Read The Traveler by John Twelve Hawks Online


The Traveler explores a parallel world that exists alongside our own. A world that exists in the shadows of our own. A conflict we will never see. One woman stands between those determined to control history and those who will risk their lives for freedom.A world that exists in the shadows of our own.A conflict we will never see.One woman stands between those determined toThe Traveler explores a parallel world that exists alongside our own. A world that exists in the shadows of our own. A conflict we will never see. One woman stands between those determined to control history and those who will risk their lives for freedom.A world that exists in the shadows of our own.A conflict we will never see.One woman stands between those determined to control history and those who will risk their lives for freedom.Maya is hiding in plain sight in London. The twenty-six-year-old has abandoned the dangerous obligations pressed upon her by her father, and chosen instead to live a normal life. But Maya comes from a long line of people who call themselves Harlequins—a fierce group of warriors willing to sacrifice their lives to protect a select few known as Travelers.Gabriel and Michael Corrigan are brothers living in Los Angeles. Since childhood, the young men have been shaped by stories that their late father was a Traveler, one of a small band of prophets who have vastly influenced the course of history. Travelers are able to attain pure enlightenment, and have for centuries ushered change into the world. Gabriel and Michael, who may have inherited their father's gifts, have always protected themselves by living “off the Grid”—that is, invisible to the real-life surveillance networks that monitor people in our modern society.Summoned by her ailing father, Maya is told of the existence of the brothers. The Corrigans are in severe danger, stalked by powerful men known as the Tabula—ruthless mercenaries who have hunted Travelers for generations. This group is determined to inflict order on the world by controlling it, and they view Travelers as an intolerable threat. As Maya races to California to protect the brothers, she is reluctantly pulled back into the cold and solitary Harlequin existence. A colossal battle looms—one that will reveal not only the identities of Gabriel and Michael Corrigan but also a secret history of our time.Moving from the back alleys of Prague to the heart of Los Angeles, from the high deserts of Arizona to a guarded research facility in New York, The Traveler explores a parallel world that exists alongside our own. John Twelve Hawks' stunningly suspenseful debut is an international publishing sensation that marks the arrival of a major new talent....

Title : The Traveler
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9781400079292
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 464 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

The Traveler Reviews

  • Saleh MoonWalker
    2019-05-14 00:22

    Onvan : The Traveler (Fourth Realm, #1) - Nevisande : John Twelve Hawks - ISBN : 1400079292 - ISBN13 : 9781400079292 - Dar 464 Safhe - Saal e Chap : 2005

  • Jason Pettus
    2019-05-08 20:39

    (Reprinted from the Chicago Center for Literature and Photography [].)(Longtime followers of my creative projects know that in general I don't like publishing bad reviews; that for the most part I see it as a waste of both my time and yours, in that I could be spending that time instead pointing out great artists you may have never heard of. However, since one of the things this website is dedicated to is honest artistic criticism, I also feel it's important to acknowledge books that I found just too bad to bother finishing, as well as give you an idea of why I found them that bad to begin with. Hence, this series of short essays.)The Accused: The Traveler, by "John Twelve Hawks" (pseudonym)How far I got: 24 pages. Yeah, I know.Crimes:1) Taking one of the few opportunities each year that occur for a science-fiction book to get a general-interest marketing budget, and wasting it on this hacky, sloppy, glorified fan-fiction dreck.2) Clumsily ripping off major concepts from four sci-fi movies and six sci-fi novels within the first three chapters, in an astonishingly offhanded way that makes the author seem like he never thought anyone would figure it out.3) Being particularly heinous with the Slow Death by Exposition, an already consistent problem within a lot of genre work but especially bad here. "Harlequins prefer old-looking cities." "Harlequins only live in places with three separate exits." "Harlequins only wear dark, expensive fabrics with custom tailoring." Yes yes yes, and Chuck Norris has a f---ing posse, I get it.4) Affecting that cloying, obvious, Benetton-rainbow style of multiculturism so common in this Web 2.0 era; where there's a Japanese Harlequin and an Arab Harlequin and a British Harlequin and a whole globe of other superfriends, traipsing their way across the world to have the same exact bland conversations and bland action scenes no matter where they are. And by the way, "Twelve Hawks," just because you've looked up the names of a couple of metro stations does not mean that you've painted a convincing mental image of that city. Give us a sense that you actually know something about all these global locations your book is known for, besides the stuff you can look up at Wikipedia.5) Not understanding that making a plucky, quirky, rebellious pale young girl the main hero was already tired and cliche 20 damn years ago. Also, for making her too much like Lara Croft. Also, not the marginally cool Lara Croft from the videogame but the infinitely annoying Angelina-Jolie Lara Croft of the movies.6) Deliberately withholding the author's real name, in a desperate bid to drum up a little viral-marketing-style publicity over who it might be. Come on, Doubleday, we all know who the real author is; some pasty, acne-riddled 23-year-old nobody, who wears floor-length leather coats and sunglasses at night to the Saturday-night filk session of Dragonomicon 17. "Worst. Attempt. At. Building. False. Suspense. Ever!"7) Convincing me to completely give up on a 500-page book before even hitting chapter 4. Seriously, that's impressive.8) Making this the first book in a trilogy. A trilogy?! Cheese and Rice, Doubleday, are you freaking kidding me?!Verdict: Innocent by reason of insanity.Sentence: Indefinite incarceration in the St. Asimov Home for Wayward Science Fiction Fanboys Who Think They Too Can Write A Novel Because They've Seen The Matrix One Zillion Freakin' Times.

  • Jaidee
    2019-05-09 23:18

    3.5 "interesting, carefully plotted and plausible" stars.John Twelve Hawks is a pseudonym for a writer who writes in privacy and is "off the grid". His book appears to be a reflection of a fictionalized account of his world and spiritual views.From Wikipedia:QUESTION: Is there a reason for the pen name? One you’d be willing to share, I suppose. As in, is it because you’re actually a secret CIA agent and/or Russian spy, or merely because you don’t ever want your mother knowing what you’ve written?JTH: My mother and the rest of my family don’t know that I have written the novels. Those people I know who aren’t close friends see me as a failure by the American standards of success. Being a “failure” in such a way has been a continual lesson. It’s helped me realize that we make quick judgments of others based on little real information. We assume so much – but don’t know the secrets held.The book is not one of a paranoiac but one of who has carefully thought out his vision of modern life as one of being constantly monitored, scrutinized, controlled and ultimately exploited by the establishment of institutions and persons with power.The story is presented in an interesting, logical and sequential fashion and presents themes of love, loyalty, spiritual paths and rebelling against authority. It is fast paced with interesting characters (who in my view) are not fully developed or psychologically complex (more like action heroes than real people) despite this the book kept me fully engaged and helped me reflect on my own views of the world and the themes he has presented. What I find in much dystopian fiction is that when the writer comes into a conundrum he just pulls something out of his hat that is illogical and jarring. Mr. Twelve Hawks does not do this- his story is carefully planned out and makes complete and coherent sense from beginning to end.I will definitely be adding the second book to my TBR list as I really want to know what happens next.

  • Alex Telander
    2019-04-28 21:24

    THE TRAVELER BY JOHN TWELVE HAWKS: This book actually generated quite a bit of buzz before it was released last June and I had it recommended to me by a few people saying that it was in the vein of Stephen King, and since I'm a fan I would probably enjoy this. I managed to get an ARC through the bookstore I used to work at and then it sat on my shelf for about six months until I picked it up and decided to start reading it last week. I finished it about four days later after pretty much eating it up. I would describe it as very akin to a Michael Crichton techno-thriller with some plenty of sci-fi mixed in. After getting about a hundred pages into it I was even wondering if Crichton much just be working on this same book currently because of its similarities with his story lines, the main difference being that this was a little slower and the characters had more depth to them. After finished this book I realize that this has certain elements that Crichton would never put in his book make this an enjoyable original piece of fiction. If the Matrix trilogy had originally been made into a book trilogy and done by a good writer, it would've been something like The Traveler.The book is set near to the present day or perhaps twenty or thirty years into the future. The world is pretty much like it is now, except for being a little more high-tech and with better gadgets. There is a group of people known as Travelers who have the unique ability of being able to leave their bodies and travel to other worlds or realms. They have existed for many thousands of years, Jesus and Mohammed are though to have been travelers. There is a group of people known as the Tabula whose job it is to eradicate these travelers by whatever means necessary. They have also been in existence for a long time. Then there is a group called the Harlequins whose job it is to project the Travelers by whatever means necessary; again they have been around for a very long time.In the present it is thought that no travelers are in existence anymore, having been wiped out by the Tabula, while the Harlequins have been reduced to very small numbers. Our main character is the daughter of a Harlequin whose father is soon killed in the book and while she had renounced her duty as a Harlequin, due to the lack of these people remaining, she has been summoned to become a Harlequin once more, because two offspring of a traveler have been found alive in California. The traveler's gift is usually passed down through genes, though this is not certain. It is her job to find those two brothers and keep them safe. The Tabula also know of the existence of these two brothers, but their modus operandi has changed dramatically. They no longer wish to kill the Travelers, but to harness their powers. The reason being that using past Travelers they have been in contact with another race living in one of the other realms that the Travelers go to, and this race is vastly superior and more intelligent and has been sending them new inventions and technology such as creating quantum computers that can measure how Travelers pass into these other realms as well as being able to send additional matter into these realms. So they want to use the Travelers as guinea pigs to work with this new race.This the setting of the book with a lot more details than I have given and features great chase scenes and amazing fights. The Harlequins are taught from when they are children how to fight with different weapons. At the same time the Tabula basically have the Internet, all technology, the government, police, etc. under their control. If you liked this review, and would like to read more, go to BookBanter.

  • Chris
    2019-04-29 21:13

    6/26/08I'm still deciding if I can finish this book. Its pure summer fluff, but it is sooo bad I almost can keep reading . . .6/27/08I can't take it any more -- there are so many other good books, sci-fi or not, that I could be reading. I just can't waste my time on this crap. It's a bit of the Matrix, a bit of Highlander, with a lot of John Woo thrown in for good measure. This book has every cliche known to man (or rahter, known to 12 year old fan-boys) tossed together into one badly written mess -- the reluctant warrior who tried to walk away, drawn back in by destiny and the death of her father; the paranoid drop-out from society, who rides fast motorcycles and has the feeling that some "vast machine" is out to get him; hardened agents of said "vast machine," who have military cropped hair and narrow black ties. There's the aloof british character, the honor-bound japanese character, the money-seeking American character. There's a former general, a brilliant scientist who doens't know he is being manipulated by an Illuminati like organization, and a dying mother's death-bed confession. Everyone who keeps talking about how "cool" the premise is must have never read a single paranoid-dystopian novel before. There's some vast, logical-yet-evil organizaiton seeking to make the world "perfect" by controling everyone's lives, watching us at all times, and destroying the forces of chaos that seek to oppose it. Hello 1984/Matrix/every Philip K. Dick novel ever written. Insult to injury is the fact that the writing is, at best servicable, at worst wooden and just as cliched as the concept behind it. Far too much time is spent on descriptions of weapons, black-leather clothing and vehicles, all of which sound like they were copied word-for-word from some Shadowrunner source-book. This is basically an above average work of fan-fic or a decent RPG campaign bound in novel form and hyped up by the laughable gimic of an "unknown author" who has never been photographed and only communicates with Random House via untracable satalite phone. Apparently, Dick Cheney has spent his time in that undisclosed location writing a bad sci-fi novel.I might, just possibly, have laughed my way through it had not I then realized it was part one of a TRILLOGY. 463 pages of crap is one thing, but 1200 some? Moving on . . .

  • Amy
    2019-05-04 02:37

    This book was not at all what I expected...but I loved it. I am not generally a big sci-fi/alternate reality fan but loved this read.The author raised tons of important points regarding "big brother" and how easily our every move can be monitored by the "vast machine." I am not an alarmist but it is a little scary how easily our movements could be traced through seemingly little things such as grocery store discount cards and security cameras in ATM's. I loved Maya's character the female harlequin wrestling with emotion and destiny. Is her future necesarily bound by the harlequin tradition or is she free to pursue friendships.Being a theologian at heart I was fascinated by the books take on religion. It basicaly describes the religious experience as being a result of measurable brain activity. They joke about the God in the box and the idea that God is all in our head, and is as explainable as the sensation of smell or touch.I jumped on the sequal: The Dark River and eagerly anticipate the final book in the trilogy.

  • Sandi
    2019-05-19 02:21

    I read "The Traveler" a couple of years ago and I still think about it occasionally. The whole concept of what a Traveler can do was kind of New-Agey, but I thought the idea of people trying to live off the grid (without anything connecting up to computers) was very unique. If you read the blurb, you'd think this was a science fiction novel. I suppose it can be argued that it is a science fiction novel. However, in retrospect, I consider it to be a fantasy novel that uses a lot of modern technology. It has an epic quest, a centuries-old battle between good and evil, swords, and a secret society of knights protecting people with special powers. I call that fantasy even if they use GPS systems, cell phones and computers.NEW, EXPANDED COMMENTARY FOLLOWS:"The Traveler" doesn't work quite as well on re-read. I think the biggest problem is the New Age ideas cloaked in the guise of science fiction. As I stated before, this is really a fantasy novel, but it's trying very hard to be science fiction. Unfortunately for the author, he just doesn't get that when one's "light" leaves one's body and crosses barriers that are related to the "elements" of fire, air, water, etc., that's not science, it's fantasy. He uses things like a quantum computer, monitoring cameras and GPS devices like magical items. In his world, the tools of the Vast Machine have no basis in real science and technology. This is essentially a New Age Conspiracy Theory novel. However, I still found "The Traveler" to be an engaging read despite it's rather obvious flaws. The pacing is good and there's plenty of action. I did downgrade it from 4 to 3 stars though. Even though the whole New Age angle really ticked me off both times I read it, I still liked the plot and the characters. I have the sequel, The Dark River, in my to-read pile, and I hope that Twelve Hawks' writing style has improved.

  • Elizabeta
    2019-04-30 23:20

    Conspiracy with paranormal twist, great!

  • Erica Satifka
    2019-04-25 23:21

    What it is: In the not too distant future, a vaguely dystopic America has only one chance to be saved from the peril of implanted microchips and spliced rat/dog mutants--the Traveler, a man capable of traveling through the fabric of alternate realities and bringing back capital-T Truths to set the world free. Gabriel, this generation's Traveler (previous Travelers have included Jesus, Mohammed, Buddha... you get the pat drift), is not so much a reluctant hero as a poseable doll. Protected by his bodyguard, an oddly-named "Harlequin" whose family has protected Travelers for generations, they prowl various government buildings reenacting dialogue from The Matrix. His twin brother is an evil Traveler brainwashed by the government. Bet you didn't see that one coming!What I thought: The writing in this book is incredibly awful. Just... incredibly. Dialogue and description flatter than the state of Kansas (where the author apparently lives in an underground bunker writing this crap and avoiding the gubmint), stereotypical characters (Asian-American character wielding a samurai sword given to him by his traditional father?!?! oh please), crackerjack "political theory" presented in the most hamfisted way possible. And worst of all, the book's cover did not indicate that it was the first in a series. I do not read series books unless the entire series is published (I'm not that patient!) so to get to an unexpected cliffhanger ending followed by "this is the first book of the Fourth Realm" annoyed me. Highly. Though not as much as it would have had I actually *enjoyed* the book.Stay away from this one, folks. It's utter shite.

  • Monk
    2019-05-03 22:21

    Probably my favorite book of the last couple of years. The Traveler and its follow-up are a very cool blend of techno-thriller and fantasy, and they move along at an incredible pace. I live a very busy life and usually can read books only in 15-page bites before I pass out at night, but these books are load-up-on-Pepsi-Max-'cause-you-ain't-going-to-bed-brother kind of books. The story arc deals with two brothers and their inherited ability to travel between dimensions, but much of this first book is a nifty "chase" novel, with pursuers who have easy access to security cameras, credit card machines, traffic light computers, etc. I can't let my wife read it...she's enough of a conspiracy theorist as it is, that this would push her over the edge. The final book came out this fall (I just learned), so I plan to schedule a new-year's marathon reading the entire series again.

  • Hannah Rodgman
    2019-04-23 00:10

    You can tell when a book is good because it opens your mind to other possibilities. And his book truly did that for me. I loved it so much.A fantastic re-read! Highly recommended!!

  • Louize
    2019-04-24 03:35

    Book blurb:“In London, a young woman uses cutting-edge technology to elude detection by the thousands of surveillance cameras that watch the city. In New York, a secret shadow organization uses a victim’s own GPS to hunt him down and kill him. In Los Angeles, a motorcycle messenger with a haunted past takes pains to live “off the Grid” – free of credit cards and government IDs. Welcome to the world of The Traveler – a world frighteningly like our own.”My initial interest in this book was tweaked by my fascination with its writer. On the Random House website, his biography reads: “John Twelve Hawks lives off the grid.” Nothing else was said about him even if you try and google him. His name is but a pseudonym. His publisher and editor have never met him; and he communicates using only a satellite phone with a voice scrambler. Intriguing!"True freedom is tolerant. It gives people the right to live and think in new ways." The book, The Traveler is no less interesting. Travelers are people born gifted with the ability to travel into different dimensions by means of their light source (or soul). Science can’t rightly identify how and when they do it, although it was proven to be genetics. People like them, like Gabriel and Michael Corrigan, exercise freedom beyond the limits of norm. Their mere existence spreads awareness to the people. For centuries, the Tabula have worked hard to eliminate their kind."Walking is easy ... but it requires faith to find the right path."Sworn to protect the travelers are the Harlequins. There’s nothing funny about them. They are trained warriors, cunning and unblinking killers. Like her father before her, Maya was trained since she was but a child in the art of death. Her fate is intertwined with the Corrigan brothers. She must do everything she can to keep them off the grid."All the doubts and hesitation she felt in London had vanished. Maya knew who she was: a Harlequin. Yes, it would be difficult, but she would stay with Gabriel."John Twelve Hawks, whoever he is, is a genius. The Traveler is a fast-moving, high-tech, spiritually-complex thriller. "In the near future, we will simply become another object that can be monitored, tracked and controlled within a vast machine."

  • Greg
    2019-05-16 20:20

    This might be the worst book I've read in years. I gave it an extra star just for being kind of 'neat' in the premise, but the writing leaves a lot to be desired.

  • Mike (the Paladin)
    2019-05-15 23:24

    I liked this novel of conspiracy and danger. The series is delving into some eastern areas of belief as it moves.The characters here are well imagined and the story told well. The background of the book I found fascinating. Anyone familiar with Jeremy Bentham and the idea of the Panopticon would I think find this book interesting. While at first glance it the fears of the character and the situation they struggle against seems very far fetched, the idea of a "virtual Panopticon" becomes far more acceptable as you look around. The proliferation of cameras for instance is a fact (and in the UK it's actually true that in the city your "virtually" always on camera. I liked the approach. The book takes an almost paranoid seeming conspiracist view and makes it believable.The individuals in the Tabula and it's overall plans are given but don't become detailed. This works however because they are supposed to be somewhat shadowy. Keeping them so while using them in the story is done pretty well. The idea of the Travelers isn't a new one, and I find it the weakest pivot point in the book. It's handled in a way that holds together and fits into the authors milieu. Still while it works it seems a weak point to me. Of course, I find the eastern/Tibetan Buddhism (from which of course the Fourth Realm title comes) a weak part of the story. Don't get me wrong, it's not that I'm not Buddhist or that I disagree with Buddhism. I just think that the story would have worked better as a straight conspiracy piece, especially as the author makes it clear he is (at least according to his postscript and so on) a conspiracy believer.The best drawn but also somewhat enigmatic characters in the book and the one that will i think draw more readers in on a basic "action read" level are of course the Harlequins. Good name for a group of Ninja/bodyguard/assassins. The book is enjoyable and while I think the series itself sort of plowed into the ground a bit later, this one was good.

  • Jim O'Donnell
    2019-05-03 02:27

    Pretty tiresome tripe. While the subject matter is very interesting, the book becomes a slog. It is weighed down by its own cliches and overly worn themes. Essentially, there exists a group of people with special powers to cross over to other dimensions. Then there are a group of people who are sworn to protect them. Then there are a group of people working to hunt them down. All this takes place in a very near future dystopian surveillence society (future as a month from now). Its basically the Matrix with swords. Oh yeah...the Matrix did have swords. Hmmmmm....The Matrix and like...10 other recent sci-fi books and movies!There is nothing origional here and that's what I found most annoying (oh yeah...and the writing was pretty bad too): Those who have the ability to cross over are...yes...Travelers. They are persued...yes...The Bretheren. And the protectors are the Harlequins. Good Lord. The most ridiculous aspect to the whole book is the ever so tiresome fascination some people have with a fantasized historical Japan of golden swords and ninjas and secret societies. The Bretheren want to kill all the Travelers and of course the last Harlequin that can defend them is some hot chick named Lara Croft...oh wait!that wasnt really her name just her copied character...anyway, a hot chick with a British accent (she;ll only enter a room with three exits....bwwwwhahahahahahaha!) and a Japanese guy out to avenge his father's murder. Yawn.I think someday, someone will do something origional.

  • Michael
    2019-05-18 02:35

    When the most intriguing question about a book is the real identity of the author, you know something isn't working.John Twelve Hawks lives "off the grid" and his novel, "The Traveler" is a warning to the rest of us consider doing the same. We may not know it, but our world is just one of many realms, though only a special few people can break the barriers from one realm to another. These people are called Travelers and they've apparently been at war with a group called the Tabula for years. The Travelers are protected by the Harlequins, who consider it a duty and honor to protect them and possibly lay down their lives for them.Apparently, the Tabula are winning the war, using the horrors of modern technology to track down and destroy all the Travelers and Harlequins. Except for two brothers, both of whom are Travelers. The book becomes a race against time for several players on both sides to try and get to the two brothers. One of them, Michael, is kidnapped and brainwashed by the Tabula. The other, Gabriel is saved and goes to an Indian reservation to begin his Traveler training.If it sounds like a lot of popular movies you've seen in the last twenty years or so, it's probably because "The Traveler" has borrowed a lot from the best of them. The story wants to have the same sense of pervasive paranoia that is a highlight of the stories and novels of Philip K. Dick, but it comes up woefully short. Passages about how Maya, one of the last Harlequins, must change her physical features to avoid the vast machine seem to be ripped right out of the page of any good spy thriller of the past twenty years or the Bourne movies. The story is full of mystic mumbo-jumbo, little of it delved into at any great depth or even explained. Basically, we're supposed to fear the machines and the only way to live is without the intrusion of machines into our every day life. Well, except for the occasional quick jaunt around the Internet to find information...but only as long as you don't leave a footprint, of course.The novel plunges forward from one absurd moment to the next without any logic or reason, before coming to a close with a cliffhanger. It's one that you'll see coming, if only because looking at the number of pages left will clue you in that Twelve Hawks won't have time to wrap it all up in the time he has left. If the story were a bit more compelling, a bit less cliched and the characters anything more than archetypes, I might be a bit more inclined to wonder more about the identity of John Twelve Hawks. Given how pedestrian and cliched the novel is, I find myself wondering if the author is more or less hiding behind the identity of Twelve Hawks not so that he or she won't be discovered by the vast machine, but so his or her name won't be associated with this lackluster novel.

  • Arminzerella
    2019-05-17 20:36

    This book got a lot of publicity prior to publication. It was hailed as being phenomenal. It describes a future dystopian society, where privacy and individual freedom are compromised. The government wants in on that action, but the powers of observation and control are held by a group known as the Brethren who have all the cool toys – a quantum computer, the means to tap into all kinds of monitoring devices worldwide, and the ability to make genetically mutated animals. There’s been a long battle between the Brethren and the people known as Travelers. For years, the Brethren have been trying to destroy Travelers – because they’re able to go places where they can’t be watched, and they cause trouble back in the physical plane by giving people hope and making them break out of their normal lives. A group of protectors grew up to keep the Travelers safe from harm. These people are known as Harlequins. They’re cold-blooded killers, almost machine-like in their precision and training. They don’t get close to anyone. With this setup, we meet Maya, a Harlequin, whose father is killed when he tries to pass a mission along to her. She declines until she sees him horribly murdered. Then she takes up her birthright to protect the Traveler, Gabriel. Meanwhile, the Brethren capture his brother, Michael, for their evil experiments. They discover that there are other beings in other planes and they make a deal to trade information for information. Michael, also a Traveler, is important to their plans.This could be a very gripping tale, and despite flat characters, it still is somewhat intriguing. It does not have the visual power of the Matrix, or even the doomed frustration of 1984 or Brave New World. It tries to take advantage of our fears about our own civilization – where our powers of free speech and access to information seem to be under attack constantly, and where our privacy is being compromised for the sake of our protection. Twelve Hawks tries to show the parallels, but it doesn’t quite hit the right note. Yes, this is just a story, but I have the feeling it could have been a more moving one, a call to action, more emotionally gripping. But it fails to engage. There are two more books planned in this series, so if you do find yourself caught up in this one, you’ll have the rest of the story eventually. I’m still on the fence about whether I want to devote more time to this.

  • Steve Coughlan
    2019-04-29 23:25

    Nice. The first in a series, but neatly tied up at the end, so it can stand alone. Classic plot with an interesting take on history, religion, and modern society... gee, if I wanted to believe it was all true, I could... there are no obvious contradictions between the fiction and perceived reality. Which makes it a very nice read, and I look forward to picking up the sequel when it comes out, which should be real soon now.Oh, yes, the plot: Maya should be a Harlequin. Harlequins protect Travellers from the bad guys; in this case the secret cabal of the rich and powerful who make the world work the way they want. Travellers disrupt the carefully plans of the bad guys ("Tabula" to our heroes, "Brethren" is what they call themselves). We're down to a small handful of Harlequins in the world, and no known Travellers when we start (aka "the end of hope for humanity"), and Maya changes things by the time we finish.Essay question for you: are you a citizen or a drone?

  • Kara-karina
    2019-05-11 04:32

    Another ridiculously good book that found me by pure chance. All the conspiracy theorists of the world, this book is definitely for you. As I count myself one of the men in the tinfoil hats, that book felt like home.My mom-in-law gave it to my hubby to read and it was gathering dust in our car, until one day I went to work forgetting my own book (oh, horror!) and had to make do with this one.I was so engrossed in it, I did not put it down until it was finished. Thanks, Mom! *grinning*Brilliant conspiracy thriller with a neck-breaking pace. Somehow it had the style of Heroes despite a very different plot. I kept hearing this music in my mind, I swear! Maya is a Harlequin, a secret warrior trained since her childhood by her father to live off the grid and to protect The Travellers at all costs. Travellers are people who can astral travel in other dimensions and come back seeing the world as whole, preaching freedom from control and more harmonious society. This is why they are known as great spiritual leaders and get killed all the time by Tabula - a secret organisation striving for a total control over the world.When Maya is 17 she has to kill a member of Tabula. At that time she is standing guard over one monk - a sort of teacher for travelers, and the murder is as much as in self-defence as to protect her guy.Shaken, she breaks away from her dad and Harlequins and tries to live a normal life, getting education and starting working in one of London firms. All that changes few years later when her dad contacts her asks her to come and meet him in Prague.What happens after that is one phenomenal race against time and almost total technological control of Tabula when Maya has to find the last two travellers on Earth hiding in US and save them before Tabula gets them first.There are so many things in this book that make you stop and think how every new gadget, every new CCTV camera and every new "anti-terrorism law" tighten the noose around our necks. I find it really interesting as well, that the identity of the author himself is unknown.John Twelve Hawks lives off the grid and talks to his publisher and editor through untraceable Internet connection and satellite phone with a scrambler. No one knows who he is and what he does, and I think it's so awesome!Fantastic book, that makes you think and it's choke full of action as well. Really recommended.

  • Scribal
    2019-04-23 02:36

    I'm embarrassed that I actually finished this book. I thought it was so bad that I morally couldn't trade it in at the local used bookstore (the one that has the biggest sci-fi section and enough actual patrons to keep it changing--and they sell new books too). I considered burning it but then I lost interest until I started re-reading some Foucault, and it brought the Panopticon to mind and then this book, which I now have to say: This is the Worst Book I ever finished reading. To cut to the chase, despite how badly written it is, the truly stupid annoying part of the book is the conceit that a shallow unexplored insight is interesting and important.Why I hate it: it's yet another popular, promoted book in a genre I love that is absolutely horribly written. The sentence structure is like a first grade reader. The characters are simpler and more cliched than the sentences. Everything else is more derivative if possible and you can sense the author struggling with moving the characters through space.The ideas are old and well-worn, but that's okay. Art reuses, reinterprets, re-imagines, and reinvigorates old concepts. But there's no art here. The characters take the ideas, and spout them like drunk undergraduates at people in general. And then those people, having been told "the truth," seem to say to themselves, "oh, I never thought of that before." Why did I finish it? Inertia maybe. It does have a Plot. It doesn't hold together well and it's full of holes, but it does run the course of the book and that's a plus. It also has a Theme and an Idea. These are not bad, just not original and not explored in any intelligent way.

  • Laura E. Hall
    2019-05-20 00:11

    I think I'd actually give this a 2.75 out of 5 if I could, but 3 is fine because a lot of the flaws of the book don't matter when you're consuming it in audiobook form, as I did. (The audiobook reader does a wide range of accents and voices for every character, which makes it very enjoyable.)Those flaws: the plot is extremely straightforward, the characters aren't much developed, and anyone who's not a "citizen" or a "drone" in this CCTV-happy, consumerism-driven society will greet you by asking if you've ever heard of the massive, history-spanning Dan Brown-style conspiracy that is the driving force of the book series. Still, it has its merits, though I actually came to it believing it was a YA novel, so perhaps I'm a bit more forgiving about the whole thing. It reads like an entry-level treatise on paranoid conspiracies, Jeremy Bentham's Panopticon and accompanying social control theories, and Buddhist beliefs.

  • Kev
    2019-05-18 00:24

    John Twelve Hawks's true identity is unknown, even to his publisher. He communicates by satellite phone and is essentially off grid. And that's the author in real life!In the book people with spiritual and psychic abilities are hunted down whilst the Harlequins who are off gridders are in place to protect them.The first part of the Fourth Realm trilogy is an exciting and paranoid novel with a taste of Enemy of the State that takes the reader on a Pullman style ride through various realities and makes the reader aware of just how much we all completely rely on being on-grid and with all that goes with it.

  • Stephanie
    2019-05-12 01:16

    Riveting! Highly recommended. Science fiction meets homeland security run amok meets the next prophet. Featuring a bad-ass woman as the ultimate fighting machine. I'm torn between wanting to see it made into a movie and leaving it alone as a great book. Listened to it as an audio-book, and the reader was fantastic. He did all the accents wonderfully and really added a lot to it.

  • Annet
    2019-04-22 21:38

    Nice story, but at times I wasn't too impressed and the book couldn't fascinate me the whole time, at times the pages sort of dragged on. Storyline is exceptional though, some unexpected twists in the story makes you curious for more, hope to read part 2 in the summer.

  • Christina
    2019-04-21 20:31

    "Freedom is the biggest myth ever created. It's a destructive, unachievable goal that has caused a great deal of pain. Very few people can handle freedom. A society is healthy and productive when it's under control." (p. 294)John Twelve Hawks is a man with a mission. He is desperately worried about the state of our society and how we are being monitored more and more with each passing year, how surveillance cameras are being put up everywhere and how our information becomes more and more available to access for more people. His point of view is expressed throughout the novel - but even more clearly in the short essay at the end of the book, 'How We Live Now' where he talks about the technology used to monitor us now and how it is used - and sometimes abused. I must admit that his talk about smart surveillance cameras that can scan our faces, compare them to databases, put a name to our face and 'cry wolf' if someone walks through a city like London in an unusual way - meaning it will post a warning at a police station or something similar - scared me a bit.Before reading this book, I felt that if you didn't have something to hide, then it didn't matter if you were being photographed. But when reading a book like this, the great bonus is that it makes you think and I don't care for being photographed and maybe flagged in some way because I don't walk through a city like everybody else. Of course it's an invasion of privacy - but it's also a wish for conformity, an attempt to make us all very similar. And I don't like that - I like individuality, I like being allowed to stand out if I so wish. Now I know for most of us, we don't have time to stand out very much in our daily life but I want to be allowed to do so. Not only for my own individual pleasure and joy of life but individuality is also needed to make great discoveries, great advances in science etc. I don't like the way society seem to be headed, I certainly don't want my book shopping to be monitored to see if I buy the wrong books, and I do think we're somewhat overreacting to the threats out there. Of course, the state and the government have to protect us - but the price need to be fair.Now when reading fiction where the author has such a strong message he wants to come across with, it sometimes hamper the book. And it does that in this one as well. When the action stops and one of the character gives a speech - either one of the good guys against surveillance and 'big brother is watching' or one of the bad guys for conformity and constant surveillance, the book slows down and then it picks up pace again when the action continues and there's no more time for talk.But even with that being said, I really like the book. Hawks puts a light on our society, the way we live today, and although it's very black-and-white, it's still illuminating.He distinguishes between four categories of people. There are of course the Travellers - these are people who are able to cross between the 6 realms we know of. They can leave their physical body and travel to these other realms and through this, they become very wise. Because Travellers can travel outside this reality, they are able to see the walls of the prison, modern technology and surveillance technology have created. This means that not everyone is happy with them. Therefore, we have the Tabula - or the Brethren, as they call themselves - a group of people who have made it their goal to kill every Traveller. And a group which job has been made so much easier by modern technology - so much easier, that they have almost succeeded in killing off every Traveller - and Harlequins, who are the warriers opposing the tabula. The Harlequins see it as their goal to protect the Travellers and try to keep off the grid, to live as random as possible (along the same lines as in Luke Rhinehart's book The Dice Man). The fourth group is the rest of us - the citizens, as the Harlequins (somewhat contemptuously) call us.In this first installment in the Fourth Realm Trilogy we meet all four groups. Maya is a young woman whose father, Thorn, is a Harlequin. Maya has tried to leave that life behind but when her father is brutally killed, she decides to do the last thing he asked of her - to go to USA and protect two young men, Michael and Gabriel, whose father was a Traveller and who might be Travellers themselves. Getting there is rather difficult and when finally there, she discovers that one of the brothers, Michael, has already been taken by the Tabula.This is in a lot of ways a standard action book with lots of fighting, travelling, hiding, finding people that can help and staying out of danger - but with the added plot of a group of people who wants to take control of everything and everyone and two other groups opposing these.When this book was published in 2005, there was a lot of hype about it. Mostly because no one know who the author really is. There are small pieces of information about 'him' that people have tried to piece together to guess who 'he' is (guesses have been Stephen King, Michael Cunningham and more) but no one knows for sure still. In the essay at the end he writes I feel strongly about the growing power of computer monitoring systems, and that belief has a great deal to do with my decision to retain a private life - even when dealing with my agent and publisher. It seemed hypocritical for an author to attack the loss of privacy in our society and then display his personal life to promote a book." (p. 598-599). As I see it, either he is a already know author who uses this pseudonym to write a totally different type of books and the whole thing is a construct, or he is a truly idealistic person who feels very strongly about this. In either case, we might never learn who he is.

  • Chris Long
    2019-05-13 03:22

    The Traveler, by John Twelve Hawks, is one of the most interesting books I have read. This book is definitely worth reading for fun. The Traveler can catch any reader attention by the first page and keep them turning until the very end. The novel was published in 2005 and was New York Times bestselling novel of John Twelve Hawks. John Twelve Hawks has created a whole trilogy with his novels. Including The Dark River, The Golden City, and The Fourth Realm Trilogy, etc. The book is under fiction (but feels so realistic). The book is about a group of people called Harlequins who have made a sacrifice to protect all of the Travelers (people who can travel into other realms). Maya one of the main characters, is assigned to protect two brothers (Gabriel and Michael) who could be Travelers. She had a history of great sacrifice and even lost her Harlequin father, Thorn (hunted down and executed). Maya is trying to keep the Vast Machine (a force working against them and watching over everybody) from finding them before she does. She finds Gabriel and needs to protect him from the Vast Machine, but they had found Michael before they did. Now the Vast Machine is experimenting on Michael and discovers he is a Traveler. But Maya and Gabriel are hiding and are trying to get Michael out. Maya as a character has such a realistic background and you can tell she is built to be a Harlequin for sure (her father forced her as a child to battle people to prepare her for her future). Gabriel is a soft spoken guy for only knows karate to defend himself. Michael is a man who wants to live off the Vast Machine (called living off the Grid) and never be involved with the world. Both of their father had been a Traveler (but was sadly hunted down and executed) and their mother was just protecting them from the future. The plot line of the story is quite intriguing and is original. If this book interest you then I suggest for you to also read The Judas Strain, by James Rollins. I would recommend this book to anyone who likes reading and going on an adventure. The age group recommended would be teenagers and young adults. This book is good for both males and females due to the character choices. And if you’re an advanced student in school, I believe this could be a good reading day choice book.

  • Melinda
    2019-05-16 03:40

    This book has perplexed me. It was serious and deep and a very interesting premise, I enjoyed Scott Brick narrating the book, but it really didn't thrill me. This is apparently part of a I will read book 2 I think. See if I get more into the series as it goes along.

  • Christopher Jones
    2019-05-16 22:17

    This IS a must, you will devour this book hook, line , and sinker.

  • Wanda
    2019-05-10 22:16

    this trilogy was one I stumbled upon while looking for a good book. I was immediately drawn in to the plot and the writing. This is a fantasy, yet I find the premise so timely, the events so close to what our world is like, that I was unable to put it down. All 3 books are excellent, the way the author talks about living off the grid, the way our lives are monitored so completely by cameras, face identification, social security numbers, the internet is frightening. I found these books almost prophetic in scope.take a look at this series, you'll be entertained, surprised and ultimately a little frightened

  • Barbara
    2019-05-17 23:27

    I rarely feel like writing reviews, but this book made me do it because it really disappointed me.The hype about it and about the author remaining anonymous got me excited. Who is the author? Some people guessed J.K. Rowling, some said Dan Brown, some even said it’s Stephen Hawking. I wanted to believe it’s Stephen Hawking. After reading the book, I must say, I would be very disappointed if it was Stephen Hawking. The author is probably the closest to Dan Brown’s style of writing, although Brown seems way more competent in comparison. I liked the idea behind the book and the premise, kind of Orwellian idea with a twist and Dan Brown-ish conspiracy theories featuring a whole bunch of clichés and token characters. It sounds cheap but I seriously wanted to like this book. I did! But I can’t. The writing is just too incompetent.First couple of chapters are seizure-inducing short. First time I felt the writer could have ADHD, the action jumps to different places in every other sentence. Yes, it is a flashback but, dear mister Twelve Hawks, please establish a location and time frame before you jump to the other side of the world 20 years in the future.Fortunately the pacing got better in the later chapters.The characters are inconsistent; they always seem to adapt too well to the situations in which the plot puts them and seem to forget all their past issues. Character starts off not ever wanting to be put in situation A and then when they are actually forced to be in that situation they suddenly appear like they were always prepared to do it and suddenly they have no issues with it whatsoever. And then when suddenly it’s inconvenient for them they morph again into something completely different. Characters switch sides at the drop of a hat without any good reasons. Seemingly smart people suddenly lose all their common sense (seriously Gabriel…). It’s one big mess.Another issue I had was lack of foreshadowing. We’re introduced to something on one page and then it becomes a major plot point one page later, or better yet whenever a character does something unexpected we’re just supposed to believe it’s natural for them because.. well, because. It’s not that hard to mention a skill a few chapters before you’re going to use it so that it feels natural. Same goes for what people are carrying on them. We reached a heat alarm sensor? Good that we brought this canister of nitrogen we didn’t mention before! How would we get out of this one otherwise? Oh hey, we could really use a blow torch right about now; well what do you know! We got one!It’s annoying.And last tiny thing that annoyed me. Everyone always punches buttons, be it on elevator, radio or wherever else. Anger management issues? Or lack of thesaurus? It's a really tiny thing but it repeats itself so often it's painful.To wrap up; the book is full of clichés but to be honest, I think they fit. Are they any good? No. No, they’re not. The story could have been good but the sloppy writing kills off any mood the writer is trying to set up. Another complaint one might have is that there is actually very little actual travelling or other realms, but I’m willing to give the benefit of the doubt here and assume next books focus more on that.Will I read the following books? I don’t know, I might because the premise is interesting and I do find the sloppy writing amusing.Would I recommend it to someone? I would love to just to discuss observations with someone, but I fear my friends do not share the love for writer’s mistakes, so I might spare them some time. I kind of wanted to give the book one star, but then again I'm amused by the bad writing.