The Dispatcher

The Dispatcher

by John Scalzi

NOOK Book(eBook)

View All Available Formats & Editions

Available on Compatible NOOK Devices and the free NOOK Apps.
WANT A NOOK?  Explore Now
LEND ME® See Details


One day, not long from now, it becomes almost impossible to murder anyone--999 times out of a thousand, anyone who is intentionally killed comes back. How? We don't know. But it changes everything: war, crime, daily life.

Tony Valdez is a Dispatcher--a licensed, bonded professional whose job is to humanely dispatch those whose circumstances put them in death's crosshairs, so they can have a second chance to avoid the reaper. But when a fellow Dispatcher and former friend is apparently kidnapped, Tony learns that there are some things that are worse than death, and that some people are ready to do almost anything to avenge what they see as a wrong.

It's a race against time for Valdez to find his friend before it's too late...before not even a Dispatcher can save him.

Product Details

BN ID: 2940157450199
Publisher: Subterranean Press
Publication date: 04/20/2017
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 136
Sales rank: 65,377
File size: 10 MB

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See All Customer Reviews

The Dispatcher 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 19 reviews.
Anonymous 3 months ago
Take an outlandish premise and weave it into a thoroughly entertaining story. John Scalzi is one of the best fiction writers I have had the pleasure of reading because he finds so many ways of entwining characters and stories with great dialogue that keeps me constantly amused.TW-SF fan for 50+ years
BlackAsh13 8 months ago
Amazing Audible narration by Zachary Quinto saves an otherwise mundane short story by John Scalzi. In The Dispatcher, we have a world where a unique phenomenon has arisen: people who have been murdered come back to life. No one knows why this has begun to happen, but "dispatchers" have been to assist in saving the life of those who are near death by "killing" them, which would allow them to come back to life. The main character, Tony, is a Dispatcher who is called on to assist the police in finding a Dispatcher who has gone missing. The Story then becomes a whodunit to find the Dispatcher and the person responsible for his disappearance. The story never really reaches a climax, and I found that I never really cared about what happened to the missing Dispatcher. The characters aren't very well developed, and the most fascinating part of the story, murdered people who come back toife, is never really explored.
TheLiteraryPhoenix 11 months ago
Ehhhhh. So conceptually, this sounded really interesting. This is a world where people don’t have to die. If you’re murdered, you get to come back in a place that feels comfortable and safe, reverted to a few hours before your death. Our protagonist is a Dispatcher, meaning that he’s on call for things like medical emergencies, tidily “dispatching” the patient so they don’t die from the procedure. I expected to learn more about this world, but honestly, this is more like… an episode of NCIS. Someone is missing, so a law official connects with another dispatcher to understand how the system works. Most of the story is conversation between Officer Langdon and Tony Valdez. There’s a lot of bouncing back and forth of ideas, and explaining. It’s really more like a science-fiction crime episode than an exciting story. I’m not sure if it’s because of Zachary Quinto’s narration or just me being generally disinterested in style of the writing… but I was bored. There’s not enough time for the characters to develop, because this is a novella. The world is well-developed in about a half-hour conversation between Langdon and Valdez. Everyone is flat, so it’s difficult to dig my fingers in and really care about the characters. Additionally, this appears to be a one-off, so there’s no gradual development over a series of short stories. As far as plot goes, I feel like there’s not really enough information to make it predictable, but the end result isn’t really a surprise, either. Again, this is all to do with the emotional investment of the story. I didn’t know enough about Jimmy to really care about where he’d gone, and I didn’t know enough about the various players to be able to dig in and guess. So much of the short time we had was spent explaining the concept of dispatching that there wasn’t enough space to flesh out things and create an emotional connection. The one thing The Dispacher had going for it was the length. I don’t think I could have dealt with the story for more than two and a half hours of listening. The pacing was slow. And, in this case, Zachary Quinto’s narration was flat. Using celebrities to read books can go either way – sometimes they’re wonderful, sometimes they’re horrible. In this case, I really feel like with a different narration, some inflection would have added to the suspense of a story that otherwise seemed to go on forever. I guess this book would be fine for those who like crime podcasts and have an interest in science fiction. It never felt like a full and interesting story to me, but this is just slightly further off the edge of crime fiction than what I enjoy. If you’re into crime fiction, check it out. For me, I got this as a free bonus from Audible one month, so I’m not complaining too much. But I don’t think I would buy it, and if it was any longer, I’d’ve probably DNF’d it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Well written , good read but seriously? I feel ripped off by B&N. Why not just say so? G?rrrrrrrrr
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Once I started I couldn’t put it down fun story lots of lessons.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Would really love to see a series in this universe.
Michelle_Palmer More than 1 year ago
Another excellent book by John Scalzi. Marvelous setup for a book. Our world with one difference. When someone is murdered they almost always come back to life. (Not a zombie book) The characters are, as always, fully sketched out. Emotions are relayed beautifully through thoughts, movements, and speech. Actions are all based on specific motivations. Although the settings are rarely described, you can still visualize them perfectly. Overall, a great short novel for if you have just a few hours to kill.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Wonderful concept, well written. Thanks, M
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Solid premise. I wish it could have been a longer story. Felt cheated by the high price for a novella.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Wish it was a fully developed novel.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I hope Scale writes more in this 'verse, I want to know more.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I like John Scalzi's work. I find it very creative and original. He creates environments that always leave me with something to think about.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
That was good stuff boss. Another hit. Keep 'em coming.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
As with every one of Scalzi's books I've read, fabulous!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Short but complete
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A great storyline just to bad it was just a short story. Mr. Scalzi you've done it again. Please keep up the good read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
"Resting smug face" is genius!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great short story!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago