Great story and narrator. But the big reveal is a little clichéd. I still listened to it all night.
It was like listening to a Scooby Doo mystery for adults. The characters were likable and fun. The story careened into weirdness about halfway through, but it was a good summer listen.
Sure. It was a fun read.
Not much to say that hasn't been said in other reviews, other than just to agree that this is a tremendous story, with outstanding characters, narrated perfectly. A long book that is interesting from start to finish.
All of the characters are terrific. Each one fits perfectly into this story. The narrator is awesome at really bringing out their personality. You feel like you are one of the "gang", and want to hang out with them on the rooftop, sipping a beer.
The narrator was fantastic, truly has set the bar for me, the story was interesting and kept my attention (an amazing feat). The end lost me a little, but still a very very good listen.
Fantastic, wanting more
My first review, the narrator for me makes the book this guy was great. A good narrator makes a good book great, a great book better, and a bad book bearable to listen to. This audio book had it all, story, characters, and well preformed, didn't want to stop didn't want it to end. Wish there was a part two, you'll have to get the book if want a great listen.
KInda blundered upon this book, it's a bit genre defying, a bit of sci fi, a bit of steampunk, a bit of 'the matrix', and a smattering of HP Lovecraft creepiness - I read the reviews, and everyone mentioned how original this book is, how awesome the narration is - the pacing, plot development, and unique storyline drew me in unexpectedly. This book would make for an incredible movie....what an entertaining book!
This was fun but also frustrating. It's a wacky, campy, and VERY contrived sci-fi mystery with a touch of urban fantasy, set in Los Angeles, told in 3rd person.
Ray Porter, narrator, masterfully portrayed a range of characters: male, female, young, old, American, and one woman from India (Veek). The narration is better than the book, in my view. A five-star performance!
Why 3 stars for the book? Even though the whole mystery, history, and horror thing was cool, the chief protagonists were too stupid to live. Every single one of them. Once they began to realize what they were dealing with -- by the middle of the book -- they should have chucked their goofy Scooby-Doo act and put on their "get serious" face complete with "trust no one" shades. (I mean, hello! I could see what was coming with a certain villainous character a mile away.)
One of the characters said it best, "We're like children playing around with a nuclear bomb."
So, the gang got into some trouble in the last quartile of the book, and frankly, they deserved it. But they were only drawn that way, as Clines contrived to drive them ever onward towards illogical responses and reckless behaviors.
Still, I enjoyed it. Kept me guessing. Not that anyone COULD guess what was going on behind that triple pad-locked door, apartment #14. Talk about weird science. I did guess what was hidden behind the panel in Nate's closet. Kudos to me. I also came close to guessing what was behind the locked doors in the cellar, but NEVER could I have predicted what the building was used for. The clues did not add up. No sleuthing your way to success, here. Just wait to be told.
Enjoyed the reference to my favorite science-fiction series, FRINGE and the marvelous Walter Bishop. Far too many references to SCOOBY-DOO. And one clever nod to HP Lovecraft, which is only right. People compare this to the series LOST, but I didn't see a strong resemblance, except for the out-of-the-blue final resolution to the mystery.
One sex scene. Better to have left it out entirely, since it was so juvenile. Then kids could read it, too, or a family could listen on a car trip.
Some loose ends: Why the roaches are green. Why they die at 30 feet from the building. Why there were so many suicides in #16. And ....
What kind of dimwatt dumbo is pulling the strings, leaving the fate of the world to Team Scooby???
Best quote: "He hasn't told us our building is an earthquake-causing apocalypse machine. That makes him a bad guy."
Chief protagonist Nate Tucker works in data entry for a small magazine publisher. He plays the role of leader in solving the mystery, and is constantly compared to Shaggy on Scooby-Doo, but he is more sensible than the cartoon figure. Of them all, he was sometimes the most sensible, but that's not saying much at all.
Veek, computer hack (black hat) and Internet provider. Veek -- short for some long Indian name -- is typecast as Velma.
Xela, a blue-haired nudist and frustrated artist. Xela is cast as Daphne.
Roger works in Hollywood as a grip. Roger is Fred Davis, maybe.
Debbie is studying biochemistry at UCLA.
Clive is Debbie's husband, working in construction.
Tim, former military, retired publisher (*wink wink*)
Andrew, a religious zealot.
Mandy, a farm girl.
Mrs. Knight, elderly widow, has lived in the building for 25 years.
Oscar, building manager.
Tina, rental agen / realtor (*wink*)
I’ve had this book in my queue for months and finally got around to reading (listening). Frankly, I almost turned off the book after the first few paragraphs not particularly impressed with the writing. I’m glad I decided to ‘hang in there’ and give the story a chance. No spoilers, but the it surrounds the mysteries of an apartment building in Los Angeles and a group of quirky tenants. The book is very intriguing when dealing with the oddities of the building and sleuthing on the part of the tenants, but I began to roll my eyes a bit with the introduction of sci-fi-alien-creatures of a netherworld. An entertaining yarn.
I'm a former programmer who now drives a transport truck in Canada and raises my 2 girls. Audible makes work much more interesting ;)
What a great story. I didn't know what to expect when I started this book and the story just got more interesting with each twist and turn. If you like to be led down a dark corridor with a barely working flashlight....this book is for you ;)
I haven't listened to any other books by this author but I will definitely make a purchase just to hopefully be taken on another unexpected journey!