Practical Demonkeeping Audiobook | Christopher Moore | Audible.com
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Practical Demonkeeping | [Christopher Moore]

Practical Demonkeeping

In Christopher Moore's ingenious debut novel, we meet one of the most memorably mismatched pairs in the annals of literature. The good-looking one is one-hundred-year-old ex-seminarian and "roads" scholar Travis O'Hearn. The green one is Catch, a demon with a nasty habit of eating most of the people he meets.
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Audible Editor Reviews

Travis and Catch come to the small town of Pine Cove, California, and that's when the trouble begins. You'd probably say Travis is a nice, good-looking kid, except he isn't really a kid at all, but a man who hasn't aged a day since World War I. Catch is the reason Travis hasn't aged a day; he's a demon, bound to Travis, and an albatross around his neck. Catch might not be so bad if it weren't for his habit of eating people, but in some relationships there are certain flaws one just can't be expected to overlook. And so Travis comes to Pine Cove in the hopes of finding the answer that will let him free himself of this curse and send Catch back to where he can't eat his friends and neighbors.

Moore describes Practical Demonkeeping as a "whimsical horror novel", but perhaps "demonic ensemble comedy" is more apropos. "Ensemble" is the important part of that description, for it's really the interactions between the characters that makes this story sing. The characters range from Gian Hen Gian, King of the Djinn, to the waitress Jenny whose only extraordinary talent is having the exceptional bad luck to get involved in this mess in the first place, to H.P., a man who might just be a little too obsessed with Lovecraft. The plot itself is nothing revolutionary, but how it unfolds is enjoyable from start to finish, and the listener will likely be surprised and amused along the way as it is unveiled what parts each of the ensemble cast play.

Oliver Wyman's general narrative voice has a youthful quality to it, with a wry, but good-natured tone which fits despite the sometimes dark turns the story takes (unavoidable when you have a primary character who tends to eat people). He provides each character with his or her own distinct voice, going above and beyond the call of duty with the guttural and abrasive — but somehow endearing! — growl of Catch.

Without the embellishment of an actor's reading, Moore's writing is quite fun and funny on the page, but as with many humorous works, the right narrator can take lively prose and make it even livelier — and this is one of those performances that truly elevates the text to a different level. Wyman, a veteran cartoon voiceover actor before turning his talents to audiobook narration, ably employs the skills of the former to strengthen and diversify the skills of the latter. Wyman's style isn't ideal for everything — reading a serious nonfiction book wouldn't be his forte — but for a book like this, which is practically a cartoon in prose form already, it's hard to imagine a better match. —John Joseph Adams

Publisher's Summary

In Christopher Moore's ingenious debut novel, we meet one of the most memorably mismatched pairs in the annals of literature. The good-looking one is 100-year-old ex-seminarian and "roads" scholar Travis O'Hearn. The green one is Catch, a demon with a nasty habit of eating most of the people he meets.

Behind the fake Tudor façade of Pine Cove, California, Catch sees a four-star buffet. Travis, on the other hand, thinks he sees a way of ridding himself of his toothy traveling companion. The winos, neo-pagans, and deadbeat Lotharios of Pine Cove, meanwhile, have other ideas. And none of them is quite prepared when all hell breaks loose.

©1992 Christopher Moore; (P)2009 HarperCollins Publishers

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

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  •  
    january huntersville, NC, United States 06-24-13
    january huntersville, NC, United States 06-24-13 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "My least favorite CM book"

    I have enjoyed all of Christopher Moore's books, except for this one. It felt clumsy and heavy handed. Some of the characters were interesting, but none were well developed. The story became muddle and difficult to understand.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    james midlothian, TX, United States 05-14-12
    james midlothian, TX, United States 05-14-12 Member Since 2012

    I listen to a lot of audio books and tend to like books that are dark in content and humor.

    ratings
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    6
    6
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    "Not The Worst"
    Would you try another book from Christopher Moore and/or Oliver Wyman?

    YES! I've loved many of Christopher Moores books. I liked this book....but didn't love it.


    How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?

    I am not a writer. I'm a reader.


    Did Oliver Wyman do a good job differentiating all the characters? How?

    Yes


    If this book were a movie would you go see it?

    Yes


    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    M. O'Malley maryland 05-10-12
    M. O'Malley maryland 05-10-12 Member Since 2011

    O'Malley

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    7
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    "Death by a Casey Kasem impersonator"

    So, I thought I would try a new author. The story was good, not great, but enjoyable. The narration was horrible! The guy sounded like Casey Kasem, and it got old real fast. The story made me keep listening but I will never by a book with this narrator again.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sheryl Roe 04-13-12
    Sheryl Roe 04-13-12 Member Since 2012
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    19
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    "Loved it!!"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Practical Demonkeeping to be better than the print version?

    Yes


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Nailsworth the spider


    Which scene was your favorite?

    When Travis is talking about trying to get rid of Catch


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    When Rachel and Efrem are reunited


    Any additional comments?

    Mr Wyman clearly catches the essence of Mr Moore's characters exactly

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    William SAN FRANCISCO, CA, United States 09-20-11
    William SAN FRANCISCO, CA, United States 09-20-11 Member Since 2007

    Author, rabid Audible listener.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A new fan of Christopher Moore"

    I am a big fan of a book like this. It does not take itself too seriously, has some interesting bits of Science Fiction or Fantasy and has some laugh-out-loud moments.

    Practical Demonkeeping is the story of a guy that looks in his 20's but is much older than that. This is because he has to keep a demon named Catch. Catch is one of the funnier characters in this book as he loves to act out funny scenes from movies while he causes great harm to his victims.

    We follow these two characters for awhile until they roll into a town where a coven of really stupid vegan witches, an 80-something barmaid and a cast of other characters find their worlds turned upside down. This is the story of how Catch came to be, the people that want him gone and the alterior motives the characters attempt to make a reality.

    This would likely have been a 4-star book for me but I brought it down to 3 primarily because I think the ending was not where it needed to be. That said, I plan on adding Moore to my list of regular authors.

    -Bill

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ellen Chesterton, IN, United States 04-15-10
    Ellen Chesterton, IN, United States 04-15-10 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Grotty"

    I found the first five minutes of this so grotty I couldn't go further. I loved A Dirty Job, but this is about college boys. I don't think it would be enjoyable unless you were one.

    0 of 7 people found this review helpful
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