Evil doesn't always look scary....
Built at the turn of the 20th century by one of the richest and most powerful men in the world, tucked away in the pristine Pocono Mountains, Summer Place, a retreat for the rich and famous, seems the very essence of charm and beauty, "a scene borrowed from a wondrous fairytale of gingerbread houses, bright forests, and glowing, sunny meadows."
But behind the yellow and white trimmed exterior lurks an evil, waiting to devour the unwary....
Seven years ago, Professor Gabriel Kennedy's investigation into paranormal activity at Summer Place ended in tragedy, and destroyed his career. Now, Kelly Delaphoy, the ambitious producer of a top-rated ghost-hunting television series, is determined to make Summer Place the centerpiece of an epic live broadcast on Halloween night. To ensure success, she needs help from the one man who has come face-to-face with the evil that dwells in Summer Place, a man still haunted by the ghosts of his own failure. Disgraced and alienated from the academic community, Kennedy wants nothing to do with the event. But Summer Place has other plans....
As Summer Place grows stronger, Kennedy, along with the paranormal ghost hunting team The Supernaturals, sets out to confront - and if possible, destroy - the evil presence dwelling there.
But sometimes in a paranormal investigation, the ghosts hunt you....
©2011 David L. Golemon (P)2012 Seven Realms Publishing, LLC
Photographer, nature & water geek, music lover, book fiend.
Yes, I would, and will someday. As someone who reads/listens to 4-5 books a week, I've become a bit jaded to formulaic plots and figuring out the end game well before the end. I've been coming across a lot of great reads lately, though, and this is one of them!
Gabriel Kennedy, obviously, but all of his personal friends, too.
I read a review where someone knocks the narrator, but for the life of me, I don't understand why! I thought Mr. Kafer did an excellent job. His vocal talent and reading of various characters never took me out of the story (uber important), and he did a very nice job with consistency. I thought he was superb.
It was simply a good ghost story...a good story period! Well plotted, spooky, enough humor to keep the book from becoming utterly gloomy...a very nice find, and I love to come across an author I've never encountered and be so happy with a spent credit.
The only critical thing I would have to say- and it's a minor point, certainly nothing to take away from a great story- is that based on the time this is taking place( meaning the 21st century, I'm guessing 2010 or 2011), I was surprised not to hear much about the internet being a factor in making this a huge phenomenon. There was very little talk of web stuff at all. Mr. Golemon, I mean absolutely no disrespect and you did a wonderful job. But it did sort of stand out for me. But that is a very minor point. This, like the book "14" by Peter Clines, was just a fantastic find I would highly recommend.
The best description I can think of for this book is that it is the literary equivalent of a movie on the SyFy channel. In other words, entertaining plot,often unintentionally humorous, not the greatest writer and the WORST narrator! Oh my god, maybe I'm just spoiled with the likes of Craig Wasson and George Guidall, but this guy. Everyone sounded the same, men, women, the elderly. There were a couple characters that he attempted accents for, but often he would forget they had accents, and they'd sound like everyone else and the accents were hilariously bad to begin with! And the characters themselves, thanks to the inexpert craftsmanship of the author, were ridiculously one-dimensional and cliche and at times, borderline racist. I mean the team of paranormal investigators consisted of a mysterious Spaniard, a wise Native American, and a tech savvy inventor referred to on numerous occasions as a former "gang banger" or looking like a "gang banger." Yeah, bad. And the narrators attempts at sounding African American, hilarious. So, in short, I enjoyed this book like I enjoy an episode of Mystery Science Theater 3000. It was a non-stop hilarious romp! Sadly, however, that was probably not the author's intention.
I really enjoyed this book for a quite original take on the average haunted house story. I was taken in immediatley by the foreword from the author.
Although never quite falling in love wih any of the characters, they were reasonably well drawn with enough back story to have the reader care about what happens to them.
The shocks were well spaced and didnt resort to unecessary gore to highlight them.
I liked the authors performance, as opposed to some reviewers. I tend to think that a lot of male narrators go beserk with lisping female characters and I found Kafers more straight forward reading refreshing. The only caveat on this would be that the man should never sing on a story ever again.
All up a very entertaining way to pass the time.
Just looking for an enjoyable story! Books are my passion.
The character descriptions were spot on.
One night while alone in my house, I found myself turning on lights as I was actually a bit nervous. Normally, books don't frighten me. But, there are parts of this one that did. Especially the voice of the entity.
I really enjoyed this story. It was gripping and you were pulling for the characters. It has a moderate level of suspense. I will check out other titles by this author because this book was so good.
I was hesitant when purchasing this book since I was unfamiliar with the author and the voice talent, however, I was very pleasantly surprised. I love a good Ghost Story, and you don't see very many anymore. I thoroughly enjoyed this book!...Best yet, sounds like there may be a sequel in the works! I look forward to listening to other books by this author and this reader! Well done! :o)
I wanted to like this book. I really did. I had high hopes at the beginning. The author had obviously done his homework and was referring to stories I had found classically scary in the past. I can even say in all honesty that about a third of he time I spent listening to this book was well spent. It had some genuinely creepy moments. It had some genuinely good writing. It certainly had some good ideas, and some of the characters were interesting and multi-faceted.
Unfortunately for me, the other two-thirds of my time was spent listening to repetitive prose, unsubtle attempts at scares, much MUCH more detail than I ever wanted to hear about the wrangles between players at a television network (honestly, hours and hours of wrangling politics between people, none of whom I liked.)
One reviewer called the plot 'bloated'. I think that is a very apt description. This book would have been much better with a fierce editor and a whole lot of red ink.
What would have made it better? Good question. I was thinking of that question as I was trudging through the story.
For one thing, Mr. Golemon seems to think that loud = scary. The amount of door booming and slamming and creaking and groaning ceased to be scary after the first third of the book. And it just escalated from there. I came to think of it as "The Mad Attack of the Booming Doors." I wish Mr. Golemon had remembered Shirley Jackson (whom he seems to have admired) used eerily quiet patting and footsteps and corner-of-the-eye glimpses much more liberally than she used creepy bulgy doors.
I became somewhat irritated as the characters would leave the site of a supernatural event right in he middle to run off to where another darn door was slamming or booming. Just as soon as it looks like something interesting is happening in the Basement, ooops we all have to rush up to the ballroom. Over and over again.
I mentioned that Mr Golemon told me so very much more than I wanted to know about television and politics. I didn't like any of hose characters, I wasn't rooting for them or against them, I just found all that tiresome, and I think the story would have been tighter and leaner without any of that. There, red pencil, do your worst!
Mr. Kafer was literate, somewhat nuanced, an okay reader all around. He has one vocal 'tic' that I always find totally distracting, and that is that he lowers his voice by a full dramatic third at the end of every single sentence. Sometimes people do that in real life at the end of a particular sentence to make a dramatic point. Mr. Kafer does it Every. Single. Time. Distracting? I hope to tell you.
The other thing that Mr. Kafer needs to avoid at all costs is attempting any kind of accent. His take on a Mexican accent sounded more Ukrainian than anything else. It always made me smile, and I was glad when he forgot about it and just used unaccented English.
I have heard much better readers than Mr. Kafer. I would cast just about any of them before I listened to another of his efforts. He's not the very worst I've listened to (see my review of "Or All The Seas With Oysters" for that reader), but I'd really like for him to work with a good vocal coach before he steps before another microphone.
As I said, I think there are the bones of a good tight scary haunted house novel here, and that is what I was hoping for. A strong edit and a good vocal director would help this author and narrator so much. I fear I hope in vain. I won't be purchasing the obvious sequel myself.
Overall Supernaturals was a pretty entertaining book. I enjoyed the assortment of characters and the twists and turns the story takes. Golemon doesn't do himself a favors by bringing up Shirley Jackson's book The Haunting of Hill House, I couldn't stop comparing the story line. There are some certain parallels between Hill House and the goings on of Summer Place. Kafer's narration certainly aided to the suspense of the story, however on a few occasions when a Irish or German accent was needed it fell pretty short of believable (fortunately these moments are short with limited dialogue).
I gave high marks because the characters are very interesting, I like the team Golemon assembles as well as the back story of Professor Kennedy and Detective Jackson. The story flowed well, never dragged or got too hokey. This was a great haunted house story!! Goleman leaves the story open for a sequel, I hope to follow the Supernaturals on another ghost hunting adventure.
I can find a book to love in any genre -- a beautifully written classic, an interesting mystery or sci-fi, a trashy romance. Bring it!
STORY (horror/suspense) - First of all, this book is creepy and scary, but it's not blood and gore like the cover art suggests. In fact, there is no character that bleeds from her eyes and there's very little bloodshed. The story is about an investigation into a house that is supposedly haunted -- to be filmed live on Halloween! The book begins with the haunted history of the house, moves to assembling an investigative team and prepping for the show, then culminates in the live broadcast. I enjoyed all aspects of the story but, as in all mysteries, there are lots of clues that the reader is trying to figure out and understand. During the live broadcast, when I thought things would start to be revealed and make sense, the book seemed to just drag on and on with very little becoming clear. Then there's a short prologue where the main characters get together months after the broadcast and talk about what had actually occurred. It is only then that the mystery of the haunting becomes clear, and I doubt any reader would have seen it coming. It's a decent explanation, but I didn't like the way it was revealed.
There are lots of characters that are all important, so you will want to keep them straight. Sometimes they're referred to by their first names, sometimes their last and sometimes by their job in the story. "The Supernaturals" refers to the team who assembled to assault whatever is haunting the house -- a professor, an Indian dreamwalker, a psychic, a genius in inventing ghost-detecting gadgets and a woman who is possessed by a male ghost. They're all likeable and you will root for them as the suspense in the story progresses. The other characters in the story each have their own motivation for wanting the live program to succeed or fail, so there's television politics, police conflict, double-crossing, etc., which keeps the story interesting.
PERFORMANCE - Good job. Characters that were on the phone or radio sounded as if they actually were, and the ghostlike voices were pretty creepy.
OVERALL - Quite a bit of scary occurrences and also profanity, so not suitable for children. While I chose not to listen to this book as I was falling asleep (as I often do), I don't think it would cause anyone bad dreams unless you're pretty easily scared.
SLIGHT SPOILER ABOUT THE AUTHOR'S VISIT TO THIS HOUSE - While this story is fictitious, the house itself is a real house which is supposedly haunted. A realtor showed the house to the author, but she wouldn't go inside. The author, after driving several hours, went in alone. He said he felt like an ominous presence was watching him and wanted to be left alone, so he left the house after only a couple minutes. That visit was his inspiration for writing this book!
wow it really went up close to the top
his voices were really good and there were many of them. He never just droned on.
I would recommend this one. I like haunted houses stories and this one was good. I was not going to get it, but I read some other readers reviews and thought it was worth a try. I am so glad I did.
"Really good stuff"
Having listened to all the haunted house books on audible I decided to take a chance on this and I am very glad I did..its well written, modern, fairly spooky in places and highly enjoyable. The narrator does a solid job and is easy to listen to.
If you enjoy a ghost packed, modern haunted house tale give it a go
"Excellant creepy chilling, no sex story!"
I loved this book so much and its a read that i have been looking for. No pointless sex. Good creepy story line that i couldnt stop listening to. Some parts i couldnt listen to at night but after a while the story takes over! Cant wait for the next one, maybe a film or t.v series!
"The Supernaturals David L.Golemon"
What a fantastic ghost story,great narrator too as all the voice changes make this sound so real the ghost voice freaks you out ,it makes you feel like you are in the book as it comes to the end it gets better and so fast paced it will have you hanging on the edge of your seat loved it go for it if you like spooky stuff!!
One of the best ghost stories I have ever listened to. The story grabs you from the first chapter and after that you have to keep listening. I cannot fault the narration the standard of which brought the book alive. This would make a brilliant film.
Excellent! Great story even though the haunted house theme has been done a hundred times before it has the thrills and just enough spooky moments to make a very rich and detailed work of fiction, Deeply interesting characters who evolve as the story unfolds and who in the end you really love or hate. Good solid narration and on the whole well performed.
I have to say that when I first started this I just did not give it a chance, so after listening for about twenty minutes I gave up.........................What a mistake, I came back to it about six months later and listened to all of it over two days! I hope we here much, much more from The Supernaturals. x
"good ghost story"
a good ghost story, based around a haunted house. well read, with a few interesting plot twists. well worth a listen.
"good all round ghost fun."
loved the characters, liked the plot the build up is good and plot flows nicely .You generally like all the " supernaturals" well worth 13 hours and did make me jump in a few parts. good if you are looking for a tamer granted house story.
"Horror with the lights on, and no gear stick"
- Who wants to hear some more TV network politics stuff? NO, PLEASE NO!
If you like hearing about the complex political struggles within a fictional TV network, then you're in luck; because THERE'S SOOOOO MUCH OF IT!
Way too much time was spent away from 'Summer Place'; it became very tiresome having to sit in on boring meetings in boardrooms and hotels.I kept thinking "Errrr guys, can we go back to the house now, please?".
- Please sir, can I have some more........... Scares that is.
To be fair I can't say I ever felt like I was on the edge of my seat at all, there was a real lack of atmosphere. For me, the author never managed to create that feeling of oppression or of impending doom that you might of expected from such a story. That's why i titled this review 'Horror with the lights on'.
- Has anyone seen the 'delete' button?
At around 16 hours of listening this book is really overly baggy and bloated. I really think this book would of been better served a fair bit leaner. There seemed to be a lot of stuff that really added little to the story.
- Was that someone at the door? Yes, a lot!
Most of the 'scary' action in this book seemed to revolve around people trying to open doors that a ghost was holding shut, or a ghost trying to open a door that people were holding shut. The local DIY store must of run out of doors by the end! The terrorfying entity in this book seemed all powerful, exept when it came to breaking down doors. Thank goodness Summer Place wasn't an open-plan house it would have been a bloodbath!
- Are we there yet?
A major problem I had with this book was it never seemed to shift gears, it just stayed at a constant middle of the road pace and intensity. It felt like the author was pulling his punches and was not able to kick things up a level or two. This just made for a relatively smooth and uneventful journey.
Overall this was a decent listen but ultimately dissapointing.
It failed to create an atmosphere, it was too baggy, didn't deliver enough scares or even chills, the action became repeatitive, the ending was a little anti-climatic, and the political stuff was largely uninteresting. Apart from all that it was ok. It was an enjoyable enoguh listen but not a book I'll be going back to again.
I am not sure as I have only listened to the audio book but it is a good read for horror fans.
The Professor because I think that he is the strongest character in the book
No but I will be trying more in the future
It was creepy in parts
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