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14 | [Peter Clines]

14

There are some odd things about Nate’s new apartment. Of course, he has other things on his mind. He hates his job. He has no money in the bank. No girlfriend. No plans for the future. So while his new home isn’t perfect, it’s livable. The rent is low, the property managers are friendly, and the odd little mysteries don’t nag at him too much. At least, not until he meets Mandy, his neighbor across the hall, and notices something unusual about her apartment. And Xela’s apartment. And Tim’s. And Veek’s.
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Audible Editor Reviews

Why we think it's Essential - H.P. Lovecraft pioneered the genre of “weird fiction”, so it makes sense that Peter Clines leans heavily on Lovecraft in this twisting, terrifying, shocking, and ultimately exhilarating tale of an apartment building with a lot of secrets. While the main character is a relatable everyman, the rest of the tenants are well-fleshed-out and rich, with their own backstories and motivations that pay off in an extended, otherworldly ending. Everyone is hiding something and the stakes are much higher than they first appear. Ray Porter absolutely nails the accents, tones, and emotions of the diverse cast of characters. —Chris

Publisher's Summary

Audie Award Nominee, Science Fiction, 2013

Padlocked doors. Strange light fixtures. Mutant cockroaches.

There are some odd things about Nate’s new apartment. Of course, he has other things on his mind. He hates his job. He has no money in the bank. No girlfriend. No plans for the future. So while his new home isn’t perfect, it’s livable. The rent is low, the property managers are friendly, and the odd little mysteries don’t nag at him too much. At least, not until he meets Mandy, his neighbor across the hall, and notices something unusual about her apartment. And Xela’s apartment. And Tim’s. And Veek’s. Because every room in this old Los Angeles brownstone has a mystery or two. Mysteries that stretch back over a hundred years. Some of them are in plain sight. Some are behind locked doors. And all together these mysteries could mean the end of Nate and his friends. Or the end of everything....

©2012 Peter Clines and Permuted Press (P)2012 Audible, Inc.

What the Critics Say

"A riveting apocalyptic mystery in the style of LOST." (Craig DiLouie, author of The Infection and The Killing Floor)

"A wholly original story that weaves together mystery and the apocalypse like a finely tuned band." (Evan Roy, Bricks of the Dead)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.1 (11582 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Ethan M. Cambridge, MA 02-25-13
    Ethan M. Cambridge, MA 02-25-13 Member Since 2000

    On Audible since the late 1990s, mostly science fiction, fantasy, history & science. I rarely review 1-2 star books that I can't get through

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    "Great SF take on mysteries fades as answers appear"

    The first 2/3 of this novel are pure fun. There are mysteries in an strange apartment complex to be unraveled, a winning cast of characters to do so, and a great reader to narrate the whole thing. The pacing is such that you are always listening for a few more minutes, just to see what the tenants will learn next about their mysterious building. There is lots of original ideas, and some old science fiction and horror concepts reused in fun ways.

    Sadly, as the mysteries are finally revealed, much of the fun drains away, and the last 1/3 of the book, while by no means bad, just can't keep up the excitement and pace. The twists are more cliched, and the revelations surprisingly unsatisfying.

    Despite that, this is still a fun novel, and a solid read, especially those into modern Lovecraftian horror (Atrocity Archives, for example)

    29 of 34 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lizabeth 05-15-13
    Lizabeth 05-15-13
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Started off Great.... But Then..."
    What does Ray Porter bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Great reading. Characters had distinct voices and brought the story to life.


    Any additional comments?

    I loved the suspense and the science of the first half of the book. It was mature and I enjoyed the theory and the intellectual approach. I couldn't wait to get back to listen to more. THEN...Somewhere near the last 1/4th of the book when the characters actually discovered "the answer" and the "monsters came out of the closet" so to speak, all the suspense flew out the window and it became a silly, contrived action adventure and I was glad when it was finally over. I actually felt a little anger at this book. How could it have been so good to start off and then end in such pure cheese?

    32 of 38 people found this review helpful
  •  
    crazybatcow East Coast, Canada 06-28-13
    crazybatcow East Coast, Canada 06-28-13 Member Since 2007

    I like Jack Reacher style characters regardless of setting. Put them in outer space, in modern America, in a military setting, on an alien planet... no worries. Book has non moralistic vigilante-justice? Sign me up! (oh, I read urban fantasy, soft and hard sci-fi, trashy vampire and zombie novels too)

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    "Surprisingly suspenseful...And a bit of a surprise"

    What on earth is this book about? At 2/3 of the way through nothing had really happened, and nobody had really done anything, but I still kept reading because I wanted to know (probably as badly as the characters wanted to know): what is up with this building? And why is it titled 14? And why has it sometimes been tagged as "horror"?

    That makes it sound like the first 2/3 dragged... it did not. For some reason the story kinda grabs you and pulls you in, even if it spends a lot of time keeping you in suspense as to what the story is actually about.

    When I (and the characters) finally discovered what was going on, the story picked up the pace, and perhaps got a bit far-fetched... and it ended up not being at all what I thought it had to be. Of course, you have to suspend disbelief when reading. If you can do that, you should enjoy this book. It has a nice sense of foreboding and suspense and you're never really sure what's really going on.

    I even liked the ending, pat though it might have been. I'd read more by this author. It is mostly sci-fi-ish, not really horror at all... There is a bit of violence, but it's not graphic or over-done. There is no sex and I don't think there was much in the way of swearing. The narration was very good.

    8 of 9 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Katheryne MD, United States 12-28-12
    Katheryne MD, United States 12-28-12 Member Since 2009

    Busy mom who loves to read but doesn't always have the time. I enjoy YA, Romance and the occasional Best Seller.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Romance junkie turned sci-fi fan!"

    Although I typically read Romance Books I just loved 14! After reading so many good reviews I decided to give this one a try for something different. WOW!
    I don't want to give any of the plot points away so I will just say this book is funny, scary, mysterious, creepy and a little weird. It's Dean Koontz meets Lost. Just the right blend of sci-fi and horror.
    The narration is outstanding. Ray Porter did an excellent job of bringing all the characters to life (even the evil ones).

    Definitely a credit worthy listen.

    21 of 25 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Bill Kailua Kona, HI, United States 09-05-12
    Bill Kailua Kona, HI, United States 09-05-12 Member Since 2009

    The Path Between the Seas to The Great Bridge ~ Kagan's Peloponnesian War to Gaddis' Cold One ~ Mornings on Horseback to a River of Doubt ~ Tom to Huck ~ Lennie to Charley ~ Cadfael to Cross ~ Rhyme to Reacher ~ Blomkvist and Salander to Wallander and Wallander ~ Moving Cheese or Eating Frogs ~ On the Road and Into Thin Air ~ The End of History to A Short History of Everything to ... well ... everything else.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Suspend Disbelief and Critical Thinking Then Enjoy"

    Well written, highly imaginative, apocalyptic thriller, ably narrated by Ray Porter. Listen, and you can expect several hours of entertaining diversion ... IF ...

    You suspend disbelief in the fantastic. This plot moves from engaging mystery to wild apocalyptic fantasy. Let me repeat: WILD apocalyptic fantasy. You have to drink the Kool-Aid for this plot to work. AND

    You also suspend logic and critical thinking. Here is the greatest flaw in this novel. Fantasy is not an excuse for sloppy plot development. And as well written as this novel is, it is bloated with illogical or unexplained plot elements, and not a few distracting contrivances.

    If you think me overly harsh, consider just a few examples (minor spoilers follow):

    ~ Do we really believe that a government so concerned about a particular building that it would track public inquiries would not have more capable agents on site?

    ~ Do we really believe the same government would go to such extraordinary lengths to screen tenants and NOT track or arrest the cult whose actions it fears most?

    ~ And don't we find the explanation from the mysterious "owner" at the end to be a little too contrived, relying a bit too much on the "if I tell you, I'll have to kill you" contrivance.

    Nonetheless, if you can, you should accept the world of 14, turn off that part of your brain that demands logic and internal consistency, and take this ride. It is a wild one.

    41 of 50 people found this review helpful
  •  
    karen United States 11-24-13
    karen United States 11-24-13 Member Since 2004
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    "Lions and tigers and dragons, oh my!"

    When "14" first came out on Audible, I read the both the publishers blurbs and customer comments, and on the basis of that, put it on my wish list. I'd never heard of the author or the book, so I tend to rely mostly on customer reviews -- of which there weren't many, in the beginning. More to the point, there weren't any that said, openly and clearly, that this was a book of science fiction -- or maybe fantasy, a distinction I won't discuss any further for fear of spoiling the story for someone who does likes that sort of thing.

    I don't. Or at least I haven't liked science fiction since I was about 9. I'd read ALL of the SF books in that impoverished little school library we had, and I loved them -- until I found myself totally blown away by the fact that I'd read a whole book -- an entire ADULT book -- about the dastardly doings in the world "Urth" without ever realizing, up to the very end, that it was EARTH they were talking about. Jeepers!

    It's not nice to fool either me or Mother Nature about things like that, so I promptly dropped the genre.

    The problem for me was, all the customer reviews referenced only a "mystery" behind that secret closed door. None of them hinted -- nor will I -- what actually lay behind it. Given that I'm totally consumed by detective fiction, my mental image focused on a room full of dead bodies, say, or maybe a few million in stolen loot. What actually WAS behind the green door -- no, wait, it wasn't really green, was it? -- was something very different, and not my cup of tea, so to speak.

    When "14" appeared as a "Daily Deal" I didn't investigate it any more, I just snapped it up, which wasn't a bad thing at all. I loved the first three-quarters of the book. Peter Climes assembled a delightfully diverse and eccentric group of adventurers, people I greatly enjoyed reading about. The way Climes worked in their back stories, each of them in turn, was just great. Loved the early adventures, the run-ins with Oscar, the nasty building manager, Nate's story, the times and trials of being a data entry clerk at a magazine -- who knew? -- and about all the beer consumed on that scenic roof top. Sounded like fun, actually. I enjoyed it.

    Then it went weird on me. I got to the heart of the book, and suddenly it wasn't about eccentric women who sunbathed in the nude -- in public -- a habit the lady tossed it off with "Oh for crying out loud. It's just BOOBIES! Haven't you ever seen any before?" which made me laugh out loud. "14" got serious, with lions and tigers and dragons and things, and my mind started to drift.

    I quit an hour before the end -- tick tock, tick tock, tempus fugit and all that -- and I decided not to waste any more of it on this book, which had already gone way beyond my tolerance level for non-reality-based fiction. I quit.

    Still -- good book, and I'm glad I listened to the first part. Special kudos to narrator Ray Porter. He mastered a strange assembly of characters of varying ethnicities -- listening to him, I could picture every one of them.

    If you like well-written weird, this one's for you.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Timothy College Station, TX, United States 04-01-13
    Timothy College Station, TX, United States 04-01-13 Member Since 2011
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    "Interesting premise, dissolves into bad writing."

    This book starts out with a great premise. Kind of an X-Files, or Twilight Zone vibe. Unfortunately the writing is not very good. People are continually saying and doing things that just ring false and contrived. Every time that happened, it took me out of the story, and it happens OFTEN. It's irritating. Several times I almost stopped listening.

    The other complaint I have is that, once the big secret is revealed there are about 10 or so more chapters, and everything from that point on is utterly predictable. Basically, once you get to the big reveal, you can pretty much stop listening. Just imagine how the story would be resolved if it were a Disney movie, and you've got it.

    Also, there are a LOT of loose ends. Many of the "oddities" that set up the premise of the story are never explained, at least not to my satisfaction.

    The narrator does a good job. I liked that all the characters are given very distinct voices.

    7 of 8 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Grant NANTUCKET, MA, United States 01-20-13
    Grant NANTUCKET, MA, United States 01-20-13 Member Since 2008

    caffeinated

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A stay-at-home thrill ride."

    An excellent read in the vein of Steven King's Under the Dome or Duma Key. A great set of characters. And a fun collection of strange and quirky mysteries which all add up to one big thriller and a fun climax. I will read more from Clines.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jason pottstown, pa, United States 10-22-12
    Jason pottstown, pa, United States 10-22-12 Member Since 2011

    reading adventurer

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "WHAT THE HELL..."

    This thing was listed under Sci-fi & Fantasy and was recommended to me after purchasing an epic fantasy Scott Lynch's, 2nd book (Red Seas Under Red Skies) WHICH WAS AWESOME. I put it in my wish list after seeing the HUGE positive ratings.
    This book is fiction, sci-fi slightly... fantasy... barely. I would have some mature high school students read/listen to this book due to its easy going pace and somewhat interesting story-line. This book is NOT for epic fantasy fans or even hard core sci-fi fans. The narrator was good which is how I was able to get through this book.

    23 of 28 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Adnan Chula Vista, CA, United States 09-29-12
    Adnan Chula Vista, CA, United States 09-29-12 Member Since 2009
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    "Good, but falls short of excellent"

    This is a very good entertaining book. The story is about a person who starts to notice a lot of strange things about his new apartment building. He forms collation of other tenants to unfolds the mystery of this building. The mystery is very intriguing and complete fiction, but it unfolds in very entertaining though highly unlikely fashion. The cast of characters in the book are very interesting and narrative is snappy delivered expertly by Ray Porter.

    I found story to be very lean, and it moved at a brisk pace. The cast of characters are well flushed out, and their interaction is entertaining. Even though last stages of story become a bit out there, I would still rate this a very good book. I would recommend this book, and I will consider picking up other books from the same author in the future.

    7 of 8 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 11-20 of 1452 results PREVIOUS123146NEXT
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  • P
    WIRRAL, United Kingdom
    4/13/13
    Overall
    "Un-expected pleasure."

    I didn't know what to expect with this one, I got it because I really enjoyed clines other creations.



    But I quickly fell in love with the whole story, you get to know each and every character and the twists are great.



    It is hard to review without giving anything away, alls I can say is very enjoyable and really well narrated to the point where you can easily pick out each character by the narration.

    11 of 11 people found this review helpful
  • Mike Collins
    Brighton, UK
    3/22/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Solid first 3/4's...dissapointing finale."
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    Hmmm, not really. [Spoiler free] - Ive said that the finale is dissapointing, but this has little to do with the plot/story - which was fine, if a little derivative. The build up of quiet dread, and the slow unfolding of the mystery was a lot of fun. No, it was the character's response to the events towards the end that didn't sit well. Up to the final quarter of the book, Nate and chums responded plausibly to what was going on. However, their friendly banter, and muted reactions (to what was, a roller-coaster of terror and madness), seemed more in keeping with getting lost in the woods, and not being sure if you're going to make it home that night, rather than, what was, a prolonged waking nightmare.

    Putting people in bizarre, and horrifying situations, and making their responses believable, is something that writers like, Stephen King or Richard Matheson, seem to make look easy. And its essential in stories like this. Peter Clines' difficulty just highlights how hard it is to actually achieve, and the difference between writing a book thats good, and writing one thats just alright.

    The narration, although a little flat and stacatto at times (during the 3rd person narration, rather than when people were 'talking'), was quality. The characters were distinct and well portrayed.


    10 of 10 people found this review helpful
  • Jane
    Avon, United Kingdom
    7/22/12
    Overall
    "Brilliant"

    This was brilliant - characterisation was wonderful, plot was brilliantly woven together with lots of nice pop culture references (loved the totally throwaway "bowties are cool"), and pace was such that I stayed up much too late to find out how it would end. Ray Porter's narration was also excellent, with clear delineation of the various voices and a great line in comic timing amid all the impending horror. Off to look for more things by Peter Clines/more narration by Ray Porter...

    10 of 10 people found this review helpful
  • Sarah
    GLASGOW, United Kingdom
    1/27/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "It's locked for a reason!!!!"

    It's been a while since I got totally immersed in an audiobook. This didn't really stand out to me, I only got it as it was in the sale, but I'm glad I did!

    Nate works as a temp, going nowhere with no cash, so when cheap digs are offered he grabs them. Once he moves in, he starts to meet his neighbours and they soon realise that not one room in the whole building is structurally the same. Not only that, the building doesn't appear to be attached to the power grid and nobody's heard of the landlord.

    I can't go into too much without spoiling it, but needless to say the atmosphere when they go past the basement and into room 14 is so tense you'll need to put the light on!

    9 of 9 people found this review helpful
  • Martin
    Inerness, United Kingdom
    4/11/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Mixed bag..."

    This was an odd one for me, I really enjoyed the first 8 hours of the story a lot but the last 4 hours not so much. That's not to say the last 4 hours are terrible or anything - its fine, but its almost like a different storyline somehow. Hard to explain without spoilers really, but for me the writer had the first part of the story done really well, and the latter part not so well - but it was an interesting story well told, just seemed to go a bit odd towards the end.

    6 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • Jane
    Sheffield, United Kingdom
    1/23/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Oh I loved this book!"
    What did you like most about 14?

    Fresh believable characters, incidental love interests that didn't detract from the story in any way! Unpredictable twists and turns, appealed to me (at 60) and my daughter (at 24) test of a good story. Different to my usual read but I'm really glad I took a chance and listened. Easy to follow without being boring, unusual concept but believable, even the weird bits!


    What other book might you compare 14 to, and why?

    Can't compare it to anything really, all new and very enjoyable!


    Which character – as performed by Ray Porter – was your favourite?

    Veek is very cool (not sure if that's how to spell it) she has a wicked sense of humour, Zeela is also pretty cool.


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

    Both - I found my jaw clenching in parts, shouted out loud in the car a few times, couldn't wait to get out of work to start listening again!


    Any additional comments?

    Buy it if you like a good story, fantasy, suspense and laughing!

    6 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • Robert
    Warrington, United Kingdom
    7/14/12
    Overall
    "Brilliant!"

    A brilliant read - very spooky in parts and full of mystery! A fun and entertaining book which the narrator brings alive with an excellent performance. I just wish the book was longer as I didn't want it to end!

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Helen
    RUISLIP, United Kingdom
    3/9/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Just, wow."
    If you could sum up 14 in three words, what would they be?

    Hilarious, entertaining madness.


    What did you like best about this story?

    It's impossible to put into words without giving massive spoilers, but the characters in this book have much more depth and realism about them than pretty much any other book I have ever read. I found myself sharing all their emotions, and rather than guessing the ending, was anxious to find out what they were leading to. This book is so well written, it's truly edge of your seat stuff.


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

    Ray Porter's performance is fantastic. A couple of the accents may have been a little ropey, but he still managed to make them believable, even his women had the correct balance of strength and fragility that so many actors tend to get so wrong. His pace is perfect, and his acting highlights all the humor and / or tension that each scene requires. I'll definitely be on the lookout for more of his narration.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    I could've lost a whole weekend to this book. I was due to take a coach journey when I was about a third of the way through it, and decided to listen to more of it rather than my music. On the way home again I was pretty tired, and thought I would continue with the book, maybe have a doze on my way home...no chance. By the time my journey ended I was LITERALLY on the edge of my seat. The girl next to me must have thought I was crazy with all the fidgeting I was doing as events unfolded in my ears. By the time I actually got home, the story had become so intense that I was glad my other half was back from work so I didn't have to sit in the house on my own while I listened to the end.


    Any additional comments?

    I've been chewing all my friends ears off (figuratively) to try and get them to listen to or read this book. If you give it a chance, I promise you will too. Pretty much jumped straight into my top five favourite books and gives Neil Gaiman a damn good run for his money.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • N
    newcastle, United Kingdom
    3/8/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "really unexpected, loved it all."
    Would you listen to 14 again? Why?

    I loved this book. Not what I expected at all. The narrator was wonderfully. The story kept me guessing. I ended up sitting in my car in the driveway with people staring at me because I wanted to hear what happened next.


    What other book might you compare 14 to, and why?

    Hmmm... that's a hard one. It reminded me a bit of the TV series Lost.


    What about Ray Porter’s performance did you like?

    Every character had a distinct voice and even one word replies were easily identifiable. Especially enjoyed his portrayal of Tim the "retired publisher" and Roger the laid back "dude". This narrator is a safe pair of hands.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Yes


    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Miss King
    UK
    4/8/13
    Overall
    "14"

    Nate moves into a new flat in a very strange apartment building. It seems that every apartment in the building is different and has something strange about it. There are the green cockroaches, the lift that has never worked, apartment 14 is padlocked, and many other strange oddities.

    This was a wonderful book, with lots of twists and turns, and some fantastic ideas. And every time something new was revealed about the building I had a new theory about what was going on. I loved this book and will be looking for more books by Peter Clines.

    Loved every minute of it.

    Really great listen, highly recommended.

    7 of 8 people found this review helpful
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