By Gerard Readett
To listen to an audio podcast, mouse over the title and click Play. Open iTunes to download and subscribe to podcasts.
Traffic Jam Buster! Come to Brussels, a congestion-free city in 2022, but avoid the day of 'Roadworks', when Akila Kama, an African terrorist takes the city and many foreign heads of state hostage. His demands are simple, either the greatest humanitarian aid package is sent to Africa by the nations of the West, or their leaders die. In a city where all rail, road and underground traffic is computerised, Hugh Ryan, a Transport Authority controller, realises that while all traffic inside the city is at a standstill, Wellens, a local crimelord who helped the Africans, has embarked on his own traitorous plans which he hatches with a mole in the Transport Authority.
||CleanPrologue||Hugh's personal experience gets intertwined with the horrific events of a fateful day nearly a year earlier.||7/5/2006||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanChapter 1: Two weeks later||Hugh trains a newcomer while Wellens, a local crimelord, is forging ahead with his plans for the city.||7/5/2006||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanChapter 2: 6:05 a.m.||A depot is attacked with military precision and some trucks are sabotaged.||7/5/2006||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanChapter 3: 7.10 a.m.||Hugh is reminded of a NATO conference that will affect his job and commuters begin to experience delays.||7/5/2006||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanChapter 4: 7.45 a.m.||The trains and metro lines begin to malfunction.||7/5/2006||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanChapter 5: 7.56 a.m.||City centre car parks go haywire and Wellens lets his men loose.||7/5/2006||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanChapter 6: 8.10 a.m.||Commuters witness the destruction of numerous tankers that block major crossroads.||7/5/2006||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanChapter 7: 8.45 a.m||A cryptic message indicates that the city is now under the control of the Oppressed People's Army.||7/16/2006||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanChapter 8 : 8.59 a.m.||A beautiful policewoman joins Hugh in the Traffic Management Centre to liaise with the anti-terrorist squads.||7/24/2006||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanChapter 9 : 9.24 a.m.||Maria gives the TMC a lowdown on The Oppressed People's Army and their leader exposes their demands via a laserdisc.||7/27/2006||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanChapter 10 : 9.44 a.m.||The police try to trace the mail but set off a trap set by the OPA.||8/3/2006||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanChapter 11 : 10.09 a.m.||The OPA show that they are deadly serious by destroying a building.||8/11/2006||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanChapter 12: 10:34 a.m.||The skeptical Bourgmestre enrages the OPA.||8/17/2006||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanChapter 13 : 10.57 a.m.||City authorities discuss their options while Hugh discovers the TMC is bugged.||8/25/2006||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanChapter 14 : 11.24 a.m.||Hugh and Maria are called by the anti-terrorist squads to prepare the attack.||9/5/2006||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanChapter 15 : 12.16 a.m.||A loose sniper fouls up the attack.||9/9/2006||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanChapter 16 : 12:30 p.m.||The traitor is uncovered.||9/20/2006||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanChapter 17 : 2.45 p.m.||Hugh stumbles onto the traitor in the ranks of the Transport Authority.||9/24/2006||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanChapter 18 part 1: 3:15p.m..||Hugh stumbles on Stephane and follows him to a secret meeting with Wellens.||10/2/2006||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanChapter 18 : part 2||Stephane chasing Hugh, tries to bury under the rubble of a building he destroys.||10/6/2006||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanChapter 19 : 4.07 p.m.||Although numbed by the destruction Hugh tries to escape Stephane.||10/16/2006||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanChapter 20 : 4:21p.m..||Hugh stumbles back to the TMC while Stephane takes on Wellens' men.||10/22/2006||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanChapter 21 : 4:53 p.m..||Hugh finally faces Stephane.||10/30/2006||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanChapter 22 : Nearly a year later||During the trial, Hugh tries to decipher Stephanes note which indicates where the money for the laser is hidden.||11/7/2006||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanChapter 23 Final Chapter||Maria comes to Africa to find Hugh.||11/13/2006||Free||View in iTunes|
Overall just a so-so book. Some parts were difficult to follow and left me unclear as to each characters role or purpose in the story. It's got an interesting premise and story, and the action picks up toward the end, but it falls short of ever being "exciting". The author/narrator doesn't help with a dull, monotone voice. The resolution is pretty unsatisfying as well.
I noticed the volume was pretty inconsistent as well, and there was often a lot of background noise.
Not to say it's a lousy story, but it isn't a great one either. Can provide a few hours of decent entertainment, but instantly forgettable once it's over.