Night Film: A Novel Audiobook | Marisha Pessl | Audible.com
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Night Film: A Novel | [Marisha Pessl]

Night Film: A Novel

On a damp October night, beautiful young Ashley Cordova is found dead in an abandoned warehouse in lower Manhattan. Though her death is ruled a suicide, veteran investigative journalist Scott McGrath suspects otherwise. As he probes the strange circumstances surrounding Ashley’s life and death, McGrath comes face-to-face with the legacy of her father: the legendary, reclusive, cult-horror-film director Stanislas Cordova - a man who hasn’t been seen in public for more than thirty years.
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Audible Editor Reviews

Editors Select, August 2013 - I don’t often find myself interested in literary psychological thrillers, but the early buzz on Night Film – a dark novel by Marisha Pressl (of Special Topics in Calamity Physics fame) – was enough to pique my interest. It’s been a long time since I’ve read something that’s legitimately creeped me out, and this novel opens with a ghost story that set the tone. I’ve only just started reading the book, and it already feels like something bad is lurking on the every page. Scott McGrath is a shamed journalist who takes a new interest in an old case when his former subject’s daughter turns up dead at the bottom of an abandoned building’s elevator shaft. The book hinges on Scott’s investigation into the victim’s family, particularly her reclusive filmmaking father, who put Scott out of business in the first place. It’s an absolutely chilling page-turner and will be even more frightening in audio. —Chris, Audible Editor

Publisher's Summary

Brilliant, haunting, breathtakingly suspenseful, Night Film is a superb literary thriller by the New York Times best-selling author of the "blockbuster debut" (People) Special Topics in Calamity Physics.

On a damp October night, beautiful young Ashley Cordova is found dead in an abandoned warehouse in lower Manhattan. Though her death is ruled a suicide, veteran investigative journalist Scott McGrath suspects otherwise. As he probes the strange circumstances surrounding Ashley’s life and death, McGrath comes face-to-face with the legacy of her father: the legendary, reclusive, cult-horror-film director Stanislas Cordova - a man who hasn’t been seen in public for more than 30 years.

For McGrath, another death connected to this seemingly cursed family dynasty seems more than just a coincidence. Though much has been written about Cordova’s dark and unsettling films, very little is known about the man himself.

Driven by revenge, curiosity, and a need for the truth, McGrath, with the aid of two strangers, is drawn deeper and deeper into Cordova’s eerie, hypnotic world.

The last time he got close to exposing the director, McGrath lost his marriage and his career. This time he might lose even more.

Night Film, the gorgeously written, spellbinding new novel by the dazzlingly inventive Marisha Pessl, will hold you in suspense to the final minute.

Download the accompanying reference guide.

©2013 Marisha Pessl (P)2013 Random House Audio

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.9 (945 )
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4.2 (843 )
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3 star
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1 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Sally SAINT LOUIS, MO, United States 09-08-13
    Sally SAINT LOUIS, MO, United States 09-08-13 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    10
    ratings
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    4
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    "Good premise - Way too long - Awful ending"

    I thought the premise of the story was interesting and i liked the creepy tone. I was hooked for a while, but it went on way too long. Some of the sequences were tangents that didn't move the story forward. Also, she repeated some stories more than once. I think the author needed a better editor. The ending was disappointing and seemed lazy - like the author couldn't be bothered to resolve things, so she just ended the book. That cost the book a star or two for me. I thought the narrator was really good.

    10 of 13 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Bob North Lauderdale, FL, United States 08-28-13
    Bob North Lauderdale, FL, United States 08-28-13
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A basic, creepy novel"

    I enjoyed this book but doubt that I would buy it again. It did have a lot of twists and turns that all came together at the end. I didn't have a problem finding stopping points to temporarily put it down. The narrator did a decent job. If you like a good mystery that is a cross of creepy, mystical, police search and dysfunctional families, this book id for you,and worth a credit.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Susan Bartonville, TX 08-25-13
    Susan Bartonville, TX 08-25-13 Member Since 2012

    Myst/thrillers and ✨fun fantasies✨are my favorites but always open for a good story.  

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Unforgettable Rabbit Hole Mystery"

    Wow, what a ride. If I did not have to sleep I would have listened to this extraordinary mystery/thriller, (with a movie literature relation), without interruption.

    Scott McGrath a disgraced journalist that can't help himself, reopens his investigation into the story that destroyed his career/ life years before. Scott must get to the bottom of an anonymous phone call that started the original investigation of Cordova, a snuff film producer, director. The caller insinuated that Cordova, a recluse, may be actually hurting children or worse for his films. Eight years, and two hundred and fifty thousand dollars retribution later the suicide of Cordova's daughter draws Scott back onto an almost deliberate path that leads him staight to a dark rabbit hole that he had luckily avoided the first time. Scott is pulled into a sinister mystery behind fame, excess, obsession, cult, private sex clubs, murder, witchcraft, black voodoo magic, etc..... Quoting the Cheshire Cat, "we're all mad here".

    During his investigation he comes across two very unlikely characters that insist on taking the path with him: a drug and alcohol addicted charmer and a homeless young wannabe actress. As the story unfolds the circumstances leading up to the young girls suicide start to help them understand the whole big, inconceivable picture.

    The narrator did an excellent job, I felt connected with the characters and did not get tired of his voice at all during the twenty three hour listen. This book is a great twisted thriller that has ups and downs galore. Just when you think..........? Don't.. Highly recommend.

    9 of 12 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Susan Phoenix, AZ, United States 02-19-14
    Susan Phoenix, AZ, United States 02-19-14 Member Since 2008

    A devout Audible junkie. Gotta have a book going all of the time, working, driving . . . LOVE my audio books.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Mesmerizing"
    What did you love best about Night Film?

    The characters are beautifully drawn, as is the world they live in. The history behind the puzzles they need to solve is created so believably that I found myself referring to Wikipedia for collaboration on certain points.


    What did you like best about this story?

    I fell in love with the characters and was completely mesmerized by the layers of mystery unfolding before them, faced as they were with the prospect of living in a Cordova film where reality is uncertain and endings do not wrap up neatly.


    Have you listened to any of Jake Weber’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    When I started listening I had the sense that I was hearing the voice of an old friend. Then I realized that this was the voice of the wonderful actor who played Joe DuBois on Medium. I LOVE his understated, yet fully dramatic reading of this book and couldn't resist picturing him in the role of the central character. So happy that he's become a reader - will look for other titles he's read.


    Who was the most memorable character of Night Film and why?

    Scott. Intelligent, flawed, moral, indomitable, ultimately heroic.


    Any additional comments?

    I loved the book overall. The provided PDF files are wonderful, and reinforced my vision of the world the author created. I was so swept away, and so wanted a neat, traditional ending, but should have realized that this was not a world where neat endings happen, not in this particular dark film world that we explore through the eyes of Scott M..

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Matthew Ortiz Texas 11-05-13
    Matthew Ortiz Texas 11-05-13 Member Since 2013

    Dental hygienist, runner, avid reader, and best of all....a lover of music :)

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Well worth 20+ hours"
    Where does Night Film rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    I generally have a difficult time ranking books even one as original as Marisha Pessl's novel. All I can say is it's definitely well worth the 20+ hours of audio.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    I don't want to spoil it for anyone, so I will just say that every character in this story helps bring the novel to life. After completing the final chapter, it's important to keep any favoritism to oneself...you can never be too sure you know the characters ;)


    Which scene was your favorite?

    The ending. Sorry, that's all you get.


    Who was the most memorable character of Night Film and why?

    Stanislas Cordova. This mysterious character is the center of everyone's attention. Although the main characters are attempting to discover the cause of Ashley Cordova's death, the fixation remains on Stanislas throughout the story. This is extremely important in expanding on the novel's theme....perception.


    Any additional comments?

    Night Film is definitely well worth the extended play. The story is original, engaging, and superbly performed by Jake Weber (for those who remember the Dawn of the Dead remake by Zack Snyder). My only gripe with the story was its overuse of metaphors. At times, I felt it got a little out of hand. But this is simply a matter of preference and opinion. Marisha Pessl is a gifted author who succeeded at writing one hell of a book. Enjoy!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Chris Mansfield, Texas, United States 09-11-13
    Chris Mansfield, Texas, United States 09-11-13 Member Since 2002

    I enjoy listening to audiobooks while woking in my shop or around the house -sort of mental multitasking.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    39
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    "Marisha Pessi is good story teller"

    Ms. Pessi really spins a good yarn. The story moves along, and really holds one's attention. The characters are interesting and realistic. It was the same in her first novel. Also the same as her first novel, as much as I enjoyed the story, I was disappointed in the ending. It seemed a little far fetched and contrived to me.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Carrie Houston, TX, United States 09-08-13
    Carrie Houston, TX, United States 09-08-13 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    ratings
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    35
    5
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    "Great read"

    Liked how well it was all woven together. Got a bit slow during one part but overall a really interesting book.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jami E. Nettles Columbus, MS USA 09-04-13
    Jami E. Nettles Columbus, MS USA 09-04-13 Member Since 2002
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Eerie and gripping"

    I really enjoyed this book - it captured my attention from the first, was far out and spooky without being stupid, and while not fine literature, was a cut above the average thriller. I love long books but expect some slow points, but this really was paced well. I can really recommend this to fans of many genres.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lori A. Allred USA 08-28-13
    Lori A. Allred USA 08-28-13 Member Since 2010

    80sGirl

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "24 hours and I still want more!!"
    What did you love best about Night Film?

    Beautifully written, amazing story and characters that I actually cried a bit for...


    Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

    You never know just quite what the truth will turn out to be.


    What about Jake Weber’s performance did you like?

    Great! Reminds me a bit of David Duchovny.


    If you could take any character from Night Film out to dinner, who would it be and why?

    Hopper. He's got a lot more going on than he lets on.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kimberly Kalaheo, HI, United States 09-09-13
    Kimberly Kalaheo, HI, United States 09-09-13 Member Since 2006
    HELPFUL VOTES
    11
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    "Save yourself the irritation!"

    As several reviewers mentioned (read their reviews way too far into my listening) this book suffers from a lethal lack of editing. What could have been an average but entertaining 6-10 hour story is a 22 hour monstrosity of mediocrity. I sufffer from a stupid need to find out "how it ends" and so I listened to this entire rambling, shambling, shuffling concept of a mystery, and was so irritated by the experience I am writing my first review. I have no idea how this book got the positive ratings it did. The author spends a huge amount of time trying to build this sense of dark, intense intrigue about this film maker character and his eccentric and possibly evilly disturbed actions. I found I really didn't care about any of these characters-the film maker, his tragedy of a daughter whom the entire quest revolves around, or any of the "detectives" that assist the protaganist on his baffling quest for I am not sure what, even at the end of the 22 hours. Seriously. I do not know what he was looking for. A story? That's how poorly this thing is pieced together. Several points of sublime irritation came when the author summarily dumps a couple main characters after their adventure to the spooky mansion/estate. I was never quite sure why these characters were interested in this guy to begin with, but the author insisted they were so I accepted them in our little story world. And then apparently they got bored or tired or disenfranchised in some way and bailed, to be seen only in a brief reunion where none of the information they were so passionately seeking was even a topic of discussion. Wow.

    I suppose it is a positive thing to say this woman makes me want to write a mystery, because if this is what gets rave reviews, I'm a Pulitzer winner in the making.

    Save yourself the headache, the money and the 22 hours and grab a Stephen King or a Jack Reacher or the new JK Rowling under whatever name. Infinitely more satisfying on every level.

    9 of 14 people found this review helpful
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