The narrator does a good job of bringing out the characters in his delivery without going too over-the-top. Most importantly, he feels like a good fit for David Wong's narratorial voice.
If the title of the book is appealing to you, you'll most likely enjoy the novel. It seems to me that David Wong is accomplishing pretty much exactly what he sets out to do, which is an admirable feat. The story is entertaining, the core characters are likable, the blend of horror and comedy works remarkably well tonally, and the book is clever and insightful without seeming like it's trying too hard to be just that. A lot of the humor is kind of stupid, but there's a human touch to it that makes it work.
I liked this book. Am a huge fan of the previous novel (John Dies at the End). I don't know if I liked this one quite as much as the first but still very good. Recommend highly, I would recommend that you read/ listen to the first book. Not absolutely critical, but you would miss a lot, I think without it.
After writing this review I realized I probably wouldn't.
The last book I listened to was "John Dies at the End" and I REALLY enjoyed that book. There were so many elements of it that just clicked for me. It was/is so fun, fresh, funny, odd ball, horrible (in a good way), surprizing and really well narrated.
So I guess that the bar had been set pretty high when I started this book. The greatest disappointment was the change in narrators. Stephen R. Thorne (narrator of John Dies at the End) was just excellent in his depiction of the characters - especially the character of John, whom he plays as a down key sort of guy, I really liked that. All his other character's voices are well defined and you are able to tell them apart and visualize them.
The narrator of this book, Nick Podehl, does exactly the opposite and John is more hyper and yells allot. It is extreemly jarring going from one book to the next. As well, many of his character voices sound the same so I sometimes was lost in what was happening in conversations - who is saying what. His female voices are straight out of a bad Saturday Night Live skit, just horrible and all the same.
Ok I get that maybe they might have had difficulty getting back the narrator of the first book - maybe it was life, schedules, whatever - but WHY chose a new narrator whose style is so very different and is just not as skilled? So VERY disappointing.
Also gone was allot of the humour and fun. I get that more serious things happen in this book, but I think it is at the forsaking of the characters personalities. Possibly the author was trying to end the series and show some growth in his characters - but it just felt wrong and fell flat for me. Sometimes I caught myself silently growning and wanting to smack my forehead.
There is a death at the end that was just completely unnecessary and made me very angry. Really angry. That was just bs. Just horrible. You know what? I’m still angry. If I can ever figure out a way of deleting it from my audio book I will. It however may not be necessary as I doubt I will ever be listening to it again. By the way, since buying John Dies at the End a few months ago, I have listened to it three times.
Ok what did I like. Some of the humor was ok. Some of the ideas were fun, interesting, refreshing.
To be honest I was sort of relived when it was over.
Also I waited at least a month after listening to this book so that I could have some time to really reflect on what I liked and what bothered me.
I would have replaced Nick Podehl with the narrator of the first book "John Dies at the End" - Stephen R. Thorne
Please be more considerate when choosing narrators.
This book makes my top five favourite books.
David Wong draws you in for another awesome adventure. This story will make you want David Wong to continue writing more books.
First of all the Narrator did a great job. This story never stopped, I was torn between covering my mouth honestly afraid for the characters and laughing out loud.
David - he's a great character. Real and floored but a hero to the end.
His timing and pace was perfect, it really felt like he was in-tune with the authors voice
I think I actually pulled a few public fist-pumps while listening i was often so in the moment. This story grabbed me by the throat and did not let go.
This is horror comedy where both elements are done well. It refuses to be cliche, and is rarely predictable.
Molly the dog, because she's the only one who is truly an innocent.
There's a part where a monster is formed out of a bunch of live turkeys. Without giving details, it is disgustingly disturbing one moment, then absurdly funny the next. Like much of the rest of this book.
Yes, but I don't want to give it away.
The reading is very good on this production, and there are just occasional touches of audio production that enhance at just the right moments without ever feeling too intrusive. The way the name of the town ("[UNDISCLOSED]") is "clumsily" overdubbed in a different sounding voice was somehow an effect that never ceased to be funny.
Near the top of my list.
I really enjoyed the scene where the pup becomes the Star! I'm a softy for intelligent dogs and there contribution to a great story.
The book made me laugh, a lot, and I actually felt a connection for the characters.
Would love to hear the authors other books narratated by the same narrator that did this one. Great job!!
This is one of my favorite audiobooks I've listened to so far. I listened to it alone, at night while at work, and while I was was quite freaked out the entire time, I couldn't stop listening. It was often the highlight of my day.
I thought this book was far more cohesive as a novel than the first book, John Dies at the End. But the characters were still vivid and entertaining. My favorite part of this book was that I never once stopped rooting for the characters. I had no flippin' clue where the story was headed, which Wong is fantastic at, but I had to keep listening.
I really enjoyed the reader, and even went through some of his other books, but none stood out to me quite as much as this one.
I always laugh out loud at David Wong. He has an easy, flippant way with words. I did cry at the end, again...while at work...like a crazy person. Like I said, he gets you rooting for everyone.
Definitely. Or at least, if you don't have a problem with being thrown back and up, front and back by the author who expertly handles your feelings, expectations and emotions like a puppet. The book, and more particularly this audiobook, feels more of an "experience" than a regular read. I felt as if I was tagging along with the characters as they faced countless horrors and struggles. David Wong is a master at making his characters think exactly what you're thinking, basically replacing your thought-process with another.
Next to the great story, the funny moments, the endearing characters and overall "colorfulness" of this book, what I found more striking was Wong's pure skill at storytelling. That alone makes me recommend this book.
The moment that will haunt me forever will be the moment at the enclosed hospital where the main character performs the spider-test on the new arrivals. The brutality of that scene made me flinch and stop the playback. It took me a while to return to the book afterwards, as I was afraid more moments like that would repeat. Thankfully, that was (at least for me) the highest point of the book in therms of trauma.
On the other end of the spectrum, the scene I enjoyed the most was the time-frozen scene near the ending. I liked a lot how the main character's personality was shown in that scene.
Podehl is great. I had heard him before in Will Greyson Will Greyson, and he did flawlessly once more. I love his interpretations and how he manages to use different voices for different characters. His voice for Amy and the psychiatrist were spot-on. I cannot imagine them with any other voice by now.
It's a tough choice between Amy and John. Amy's rough yet lovable personality produces an instant crush on her. While John's recklessness/stupidity combined with his ingrained loyalty is endearing. For all the troubles he causes, it's impossible not to forgive him every time.
However, I gotta choose Amy as I think her character is way more memorable and original in the long run.
I was initially disappointed that this book had a different narrator than the first book, but Mr. Podehl is every bit as good, if not better.