I am just halfway through this book, and I will continue only because John Hart has written a very good story and I am hooked on it. However, I agree with others who say the narration is absolutely terrible. I'm not sure what Sowers was trying to accomplish, but it almost ruins the book. My 6-year-old grandson could do a better job!! I will avoid other books narrated by Scott Sowers, and that's a shame since Hart's book is good and perhaps I will avoid other good books simply because I fear the narration will be as painful as this!
In all the years I've been listening to books, I have never stopped in the middle due to the narration. However, in this case I had no choice. This is by far the most ridiculous and annoying narration I have come across. I found the story somewhat depressing, but certainly would have finished otherwise.
This is a great story, but I could only stand to listen to it in small intervals.
Every time this narrator speaks in his overly-exaggerate Southern drawl I feel vaguely ill.
This story takes place in North Carolina. I lived in North Carolina for many years. Most of my family members live in various parts of North Carolina, including the Sandhills, Piedmont, etc.. None of them sound anything like this annoying guy!!
Exaggerated accents are jarring and as off-putting as nails on a chalkboard to people familiar with the accent. What's frustrating is, this is a great plot and such an exciting story but I have to keep shutting it off when I can't take it anymore!
Narrators and actors: if you can't "do" an accent well enough to fool the people from that area, please just speak in your regular speaking voice!
I hope I can eventually finish this book. :(
This book took a long time to get started -- about six hours. If you're patient enough to wait that long the story eventually zips along with interesting twists and turns.
About the reader -- yikes! I'm a lifelong North Carolinian and no one talks that way. If they did, I would move to Tennessee.
The story is complelling and the characters wonderful and real. The narration takes so much away from the story that I often had to re-listen to sections because I started tuning the reader out. The over pronunciation will drive you nuts! Great story too bad it is killed by the narrater.
A four star story corrupted by a narrator who decided to pronounce the articles "a" and "the", "aay" and "thee". Bad enough he did it while narrating in the third person, but when he used it while portraying someone speaking in native back country Carolina dialect, it was too much. It was so annoying I had to take the story in spurts. He slipped at times and pronounced "the" correctly and just as I started to get lost in the story he would come back with something like "aay cat jumped from thee wall onto thee floor". It was like listening to a first grader read see spot run. The article "a" is pronounced "uh". The word "decide" is pronounced "dehcide", not "deecide". It was worse than saying "nucular" instead of nuclear. It was so blatantly forced that I can't help but wonder if he was made to do it, as I have listed to other narrations by Scott Sowers and enjoyed them very much. This is a very good story and a very good author, but I would recommend the hard copy over this childish attempt at literacy.
I LOVED this book. It's the second one I've listened to by John Hart and I can't wait to listen to his third. I couldn't guess the ending of this book as hard as I friend throughout the entire story. My only criticism is the narrator. His diction is completely over the top!! It drove me crazy listening to him pronounce every single syllable (and I do mean EVERY!) with ridiculously sharp diction. I've never heard anything like it. That said, if you can ignore the reader, the book is definitely worth the credit.
Say something about yourself!
This is an awesome book but the narrator all but ruins it. This is one time I recommend reading it over listening.
This dark and sad tale was a little slow to get started and somewhat overlong. I am glad I stayed with it - the pace picked up in the last third.
Johnny Merriman is determined to get to the bottom of what happened to his twin sister Alyssa. Her disappearance destroyed their family unit and his mother has sunk into depression, exacerbated by her relationship with abusive Ken Holloway. Johnny has had to grow up fast - he takes care of the home and his mother. Nevertheless, his thinking is too mature for a thirteen year old.
I agree with many reviewers that Scott Sowers narration was appalling. His accent complemented the Southern style and vernacular, but his enunciation was uneven. Within a single paragraph, he would alternate between pronouncing "a" and "the" as "ah" and "thuh", then switch to "ay" and "thee" sounding like a 3rd grader, breaking words into too many syllables. I was so irritated by this that I had to replay sections, because I lost the thread of the story.
I would not have cut out scenes, per se, just shortened them. Without giving too much away, there is a scene where Hart tries to intervene in the arrest if his partner. This went on and on, with repeated "Step asides", followed by "No" from Hart, to the point where I could happily have thrown it in the bin.
I will read more of John Hart, but will avoid Scott Sowers at all costs.