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Aloha from Hell  By  cover art

Aloha from Hell

By: Richard Kadrey
Narrated by: MacLeod Andrews
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Publisher's Summary

In Sandman Slim Stark came back from hell for revenge. In Kill the Dead he tackled both a zombie plague and being Lucifer’s bodyguard.

Once again all is not right in L.A. Lucifer is back in Heaven, God is on vacation, and an insane killer mounts a war against both Heaven and Hell. Stark’s got to head back down to his old stomping grounds in Hell to rescue his long lost love, stop an insane serial killer, prevent both Good and Evil from completely destroying each other, and stop the demonic Kissi from ruining the party for everyone. Even for Sandman Slim, that’s a tall order. And it’s only the beginning.

©2011 Richard Kadrey (P)2011 Brilliance Audio, Inc.

Critic Reviews

“Don’t compare Kadrey’s prose with Stephenie Meyer’s, or even Joss Whedon’s Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Those works are mere fluffy soap operas next to Kadrey’s writing.” ( Seattle Post-Intelligencer)

What listeners say about Aloha from Hell

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Book 1, great, Book 2, Good, Book 3, Meh

I loved book one. I thought book 2 was pretty good, but not as good as one. Book 3 seems tired. The book is stripped down to one liners. I loved the one liners in book one, along with the story. Now in book three it is like going to watch a comedian do old jokes . There were still some LOL moments, but even a stopped clock is right twice a day.

Narrator is the best

15 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

What a great character --

Stark isn't a nice guy. He isn't polite, he isn't considerate, he doesn't play by the rules. He is continually pissed off, he goes through a LOT of destroyed clothing, he hates almost everyone, and he loves to steal cars.

What's not to love?

The Sandman Slim books aren't perfect, but author Richard Kadrey has managed to create a great character in James Stark. Stark repeatedly refers to himself as a monster, and he is an efficient killing machine -- yet he is also intensely loyal to folks like his murdered lover and the few living people he trusts, and somehow he ends up saving the general populace (and the world) from various true monsters whether he really wants to or not. Kadrey can write surprisingly poetic prose -- a rough hewn sort of poetry, but still effective -- and that in combination with Stark's obnoxious attitude and frequently outrageous violence make for an engaging, humorous, and sometimes breath-taking good time.

Now, these books are not perfect. A lot of the fantasy elements are pretty off the wall to start with, and sometimes Kadrey really strains my ability to suspend disbelief. In particular in this book, at the climax he did something with the angel half of Stark that really had me waving the BS penalty flag (I won't spoil it here). Even so, the way he set up the climax and its aftermath promises to provide a lot of interesting conflict for the next book, so some good reading may come of it. And even given that this sort of believability problem does occur occasionally throughout the Sandman Slim books, they are still a lot of fun to read.

As to the narrator -- I was not all that fond of MacLeod Andrews when I listened to the first Sandman Slim book, but he has grown on me as the series progressed (and, probably, as he got more used to the role). In Aloha From Hell I think he does a fine job of voicing both the rough-edged Stark and most of the secondary characters. Occasionally some of the side characters sound too much alike, but that's a minor complaint.

9 people found this helpful

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Book 3 in the Sandman series The best yet

Each book in this series just got better and better. Always action packed and many twists and turns. Richard Kadrey knows how to spin a story and keep his reader entertained from the very start. MacLeod Andrews is the perfect narrator for this series. His voices and attitude were perfect. There were moments in this series that were really funny, if it weren't so brutal. This is a true trilogy If you like urban fantasy this is for you. True cutting edge. I hope Richard Kadrey will be writing more novels.

5 people found this helpful

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More Sandman Slim goodness.

If you could sum up Aloha from Hell in three words, what would they be?

Funny, action, attitude.

What did you like best about this story?

The plot and characters are interesting and well considered. This series is unique and you won't find anything else quite like it.

Which character – as performed by MacLeod Andrews – was your favorite?

Casabian. He is a blast and steals almost every scene he is in.

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

Yes.

Any additional comments?

This is a great book. Go ahead.. You won't be disappointed.

4 people found this helpful

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meh...

I loved the first two books in this series, however this one dosent measure up. Characters are two dimensional and what was sharp cynical wit in the first two books, comes off as belligerent ranting in this book.

The narration and performance is very good making this disappointment more tolerable.

4 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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trapped in a genre

unfortunately, not everyone who strings together magic and PI is able to hold a candle to Harry Dresden. Please correct me if I am injustly prejudiced, in as far as I started on "Aloha from Hell", which is the third(?) of the series, and maybe I just lack the immersion that the first story captures you in. But really, I find it quite tedious. The narrator does his best, and he is very good. But for the rest, well, let me say, it seems to be something for the initiated only. If you like that kind of genre, as I do, you're far better off with Simon R.Green`s "Nightside", or you might like to check out Benjamin Jacka (don`t know if he`s on audibe yet). Have fun!

3 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Fun and darkish

What did you love best about Aloha from Hell?

Irrevent attitudes

Who was your favorite character and why?

Sandman Slim, very funny

Which character – as performed by MacLeod Andrews – was your favorite?

Sandman Slim

If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

Gone to hell for cigarettes

Any additional comments?

Very enjoyable, save for a favorite hike or car ride.

3 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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Aloha from a rushed deadline

Oh, woe unto us who suffer through jumped sharks and nuclear fridges...

All the careful setup and delicately stacked cards that Richard Kadrey has placed went to hell with Sandman Slim in this last installment. Contradictions (I thought the Fallen were disarmed when the were cast down?), poor direction and editing errors make this almost as much of a disaster as the lazy depiction of Hell itself.

I wish I could get my Credit back...but I don't think there's a "Sucker" option in the Reason pulldown.

At least the narrator makes this all worth while.
That and one of the funniest one-liners I've heard in some long while.

3 people found this helpful

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LOVE IT!

I was trying to come up with some clever headline for my review, but the overall picture is that I just love this series!
As in the two previous books, the writing is so good with all the wonderful ruminations of the lead character, done in first person perspective. I loved his inner turmoil, his wrestling with his good/bad self, his take on the world, people, monsters, the devil and god. And the story still moved along at a fast pace and I never lost interest in this extraordinary character.
I cannot say enough about MacLeod Andrew's performance. His narration makes the character absolutely come alive. I wonder if reading it would have the same impact, but I think the experience would be quite different. His smokey, growling voice conjures up vivid images and that perfect sarcastic humor just swept me away.
I would love this series to be made into a movie. It is so visual and such rich material, it would make a terrific film.
And if only MacLeod Andrews looks anything like his voice, he could play Sandman Slim!

2 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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More of the Same

As an individual episode, this book is just OK. Sandman Slim spends another novel being a tough guy, treating his friends like garbage, referencing movies, beating up monsters and cracking one-liners. That leitmotiv remains strong. Unfortunately, there is no deepening of the narrative or development of the characters. Throughout the previous book I'd thought it was going somewhere. Jim was learning about his dual nature and hinting at a growing maturity in solving his complex problems. Kadrey appears to have scrapped that sort of character development. It makes this book feel like empty calories. It has some good fight scenes and it has a well described Los Angeles qua Hell setting that will probably appeal to people from that area, but the characters are just meh.

I understand the whole "root for the bad guy," anti-hero protagonist narrative. These novels are missing two important elements of this. The anti-hero is usually rebelling against a system or a prevailing authority of some sort. For that protagonist to be an anti-hero instead of merely a villain, that system has to be corrupt somehow justifying his or her antithesis. In this series, there is no such system or authority. There are lots of powerful individuals, but there is really no "man" to stick it to. Also the anti-hero has to have some redeeming quality for the audience to admire. Jim is mean, dishonorable, selfish, sociopathic and not particularly smart. He has a lot of power, but he uses it to harm innocents for his own convenience and rebukes those that show him kindness all while failing to grow up.

He's a thug. There is little to redeem him. I am back to rooting for him to lose. I think this will be the last book of this series for me unless I get really bored.

2 people found this helpful