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Publisher's Summary

A chilling ghost story from the author of The Woman in Black, set in a crumbling English house...

The remoter parts of the English Fens are forlorn, lost, and damp even in the height of summer. At Iyot Lock, a large decaying house, two young cousins, Leonora and Edward, are parked for the summer with their aging spinster aunt and her cruel housekeeper. At first the unpleasantness and petty meanness appear simply spiteful, calculated to destroy Edward's equanimity. But when the spoiled Leonora is not given the birthday present of a specific dolly that she wants, affairs inexorably take a much darker turn with terrifying, life-destroying consequences for everyone.

©2012 Susan Hill (P)2012 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

What listeners say about Dolly

Average Customer Ratings
Overall
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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    196
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Story
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  • 2 Stars
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Are you afraid of dolls? No? You will be now.

If you're afraid of dolls, this book will frighten the life out of you. I'm not, but I still found it chilling and atmospheric. It's a short feature, but well worth it for the quality of writing, suspenseful timing, and of course, the originality of the story and its characters. Highly recommended.

10 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Excellent short story, excellent narrator!

I've recently discovered author Susan Hill but am familiar with ghost stories of the past few centuries. Susan Hill's horror style is tense, disturbing, and creepy and this book is a good example. This a classy, interesting piece that is worth a listen.

The story involves a young boy subject to a nasty, older female relative a few years older. Hateful and full of violent tantrums, she's fully capable of making everyone's life miserable when unsatisfied

As the story progresses it deviates from normal reality but somehow this is effective and works without losing momentum. I liked like length and it felt complete, the perfect length for for an after dinner listen or short road trip. there are no extreme language, and no extreme sexual situations. The female child is described as very pretty and there are some mild, age appropriate descriptions relevant to the story.

The story involves themes of travel to India. This could be construed by some as a racial bias but my opinion is it was written in the spirit of exotic adventure without any nuance of racial degradation. There are mentions of diseases found in third world countries and Indians were celebrated in an enjoyable and empowered sense.

The "Dolly" name should not be construed to mean this story is suitable for young readers. It may be upsetting for younger ages but junior high and older would likely enjoy it, especially the natural conflicts often found between siblings.

I noticed when considering other Susan Hill books numerous reviewers were unhappy with the slow burn pace. This style is typical of 19th writers such as MR James, Henry James, etc. I expected the slower pace and found it boiled to a unique ending. It incited interest and I will look forward to reading more of Susan Hill's books in the near future.

5 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

💤Dolly Dearest 🤏

The story wasn't to bad, I guess. It tended to be a bit confusing though and had me asking... Why? & What? a LOT!!

It was not scary at all and the voice of the little girl & then as a grown up was VERY ANNOYING!! 👎 The little girl was a snobby brat and the voice used for her made her even worse. 🤬 I wanted to push her down the stairs with her dolly. Lol😂

It tended to be very long winded😴 & the characters were a bit over developed at times, while others were not developed enough.🙄 I pushed myself to finish the book and found myself falling asleep & having to go back to listen to the parts I missed.😴😑

The narrator wasn't to bad really, but I wouldn't get another book with him as narrator myself.👎
If the book is free (like it was for me) then maybe give it a shot, but it's not worth a credit or money.🤏

4 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Great old fashioned ghost story

You won’t want to stop listening. The narration is wonderful. The story will scare you. These types of plots are rare nowadays.
Simple but intense.

3 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

it lost a star for the ending

I expect a story so detailed to have an ending that makes more sense. It doesn't have to be a happy ending, but it needs to be satisfying.

2 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

What ghost?

It was dull build-up to a lot of nothing. I kept waiting for the "ghost" part of this alleged ghost story.

2 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

interesting !

i liked the story, the narrator did a great job reading the book and was not to long.

2 people found this 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

Classic spine-tingler!

Where does Dolly rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

Middle. I like that it was short and suspenseful but I prefer longer stories.

What other book might you compare Dolly to and why?

Poe's tales of suspense. His stories are also tight and tense.

What three words best describe Cameron Stewart’s voice?

Over the top (on the female voices)

If you could take any character from Dolly out to dinner, who would it be and why?

Lenora because she is the most complex and deliciously evil.

2 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

A wonderful surprise

I’ve never heard of this story before but it was recommended to me and it was free (and 3 hours long, which is short enough to finish in one day). To my surprise, I quite enjoyed it. I felt that the strongest aspect was the characterization and I really enjoyed the ending. I would recommend simply because of its length, it’s so short that if you don’t like it, it’s not as though you’ve wasted your time. Also, I listened to it at 1.8 speed and was done in less than 2 hours and the pacing was manageable.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

snoozefest

maybe the most lackluster storytelling ever. read with no feeling, it was all I could do to get through the first chapter. I did but and read the book and it was ok, I just don't recommend this audible version.