Orbs IV: Exodus - it's time to flee Earth
The fight for Earth has been lost. With the failure of Operation Redemption in the last book the human race now finds itself on the brink of extinction. The few humans still alive on Earth can barely recognize their own planet. All the freshwater gone and the oceans down to 21% of their former volume, and still the aliens continue to drain away the remaining water. Earth is now a barren planet and this is the world that the former crew of the grounded submarine, Ghost of Atlantis, is trying to survive in. Of course, things are not much better for their former commander, Captain Noble, who finds himself caged in some kind of alien zoo spaceship and headed to an unknown destination. Perhaps humanity's best hope of survival is Dr Winston's team who are on their way to Mars aboard the NTC Sunspot in a desperate attempt to find a new home - too bad for them the aliens are already there too.
Looking at that list of story threads makes it seem like this should be a solid apocalyptic sci-fi book with a little bit of everything, but it just isn't. Even my favorite of the storylines, Captain Noble aboard the alien zoo ship, just never blossomed into what it could have been. I am glad that Nicholas Sansbury Smith decided to write a tale where the aliens kick our asses and take our planet, rather than the typical alien invasion story line where humanity wins against higher tech invaders, but he managed to do so in a way that never grabbed me. The characters are just too bland and the story is just too unbelievable for me. Of all his apocalyptic series this is without a doubt the weakest. If you want an apocalyptic sci-fi series with more fiction than science, as well as a lot of action, then his Hell Divers series is way more entertaining. If you want something a lot more plausible then go for his Trackers series and if you prefer something in between the two then you can go with his Extinction Cycle series - all of them are just better than this one.
The audiobook version has some additional challenges as narrator Bronson Pinchot, who does such a great job with a lot of books, doesn't deliver his best performance here. I found the constant screaming from the military characters to be quite annoying so if you are going to give this one a shot anyway perhaps reading is the better choice.