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Publisher's Summary

The Perry family's new house is perfect - except for the weird behavior of the neighbors, and that odd smell coming from a dark corner in the basement. Pity no one warned the family about the house. Now it's too late. Because the darkness at the bottom of the basement stairs is rising.

©2012 Bentley Little (P)2012 AudioGO

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 3.8 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    226
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    296
  • 3 Stars
    158
  • 2 Stars
    47
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    44

Performance

  • 4.0 out of 5.0
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    118
  • 2 Stars
    23
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    23

Story

  • 3.7 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
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  • 4 Stars
    240
  • 3 Stars
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  • 2 Stars
    57
  • 1 Stars
    48
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  • Jason
  • Angus, Ontario, Canada
  • 05-24-12

Very dark, Very Good!

What did you love best about The Haunted?

Almost everything, from the writing, the characters, the plot, and the narration was all great. But what I really liked was how personal this book felt. One of Little's best, that's for sure.

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

No I have not, but I will now.

Any additional comments?

This book was a lot of fun to read, despite it's bleakness. Bentley Little is, however, known for his sense of humor. Do not look for that here. This is a book that is dark, bleak, and full of despair as the Perry family loses control of their average, every day lives. <br/><br/>The story is about an innocent family haunted by their new house, but it reminded me of self-abuse spinning out of control, the unknown anger and angst of adolescence, the fear and desperation of a child stuck in a family haunted by its past and current abuses. This book is about what's not in your control, and how what's good and average can turn to bad and abnormal at any time.

18 of 19 people found this review helpful

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  • Marci
  • portland, OR, United States
  • 03-05-13

You had me until...ugh

I'm still giving this book three stars because most of the story was good. It was entertaining, I was buying the plot, it worked. Then things changed towards the ending, it's like Little's editor quit, or like someone else wrote the ending. It was bad. It yanked me out of my suspension of disbelief and made me say "really, that's the best you've got?" It wasn't that I didn't like "the end" of the book, the whole story just fell apart with about 20% left to go.

15 of 16 people found this review helpful

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Fell very short of initial expectations

What disappointed you about The Haunted?

(Spoiler alert:) The reactions of the family to these disturbing scenarios seemed extremely unrealistic. The reluctance to communicate between family members and the refusal to wake others when things went bump in the night seemed less than plausible. I get that the presence in the house drew them in... made them do things they weren't quite aware of but all were in possession of their mental faculties most of the time. The sudden bursts of rough sexual acts caught me off guard and left a sleazy aftertaste. The ultimate climax of the book just didn't seem to follow the flow of the story.<br/><br/>The almost constant repetition of certain bits of dialogue became obnoxious. "I'll kill you both..." and "take off your pants" were repeated so often I found myself rolling my eyes each time, thinking that the author must consider the reader/listener awfully inept at recalling plot points. Also... the writer's expressions could use a bit of diversity. Another expression that grew old entirely too fast was "persue/follow this line of questioning."

Has The Haunted turned you off from other books in this genre?

No. I will always be an occasional listener of horror fiction.

How did the narrator detract from the book?

During dialogue, the narrator's tone never seemed to match the mood of the context. When a character cried out in panic, anger, lust, or fear the narrator sounded bland, bored, or conveying the exact opposite emotion.

What character would you cut from The Haunted?

Rick, the owner of the print shop. He was really only an occasional distraction who served little purpose in the overall plot, other than to convey Claire's distaste for Julian's friends.

Any additional comments?

There were excellently written thrills and incredibly bizarre moments that made my nose pinch with revulsion and disgust. Bentley's capability to write gruesome or thrilling fiction is unquestioned. I was properly scared a number of times... but I was able to predict the ending about an hour and a half before the book's conclusion and found myself so disappointed to be proven right.

17 of 19 people found this review helpful

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Scarier Than I Thought it Would Be

The Haunted is a fast paced ghost story with like-able characters. It was much creepier than I expected and just different enough from the run of the mill haunted house stories. Dan Butler's narration was great. He managed different voices for the characters which is something that grates on me with other narrators.

16 of 18 people found this review helpful

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  • Flavius
  • Morro Bay, CA, United States
  • 02-19-13

A Ghost Story That Delivers The Chills

I love a good, scary ghost story. The problem is that so few of them are downright scary. I've been burned time and time again by stories that hint at the creepy or take you right up to the edge of something scary, but can't pull the trigger. "The Haunted" remained in my Wish List for some time because of this.

You can imagine my delight, then, that when I finally took the plunge and downloaded the book, I found "The Haunted" fulfilled its scary promise. In addition to being scary, Bentley Little gives us characters we can relate to and root for. A haunted house story (and believe me, that's not a spoiler) means very little if we can't be bothered to care for its victims. We care a great deal for these victims, as Little has made them real people, with real pain and real joy.

Although I found the conclusion a little unsatisfying, this was largely offset by the powerful emotional reaction the author is able to elicit. "The Haunted" is not perfect, but it is very, very good. A must-read for those who, like me, are always on the hunt for a good, scary ghost story.

7 of 8 people found this review helpful

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  • Stacy
  • CHARLESTON, WV, United States
  • 08-29-13

Both good and disappointing

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

I would probably not recommend this book as one of the better novels of our time. I am an avid King reader, but I often find that King gets too lost in details and aspects not always relevant to the plot or even the over all feel of the novel. In Bentley's writing, I appreciated that there was never a dull moment. However, like King, he included unnecessary sleaze that at times was somewhat disturbing. My personal preference for horror is actual horror, rather than sexual or violent gore. I also found the novel heart breaking in places. The ending was horrible and made no sense.

Would you ever listen to anything by Bentley Little again?

I would give Bentley one more chance.

Which scene was your favorite?

Didn't have a favorite

Was The Haunted worth the listening time?

yes and no

6 of 7 people found this review helpful

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Hated it!

The first half was pretty good and set the atmosphere for a good scare. The part about James and the dirt was claustrophobic to say the least and very creepy. But then the story seemed to take a 180 degree turn and I found myself checking frequently to see how much time was left until the end. I felt like the author was beating me over the head with a political agenda and that added nothing to the story. Maybe the author was paid by the word or chapter. I hate to leave anything unfinished so I stuck it out but it was painful to complete. There were just too many sentences, paragraphs and chapters that seemed nothing but filler and wasted space. How do you spell relief? t-h-e-e-n-d!!!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Donna
  • Queensland, Australia
  • 06-19-12

Gotta Love Bentley Little

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

Absolutely, if any of my friends read horror. I've read a lot of 'haunted house' stories over the years, and this one managed to be fresh and interesting and really captured my imagination.

What other book might you compare The Haunted to and why?

I wouldn't really compare it, personally. It's different enough, to me at least, to stand alone.

Have you listened to any of Dan Butler???s other performances before? How does this one compare?

I don't think I've heard any of his other readings...

If you could rename The Haunted, what would you call it?

Oh man... I'm a writer and naming my own stuff is hard enough, I don't think I'd think of anything better. This title suits the book perfectly, and was certainly enough to make me buy it without a second thought (the author's name helped, too!).

Any additional comments?

I'm a Bentley Little fan. Occasionally his stories go off on strange tangents that to me feel like they fit with the rest of the story, but this is NOT one of those books. I'll be listening to this one again, no doubt about it.

10 of 13 people found this review helpful

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  • Tracey
  • Danville, AR, United States
  • 04-01-13

Based upon reviews, I expected scarier fare....

Based upon reviews, I expected some truly scary, King-esque spookiness. Besides a couple of noted scenes, the scariest aspects I found in this novel was the complete lack of communication of the family and, that, despite being a full-time lawyer with a work-from-home husband, the wife still did ALL of the housework and laundry. There was also a bit too much political ranting for my taste (whether the writer leans right or left, I prefer my horror, scifi, etc to be politics free, escapist fare.) Finally, I felt the culmination very slap-dash and unbelievable.

But, there were a few spine-tingling scenes and the narrator did an excellent job bringing the characters to life, so I gave this 3 stars.

8 of 11 people found this review helpful

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  • victoria
  • murfreesboro, TN, United States
  • 10-13-14

Not too scary and overall disappointing

This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

Readers who enjoy Bentley Little stories

Has The Haunted turned you off from other books in this genre?

The story was unbelievable. We are asked to believe a family with two teenages experience horrifying events almost immediately after purchasing a house do not share these experiences with each other; instead they decide to keep it to themselves. After many terrifying experiences, it isn't until Chapter 25 before one of the parents utters those magic words "we have to move!" Unlikely as it may seem, the teens are texting but the two parents (one a website developer the other an attorney) do not text; rather they use their cell phones to call each other. The ending was ridiculous and completely disappointing. I got the feeling the author got tired of writing the story and came up with a preposterous ending just to be done with it.

How did the narrator detract from the book?

Annoying, monotone voice. Couldn't tell who was speaking because the character voices were nearly the same.

You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

A few scary moments but truthfully too few to save the book

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Overall
  • Jonathan Mills
  • 06-24-12

Genuinely unsettling, well written horror

If you've listened to or read Bentley Little's The Collection (also on audible), you may well be wary of trying this book - even as a pretty hardcore fan of horror as a genre, I found stories in The Collection difficult to listen to (and often to stomach). Don't worry though - The Haunted is a much easier listen, and well worth the download.

It's a fairly standard haunted house story, but it's very well written and honestly compelling. From the comfortable, engaging trials and troubles of an american middle class family, the narrative turns in a heartbeat to something much more disturbing and other worldly. You find yourself waiting for the next thing to happen, but you're often genuinely surprised when it does. Unlike The Collection, which was very much about short, massive shocks, this is much more subtle. I've been very disappointed with horror releases on audible lately, but this book is a very welcome change from the general trend and well worth a credit.

10 of 10 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • sarahmoose2000
  • 03-02-13

Gah!

I've never had to stop an audiobook before because I'm so scared. Maybe that makes me a big jessie, or maybe it shows a really great listen!



Julian and Clare move their two kids into a new house; all of them start seeing visions of some sort that scare them silly, but they don't share their fears and stay where they are. The sense of evil escalates until a finale you don't expect slaps you in the face!

8 of 8 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Lee
  • 07-16-12

What if...

...a modern day family moved into The Marsten House from 'Salem's Lot?'

That's the vibe I get from this novel and that's no bad thing either. In fact it's meant as high praise as 'Salem's Lot is one of my all time favourites,

I thoroughly enjoyed The Haunted and listened to it in two sittings (like the Father in the book I'm an artist who works from home) and it kept me hooked the whole time. The characters were all likable and believable, reacting in realistic and natural ways to the horrors that unfold and there a times when it's really quite unsettling. This is also due in no small part to Dan Butler's excellent narration.

The only downside is I now want more Bentley Little on Audio but there's none to be had. Hopefully the success of this will lead to more very soon.

Highly recommended.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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  • fiona
  • 09-15-13

haunted house

Original story about a family living in a haunted house. The author has done a good job on characterisation,. The haunted house themes are all here and updated. The narrative has been updated but there are a few cliches. This didnt knock my socks off but it was entertaining. The narration is really well done.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • jason
  • 12-01-12

very pleased

wanting to break the hold of king barker and koontz i thought i would start with bentley little's the haunted and i am very pleased i did this is an excellent listen well wrote and well read with some genuine moments of terror.Not many books can cause me to hold my breath but at points in this book i had to remind myself to start taking in breath before i passed out.would highly recommend this to all lovers of said authors above i promiss you will not be dissapointed

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • jennifer
  • 07-06-12

THE HAUNTED

This a fantastic book with a great story,its so creepy too you can so get into the book and the perry family
A must if you like the ghost stories,its interesting from start to finish,and a little sad too.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • Sue Jackson
  • 10-03-15

S**t scary!!

Would you listen to The Haunted again? Why?

N0 BUT THEN VERY RARELY READ ANY B00K M0RE THAN 0NCE ANYWAYS! :)

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Haunted?

A GENERAL FEELING 0F BEING ILL AT EASE AND IMAGINATI0N GETTING BETTER 0F ME AT TIMES - EEK!! :0

What do you think the narrator could have done better?

N/A GREAT J0B!

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

YEAH CRIED QUITE A FEW TIMES - SPECIIALLY AB0UT THE LITTLE B0Y , MILES, THEY'D L0ST AND H0W IT AFFECTED JULIAN AND CLAIRE'S MARRIAGE/RELATI0NSHIP.

Any additional comments?

VERY ATM0SPHERIC AND HAUNTING ST0RY . - G00D 0NE!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 09-03-14

A truly unsettling contemporary haunting tale

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

Amongst the very best I have heard, this modern take on the haunted house scenario by Bentley Little, is a very engrossing listen and is truly scary in a way that is so engaging as you have a sense of deep sadness for the family as you see them being used and played with in such a horrific way by the thing that lives with them in the house.

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Haunted?

I can or will only say, the wet black earth and the boy

Which character – as performed by Dan Butler – was your favourite?

Dan Butler performed all the characters well and his narration was very good all round.

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

I was creeped out by it.<br/>At times I felt sorry for the characters, I especially was affected by what the became of the boy and how he was treated by that thing.

Any additional comments?

Bentley Little is an extraordinarily unique writer who's books I find truly fascinating .He manages to write his characters so vividly by describing something as ordinary as describing their shoe size and by some strange alchemy makes them become so real valid and truly alive. I have become addicted to his writing style.I wait in hope for more of his books to be made into audiobooks, so I can buy them.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • a white
  • 11-06-17

Awful

Had to return for a refund- just an awful cliched book- no thrills, no scares .

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  • Yan2016
  • 10-15-17

Disappointing end

This book is good until the middle...from there on it gets increasingly outlandish and the end is just rubbish. I think the author got tangled up in his own creation and didn’t know how to end it. Shame because the idea is good.