I purchased this novel on a whim, primarily on the strength of it's description. It turned out to be a great investment and a pleasant surprise! It's best experienced without much knowledge of the plot as most of the fun comes from the characters (who make numerous pop culture references and even compare themselves to Scooby Doo and his pals) unraveling the mysteries of the building where they live. Cline has a to-the-point writing style, a good sense of humor and he keeps this story rolling along.
14 isn't a deep novel or a book that will blow the reader away with tremendous, in-depth characterization. It's good, fun genre fiction with a memorable cast of characters and some genuinely surprising twists and turns. I highly recommend it.
It probably deserves a rating more like 2.5 stars rather than just 2. The premise is fun and the story owes an obvious debt to tales like Stephen King's "The Mist", which Brian Keene acknowledges in the novel. Keene shows a flair for character and the story moves at a good pace but eventually it succumbs to it's own baser instincts, going for horror cliches rather than something less conventional and potentially more satisfying. Giving in to those baser instincts is part of the point but regrettably, I was laughing at a few moments where I think the tension was supposed to be at it's highest.
If you're looking for lightweight (but not lighthearted) b-movie thrills, you might enjoy this one. Otherwise, I can't recommend it.
Eric Medler does an excellent job with the narration.
Forget the "Gone Girl" comparisons and just accept this book on it's own merits, which are considerable. It's a cleverly constructed novel that will keep you guessing and it features some memorable, and memorably flawed, characters. We get the story in first person from from 3 of them: Rachel, Megan and Anna, and all 3 are narrated wonderfully by Clare Corbett, Louise Brealy and India Fisher. Some listeners may find the characters difficult to relate to but I found their character flaws interesting and those flaws help make the book's central mystery plausible and compelling. Highly recommended.
Peter Nimble and his Fantastic Eyes is a charming, sometimes appropriately frightening and even gruesome children's tale. The author is willing to take the book to some of the dark places adults don't always want to believe great children's fiction should go and in doing so, with both wit and originality, he creates genuine drama. The book certainly owes a debt to similar tales of the fantastic that have come before it yet from it's premise to it's conclusion, it has a personality all it's own. It's as clever and resourceful as Peter Nimble himself.
Michael Page's reading is absolutely superb.
Narrator Eric Dove does what he can with this short novel but even with his excellent reading, and at a mere 6 hours, I found it tedious. The premise plays out as predictably as a bad B-movie, with few surprises and many familiar tropes. The writing is fine, the reading is excellent but the story itself left a lot to be desired, at least for me. Seed was a disappointment.
Simmons practically makes his setting into a major character in this subtle, unsettling novel set in Calcutta, India. Song of Kali is mysterious and though-provoking and like some of the best horror, a bit ambiguous. Simmons doesn't spell everything out for the reader and that works to the novel's benefit. This book is definitely worth a credit and the reading by Mark Boyett is superb.
My expectations may have been too high going into this novel. It's an entertaining book but I found it overly long, bordering on tedious at times, especially because in essence, it's a pulp novel filled with larger-than-life characters. The Alienist takes a bit too much too much time to get where it's going.That said, the historical setting is interesting and Carr practically makes turn-of-the-century New York into an additional character.
George Guidall's reading is superb, one of the best I've ever heard for an audiobook. He brings the characters to life, raises the tension in scenes where it's appropriate and overall, just does a fantastic job.
I've always considered The Shadow Out of Time one of Lovecraft's better tales. It's as much a science fiction story as a horror story, although the mind-bending experiences of it's protagonist would be enough to push anyone's mind to the brink of madness.
This story probably isn't the best starting point for a Lovecraft reader (try The Dunwich Horror, The Shadow Over Innsmouth or The Call of Cthulhu if you're just getting to know HPL) but it's one of his most carefully constructed tales and it gradually builds to a ripping climax.
Mike Vendetti's reading of the story doesn't ruin it by any means but it ranges from good to lifeless to distracting. At times, he does a fine job but he repeatedly struggles to pronounce words correctly. Some of them are Lovecraftian creations but he has as many problems with good ol' English as he does with words like "Necronomicon" (how can anyone be allowed to read Lovecraft for an audiobook if he can't pronounce the name of that infamous tome correctly?).
Anyway, I don't mean to be too hard on the man but this isn't the sort of reading that truly enriches that material like, say, the readings of Wayne June, which I highly recommend.
I've read and listened to quite a few Stephen King novels at this point, including fan favorites like The Stand and It and I'd rank this as one of his best. Like many of King's books, it's long but in 11-22-63, he uses that time to really develop his characters, to give them rich, emotional lives, and it serves this fascinating time travel tale well. It's more than just a time travel tale, of course. It's also a love story, a thriller and even a bit of a "chiller" in places, though this really isn't a horror novel.
The pacing is good and King hooks the reader/listener from the start. His fondness for the past is evident and there are times when the book feels a bit like a paean to simpler times. However, the author is sharp enough not to simply romanticize the past and he also reminds us that the period had a darker side. After all, this is a book that concerns itself with the assassination of a U.S. President.
It's a great, compelling listen, well worth the credit, and the narration by Craig Wasson is as good as it gets. He does a superb job.
I'd consider it but it would depend on the theme of the book.
The most interesting aspect of the story was it's central mystery: what really happened to Sara's daughter Gertie? Was Sara really able to accomplish what her notes and the legends surrounding her implied?
The book was read by two readers and I'm not sure which reader read which sections. The novel splits it's narrative between the past and present. The reader who handles the contemporary sections of the book does a fine job but the reader who handles the past sections, featuring Sara, has a tendency to seriously overact at times, trying to squeeze so much emotion and pathos out of her voice that it became an annoying distraction.
I doubt it.
This is a book worth reading if you like gothic tales and ghost stories. As I implied above, the audio performance detracted from parts of it for me so I might have enjoyed it a little more if I had simply read it.
This well-narrated novel about a girl not only coming of age but coming to grips with the mystery of her lost mother's disappearance and the more recent death of a friend is alive with the local color of the Ozarks. The reader not only feels the weight of family ties alluded to in the novel's title but also the intimate connections the people who dwell in a small, rural community. Laura McHugh's debut is an excellent read and I won't be surprised if it's up for an Audie award at the end of the year. I'm glad I took a chance on this book!
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