Listen free for 30 days

  • The Never Hero

  • The Chronicles of Jonathan Tibbs, Book 1
  • By: T. Ellery Hodges
  • Narrated by: Steven Barnett
  • Length: 12 hrs and 22 mins
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars (89 ratings)

One credit a month, good for any title to download and keep.
Unlimited listening to the Plus Catalogue - thousands of select Audible Originals, podcasts and audiobooks.
Exclusive member-only deals.
No commitment - cancel anytime.
Buy Now for £22.89

Buy Now for £22.89

Pay using card ending in
By completing your purchase, you agree to Audible's Conditions of Use and authorise Audible to charge your designated card or any other card on file. Please see our Privacy Notice, Cookies Notice and Interest-based Ads Notice.

Summary

At the gates between worlds...

In a war outside of time...

He fights for us.

Reclusive college student Jonathan Tibbs wakes in a pool of blood, not a scratch on him. His life is about to undergo a massive shift. A violent and merciless otherworldly enemy unleashes slaughter in the streets, calling out in a language only he understands.

And it is seeking its challenger.

In order to defeat the threat, Jonathan must become a temporal weapon...while remaining completely anonymous. Unfortunately, harnessing off-world powers has its own special challenges...

The Never Hero is the first installment in The Chronicles of Jonathan Tibbs - a mind-bending, genre-crossing action-adventure trilogy.

©2014 T. Ellery Hodges (P)2015 Foggy Night Publishing

What listeners say about The Never Hero

Average customer ratings
Overall
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    57
  • 4 Stars
    21
  • 3 Stars
    10
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    1
Performance
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    54
  • 4 Stars
    22
  • 3 Stars
    7
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    0
Story
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    49
  • 4 Stars
    24
  • 3 Stars
    8
  • 2 Stars
    1
  • 1 Stars
    1

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

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Amazing!

Fantastic story from Todd and amazing narration from Steven! Be sure to check out the second book "The Never Paradox" and the third one "The Never Army" when it comes onto audible in about a month!!!

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Tropes are good!

Would you listen to The Never Hero again? Why?

The Never Hero was a good balance of fun and realism, also the interesting world building will need reviewing before book 2.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

brilliant

this audiobook brilliant it has a really good backstory and full of action packed drama and it has really good plots also the main character has a lot of deaths not like books out there. he thought a lot about the character character this author have thought about the main character things that make him tick and it's a really odd book as it tells of two worlds one trying to save themselves and the other in desperate need

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

deep

I felt for the lead character and the story is well carried and Steven did a great job narrating the story. Keep it up!

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Worth your time

I managed to listen to the whole book in the span of two days. So I'd think it's safe to say i really enjoyed it. The story was captivating and kept my interest the whole way through.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Entertaining listen

Interesting plot and nice characters. With good humor and seriousness in a nice balance. I recommend this book.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

If you love fiction, you should love this book.

A breezy meditation on why we tell the stories that we do, that knows exactly when to play into the tropes it's mulling over and when to subvert them. It's also enjoyable on the occasion that it remembers to take a break from dissecting hero media and gives some actual plot. Not the most eye opening deconstruction, but it does choose to focus on unique aspects in it's telling, in that it's mainly about the changes that have to happen between the first and second act of a male hero.
And the narration, was absolutely spot on, to what the story needed it to be; the potency behind the word 'challenger' will be burned into head forever.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Edge of Tomorrow Meets Independence Day

I enjoyed this a lot. I won't be able to properly judge it until I've read the whole series but I grew to really like these characters. Of course there's bits and pieces I didn't like, e.g. took me a while to grow to the characters and I hate it when the reader finds out stuff the MC doesn't know but overall I thought the themes were good and I'll definitely recommend it if you want a sci fi that's actually ethical.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

First book to ever give up on

I frequently listen to audio books and this is the first book I have ever had to give up on.

The story is badly written and immature. I could have ignored most of this but when the attractive girl next door
was sat on her balcony thinking about Romeo and Juliet I gave up.

The story is very American teen which isn't normally a negative but with the book trying to be deep comparing Jesus and superman, it left me feeling like I was listening to a story written by someone at high school.

The story may have got better and I'm annoyed I gave up but I just couldn't continue listening.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

This is a wonderful story

I loved this book so much that after reading it as an e-book, I decided to get it as an audio book too. Steven's wonderful reading gives this book a totally new aspect. This book (and I am not going to put any spoilers in) is the first in a trilogy - the books are wonderful and really hard to put down.
Although it was written as a YA (young adult) book, there are absolutely no age limits for those who love this genre. I couldn't put it down when I first read it. A couple of recommendations - don't start any of this series if you have other stuff to do - you will never get to the other stuff! And start the series with this book - it is essential to read this one first. Enjoy!

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for mix579
  • mix579
  • 22-06-17

Crap

I am beginning to believe in the existence of paid fake reviews. How can anyone who is not a) a teenager or b) into "young adult" literature score this highly. Halfway through I finally gave up. Lousy storyline (monsters attack earth, young unsuspected earthling forced to become protector of the realm), unengaging characters, no sense of pacing, inane dialogs, irrational behavior ("look I have this glowing thing in my chest, but why would I go to the hospital, they can't help anyway"), a narrator who sounds (rightly) bored reading it, etc etc. What pushed me over the edge was the seemingly endless chapter on watching Rocky movies so the unwilling hero finally accepts his destiny. Barf.

327 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Parkwood Lane
  • Parkwood Lane
  • 12-07-15

What the Positive Reviews Don't Tell You

Yes, it's a great book as the top reviews state, but only if you make it to the second half. It starts out feeling like a young adult superhero type of novel with characters that have boring archetypal motives. I was thinking about returning it at a couple of points. I kept listening because I was using it to kill time walking our dogs and didn't want to search for another book. But, by the end, the author has made things complex, interesting, three-dimensional enough that I'm going to get the second book.

173 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 mason
  • mason
  • 03-06-15

GIVE THIS BOOK A CHANCE!!!

I took a risk using a hard earned credit on this book... I don't regret it in the least! I love urban fantasy because Jim Butcher got me hooked, but I hate it because there is so much derivative garbage overwhelming the shelves. Finding a book that has substance is often impossible. Too many author's are willing to tweak an existing premise and churn out book after book with the ambition of selling rather than telling a story. This book is the reason I still search under this genre for new reads. The story was original and engrossing. Even though this is only the first book in a series, the author gave the impression he was telling a story, rather than churning out an endless stream of directionless books. I can't wait for the next book.

114 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 Amazon Customer
  • Amazon Customer
  • 21-06-17

Wait for it... wait for it.... Bam!

I enjoyed this book like few others I've listened to simply because it pulls you along with satisfying well timed pockets of discovery and action! it has elements of the modest hero, the warriors will to fight with everything he's got, and the sense of discovery in using power never before known.

It has qwerky movie references from the 80's that I enjoyed immensely and made it feel relatable. There is depth to the development of the primary and secondary characters given by insightful but subtle description.

the narrator, I have to say, did a fantastic job of expression. he seems to capture inflection and meaning in the right way at the right time. some narrators are monotone or seem to put odd qwerks on their sentences that seem unnatural. not the case here. I found myself able to absorb the narration with the story so completely that I could focus on visualizing the story... while mowing the grass, walking the dog, washing the dishes, vacuuming the house, etc. seriously well done performance.

I would put this book on my shelf with: the codex alera series by Jim butcher, ready player one by Ernest Cline, and the bobiverse series by Dennis e taylor with a twist of marvel comic book heroes thrown in.

I would buy it for you if I could but I can't. invest. you won't regret reading or listening to this book.

93 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Helene
  • Helene
  • 30-01-17

Unpolished, Misogynistic, Clumsy

I really tried to give this a listen. There were a lot of positive reviews. But once I got to the modern superhero arena... ack. Where do I start.

The writer relies heavily upon metaphor. Not good ones, not ones that really add to anything. A lot of descriptions of people being like predator cats or animals poised. Repeatedly.

Are you female? Because of the first 3 female characters, all 3 are described, presented, and evaluated for their attractiveness, and nothing else. So, if you're female, this book may piss you off.

First is a female roommate that eventually all other roommate characters internally admit they hate her boyfriend because they're jealous and want to get with her. Second, is a federal agent of some sort, which... i kid you know... the hard-ass military character in her scene, a guy we are to believe has figured out chain of command, respect for authority... when he finds it's a woman that has made him wait (regardless of rank) he mentally belittles her. Assumes she's some hot secretary for someone who matters. Then, when he finds out she IS authority, claims she's the type that uses her sexuality to manipulate.

Newsflash, guys, how a woman looks is not something she puts on in the morning, it's more or less how she wakes up. Please stop assigning motive to looks and then the blame and antagonism and blatant outright belligerence for a woman's attractiveness. It's a shitty way to describe a character. Just stop it. "She used her looks on purpose..." seriously, stop writing for a while.

Oh, and there's one more... the female neighbor - who conveniently has a child BROTHER not kid (have to be able to picture her naked without problems, like her being a mother/wife)... who is nothing other than a senseless, tactless vehicle for embarrassing the main character with dialogue that sounds more like a penthouse letter. After being attacked in his home, the main character's roommates don't like leaving him alone. However... one must rush off to a comic book store for an emergency and asks hot neighbor girl to stay at the house and watch after him... she tells main character to "nut up" and he stops moping out of.. I don't know, stupid male lust? I guess?

This is embarrassing in general. But you have female readers. We exist. And this kind of tripe is tiring.

Two of the roommates are described as Roman Catholic and atheist and spent their time discussing a new testament comic book after comparing jesus and superman.

Apart from these, I'm used to experienced writers. Scalzi. Martin. Stephenson. Writers that can write smooth, seamless dialogue, or paint a scene in an effortless way that doesn't feel like doing a 17 point turn in a large vehicle, knocking over decent metaphors in favor of painful, clunky ones. Granted, I didn't finish. So... maybe that all changed... and women became sentient, worthwhile human beings that weren't described based on ... oh yeah, did I mention 2 out of 3 of those women were presented by the male telling himself DON'T STARE AT HER BOOBS... yeah. nice.

pass.

Narrator probably isn't bad, but he was reading this book so hard to tell.

80 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 tracie
  • tracie
  • 06-12-16

Good read. The average guy hero

I enjoyed this book because there are a lot of practical issues that are covered. A reluctant hero spends a great deal of time building himself both mentally and physically into what he needs to be, and he faces many uncertainties and dilemmas along the way! I adored his supportive friends, whose loyalty is inspiring. There were plenty of plot twists along the way to keep me guessing. I do feel like many are waiting the next book anxiously! Lots of loose ends to wrap up. However, I did feel like, in general, there was some closure.

Things to know for children potentially reading or listening to this:
There is language, though never the f-bomb, thankfully. There is a bloody scene that was handled tastefully (I tend to be extremely sensitive to blood). There was violence, but it always felt like it was out of necessity or defense of others. Much thought has been given to whether it's okay to kill or hurt others, and it's not the hero's first preference. Sex: unfortunately, there are several sexual references: he wakes up next to her, bare skin, a few more details like that. However, as these things go, it was handled tastefully. Spoiler--we also get a glimpse into the mind of someone who might have the potential to be a rapist. This could be disturbing to children and open up doors we might not want them to be aware of yet.

Overall, a good read!

44 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Joshua Lucas Fox
  • Joshua Lucas Fox
  • 30-05-17

Urban Fantasy my (Bleep)!!

Any additional comments?

Make no mistake, this is a Super Hero story. Most super hero stories are urban so, yes you could make a case for urban fantasy, but it's not. That being said, you'll see what I mean cause I recommend the read.
I don't usually read super hero stories. Too shallow; too predictable; too hard to believe; something like that. This series has good character development, the author actually has a talent for writing. The world development is thorough enough that I don't have to work as hard to suspend my disbelief as much as I normally do with super hero stories. Go read it already, just don't expect urban fantasy.

38 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 David
  • David
  • 04-06-15

Unexpected Excellence

Where does The Never Hero rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

It is interesting because I don't know how to classify it exactly. Contemporary SciFi? It kind of sits in its own niche but it definitely sits at Number 1 in that Niche.

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Never Hero?

When the lines light up. I won't say more but it was pretty cool.

Have you listened to any of Steven Barnett’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

No I haven't. I think Steven did a good job, though honestly I prefer some of the other readers better (Sorry Steven!). For some constructive criticism, some of the other readers are able to instill the emotion of certain events better in their reading. Luke Daniels is particularly good at this.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

At first it wasn't but toward the end I was wrapped up enough that it kept me up thinking about it last night before bed.

Any additional comments?

Honestly I wasn't sure about this book when I first grabbed it. I took a chance on it and I have done so on others just to have my worst fears realized. This book turned out to be a diamond in the rough and I highly recommend it.
Keep on writing T! Great job and I am looking forward to the sequel!!

30 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Rochelle D.
  • Rochelle D.
  • 07-02-18

Amazing Book

The Never Hero, by T. Ellery Hodges, is the first installment in the story of Jonathan Tibbs, a normal, reclusive college student who is assaulted by a blond man in his house while his roommates are out. He wakes later in a puddle of his own blood without a scratch or any other damage to his body. His life undergoes a huge shift when an alien beast begins wreaking havoc in the streets, killing left and right looking for its challenger. Jonathan must become a weapon, fighting the monster while remaining completely anonymous. This book is a mix of sci-fi and action/adventure that I personally couldn't put down. Many great scenes occurred throughout the story, but my favorites were definitely the epic fight scenes. I loved every moment I spent listening to this audiobook, and when it ended, I was all the more eager to read the second book.

I thought the book was very suitable for audio narration, and that the narrator, Steven Barnett, did so much with the opportunity presented to him. There were some parts of the book that called for voice modulators, which he used flawlessly. All of the characters were extremely well-voiced, and I could always tell who was speaking. I especially enjoyed the voice of the tall, blond man, as Barnett gave him an interesting accent and unmistakable voice tones. Barnett enunciated his words very well throughout the duration of the book, but sometimes I thought he enunciated almost too well, distracting from some of the dialogue. All in all, though, he was an excellent voice actor and I look forward to listening to more of his work.

As far as production and sound quality go, I thought Barnett maintained a pretty consistent pace throughout the story. He lowered his voice during moments of intensity, which added a lot to the novel. I didn't notice any technical flaws or edits during my listening experience.

I would definitely recommend this book to anyone looking for a thrilling read voiced by a very interesting narrator. The plot was exciting and always kept me guessing through its entirety, and Barnett did an excellent job with both reading the story itself and voicing the characters. I already have the next book purchased and I can't wait to listen!

27 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 Michael Oberhardt
  • Michael Oberhardt
  • 05-06-15

The Loneliest Hero

The Never Hero was a well written and structured story that I feel ended up gradually revealing more and more depth and forethought as the story progressed.

Early in the book I was thinking "OK, so a wish fulfillment type young person gains super powers as the only person who can stop a greater threat". As it progressed, it became clearer, to me as the reader, as well as to the main character how far from actuality that was. Even later in the book, I could appreciate the scenario, but was thinking "what more? I can see this makes a good story, but as a standalone book. What are the 'chronicles' going to add?". And not much sooner than I think this than it becomes clear that there is a much bigger story that this is just the beginning of. So I was really impressed how this story progressed.

And the lead, as the story progressed I couldn't help starting to really feel sorry for him. It would be one thing to have super powers, but another if no-one else could ever know. And not could never know in terms of the typical "they may be harmed by my enemies" type superhero staple/cliche, but that the only times his powers were apparent time would rewind to before they showed and they'd never know. So even if you told them about it, you could never prove it and would just come across as nuts. And then having to dedicate your life to training for no apparent reason.

The narration was great, and I've not heard this narrator before to my memory. But I'd listen to him again, and I do hope he narrates the next book in this series.

Recommended.

23 people found this helpful