Get Your Free Audiobook

Non-member price: $62.68

After 30 days, Audible is $16.45/mo. Cancel anytime.

Publisher's Summary

Award-winning performers Wil Wheaton (Star Trek: The Next Generation, The Big Bang Theory, and Ready Player One audiobook) and Katherine McNamara (Shadowhunters, The Stand, CW’s Arrow) bring this mind-bending, deeply imagined sci-fi tale to life.

The real world is only where you breathe....

In High Earth, digital entertainment is everything. Shows. Virtual worlds. Simulations - there’s something for everybody in a city where working for a living has been rendered obsolete by technological advancements. Even a short walk outside to visit with others is no longer necessary. Just load into the network and you can be with anyone, anywhere.

For Asher Reinhart, nothing compares to Ignis; a live reality show that pushes human beings to their very extremes. As a volunteer director, Asher closely monitors the lives of those living on an interstellar ark, believing they're the last of humanity.

But when it's determined that the life of the show’s brightest star, Mission, must be put in danger to boost declining ratings, Asher is forced to choose: the show he loves or the woman whose existence has been the focus of his attention since the day he was born.

From number-one Audible best-selling author and Nebula Award nominee Rhett C. Bruno comes a story about the power of human connection. The Truman Show meets Ready Player One in a novel perfect for fans of Hugh Howey, Kim Stanley Robinson, and Michael Crichton.

©2021 Rhett C. Bruno (P)2021 Podium Audio

What listeners say about Vicarious

Average Customer Ratings

Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

No Reviews are Available
Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Willis Burns
  • Willis Burns
  • 13-04-2021

Fastest read ever!

I can’t begin to express my love for this book. I listened through in one sitting, mesmerized by Wil and Katherine’s performance. As always, Bruno weaves a dark but hopeful world filled with unique people and ideas.
Different from his others (Children of Titan, Buried Goddess Saga) Vicarious stands alone as a work of art. No need for sequels, no massive arcing story, just the glorious, beautiful prose and dialogue he is known for bringing to fiction.
Asher and Mission are adorable and lovable and tragic.
Vicarious both made me long to live in High Earth and fear the possibility it might some day exist.

Bravo! Ten stars.

10 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Brian
  • Brian
  • 13-04-2021

Excellent

This isn't the first glowing review of a Rhett C. Bruno book that I've written, he has a way of captivating me in every story he tells. Vicarious was no different. From the first few minutes of it I was intrigued. I needed to know more and know who these characters where and what made them tick.

The description calls it The Truman Show meets Ready Player One, and I definitely see that, but I would throw in a bit of The Island as well. A lot of the pretense around their lives reminded me a lot of what the characters in The Island were going through. Especially because the characters in Vicarious were meant to be almost perfect human specimens because of the specific breeding and procreation they were doing.

One of the hardest things to do about a book that has twists and turns like this one does is write a review and talk about it. I can't really mention anything about the book because it will likely give away a twist or a turn that someone didn't see coming. I think The Truman show is definitely the "best" comparison, but in the future and in a really unique setting.

Normally, I can take or leave a Wil Wheaton narration. I've never hated them, but I haven't loved them either. I loved him in this. I thought he was perfect for Asher even to the point where I could sort of see Wil playing him in a movie/tv version of this. And the same goes for Katherine McNamara, I thought she absolutely nailed becoming Mission. There were a few times where I had to remind myself that this was a book and not a retelling of their life story. The narration was that good.

Overall, I really really enjoyed Vicarious. I think that Bruno knocked this one out of the park and this might be his most ambitious book along with being the best one I've read so far.

8 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Mitch Johnson
  • Mitch Johnson
  • 16-04-2021

5 stars across the board

I'm new to author Rhett C. Bruno but after finishing this masterpiece that will certainly change.

This book has some twist and turns so I can't speak to much about it. With that being said, it's April 2021 and this my 16th listen of the year. Without a doubt, it sits alone at the top.

Well written characters, a hint of mystery, a future world that could one day exist, love, consequences, and moral decisions all tightly packaged to the point where I literally could not stop.

I had to work at 5am and instead of stopping every hour like I told myself I would, I ended up listening until I literally had to get ready for work. Later on the same day after work, instead of going to bed early, I opted to finish it. I was a junkie and this was my fix.

I've seen it called The Truman Show meets Ready Player One and I agree; however, I think it has a little splash of Lost mixed into it as well. The part where you love the chapter / episode so much that you tell yourself just one more but at the end, you repeat the same phrase because it was so good. Before you know it, it's light outside,

If you are at all on the fence, let me be the first to tell you that this purchase was one of the best credits I have ever spent. I recommend you do the same. You won't regret it in the slightest.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Kenneth Lumetta
  • Kenneth Lumetta
  • 17-04-2021

Very Enjoyable

Great storyline, very indepth and detailed, plus an awesome job narrating, can't wait for the sequel!

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Kindlereader
  • Kindlereader
  • 17-04-2021

Excellent reading and listening experience!

A truly unique sci-fi experience. I wasn't exactly sure what I was getting into, but I'm so glad I did. Mission's story is both heartbreaking and triumphant, and the growth Asher shows from start to finish blew me away!

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for A.G. Whiter
  • A.G. Whiter
  • 17-04-2021

Phenomenal

I mostly knew Rhett's scifi through Titanborn, but wow, what an adventure this is. Will and Kat's narration is a dream come true that really elevates the storytelling to another level. Highly recommended.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Rob Bew
  • Rob Bew
  • 17-04-2021

Vicarious

Asher is off on his first... Mission =P

What a great book. I loved every second of it from the writing to the performance. The world of High Earth and the Outskirts was visceral and real. I would love for another book following this universe, but Vicarious ends perfectly.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Dorian T
  • Dorian T
  • 17-04-2021

Superb narration

We all know Will Wheaton can make a book fantastic, but I wasn’t familiar with Katherine McNamara before this. I am now. And I want her to narrate everything. Bruno is an author in a league all his own as well. This is a trio for the ages.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Curtis Mason
  • Curtis Mason
  • 17-04-2021

Curse you Rhett! All books now pale in comparison

I have read many of Rhett C. Bruno's books and typically find them to be good or excellent. this book passes all of them up in comparison. I have an audiobook collection of over 500 and have listened to a good portion of them. This is one of those books that will leave you considering and thinking long after you have finished it. I would say that it's similar to reading the bobiverse books without the comedy.

This book is, like it claims, a mix between The Truman Show and dystopian sci-fi, with some Mission Impossible thrown in. it is also a complete story so I do not expect a sequel to follow this although there is room for a sequel to follow the characters but it would be a very different book.

to highlight some of the positives I want to focus on pacing which was very good. the beginning was a little slow but the pace increases rapidly after the first few chapters are set up. there is little to no swearing in this book so it is safe for those who require this for their children or teenagers or themselves. character development is fantastic with plenty of growth of the main characters throughout the book. social commentary on our addiction to social media and our ideals of a perfect world are drawn throughout. the narration provided by the new McNamara and the consistently good Wheaton are great.

negatives are minor such as a fairly slow beginning and I encourage you dear reader to make it past the first four chapters because it is worth it. another negative is that the world outside the walls seems a little difficult to believe. I believe this is on purpose as it is there to provide an idea of what it means to have your eyes opened especially in today's age where everyone is glued to some sort of media device. of course I was glued to my media device until the book ended.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Sailfish
  • Sailfish
  • 17-04-2021

A good book

As others have commented, the book had a strong The Truman Show and Ready Player One influence to it, I also sensed a Blade Runner element with the Outskirts giving a gritty dystopian LA feel to it. Also, whenever one learns of a character by the name of Virgil ushering a leading character through a hellish environment, shades of Dante's Divine Comedy come to mind.

I did find the amount of time spend on the High Earth directing sections less interesting. Also, the MC, Asher was self-centered and somewhat shallow throughout what with his obsession with Mission to the disregard of most other humans.

Wil Wheaton's performance was okay but came off a bit too Yuppy-like but Katherine McNamara's performance was done well.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for S. Reid
  • S. Reid
  • 16-04-2021

An Audio that just comes to life

A mix between the 100 and The Trueman show is pretty close to what this is as a large ark on a journey trying to survive is nothing but a popular reality tv show for a VR obsessed populace. Only a young girl birthed illegally will put everything into jepoardy as we follow her birth and her revelation so closely with the debut narration by McNamara doing extremely well bringing the listener into our hearts. Wheaton doing the VR director of the programme also showcases his usual skills as we see his eyes being opened to the manipulation being done to rhe unknowing populace. The two seperate but connected viewpoints coming into collision bring great interest for the listener and we feel the emotions that Bruno writes into events which are all too believable for an apocalyptic future eden for the mighty chosen elite. Great story telling and narration is 5 stars all across the board.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Kindle Customer
  • Kindle Customer
  • 14-04-2021

a slow burn masterpiece

a great story and narration, slow paced story but it has to be to slowly build the world for us so we can fully appreciate it and its importantance

In the spirit of reconciliation, Audible Australia acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of country throughout Australia and their connections to land, sea and community. We pay our respect to their elders past and present and extend that respect to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples today.