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Asylum

The Afterlife Investigations, Book 1
Narrated by: Joe Hempel
Length: 6 hrs and 42 mins
4 out of 5 stars (756 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Winner of the 2018 Audiobook Reviewer Award for best horror!

What lurks within Chaythe Asylum? 

College professor Stephen Barlow needs cash. Badly. When a student asks him to head a new campus organization that centers around paranormal research, he puts his skepticism aside, and signs on in the hopes of scoring a fat bonus. 

Enter Chaythe Asylum - a long-shuttered and controversial institution where patients were allegedly subjected to unethical experiments. Stephen deems the old building, closed in 1989 after a series of grisly murders, as good a place as any to explore the possibility of the supernatural, and arranges to take a tour with his students.

But it turns out that the asylum is not as abandoned as it seems. There is something sinister in the building. It has watched and waited for nearly three decades, and when Stephen and his students enter, they find themselves at the center of a nightmare 28 years in the making. 

Asylum is the first novel in the Afterlife Investigations Trilogy. 

The Afterlife Investigations: 

  • Asylum 
  • Forest
  • The Occupant 
©2017 Ambrose Ibsen (P)2017 Ambrose Ibsen

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Asylum

Any additional comments?

Very interesting. This is a very fast paced good old fashion ghost story. I am going to download the next audiobook in this series when it is available.

20 of 21 people found this review helpful

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Great book for a night drive.

Great book. Built up fast and ended abruptly, but now I understand why. Can't wait to listen to the sequels.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

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  • Jason
  • Sacramento, CA
  • 08-26-17

Excellent ghost story. Very spooky

I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review."

Ambrose Ibsen has managed to do something that no author has done in a long time, scare me. The darkness and cavernous space of the Asylum Is very creepy and conducive to let you imagination run wild.
Well crafted story and I definitely look forward to the next one.
The narrator, Joe Hempel, did an excellent job as well. He had unique voices for each character and helped the listener to embrace the story and put them selves right into it.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

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Haunting!

This is my first book I've come across by Ambrose Ibsen. I loved it! Very creepy! A pair of college students and a professor start a paranormal research organization at their school. The professor doesn't believe in that nonsense but he could use the extra cash. The first call they get leads them to an abandoned asylum only to find it wasn't abandoned. There was something waiting there. It had been patiently waiting for 28 years planning for this night.

Excellent narration by Joe Hempel! He always does a great job and knows how to properly set the mood for the story he is telling.

I will be adding Ambrose Ibsen to my list of authors I'd love to read/listen to more of. I will definitely be check out the rest of this series when it is available!

14 of 15 people found this review helpful

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A ghost story

This is a good story. Nothing new. A cute summer read or listen. The audible recording is well done.

10 of 11 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Ghost story worth its salt!

I've said it before and I will say it again Ambrose Ibsen is the master of the ghost story. I have read and listened to numerous stories and he delivers shivers and he-be-jee-be's on every one. I live in Florida and made the mistake of listening to this tonight during hurricane Irma with no power, raging storm and lots and lots of strange noises. I so cannot sleep at this point. Joe Hempel delivers an impeccable narration lending the story the edge it deserves and creating that creepy crawly feeling the author intends you to have. Can't wait for the next one!!I was voluntarily provided this free review copy audiobook by the author, narrator, or publisher.

10 of 11 people found this review helpful

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Great start to what looks to be a brilliant series!

I’ll be honest... I’m a total chicken when it comes to ghosts and possessions. But on the recommendation of a good friend I was willing to check this story out.

I’m so glad I did! The material was handled in such a way that all of the spooky elements were there, and you felt a real danger for the characters, but I’m not going to be up with nightmares for the next 3 weeks. I was intrigued, and wanted to know who and how the person was making phone calls, and then as “the plot thickened” (as they say) and I found out the who and hinted at how, I had more questions and wanted to know more about what was happening.

Great pacing, and well timed reveals, meant that I wasn’t drudging through hours of questions with a sudden and abrupt revelatory ending; neither were all the answers dumped into my lap with so much for shadowing that I had it all figured out, and was suck waiting for the characters to catch up (I hate that).

I was given information and revelations at a delectable rate - allowed to enjoy each morsel before moving on to the next with the sumptuous speed of a fine dining, 7 course meal.

Joe Hempel did a brilliant job of conveying the MCs skeptical reluctance - his irritation with being dragged into something that seemed “a total waste of time”, but he - believably - started to wonder what the hell was happening as the inexplainable continued around him.

Joe’s cadence and measured pace kept time with the tone of the story with the perfect precision of a metronome! He neither rushed nor dragged the plot along with his narration.

I believe a large part of my ability to make it through this book was due to ‘having Joe with me’ throughout the winding plot, it’s strangely comforting to feel a trust in the voice that at points is scaring you...

I have to thank them both for opening the door to this genre for me so that I can tentatively step in and experience something I never would have been willing to before now!

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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Another great Ibsen/Hempel story

What made the experience of listening to Asylum the most enjoyable?

Joe Hempel. He really does a fantastic job narrating all of his stories. He definitely adds to the tension of the plot and truly perfected his craft.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Elizabeth, she was the only character who actually has a mission. Stephen is only doing this for money as he is broke and Jake is only doing it because I assume he loves his girlfriend. Why the story centers around Stephen, he was my least favorite character. I don't mean that as a bad thing, I just personally didn't like him and wouldn't want to be his friend.

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

Absolutely and as always he does not disappoint.

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

No extreme reactions but it definitely made me want to listen to the next story. I am happy to see that there is going to be more to the story than just a simple haunted asylum.

Any additional comments?

I was voluntarily provided this free review copy audiobook by the author, narrator, or publisher.

9 of 10 people found this review helpful

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Creepy!

I've read a lot by this author and he never fails to deliver a creepy and thrilling story, and this one is no different.

Stephen Barlow is a professor and is hoping to become full time, but at the moment he needs money! When a student of his comes to him after class and asks him to head a new organisation that she is creating, he is hesitant because it's to do with the paranormal. But once she tells him that just by being head of it, he is entitled to 1000$, he jumps at the chance. He finds out about a place called Chaythe Asylum and arranges a tour of it with his students. Little does he know that the Asylum isn't as abandoned as he thinks!

I really liked Stephen. He is a no nonsense professor who puts aside his skepticism to help his students (well the money helps too ;)). He is used to facts but even he can tell that the Asylum isn't a friendly place. He doesn't want to go in but can't let his students go without him. He was well written and developed and I look forward to more from him.

The plot was fast paced and creepy. An Asylum is an incredibly creepy place anyway, but add in a supernatural element and you have a home run. I know I wouldn't willingly walk into an abandoned Asylum, but I do love reading about them! The ending left me wanting more!! I can't wait to find out what happens next.

In all, an incredibly creepy read. I am so looking forward to book 2!!!

Joe Hempel reads these kind of books brilliantly. He knows how to bring the creepiness alive and how to keep us on the edge of our seats!! He is a narrator that is firmly on my favourite list.

I was voluntarily provided this audiobook for free from the author, narrator, or publisher. This in no way affected nor influenced my thoughts.

16 of 19 people found this review helpful

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Wow! A great nail-biter!

I loved this ghost story! And Joe Hempel’s performance was great!
Thanks,
Kathleen Holeman -musician/voice-over

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Abi
  • 12-16-18

Okay for a quick scare

I was dissappointed It took far too long to get going for me and by the time it did you knew it was going to be dragged out into other books. It was an okay story but I wont be following onto the next book

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • J Smith
  • 09-11-19

‘Do you hear them?’

Really enjoyed this mystery horror. Really well written and paced and pretty bloody creepy!!
Joe does a great job telling the story with great pacing and character differentiation!
Straight into book 2 for me!
This is my honest opinion of a free review copy.

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  • Selina ryles
  • 07-10-19

A creepy atmospheric and fast paced pageturner

Asylums have always been the abandoned buildings that are full of intrigue. Many years ago I was able to enter an asylum to photograph the disrepair and this is why after reading the brief I knew this book would be a great suit for me . It is the first time I have heard of the author and was eager to read this first book in the series. It didnt fail to deliver in building up the atmosphere and whilst it is quite slow at the start...it is much needed to draw the reader in. I loved the buildup and from this point it became quite apparant to me that it is definitely a page turner and I would be listening to it in one or two sittings. It is creepy and I was at the edge of my seat wanting to find out what would happen next . It is a strong start to what I feel will be an impressive collection . I was given this book by the author/narrator in return for an honest and unbiased review

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  • terry
  • 07-08-19

Truly enjoyable

Not my usual genre, however I was hooked from the get go. It was a bit short, but there are 3 book to the series. I’m looking forward to the next book.
The narrator sounds great and he makes it easy to distinguish between different characters. An all round good read, highly recommendable.
Terry.

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  • Rhiannon
  • 06-15-19

Really enjoyed

The book was hard to stop listening to and had twists and turns throughout. The writer really set the scene for each place and definitely left you feeling uneasy as if you were there yourself. really enjoyed the narrator as he gave different voices for each character and ensured his reading gave the intended effects on the listener.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Chris Gunn
  • 12-10-17

Asylum

Not at all what I was expecting. But I was hooked.excellent believable story telling. Can't wait to start second book.

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  • jordan
  • 12-01-19

Great listen, shame it’s so short

Ambrose Ibsen does a great job at building the intrigue and creating a captivating story. It just doesn’t go for long enough - it was over before it started! Definitely a worth while listen if you like spooky and scary.