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Publisher's Summary

Here it is - The 3 H's Trilogy, now available in a complete collection that is a weird mix of cosmic horror, weird fiction, comedic bizarro, and dark romance!

The 3 H's Trilogy begins with the story of a woman who falls in love with a decapitated head. From there, the story only gets weirder and darker, and is unlike any other tale ever written. Edited by Jeff O'Brien, who also provided an introduction for this collection. The amazing cover art and interior art was done by the talented artists, Sullivan Suad and Zilson Costa!

©2017 Brian Barr (P)2018 Brian Barr

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

A hidden jem

Since there are a few summaries of each of the three stories I will just tell you my thoughts on them. These are definitely weird stories. Each one is longer than the previous and I would definitely say go with the trilogy as I wouldn’t really want to listen to just one of them since you wouldn’t get the full picture.
The first one starts out relatively benign and funny and they just get darker and weirder as they stories move along. Didn’t mean to steal that from the description but there it is. I feel like the author matures throughout the process of writing each story and that is clear in both the length and the content.
I like horror and I like weird, but I can easily see some people not liking these stories. You really have to pay attention to them or they will just float on by leaving you with more questions than answers. For the horror fan who used to pick out that lonely odd VHS tape in the horror section at the movie store and fell in love with something unique and not so mainstream this is for you.
Great job by Rick Gregory. His different voices are perfect for the characters and fit perfectly for the type of story.
I was voluntarily provided this free review copy audiobook by the author, narrator, or publisher.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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

From lighthearted to darkhearted

This is a seriously messed up series of stories that have been strung together like sticks of dynamite under a train tressel. You know it is exciting at first, but it isn't going to end well for the passengers of the train. You are the passenger. So be warned, what starts off as an innocent funny story grows darker the deeper you go. There is a connection to each story, so pay attention!

How funny that I can seriously say that the severed head story is the light one. Story two is filled with blood and gore, and three takes on a cloak of sinister darkness that just will not wash off. I must say, that I liked the way the story progressed, as if you were entering a dungeon stairway. At first the way is clear and well lit, but the deeper you go more cobwebs appear, and your torch starts to sputter. Eventually, you are left stumbling downward in the dark never knowing when you'll hit bottom.

That is a ride. I have enjoyed several Barr stories, and really thought Metal Magic was a fun but dark trip. The Three H's has proven to me that Barr's mind is slightly out of sync with the rest of us, and that he writes on a lovecraftian level few can touch and come away unscathed. I appreciate his work more and more.

Gregory is an excellent pairing with Barr. He lives the characters, giving each a solid distinct voice, even the female ones, and adds to the air of suspense with a pause at just the right time, of an infection that changes the meaning of what he is saying. He is masterful at his craft, and you can tell that he is enjoying what he is reading. Even though I did receive a promo code for this review it in no way influenced my considerations of the material, and in fact, inspired me to be more honest. In fact, getting a code generally makes me harsher as a reviewer as I am more often concerned what someone like Me will decide based on my review.

If this review helped, please press the YES below. Thank you immensely!!!

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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What a wild imagination!

The Head:
Crazy story! Part urban legend, part romance, and part horror story. Highly entertaining, and worth every cent. I went into this story expecting a gruesome tale, and wasn't disappointed, but I didn't expect the strange and unusual twists the plot took. The narrator did a great job without detracting from the story, which is great, because it's the first time I've heard from him,but it hopefully won't be the last.

The House:
The House is somewhat more creepy than The Head, delving further into the madness of the house and its inhabitants. Slightly gory, and packed with plot, this audiobook was very enjoyable. The narrator is consistent, and did a great job coming up with voices for all the crazy characters.

The Hell:
Wonderfully gory and beautifully evil... that's how I'd describe this book. I'm impressed with the narrator's ability to tell the story without gagging! As the conclusion to a trilogy, The Hell ended it all in a surprising turn of events. I'd totally recommend to fans of extreme horror.

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
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    5 out of 5 stars

Talking heads? Paranormal investigators? Ghosts!

This contains a review for each story in this trilogy.

I received a free copy of this book.

The Head

What would you do if you found a lone human head in the yard? You’d probably do something practical, like dial 911 or bury it. What if that head started talking to you and begged not to be left alone? Yep. That’s the situation our heroine Elizabeth finds herself in.

This tale is equal parts horror, suspension, love story, and humor. First, it’s a decapitated head named Bill complaining about a headache. Ha! Poor Bill doesn’t have many memories but he does enjoy Elizabeth’s company. As time goes by, Elizabeth comes to care for Bill as well despite Bill’s off-putting odor.

Things move along as Bill insists they go in search of his body. More memories come back and Elizabeth is drawn into a twisted paranormal situation. Let’s just say that Bill comes from a messed up family.

It was fun and I wasn’t expecting so much humor nor the love story. Also, on a personal note, my husband’s name is Bill and I couldn’t help but picture his head as The Head in this tale. That just added to the enjoyment of this story, not that I want to decapitate the man. Just if he ever ends up in that situation, I’d like to think I would love him all the same. For such a short story, it was full of entertaining surprises.

The Narration: Rick Gregory did a great job as Bill the detached head. He fluctuated between serious and caring, pleading and decisive, with ease. His character voices were distinct though I felt that Elizabeth could sound a bit more feminine without sounding slightly cartoony.

The House

Retired cult buster Daniel Paine often chats with his long dead wife, a woman who he couldn’t save from a cult. Now the ghost of Alexis Bailey haunts him, begging for his help so that she can truly be free of the cult her family built. Daniel may be retired but he’s not useless!

It took me a little bit to connect The House with The Head but I was probably a bit slow due to allergy medication. Yep. I’ll go with that. So Bill, the detached head from The Head, is Alexis’s brother. The house at the ending of Book 1, The Head, is the same house referred to in this book, being the Bailey Cult family home.

What I loved about this book was that I often wasn’t sure what was Daniel’s reality and what was his hallucinations or products of his schizophrenia. It gave a very supernatural aura to the tale. Also, this story is quite a bit more serious than Book 1. There’s not much humor and no real love story unless you count Daniel talking to his dead wife off and on throughout the story.

There’s little glints of the true messy horror that is contained in the Bailey cult house for much of the book, adding to the suspense. Of course, as we near the end of the tale, those glints turn into solid imagery complete with body parts and blood.

The Bailey cult was interesting in that they do ancestor worship but in a very unhealthy way. I loved that Daniel used to be an excellent cult buster, world renowned. I think this would be a very rewarding, if tiring, job. I think a whole series could be written about Daniel’s career. (Looks hopefully off to the author).

In the end, things don’t go as Daniel thought they would. The House seems to have a spirit all it’s own and that is a malevolent one. I enjoyed Book 1 quite a bit but I enjoy Book 2 a little more. The serious tone coupled with Daniel’s character really reeled me into this tale.

The Narration: Rick Gregory is doing this series justice! I really enjoyed his narration. His female voice for Alexis was well done. Daniel has quite the ups and downs emotionally in this story and Gregory did a good job capturing those.

The Hell

This final installment is quite a bit more serious! Book 1 had some humor and even a touch of romance to it. Book 2 showed us how twisted that romance was but still had some quips and sarcasm here and there. This book is quite a bit darker. We take a walk through the Bailey family tree as we meet Gregory, the grandfather, and he reigns down a type of hell on the occupants of the house. Never fear though! The ladies have been coming up with an escape plan…. of sorts.

So eventually we get to meet the paranormal investigators Susie and Mac. They’ve been doing this for some time and both are sensitive to the paranormal. Susie receives a desperate plea from a client to take out the Bailey house. Alas, arson is not in Susie’s skill set and pretty much goes against her morals.

But then we meet Mac’s new friend. That’s a game changer for Susie! This story was full of unexpected twists and I was delighted with each one. The ending winds up and up to a fever pitch as evil throws punches at good and good-ish kicks back. Not everyone gets what they want by the end (and that’s great for us rooting for Susie and booing Gregory) but things end on a rather positive note. I wasn’t expecting that but it was nonetheless quite suitable for this trilogy. 5/5 stars.

The Narration: Rick Gregory has done a good job narrating this series but I found this book narration could have used just a little polishing. There’s a few mispronounced words and sometimes the pacing is just a little off. Over all though, it’s a good performance. I can tell that Gregory is fully engaged in the story (perhaps because the Big Baddie is named Gregory?). He had distinct voices for all the characters and his female voices were feminine. 4/5 stars.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Story
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Weird and disturbing

THE HEAD
While working on her deceased mother’s garden, Elizabeth finds a man’s severed head. When she was about to call 911 ‘the Head’ starts talking to her and convinces her to not call the cops and take him inside. Elizabeth falls in love with ‘the Head’, and she sets her mind to find his body.

This is short story, just over forty five minutes long. It is a weird one, with a disturbing and creepy element of surprise. I found the premises quite original, and the execution was great, impregnating the tale of weirdness from every perspective. With such a strange story you expect something horrific to happen at some point, but this time it was much more than I expected. The images that this story evoked were crude, horrific and out of a nightmare.

While I think the premises and the final effect were greatly done, I am not completely convinced about the stuff in between. Elizabeth falls inexplicably in love with ‘the Head’. True that Bill is charming with uncanny blue eyes, but he is just a severed head. I wonder about Elizabeth’s background to be able to fall in love with a severed head. I think it would have been interesting to explore this too, as I am sure there is a reason for every dysfunctional relationship, and Elizabeth’s story would have added another dimension to the book.

I was impressed with this book, able to provoke strong reactions and with an original story. I think any horror fan would enjoy it, especially if they are into weird elements.

THE HOUSE
Alex, Bill’s sister seeks help to escape her family’s cult, ands find David Paine, already retired due to schizophrenia and other issues. He still talks with his deceased wife, who passed away thirty years before due to a cult. Alex will try to convince Bill and get her something from her house.

I like the ‘The Head’, but I think this one is even better. I found the characters better depicted, and their actions match our expectations regarding their personalities. This book is a bit longer than the previous one, just over an hour and a half. The horror here is a bit more psychological and subtle, and in general it is a more polished piece of work. We get some explanations about the house and the family inhabiting it, and I guess we will get the whole picture with the next book.

THE HELL
This is the third and final installment of the 3 H’s by Brian Barr. We finally know the past of the House in Lexington, and the origin of the family living there. On this occasion Suzie and Mac, two ghost hunters are contacted by a client to investigate and exorcise the house. Things will not be easy for the ghost hunters.

The first book in the series was the most trivial one, the second was gruesome, and this one was terrifying. It was interesting to know the origin of the house and the family, and find an explanation for strange phenomena occurring there. I found it entertaining and I enjoyed the two ghost hunters and the dangers they met. There are numerous flashbacks in this one, and I needed to pay special attention to avoid getting lost and recognize when the action was occurring.

NARRATION
I like when the narration flows and does not interfere with the story. Rick Gregory did a very good job, accentuating the characters’ emotions and transmitting their feelings at all moments. Gregory also made clear distinctions between characters’ voices without overdoing, which is something that I appreciate. There were a couple of time when I felt a longer than usual pause between a dialog and the tag just afterwards, but this is just a question of rhythm, and it was very very subtle. The audio production was correct, but there were a couple of noticeable audio edits. It was in general an enjoyable narration.

I received a copy of this book in audio format from the narrator in exchange for an honest review.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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Great comedic horror trilogy!

With book one I was expecting a horror story. It was definitely creepy, but more comical. If you need a good laugh, this story will give you one. Very creative story by Brian Barr! Almost a romantic horror I guess.

Book two continues the comical, romantic horror. It's creepy, but it will make you laugh. This series is based on a crazy dream the author had. Wow! What a crazy dream! lol

Book three was a great end to The 3 H's trilogy. The series starts out funny and gruesome and gets less funny and more gruesome with each book. The Hell was the most gruesome, telling the history of the family and the house. The ending was an interesting twist!

I really enjoyed the narration by Rick Gregory. He is a fairly new narrator, but does an excellent job.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful