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No Sharks in the Med and Other Stories

Narrated by: Joshua Saxon
Length: 12 hrs and 41 mins
Categories: Fiction, Horror
4.5 out of 5 stars (13 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Prior to the first American publication of Brian Lumley's ground-breaking, dead waking, best-selling Necroscope in 1988 - the first novel in a long-lived, much-loved series - this British author had for 20 years been earning an envious reputation writing short stories, novellas, and a series of novels set against H. P. Lovecraft's cosmic Cthulhu Mythos backdrop. In addition, and for a further 20 years, Lumley's non-Mythos fantasy, SF, and horror stories have been appearing on a regular basis in some of the world's most famous publications; for example The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, and Weird Tales, along with anthologies such as Karl Edward Wagner's Year's Best Horror Stories, Charles L. Grant's Final Shadows, and Kirby McCauley's Frights, among others.
 

With his multiple-award-winning literary career now spanning over four decades, Lumley continues to write his superior fictions, examples of which from each of those decades can be found in this current collection, where weird tales itself is represented by no less than five stories!
 

And so, to complete a trilogy of volumes begun with the Lovecraft-inspired The Taint and Other Novellas, and followed by Haggopian and Other Stories, Subterranean Press is now proud to offer No Sharks in the Med and Other Stories, a handpicked collection of Brian Lumley s best macabre tales.

©2012 Brian Lumley (P)2019 David N. Wilson

What members say

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  • S A
  • Portland, OR USA
  • 08-12-19

Diverse Group of Well Written and Narrated Stories

There is a wide variety of good writing here. Mostly some class of scary stuff, but all well written and entertaining.
This isn't his Vampire or Lovecraft stuff although there is a reference to Lovecraft in one of the stories. Give it a shot if you like well written scary stuff.
I particularly liked the narration by Joshua Saxon. He handled a variety of accents well and narrated with style and in a non distracting way. I'll be looking for more books that he's narrated.
I was given this free audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • Al
  • British Columbia
  • 09-12-19

Good, but not great, but a narrator to die for

I loved Brian Lumley's Necroscope series back when I read it 25 years ago. Like most books we read when younger, I wonder if I'd still enjoy it today, but I'll probably never put that to the test. That being said, when I got a chance to listen to the audio of a collection of his short stories, I happily jumped at it, and I liked it, but certainly didn't love it. Why? Well, the stories, apart from maybe half of them, didn't really grab me. This can be a problem with short story collections though, especially when they span many years like this one. But don't be totally put off. This is, of course, my subjective opinion, and there are some "fun" stories (it's horror) in there. Also, I've learned (re-learned?) that the BL is a terrific writer, and his ability to evoke imagery or describe human behaviour is worth the price of admission alone. The absolute best thing abut the audiobook was the narrator, who seemed to be custom made for this genre.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Loved this collection!

Where to start? I loved the stories! I loved the narrator! He definitely added to the overall suspense factor of these creepy stories. This is the second audiobook I’ve listened to by Joshua Saxon (in combo with the Brain Lumley) and wow! They are great together! Mr. Saxon does such an amazing job! I swear he is the best male narrator I’ve come across. And for me, my top male narrators consisted of RC Bray, Travis Baldree, and James Anderson Foster. Move over RC Bray! When he read the second to the last story using his American accent, it just slays me with how natural he sounds (not that he doesn’t sound natural with the other accents he uses, because he does)! His voice was made for narrating.

Fruiting Bodies 4/5 This was a very interesting story; I just had a hard time getting into the beginning of it.

The Sun, the Sea, and the Screaming 5/5 This was a very disturbing and made-you-feel-itchy kind of story. Question: why would they kill the fish when they were told not to eat them?

The Picnickers 5/5 I’ve listened to this one in “Cover of Vampires” and still loved it!

The Viaduct 5/5 There was so much tension in this story!

The Last Stone 5/5 The love stone part sounded familiar to me. I might have read or listened to another story that had similarities to the love stone idea, but… I don’t know what it was about the following line, but the fact Mr. Saxon said it so nonchalantly, yeah… it just went really well with how Mr. Lumley wrote the character: “Betting on the races was one of his hobbies, another of his hobbies was rape.”

The Whisperer 4/5 This was a good story until the final few minutes when the main character had the realization or whatever you want to call it and knew who the stinky, little man was. It went over my head! I couldn’t figure out who he was. AHHH!!!

No Sharks in the Med 5/5 Overall, I loved this story but didn’t understand why the main characters would have gone anywhere with Spiros(?) after all the red flags and weirdness that surrounded him. There were also some lines in this story that stood out to me in a negative way. It really made me want to see the actual writing because I swear there were tense issues (past/present) and just questionable phrasing. For example: “Spiros must release Gwen to keep his balance.” Or “Breathing heavily, Jeff and Gwen tried to catch up. Failed miserable.”

The Pit Raker 3/5 I just couldn’t get into this story.

The Place of Waiting 5/5

The Man Who Killed Hugh Gardens 5/5 This was such an easy to imagine, yet very creepy story!

My Thing Friday 5/5, American accent A+ The way Mr. Saxon narrated this was different but went so well with what the character was going through. It reminded me of Matt Damon and his recordings from The Martian.

The Disapproval of Jeremy Cleve 5/5

I received a free copy in exchange for an honest review.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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

Engaging Collection of Lumley's Non-Mythos Tales

"No Sharks in the Med" is a collection of several of Lumley's non-Cthulhu Mythos short stories. This is in many ways a good thing; while the Mythos has produced several great stories, time and familiarity with its themes and creatures has lessened some of the impact. Once you can think "Oh, it's a shoggoth!" the same way you'd identify a creature from a D&D monster manual, the creature is no longer quite so alien and horrifying. No such problem in this book.

The lack of an overarching theme to the book beyond "not Cthulhu" serves more as a strength than a weakness, allowing a listener to continue through several stories in a row without things feeling repetitive. The stories themselves fill the entire range between openly supernatural and completely mundane (in terms of fantasy elements, not excitement). In them horror is blended with coming-of-age, with tragedy, even with a touch of black comedy. Especially notable is Lumley's skill in evoking a real sense of place in a relatively short amount of page-space.

As a short story collection with a variety of character backgrounds and story themes/tones, the book demands a more adaptable narrator than the average novel, and Joshua Saxon is very much up to the task. Character voices felt appropriate for their stated background and personality and the narration's timing and tone felt consistently in sync with the words on the page. This is no small thing, as many narrators struggle to pull this off consistently with a single story, let alone such a collection.

As with any short story collection the included stories vary in quality. Some are genuinely excellent, but others (while none are outright bad) are less notable. Overall it is a very solid and pleasantly varied collection which in paper form would rate 4-stars from me (5 being reserved for those rare collections where every single story hits the mark), but as with "A Coven of Vampires" I feel the quality of Saxon's narration earns it an extra star in this format.

This audiobook was provided to me for free at my request in exchange for an honest and unbiased review.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Creepy Stuff

Joshua Saxon's voice is powerful and resonating and perfect to describe the slugs and parasites to make your skin crawl. I would give him five stars, but he didn't seem to adjust for subsequent stories in the book. This is a collection of stories, and well done at that. But I needed to listen to it in intervals, which for short stories is convenient. I enjoyed the work of Brian and Joshua.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Excellent variety of stories included!

I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

Excellent variety of stories included! There was horror and sci-fi galore! Very enjoyable collection of short stories for almost all tastes of the macabre and sci-fi fan! I felt heavy influences of H.P. Lovecraft throughout. Great! Four stars overall.

Narration was well done and flowing throughout. I would recommend this one to horror lovers and sci fi fans alike!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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A must have horror shirt for any fan of the genre

I love Lumley. Been reading his stuff for years and I must say that since I’ve started listening to the audio books that when I pick up one of the stories to read it is the voice of Joshua Saxon that I hear in my head as I read. He has brought Lumleys work to life in a way that simply reading it myself never did. I live that this collection has a few of my old favorites as
Well as some I hadn’t yet read or heard. Fruiting bodies was always one of my favorites as was the whisperer. The kind of Lumley can be a truly dark and twisted place. Come in and enjoy it, must bring your own lightsourse. Don’t advise listening to on a dark stormy night unless you like nightmares. I was voluntarily provided this free review copy audiobook by the author, narrator or publisher

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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A perfect fit of stories and narration

I like this guy Lumley. I dig the narrator Joshua Saxon too. These guys are a perfect fit together.

The peeping eyeball, androgynous Friday, the walleyed rapey bros, bar hopping hunchbacks, Wiley Smiley’s rock throwing contest, geriatric farmer fruiting bodies and nasty Grecian water worms.

Yep. Quite a collection of stories and themes. Well done. Solid 4 Amazon/Audible Stars

*Thanks to Joshua, btw, for the complimentary audio copy. The honest review I have left voluntarily.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Short stories for horror fans

I quite liked this book. There was only maybe one or two that were kind of just so so, but for the most part I really liked them. If you’re a fan of short stories I’d recommend giving it a try. My personal favorites were the beach stories and my thing Friday which was about being isolated on a distant planet. There is variety of different stories from just spooky ghost to creepy alien and of course you can’t have horror without the phychopath. The narrator was pleasant to listen to not one that was hard to hear or harsh to understand. I think he did excellent job portraying characters in each and would definitely give a listen to more books that he has narrated. Also before I finish I was given this audiobook for free in exchange for honest review. Which I always strive to do regardless if I was given or paid for a title. Hope you enjoy as much as I did.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Profile Image for Andromeda's Twin
  • Andromeda's Twin
  • 08-23-19

Great collection

This is a collection of non necroscope, non mythos stories (except 'The Picknickers' possibly) so be aware if your only previous experience of Lumley is in one of those categories. This collection is of fine, traditional horror stories. I have previously read half of these stories, listened to a couple more in other collections, but some were new to me, and all were good

The best story in this collection has to be 'The Luststone' (in my opinion) and 'The Picknickers' is one of my favourites from many years ago.

If you enjoy horror shorts then this is the one for you.