Defender: The most gripping read-in-one-go thriller since The Stand (The Voices Book 1)

Defender: The most gripping read-in-one-go thriller since The Stand (The Voices Book 1) by G. X. Todd

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By G. X. Todd

avg rating

7 reviews

The primal battle between Good and Evil plays out in a new arena. With nods back to Stephen King’s The Stand, Defender is the first in a four part series where your inner voice might kill you.


12 Jan 2017

Thank you to the publisher for an advance copy of the book in exchange for a review.

I enjoyed this book and rattled through it quite quickly, its a fast paced page-turner that kept me up late into the night to finish it.

Fans of Nod by Adrian Barnes or The Stand by Stephen King will be on familiar territory. This post-apocalyptic setting sees loner Pilgrim accompanying Lacey, a young girl in search of her sister and niece, who happen across some frightening situations along the way. They rescue another traveller, Alex, on their journey and then things begin to unravel.

GX Todd does a brilliant job of inserting 'The Voice' into the narrative in a way that steers away from becoming gimmicky or predictable. I found myself rooting for Lacey and Pilgrim from the beginning, Lacey's naivety could easily have been irritating, but instead she was the voice of hope in an otherwise bleak world.

I understand this is the first of a four part series and I really am looking forward to the rest of the story. For a debut novel GX Todd has done a remarkable job with this ambitious story and best of luck to her and the rest of the series.

12 Jan 2017


This is a fantastic debut novel. A vivid depiction of a post-apocalyptic world with deserted cities and ruined towns and a ragtag group of survivors. Full of twists and turns, fast-paced plot and well-crafted characters keep you gripped to the end and I look forward to more books in the series. A must read!

11 Jan 2017

‘Defender ‘is not my normal choice of reading material, however, having agreed to read a proof copy of the book, I can honestly say it was a story that gripped me from the start. I started reading it before bed one night, but quickly changed to reading it in daylight. I found the characters of Pilgrim, Lacey and Alex very engaging. Although slightly too gory in parts for my taste, this road trip to find Lacey’s family, gives a very clear and visual picture of what a world that has ‘gone mad’ could be like.

10 Jan 2017

I found this to be an excellent book, hard to believe it is Gemma Todd's first novel ! it was fast,gripping and hard to put down!

09 Jan 2017

I didn't expect to like this because I thought it would be full of horror! Yes it was a bit gory at times but it swept me away into a new world where not only were men & women good or bad but so were the "voices" some of them could hear in their heads that drove many people to suicide. I liked the characters of Pilgrim and Lacey and also Alex and more then admire their grit & determination let alone their physical prowess in recovering from some of the extreme abuse their bodies were put through. It was an easy book to read that I had to read on and on and I can see the film rights being snatched up because of it's visual qualities. I usually skim over descriptive passages but it had a real sense of place and setting and plenty of action to boot

04 Jan 2017


I thought this was a fantastic book. A brilliant premise, and a genuinely tense read during the action parts. Will be looking forward to book 2.

04 Jan 2017


I had this book as a free give away a suprise as it arrived without me asking .

I do enjoy a good thriller /horror book. Yes another scenario good v evil with the added "hearing voices" aspect thrown in. I did find it difficult to connect with some of the characters. I feel they could have been given more depth . It's based more on American language/thoughts and I had to think this way too so I could engage with the characters to some degree.

It's a series I feel which could be developed into a better plot. I would like to read more if only to get the abrupt end out of my mind
A good start and middle but a very weird end to book one.

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