but I am serious about my zombies. Secondly my true rating is 4.5 stars, and that is only because it started a bit slowly for me.

I have here an author who can write a great apocalypse and make me enjoy it as the world falls apart. The characters are realistically portrayed and feel
Jason Enns
Aug 19, 2017 rated it liked it
Plausible twist on the zombie theme. Moves along quickly, fine summer read, not sure I would continue with the series.
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Official Nicholas...: Extinction Horizon 4 8 Aug 09, 2017 09:37AM  

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Nicholas Sansbury Smith is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the Hell Divers series. His other work includes the Extinction Cycle series, the Trackers series, and the Orbs series. He worked for Iowa Homeland Security and Emergency Management in disaster planning and mitigation before switching careers to focus on his one true passion--writing. When he isn't writing or ...more

Other books in the series

The Extinction Cycle (7 books)
  • Extinction Edge (The Extinction Cycle, #2)
  • Extinction Age (The Extinction Cycle, #3)
  • Extinction Evolution (The Extinction Cycle, #4)
  • Extinction End (The Extinction Cycle, #5)
  • Extinction Aftermath (The Extinction Cycle, #6)
  • Extinction War (The Extinction Cycle #7)
“If one thing was clear, it was that the average American civilian lived under the constant threat of a chemical or biological attack. Even with the strides the government had made over the past two decades with organizing first responder teams, they were all just one accident or attack away from Armageddon. If Gibson had his way, the public would remain in the dark. That’s why Beckham was sitting with a team of ‘ghosts’ in an Osprey. They existed for the sole purpose of making sure the average civilian had no idea just how close they were to the apocalypse.” 3 likes
“He’d learned a long time ago never to trust someone without a sense of humor. Over the years Beckham had grown to know many men in his career that lacked this trait. He’d found it was a good way to judge character.” 3 likes
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