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Dark Matter | [Michelle Paver]

Dark Matter

January 1937. Jack Miller has just about run out of options. His shoes have worn through, he can't afford to heat his rented room in Tooting, and he longs to use his training as an specialist wireless operator instead of working in his dead-end job. When he is given the chance to join an arctic expedition, as communications expert, by a group of elite Oxbridge graduates, he brushes off his apprehensions and convinces himself to join them.
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Publisher's Summary

January 1937. Jack Miller has just about run out of options. His shoes have worn through, he can't afford to heat his rented room in Tooting, and he longs to use his training as a specialist wireless operator instead of working in his dead-end job. When he is given the chance to join an arctic expedition, as communications expert, by a group of elite Oxbridge graduates, he brushes off his apprehensions and convinces himself to join them.

As the young men set sail from a gloomy Britain on the verge of war, Jack feels the overwhelming excitement of not knowing what lies ahead. Little can he imagine the horrors that await him in their destination, Gruhuken, a place that cannot escape the savage echo of its past.

©2010 Michelle Paver (P)2010 Orion Publishing Group Limited

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.2 (275 )
5 star
 (138)
4 star
 (73)
3 star
 (47)
2 star
 (10)
1 star
 (7)
Overall
4.2 (219 )
5 star
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 (68)
3 star
 (35)
2 star
 (9)
1 star
 (5)
Story
4.5 (221 )
5 star
 (144)
4 star
 (48)
3 star
 (22)
2 star
 (4)
1 star
 (3)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Gudrun Fort Resolution, Northwest Territories, Canada 06-17-12
    Gudrun Fort Resolution, Northwest Territories, Canada 06-17-12 Member Since 2011

    I'm open to any book as long as it is true to itself.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    41
    ratings
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    282
    119
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    3
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    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Simple premise, northern feel"

    As I live in the North myself, I can tell you that Paver captures the feeling of the cold and isolation extremely well. A simple premise, but Paver explores relationships between friends and man and dog effectively. Class issues permeate through the relationships between the men and the main character comes to new understandings through his experiences and is a changed man by the end of the book. A unique book which I would highly recommend. The narration was excellent.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    nevina CT, United States 04-29-12
    nevina CT, United States 04-29-12 Member Since 2006

    nevina

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    138
    46
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    7
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    Story
    "Tense and chilling"

    I felt a lot more tense while listening to this than I expected to. Its pretty short so I was able to listen to it on one long evening drive which made it much more immersive. Definitely a well executed chilling ghost story.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michael Norfolk, VA 08-20-11
    Michael Norfolk, VA 08-20-11 Member Since 2010

    Tell us about yourself!

    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
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    22
    5
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    "A Must Hear!"

    I am just one third of the way through this novel and I am already going to pieces, as it is making me very giddy.. Paver is skillfully weaving a most suspense ridden story while Northam's realistic reading, makes me not want to listen to it after night falls. That is quite significant to me, as I live on sunny St. Thomas, the complete opposite of Spitsbergen. Will update later.....

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kenny Andersson Sweden 07-11-15
    Kenny Andersson Sweden 07-11-15 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    26
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    "Chilling, suspenseful, scary. "

    I liked this book, a lot. It's descriptions of the terrible loneliness in the dark is amazing. I think this is a ghost story comparable with the Shining, which I think it's another amazing book. Highly recommended.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Greg Cahl 07-09-15
    Greg Cahl 07-09-15 Member Since 2014
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    4
    2
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    Story
    "Simply brilliant!"

    A suspenseful, gripping story that immediately submerses the reader in an alien world replete with hidden dangers. The narration is one of the best I have ever listened to. Don't miss it!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Philip A. Sisk burbank, ca 05-27-15
    Philip A. Sisk burbank, ca 05-27-15 Member Since 2013

    philip_review

    ratings
    REVIEWS
    4
    4
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Dumb story"

    Boring nice narrator. It well read but really go hiking or do something outside this story sucks

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rachel United States 04-08-15
    Rachel United States 04-08-15 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Great scary story!!"

    Creepy atmosphere, building up tension throughout the story. I really had no idea how it was going to end. I was on the edge of my seat. Great narrator, too, with a natural-sounding accent, good reading pace, added atmosphere to the story.
    Characters were complex & believable. I really enjoyed this story all the way through.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Goran 12-10-14
    Goran 12-10-14 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Unexpectedly Good"

    I was not familiar with the author when I picked this up, so I had no idea what to expect. The plot is simple but told in a very effective way. Narration is absolutely top notch. This may be my favorite audio book of the past 12 months, and I go through these things like it's my job.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Spencer Media, PA, United States 11-06-14
    Spencer Media, PA, United States 11-06-14 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Bleak, Beautiful Terror"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Dark Matter to be better than the print version?

    I haven't tried it in print form, but the reader brought an incredible richness to the experience. Aside from the excellent voice, Jeremy Northam worked it so you could feel the dry cold in every breath.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Dark Matter?

    When the pole he definitely cut down and destroyed is back.


    What about Jeremy Northam’s performance did you like?

    He has a rugged sharpness to his voice that fleshes out the atmosphere.


    If you could rename Dark Matter, what would you call it?

    A Cold Post


    Any additional comments?

    The atmosphere here is thick enough to float rocks in. The setting of the story is wonderfully bleak and vivid. I also like that it makes use of a rather underutilized monster of nordic folklore.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 07-15-14 Member Since 2015

    See clearly/Know what is/Act without hesitation

    ratings
    REVIEWS
    17
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Listen to this in the cold and darkness!"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    This is easily one of the best ghost stories I have read and listened to in the last decade.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Dark Matter?

    The first look at the round shouldered figure on the beach.


    Which character – as performed by Jeremy Northam – was your favorite?

    The protagonist.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
Sort by:
  • Mr. L. Jackson
    London
    10/21/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Good to listen to after The Martian"
    What did you like most about Dark Matter?

    The narrater Jeremy Northam was brilliant! The whole book is very atmospheric and really pulls you into the cold, desolate place that the characters find themselves in. I would suggest this is a good book to listen to after The Martian - this one is not funny like the Martian but it is written from the same viewpoint of a single man trapped.

    I would also suggest opening a YouTube tab on your browser and looking for a video called Meditation To The Sound Of A Blizzard - its an hour long blizzard sounds - really really adds to the drama of the book!


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Alexander Sutherland
    UK
    8/22/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Super!"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    What a great story, and the narration by J Northam was excellent. Can't fault this novella!


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • SnapWriter
    London, UK
    7/7/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Classic English Horror - M.R. James Style"

    Dark Matter is a beautifully written and atmospheric ghost story, which pulls you into the polar isolation, barely able to take a breath. The protagonist is set up brilliantly, showing you the detail of research which went into the period of the time. Many people today will not appreciate what poverty is, and indeed, was. Jeremy Northam very much makes the story his own. I cannot imagine reading the paperback to be an equal experience. Both subtle and creepy, this must surely be recognised as one of the great horror and ghost stories of the early twenty-first century. Listen in bed with the lights off on a cold winter's night for maximum effect.

    A brilliant story, with 100% satisfaction delivered for this reviewer.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • janien
    hampshire, UK
    4/2/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "One of the best ever ghost stories"
    Where does Dark Matter rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    One of the best novels, audiobook or otherwise that I've read.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Dark Matter?

    The cold, the loneliness and the fear. It's a book to read whilst warm and cosy with the lights on!


    Any additional comments?

    This is one that I will listen to again

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • eleonora
    manchester, United Kingdom
    2/27/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "i know it says a ghost story but..."
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    ...i'm in two minds. i'd recommend because it's a different kind of ghost story. but i'm not sure it's good enough of 'different' to recommend. it's good enough but very original at times and very predictable in other bits, it would have been nicer if it had kept the originality up all along.


    Has Dark Matter put you off other books in this genre?

    definitely not!


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Charles
    Lancaster, United Kingdom
    2/21/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Short but riveting"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    The slowly mounting sense of dread as the central character's sanity is pushed to its limits will make you feel better about your petty quotidian anxieties.


    What other book might you compare Dark Matter to, and why?

    If you enjoyed Michel Paver's Chronicles of Ancient Darkness you will appreciate the emotional impact and suspense of her writing in this book.


    What about Jeremy Northam’s performance did you like?

    Not too over the top, good interpretation of the central characters frustration, self-loathing and existential angst.


    Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    You do get engaged with Jack's emotional journey and identify with the base emotional fear of the unknown, the other, the monster under the bed.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Amazon Customer
    uk
    2/9/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "nearly gave up on it."
    Would you try another book written by Michelle Paver or narrated by Jeremy Northam?

    No to written by Michelle paver. Yes to narrated by Jeremy northam.


    Has Dark Matter put you off other books in this genre?

    Yes


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    Gave me the spooks at the end.


    Any additional comments?

    The description of the arctic was nice, but there was too much of it for me. I nearly gave up on this book and found myself getting distracted and losing track of what was happening. The last hour of the book was good and chilling.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • sean
    BRISTOL, United Kingdom
    12/1/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "An amazing story for an amazing author"
    Where does Dark Matter rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    I loved this story, very scary and very dark, so very different from here wolf brother books, this really not a kids book, there is still here beloved dogs and a tale of love the sort of book that make the hair on the back of your neck stand on end, a five star book and lovely narration.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Dark Matter?

    The time spent alone in the miners cabin


    What does Jeremy Northam bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

    A depth of feeling


    If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    A very dark matter


    Any additional comments?

    Please can we have more

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Roderic
    Victoria Park, Australia
    11/13/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "I thought the book had been written 50 yrs earlier"
    What made the experience of listening to Dark Matter the most enjoyable?

    The novel descibed the English manner of the adventurer class very well. The writing was of a style I associate with John Buchan or Jack London


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Patabee
    Notts., United Kingdom
    11/4/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Spooky!"

    Just brilliant! Gripping story read perfectly for the best effect. I could visualise the scenes, and when I told my daughter she should listen to it, she said 'no way!' And that it would give her the creeps. I didn't find it too scary, but full of tension, and the atmospherics are just amazing. I listen to my audible books in bed, and it stopped me from dozing off! Can't recommend highly enough. Top marks for the original story idea and for the narration.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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