• Disappearance at Devil's Rock

  • A Novel
  • By: Paul Tremblay
  • Narrated by: Erin Bennett
  • Length: 12 hrs and 45 mins
  • 3.9 out of 5 stars (945 ratings)

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Disappearance at Devil's Rock

By: Paul Tremblay
Narrated by: Erin Bennett
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Publisher's Summary

A family is shaken to its core after the mysterious disappearance of a teenage boy in this eerie tale, a blend of literary fiction, psychological suspense, and supernatural horror from the author of A Head Full of Ghosts.

"A Head Full of Ghosts scared the living hell out of me, and I'm pretty hard to scare," raved Stephen King about Paul Tremblay's previous novel. Now Tremblay returns with another disturbing tale sure to unsettle listeners.

Late one summer night, Elizabeth Sanderson receives the devastating news that every mother fears: Her 13-year-old son, Tommy, has vanished without a trace in the woods of a local park.

The search isn't yielding any answers, and Elizabeth and her young daughter, Kate, struggle to comprehend Tommy's disappearance. They feel helpless and alone, and their sorrow is compounded by anger and frustration: The local and state police have uncovered no leads. Josh and Luis, the friends who were the last to see Tommy before he vanished, may not be telling the whole truth about that night in Borderland State Park, when they were supposedly hanging out at a landmark the local teens have renamed Devil's Rock.

Living in an all-too-real nightmare, riddled with worry, pain, and guilt, Elizabeth is wholly unprepared for the strange series of events that follow. She believes a ghostly shadow of Tommy materializes in her bedroom while Kate and other local residents claim to see a shadow peering through their windows in the dead of night. Then, random pages torn from Tommy's journal begin to mysteriously appear - entries that reveal an introverted teenager obsessed with the phantasmagoric; the loss of his father, killed in a drunk-driving accident a decade earlier; a folktale involving the devil and the woods of Borderland; and a horrific incident that Tommy believed connects them.

As the search grows more desperate, and the implications of what happened become more haunting and sinister, no one is prepared for the shocking truth about that night and Tommy's disappearance at Devil's Rock.

©2016 Paul Tremblay (P)2016 HarperCollins Publishers

What listeners say about Disappearance at Devil's Rock

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Creepy, eerie, and dark.

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

I loved this story. I read so many reviews expecting this to be the next "Head Full of Ghosts" and how disappointed they were that it was not. It was it's own story and held it's own. A great, suspenseful story from beginning to end with some key horror elements for optimal enjoyment. It was great.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Disappearance at Devil's Rock?

There was an element of supernatural which was left in a bit of a mist, it added to the mystery and discomfort level of the story. I like a story that makes me feel uncomfortable. I seek out stories like this one!

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

Wonderful performance by the narrator.

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

YES. It was so good. I tried so hard to listen to it all day and evening but fell asleep and lost my place!

Any additional comments?

Awesome story. Great elements of horror, supernatural, suspense, and surprise. I loved it.

12 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars

Great book, but not what I thought it'd be...

I loved this book, but I thought it was going to be a supernatural thriller. Not so much.

6 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Excellent ambiguous thriller

I thoroughly enjoyed Tremblays Headful of Ghosts. This book strikes some of the same chords: well drawn characters that never descend into cliche, events that touch on but never quite land in the supernatural, and some truly chilling passages. Tremblay is not King or Koontz--he's merciless in taking his characters into unpleasant places and showing the logical consequences of their being there. He also doesn't feel the need to "Scooby Doo" his stories--sometimes there is no explanation for what's happening in the world! Really creepy.

6 people found this helpful

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VERY good book. Creepy & intriguing.

I loved this book. It definitely catches your interest right off the bat, and the mystery of what actually happened to Tommy keeps you so intrigued till the end. I have not read Head Full of Ghosts but immediately purchased it after finishing this story.

5 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Subtle Creepiness

After reading A Head Full Of Ghosts I wanted some more, so I picked this one. Not at all disappointed either. It's not in your face scary, but it does linger in your head. Subtle creepiness

5 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Boring, then confusing

The first three quarters of the book were exceptionally boring. I understand that the more supernatural elements of the story were supposed to be vague (is it real, or are they crazy?) but the overall effect was confusion. I guess I don't feel like I wasted my money, I didn't hate it, but I don't recommend this story.

4 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Long story, but overall interesting

There are parts of this story which seem excruciatingly tedious and drawn out. I almost stopped listening to it and gave up. But it had just enough of a hold on me that I had to keep listening and find out what happened. Overall, I liked it. Just enough mystery, dread, character development, folklore, and ties to the supernatural to keep you guessing and intrigued.

As a parent, I found it deeply troubling and sad. My heart goes out to anyone who has lost a child. That would be anyone's worst nightmare. I think the author did a good job of encompassing all the range of emotions a mother would go through and how she had to pull herself together for her daughter, and it was kinda sweet and touching to witness the interactions between the grandmother, mom, and daughter.

3 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Strong Suspense

the narration is very strong and the story is one that will keep you listening and trying to figure out what's going on. I'd recommend this for fans of psychological suspense.

3 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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Like swimming in jell-o, tolerable at 1.45x speed

I listened to HEAD FULL OF GHOSTS over a year ago, and recently a second time, for book club. I loved it, and found the twists and the realistic portrayals of unbalanced, hyper-eager people, especially suburban American girls, to be spot on. There's a lot of social parody in the book, and the writing leaves nothing to be desired. It helps if you're a pop horror fan, and I am.

After my second reading of HFoG, I found I'd slipped another Paul Tremblay book into my library last year, and forgotten about it, so I was glad to cue up Disappearance at Devil's Rock and ---ooohhhhhhmmmyyyyyyggggooooooddddddthisisSOOOSLOOOW. The story is redundant and BORING. Very, very little happens, and when you THINK it does, well, take my word for it, it didn't.

After the first 4 hours, when I realized I could knit an entire row between sentences, I cranked the player up to 1.75x speed. This is something I NEVER do with fiction, but it made the story move along. I wound up reducing that to 1.25x for a long drive, and it sounded completely NORMAL at that velocity! But nudged it to 1.45x for the interminable denouement.

A young teen vanishes into the woods while sneaking around with his friends. Everybody in this book is TERRIBLE at what they do. Bad mom, horrible friends, bad sons, rotten neighbors, lousy cops - you can root for the little sister, maybe, but she's not anyone we're going to want our kids to play with.

It's a very frustrating type of "mystery", because rather than the twists and turns featured in the best of the genre, nothing the reader is told turns out to be true. That's a really sh*tty trope, and makes for a really sh*tty book.

2 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Masterful writing style

Like others have pointed out, this story is strikingly similar to one of my favorite films, Lake Mungo. But that ended up not mattering one bit. I was still victim to chills, stomach drops, and a profound unnerved-ness throughout. This coming from a person not easily affected by horror. Something about Tremblay's narration style and weaving of themes is vividly beautiful, but also absolutely gets under my skin. After reading this novel and Head Full of Ghosts, I think he may have just sealed his place as my favorite horror author.

2 people found this helpful