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Beneath

Narrated by: Brandy Skelly
Length: 8 hrs and 12 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (10 ratings)
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Publisher's Summary

From USA Today best-selling author Maureen A. Miller comes this young adult adventure that will plunge you deep into the Atlantic Ocean.

It was Stella Gullaksen's final break before starting her freshman year at college. Joining her best friend Jill and Jill's family aboard the Starkissed, Stella wakes up to a violent storm that capsizes the boat over a hundred miles off the New Jersey shore.

As the waves pull her under, Stella knows that she is going to die. Instead, an unusual current drags her deep into the underwater canyons of the Atlantic Ocean. Powerless against the raging waters, she is suddenly sucked into a ventilated cave. One by one, Jill and her family also emerge in the sunken cavern. With only a faulty diving flashlight to keep oblivion at bay, Stella and her best friend's brother Colin search the cave in hope of finding a way back to the surface. What they discover, however, is that they are not alone. There are other survivors in this subterranean grotto - survivors spanning decades of maritime disasters.

Will this discovery prove salvation, or have they all been condemned to the same fate? A grim finale at the bottom of the sea? On an alliance forged by friendship and attraction, Stella and Colin battle to escape the danger that lies beneath.

©2018 Maureen A. Miller (P)2018 Maureen A. Miller

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

You never know what is Beneath

Maureen A. Miller knows how to spin a tale. Coming from a reading that loves the ocean and has always wondered about the deep beneath this book had my attention. This gripped me and didn’t let go. It certainly felt real to me. Beneath is a realistic and frightening story of being lost at sea, with a twist. They end up capsize in an underwater cavern fighting for their life on a sunken cavern they realize they are not alone, they have to learn to survive together, and try to escape. I was completely immersed in this underwater world. Beneath adds so many unexpected aspects there are surprises everywhere.

Brandy Skelly’s was perfect for Beneath. I do think the audio quality could have been a little better as if it missed a final editing some noises and sounds could have been removed to improve the overall performance.

I look forward to what comes next from author Maureen A. Miller

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Oh my gosh!!!

My worst nightmare, so scary. I absolutely loved it, the underworld is what they call it. I really like the closeness between Stella and Colin and his family. The ending part was the most intense and I could not stop listening.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Beneath

I loved this book! Stella is on a fishing trip with her friends family when the boat goes down and she ends up in un underwater cave.It's a whole new world .Very creative. Brandy Skelly was a fin narrator.I was given this book by the narrator,author or publisher free for an honest review.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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WOW! SUPERB THRILLER

Maureen Miller's writing is fantastic! She weaved a very creative world with interesting characters in a unique situation. I loved the description involving the sinking boat, and Stella's plight as the boat sinks and she goes down into the depths.

I was interested from beginning to end, and I was completely captivated by the story.
Excellent story, excellent narration, very much enjoyed it and think everyone will!
Great listen :)

I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.
Please take a moment to click the "YES" ("Helpful") button below if you found this review helpful :) Thank you!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Under the Sea

I’ve always been fascinated by the Bermuda Triangle; is the phenomenon pure fantasy or science fiction or perhaps even real? No one has the definitive answer but there is no question that a lot of boats and planes have been found on the bottom of the Atlantic and disappearances continue to happen. The premise that Ms. Miller suggests in Beneath is not all that bizarre considering the oddities of the Triangle, is it?

Now, just suppose such a thing happened to you and you found yourself in a vast undersea cave system with other people who had been “saved” over a period of many years. You’d be filled with questions as are Stella and Jill’s brother, Colin, and no one would be surprised when they act on their curiosity, going in search of answers. They find some of those answers, leading to even more, but perhaps the biggest is, are they condemned to remain here until…

Stella is a likeable character—as is Colin but he’s less vibrant—and I had no trouble believing in her personality, her attitudes and her determination to brave the unknown. I’m glad, actually, that her story isn’t over yet and that a sequel is coming.

Brandy Skelly brought Stella to life for me even though there were moments when her narration wasn’t entirely successful. Between Ms. Miller’s intriguing story and Ms. Skelly’s telling of that story, Beneath is a tale worth hearing.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Hard Days Night

I absolutely loved this book! The SunKissed capsizes off in the Atlantic Ocean, where Stella and her best friend Jill and Jill's family are thrown overboard only to get sucked down, down, down into a cavern inside of the ocean. This cavern is a sort of oasis, with air, fresh water, and food that have been sucked up into its pools. While in the cavern, they meet several other folks, who have been living in the cavern for many, many years. While exploring the caverns they are introduced to a capsule, where Stella and Jill's brother, Collin, fit to make their escape back to the top of the ocean.

There is SOOOO much more to this book, however, I do not want to ruin it for you, so do yourself a favor and read it!



This audiobook was provided by the author, narrator, or publisher at no cost in exchange for an unbiased review courtesy of AudiobookBoom

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Uniquely Beneath

This was a pretty well written story. The author did a good job with descriptions. There were some spots in the story that just didn't hold my attention very well. Overall, I did enjoy this listen. I think the whole story was a fairly unique and the narrator brought these relatable characters to life. The author also includes some interesting aspects of life that I liked and that were suprising as well as minorly creepy.

The narrator was pretty good job but there could have been a tad more differentiation between some character voices. There were also some things that needed to be edited but it was a good performance and the narrator was a good fit for this story.

I received a review copy at my request and have voluntarily left this unbiased review.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Fascinating, mystical world beneath the sea

BENEATH by Maureen Miller immediately caught my attention because of the fabulous cover. (Yeah, I’m like that.) Then I read the premise, and there was no way I was going to pass on reading this one with my ears. The book opens with a boat on the sea being battered in the midst of a vicious storm. Within minutes, the boat and all its passengers are sinking. Readers are put into the mind of main character Stella as she descends to what she thinks is her watery grave. Instead of drowning, she surfaces…beneath the ocean.

What makes BENEATH engaging is author Maureen Miller’s wonderfully descriptive passages of this world and its inhabitants. The world building is slow, and the mystique around everything is fascinating. At times, it feels like those old TV shows about the Bermuda Triangle where viewers are given information that points to both scientific and other-worldly (aliens!) explanations. (YOU be the judge.) Miller’s story leans more to scientific but it stays blurry enough to not be conclusive – which is intriguing.

A large cast of characters allows for several sub-plots to be happening, primarily between the five young (or seemingly young) adults in the story. Again, that mystique surrounds the inhabitants of Jackson Canyon (the name for the underworld village) and everyone seems just a little off – like what you see, which is odd enough, isn’t quite what you get. And there are seeeeeeecrets. The story is told primarily from Stella’s point of view, but there are a few awkward chapters that switch and are told from her friend Jill’s perspective. While that story line is high interest, the switches on audio are a bit jarring because it’s not immediately obvious who’s speaking – perhaps the print version indicates it? I would have preferred either a better balance of the two narrators or it to have stuck with just Stella. (Jill isn’t very likable.)

Normally, I am tolerant of teen-love, insta-love, and all the permutations, but in BENEATH, I have a hard time believing Stella’s thinking early in the story. I mean, she and all her friend’s family nearly drowned to death, her friend’s mom is in a coma, they are in all kinds of danger, but she’s lusting after Colin? Perhaps I am so far removed from my teenage-years that I can’t relate any more, but it doesn’t ring true for Stella’s intelligence or character. In any case, after some time, her thoughts and actions seem more natural, and the unfolding of the teen-love from there is perfect.

Readers will get immersed (see what I did there) in BENEATH and will love the somewhat neatly tied-up, but haunting, conclusion to the book. Be prepared for more than a few things that are never fully explained. I don’t mind because the result is that I have thought about this book a lot well after I finished it, and that community beneath the water feels real. I am not sure if this is the start of a series, but there certainly is potential for it. I would definitely pick up the next book.

ABOUT THE NARRATION. Narrator Brandy Skelly has the perfect voice for the protagonists in this story in this story and does a great job with pacing and nailing teen angst, surliness, and enthusiasm. However, the overall audio production needs some polishing. Skelly mispronounced several words (piqued, tumult, supposedly), and there are chapters that are very breathy and several times I heard the narrator swallow. Additionally, there are some sporadic background sounds that should have been edited out. It’s a bit like reading the last draft that needs just one more pass of the proofreading pen. As usual, I increased the listening speed to 1.25x-1.5x because I am impatient.

Thank you to Audiobookworm Productions and the author for providing me a download of this book in exchange for my honest opinion – the only kind I give.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Raven
  • 11-19-18

Very enjoyable

This YA story revolves around Stella, a young girl who goes on a fishing trip with her friend's family. During a violent storm, the boat capsizes and they are all dragged down into the depth. Surprisingly, they find themselves caught up in a water funnel which deposits them into a huge air-bubble cavern deep beneath the ocean. The novel follows the struggles they face to survive and hopefully escape. However, they are not alone, and soon discover they have more to deal with than just survival. I liked the characters in this novel. The plot moved along at a good pace. Romance is not one of my favourite genres, but there is some in this book and it is done well. (Suitable for those who prefer a "clean" read. I hadn't read any of this author's work before. As this book was enjoyable, I will certainly look out for other books by her. The narrator did an excellent job of the character voices and story. I found her to be believable in the various roles. I also thought the production was well done. A definite recommend. I was supplied with a copy of this audiobook by the author for an honest review.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • BookAddict'sReviews
  • 10-07-18

Spooky!

Miller did an excellent job of writing this suspense. It was creepy and spooky in moments and sad in others. I enjoyed reading about these people and their struggle to survive after a shipwreck and being lost at sea. The mystery beyond why there are people from other eras all in this cave is pretty bizarre. I found myself immediately interested in learning all the details. We get a good amount, but this is a series and it ends kind of ambiguously. I’m looking forward to what else comes out in the next book as I’m definitely interested in the magic that is holding our characters captive! I give the story a 4/5 stars.

Brandy did a great job as narrator! I liked her voices for each character and enjoyed the little bits of accent and emotion she put into each one. It made me easily understand who was speaking. I hope she continues working on this project with the future books! I didn’t notice anything wonky with audio clarity or editing. I give her narration a 5/5 stars.

I received this audiobook as part of my participation in a blog tour with Audiobookworm Promotions. The tour is being sponsored by Maureen A. Miller. The gifting of this audiobook did not affect my opinion of it.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Lomeraniel
  • 10-06-18

Gripping and original story

Stella used to go often with her friend Jill and Jill's family on their boat. This was a time like many others until a sudden storm capsized their boat and a strong current pulled them to the bottom of the ocean. They awoke inside a cave in the depths of the sea, a cave where no one seemed to be able to escape from.

This story had me so intrigued that I listened to it almost in one go. The unique setting and conditions the characters were in made me want to continue just to know more. The book is well written and the two main characters are well depicted. I would have liked some more character development on some secondary characters, but it was fine nonetheless. I had troubles understanding Jill's father's actions and words, but it's also true that some people may react in unpredictable ways under stress.

There are several moments of tension and many unanswered questions that had me on the edge of my seat. I think what attracted me the most from the story was the strange place they arrive in, and the secrets that its inhabitants kept from the new arrivals. I think I'm just a sucker for weird locations.

There is also some romance in this book, as in any YA story, but it didn't bother me since the plot is mainly centered on the place and the people living there.

Now, after all these good comments, why am I not giving 5 stars to this book? There were some things that bothered me a bit. One one hand: evolution! I'm not going to give any spoilers, but to anyone who has read the book, this must mean something. The other thing that bothered me was the 'easy' way out and how indolent the people living in the Underworld were. It just didn't sit very well with me, especially those who knew more.

Brandy Skelly's voice and style were the perfect match for this story. She did a great job interpreting the characters and voicing them with subtle differences. The audio production could have been better though, and it's what prevented me from getting into the story from the start. There were several background noises all throughout the book, and her breathing and swallowing were also audible. The 'sh' sounds also bothered me a bit at first, but I think I got used after a while. Checking Audible, this is the only book I see narrated by Skelly, so I'm impressed at her narration skills, and I would just advise her to polish her audio production or at least have it edited by someone with experience.

All in all, I loved this book, even though I felt there was a lot of building up and it seemed deflated when we reached the end. I also know how difficult is to finish a story that was very original and different to begin with.

I've just discovered that this is meant to be a series, so I definitely want to know what happens next! I guess I'm hooked.

I received this audiobook as part of my participation in a blog tour with Audiobookworm Promotions. The tour is being sponsored by Maureen A. Miller. The gifting of this audiobook did not affect my opinion of it.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Book Addict
  • 10-05-18

An Exciting and Gripping Tale!

Great story told in a plausible way. 
Stella goes sailing with her best friend and her family, a sail which has happened so many times over the years. Unfortunately they encounter  a strange weather condition, and they capsize and the next thing Stella knows is she comes up into a strange pool of water in a cave.
Beneath is a frightening tale of what happens to a family that is lost at sea, and instead of dying they end up in an underwater cavern. Where nothing is as it seems. They meet people from different eras and don’t seem to have aged very much.
What they discover when Colin and Stella go investigating is both frightening and encouraging. They have to try to merge into the community to stay alive.
This was such a gripping and eerie story, and everything seemed so real. A great spooky read, and I loved it. I can’t recommend this enough as everything seemed so real, I know I was there.