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Publisher's Summary

Audie Award Nominee, Science Fiction, 2013

Padlocked doors. Strange light fixtures. Mutant cockroaches.

There are some odd things about Nate’s new apartment. Of course, he has other things on his mind. He hates his job. He has no money in the bank. No girlfriend. No plans for the future. So while his new home isn’t perfect, it’s livable. The rent is low, the property managers are friendly, and the odd little mysteries don’t nag at him too much. At least, not until he meets Mandy, his neighbor across the hall, and notices something unusual about her apartment. And Xela’s apartment. And Tim’s. And Veek’s. Because every room in this old Los Angeles brownstone has a mystery or two. Mysteries that stretch back over a hundred years. Some of them are in plain sight. Some are behind locked doors. And all together these mysteries could mean the end of Nate and his friends. Or the end of everything....

©2012 Peter Clines and Permuted Press (P)2012 Audible, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"A riveting apocalyptic mystery in the style of LOST." (Craig DiLouie, author of The Infection and The Killing Floor)
"A wholly original story that weaves together mystery and the apocalypse like a finely tuned band." (Evan Roy, Bricks of the Dead)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.3 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    15,877
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Performance

  • 4.5 out of 5.0
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Story

  • 4.2 out of 5.0
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  • 3 Stars
    4,004
  • 2 Stars
    1,115
  • 1 Stars
    572
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  • Jim N
  • Chicago, IL
  • 06-27-12

Fresh and Enetertaining

I purchased this novel on a whim, primarily on the strength of it's description. It turned out to be a great investment and a pleasant surprise! It's best experienced without much knowledge of the plot as most of the fun comes from the characters (who make numerous pop culture references and even compare themselves to Scooby Doo and his pals) unraveling the mysteries of the building where they live. Cline has a to-the-point writing style, a good sense of humor and he keeps this story rolling along.

14 isn't a deep novel or a book that will blow the reader away with tremendous, in-depth characterization. It's good, fun genre fiction with a memorable cast of characters and some genuinely surprising twists and turns. I highly recommend it.

79 of 101 people found this review helpful

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  • Janice
  • Sugar Land, TX, United States
  • 09-04-12

My bad

SciFi is not my usual genre, but the almost universal rave reviews with promises that this was new and different than any other book around made me take the leap of faith. Ultimately I was both disappointed and pleased at different points in the story.

I hated the slower than molasses set-up. It took right at half the book to get beyond the introductions to the cast of characters, and as much time as the author took to work everyone into the narrative, there was little depth to any of them. You could see the broad stereotypes from central casting. The comparisons to Scoobey and the gang sounded somewhat intriguing in the reviews that I read, but especially in the front half of the book it became tiresome and trite.

Once I hit the halfway mark, things picked up considerably. There was action and the wild ride creativity that had been promised in the reviews. It was Scoobey Doo meets Dr. Who, and I mean that in a good way. (Yes, Dr. Who is my one scifi guilty pleasure). Well written, unexpected and breathtaking. The characters took on greater depth and dimension as they were (finally) given something to do.

Then I hit hour 10. After the thrilling Act 2, I wondered what the author was going to do for four more hours. That's when it hit some hard core scifi that I don't mean in a good way. The fans of the book who gave the rave reviews obviously had no problems with the turn of events. But it didn't appeal to me. I don't want to ruin anyone else's pleasure with spoilers, so I won't be specific about what disappointed me. But the movie Jaws came to mind in the sense that for most of the movie we never saw the shark, and we were scared to death. It was after we actually saw the shark that it didn't quite match our imaginations. That was the kind of let-down that I felt. True fans of Clines may be better pleased. But for my leap of faith - my bad.

42 of 55 people found this review helpful

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Started off Great.... But Then...

What does Ray Porter bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Great reading. Characters had distinct voices and brought the story to life.

Any additional comments?

I loved the suspense and the science of the first half of the book. It was mature and I enjoyed the theory and the intellectual approach. I couldn't wait to get back to listen to more. THEN...Somewhere near the last 1/4th of the book when the characters actually discovered "the answer" and the "monsters came out of the closet" so to speak, all the suspense flew out the window and it became a silly, contrived action adventure and I was glad when it was finally over. I actually felt a little anger at this book. How could it have been so good to start off and then end in such pure cheese?

54 of 71 people found this review helpful

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  • Suzn F
  • Fletcher, VT, US
  • 08-19-12

YES 5 Stars all around- A WINNER!!!!!

I am thrilled to rate this book with 5 stars. What this book has.....
terrific character development, I got to know and cared about each and every character; story/plot, I just couldn't put this book down (what is the audio equivalent of a page turner?); intrigue and suspense, the tenants of the building have a mystery to solve that is a matter of life and death;
romance that is hip and cool and relevant, with plenty of references to current culture;
and equal to the wonderfulness of the book overall is the expert narration, I am thinking that Mr. Porter is perhaps one of the best narrators ever, he did everything right, accents, pace, tone, and inflection.
I wholeheartedly recommend this book, oh I agree ......happy dance!!!!

75 of 99 people found this review helpful

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  • Amanda
  • Phoenix, AZ, United States
  • 06-24-12

14? Should Have Stopped At 10.

This book is 12 hours and 42 minutes long. For the first 10 hours, I was so pleasantly surprised I couldn't believe it. It was imaginative, and mysterious, and unlike any story I'd heard before. The tenants of this bizarre apartment house become an amiable team of unlikely amateur sleuths, each of whom has their own secrets, and each of whom hold some sort of special skill or knowledge that seems to come in especially handy in this undertaking. As an added bonus, it's narrated by Ray Porter. It was like a mini-vacation at home, with this crazy fantasy romp.

Then, we hit hour 10, and a marked corner is turned. What followed was, in my opinion, a complete meltdown of everything I enjoyed about the book. It reminded me of a certain 90's sci-fi flick; one I didn't much like to begin with. I wish I could be more specific, but without giving things away, that's about as much as I can say.

Right before the plot fell apart, one of the tenants remarked that they may have figured out enough about the mysterious apartment building; Perhaps (this character suggests) they should bring the investigation to a close?

I couldn't agree more.

71 of 99 people found this review helpful

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I went from skeptical to obsessed

After talking my my co-worker Chris into checking out some of my favorite YA books it was my turn to take him up on a recommendation – and his pick for me was WAY outside of my normal listening zone. 14 is a Lovecraftian sci-horror novel that feels pulpy and modern at the same time. There’s plenty of kitsch, and lots of old-fashioned sci-fi techniques are on display here, but the voice is still totally fresh, as is Ray Porter- who totally nails the narration. It’s one of the weirdest and best books I’ve ever listened to, and from the number of 5 star reviews it would seem our listeners agree!

33 of 46 people found this review helpful

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  • Matthew
  • BERKELEY, CA, United States
  • 01-31-13

Dumb and Dumber

I honestly think I lost IQ points listening to this book. The worst part was that I got sucked in initially by the reasonably suspenseful plot devices. I put up with the cardboard characters and cliched writing because I was intrigued by the mystery surrounding the building. But the pay-off was so bad, so ridiculously bad, that I felt like an idiot having wasted any time on this drivel. I want my time back and the brain cells I expended in the effort. The narration was ok, although some of the accents were pretty lame. (Ray Porter's German is much better than his Indian.) I just kept wondering, "Isn't he embarrassed to be reading this?"

I understand from reading many other reviews that mine is a minority opinion. Just don't say I didn't warn you.

44 of 62 people found this review helpful

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I have to contradict all those rave reviews

You finally forced me to take the time to review this book by continually shoving it in my face as one of the greats of the year. This book was awful! The narration was, at best, lackluster, and that was the best element. I, too, was sucked in by the plethora of glowing reviews. The first quarter or so of the book was promising. The story moved pretty slowly but was building up some interesting mystery. Beyond that point, though, everything began to read like it was written by a high school student who had seen too many episodes of "Scooby Doo". The fact that the characters eventually begin referring to themselves as Velma, Shaggy et al only makes it worse. As the story progresses we discover that this high school student author has read a few works by H.P. Lovecraft. This leads him to introduce mutant creatures including flying squid-whales and giant insects. Just to be sure we get the erudite literary reference (bonus points!) the writer includes Mr. Lovecraft himself in a tangential way. Not content with this, the author has to add poor Nikola Tesla as a conspirator. I could go on but why bother? The plot is absurd, the characters are two dimensional and literally cartoonish, and the narration is barely adequate - although to be fair you can't do an award winning job on lousy material. I feel like a chump for listening all the way through but it was like the proverbial train wreck you can't look away from .... A really bad train wreck. Please spare yourself and don't waste the credit.

47 of 67 people found this review helpful

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Romance junkie turned sci-fi fan!

Although I typically read Romance Books I just loved 14! After reading so many good reviews I decided to give this one a try for something different. WOW!
I don't want to give any of the plot points away so I will just say this book is funny, scary, mysterious, creepy and a little weird. It's Dean Koontz meets Lost. Just the right blend of sci-fi and horror.
The narration is outstanding. Ray Porter did an excellent job of bringing all the characters to life (even the evil ones).

Definitely a credit worthy listen.

24 of 34 people found this review helpful

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  • Robert
  • Yamhill, OR, United States
  • 04-01-14

The stars say it all.

This book has been around and promoted for a while now. I've seen and been tempted but not so much till it went on sale. While I think it was worth the sale price, it was not worth my time. I was tempted to quit in a number of places but continued to hope it would somehow redeem itself. It didn't.

The book has almost 1000 ratings on Audible and over 4 stars. I don't get it. I thought the book was silly, trivial and uninspired. You can read what the book was about and why others liked it elsewhere. But for me, I'm done.

39 of 56 people found this review helpful

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  • N
  • 03-08-14

really unexpected, loved it all.

Would you listen to 14 again? Why?

I loved this book. Not what I expected at all. The narrator was wonderfully. The story kept me guessing. I ended up sitting in my car in the driveway with people staring at me because I wanted to hear what happened next.

What other book might you compare 14 to, and why?

Hmmm... that's a hard one. It reminded me a bit of the TV series Lost.

What about Ray Porter’s performance did you like?

Every character had a distinct voice and even one word replies were easily identifiable. Especially enjoyed his portrayal of Tim the "retired publisher" and Roger the laid back "dude". This narrator is a safe pair of hands.

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

Yes

8 of 10 people found this review helpful

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  • Dylan
  • 03-04-14

Modern Lovecraftian mystery

What did you like most about 14?

The characters and the slowly developing mystery.

What did you like best about this story?

Occasionally fell into over analysis of the surroundings.

Any additional comments?

Great mystery that goes in a direction I did not expect. Comedy element was a little over done at times.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Sydney
  • 02-23-14

The reviews don't lie!

Crackerjack cosmic mystery-adventure for X-Files/Lost/Buffy/Fringe/etc fans, with witty dialogue, fun well-drawn characters, and swift excellently-judged pacing. Great performance in an edge-of-the-seat style from the reader. Couldn't turn it off!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Marie
  • 02-19-14

Easy and surprising

This was not the book I thought it would be. I thought/hoped I bought a mysterious thriller, but this was quite sci-fi. But I'm glad I read it. It is easy to follow and very much entertaining! A good break between my big heavy books...

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Mike Collins
  • 03-22-14

Solid first 3/4's...dissapointing finale.

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

Hmmm, not really. [Spoiler free] - Ive said that the finale is dissapointing, but this has little to do with the plot/story - which was fine, if a little derivative. The build up of quiet dread, and the slow unfolding of the mystery was a lot of fun. No, it was the character's response to the events towards the end that didn't sit well. Up to the final quarter of the book, Nate and chums responded plausibly to what was going on. However, their friendly banter, and muted reactions (to what was, a roller-coaster of terror and madness), seemed more in keeping with getting lost in the woods, and not being sure if you're going to make it home that night, rather than, what was, a prolonged waking nightmare. <br/><br/>Putting people in bizarre, and horrifying situations, and making their responses believable, is something that writers like, Stephen King or Richard Matheson, seem to make look easy. And its essential in stories like this. Peter Clines' difficulty just highlights how hard it is to actually achieve, and the difference between writing a book thats good, and writing one thats just alright.<br/><br/>The narration, although a little flat and stacatto at times (during the 3rd person narration, rather than when people were 'talking'), was quality. The characters were distinct and well portrayed.

19 of 25 people found this review helpful

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  • Miss King
  • 04-08-13

14

Nate moves into a new flat in a very strange apartment building. It seems that every apartment in the building is different and has something strange about it. There are the green cockroaches, the lift that has never worked, apartment 14 is padlocked, and many other strange oddities.

This was a wonderful book, with lots of twists and turns, and some fantastic ideas. And every time something new was revealed about the building I had a new theory about what was going on. I loved this book and will be looking for more books by Peter Clines.

Loved every minute of it.

Really great listen, highly recommended.

12 of 16 people found this review helpful

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  • UsefulThings
  • 07-01-15

Loved the 1st half...then it all got a bit silly

Overall narration was good, characters pretty interesting and the story flowed at a decent pace.

I LOVED the first half / 2/3rds of this ...introduction to the characters and the building, some intrigue, building suspense, a hint at what's been going on. Loved it. It's been compared to Lost and I can see why.

HOWEVER. Without giving anything away, after we get the big reveal of what/how/why/where/who it became increasingly daft.
One aspect in particular I detested and it made me cringe, because it was so awfully silly and daft and cheesy. You'll know the bit when you get to it.
The last couple of hours I really just sat through because I was in the car and hate to leave anything half finished.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • Carolyn
  • 03-05-14

Good start rather unrealistic finish

Where does 14 rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

Enjoy listening enough variety to keep returning

What was one of the most memorable moments of 14?

Going into tunnel description of flats

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

easy listening

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • hfffoman
  • 10-15-17

Poor writing made worse by the narration

I rarely give one star to a novel but I am sorry to say this one deserves it. The slow buildup makes interesting reading for a while but you soon get the feeling the whole thing isn't going to make sense and the longer it goes on the more unconvincing it becomes. Even if you accept the premise (I won't reveal anything) which has some extremely strange and unexplained science, the logic doesn't work. As soon as you stop and think, you realize that the role of the caretaker and the building management company were just ludicrous and the whole story relied on that ludicrous premise, (as well as the ludicrous science).

To make it worse, the dialogue feels like Enid Blyton's famous five and unfortunately there is an awful lot of it. At times the characters act like witless children. Again without revealing anything, there is a scene involving a spear near the end which should have made any sensible publisher cough politely and recommend the delete key.

The narration is mixed. He does the different voices superbly. The rest of the reading is unpleasantly flat and nasal. But the whole experience is ruined by the awful way the speech is reported. It goes like this: &quot;look out!&quot; ......(pause).... SAID Tim. The inappropriate pause and the emphasis on the word &quot;said&quot; makes it sound like people learning to read out loud at primary school. It sounded as though someone had had the clever idea of recording &quot;said Tim&quot;, &quot;said Nate&quot;, &quot;said Mandy&quot; once for each character and grafted them into the recording every time they were needed. I winced every time I heard it, which made a huge amount of wincing.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Jean Claude Ard Van Pierre
  • 07-19-17

Excellent bit of listening!

Where does 14 rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

It's up there don't get me wrong; Ray Porter who only ever heard doing the We Are Bob series shines here; where as in We Are Bob he plays the same character but a different variation, here he plays a wide array of characters and he makes you forget you're actually listening to just one person.

What did you like best about this story?

I liked the mystery of it all, the things that aren't quite right, the deep history of the place.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

Tim, oh Tim. You are awesome.

Any additional comments?

I gave it 4 stars because I felt that the ending was maybe a little rushed, considering this was released in 2012, five years ago, there hasn't been a sequel to this.<br/><br/>I felt that Peter spent a good portion of the book building up the mystery surrounding the place, developing the characters, exploring the building; but when shizz actually hits the fan I don't feel like I was given a satisfying ending as the big pay off only lasts a few chapters and some things aren't really explained.<br/><br/>Also I'm a little unsure why the book is called 14 in the first place, yes 14 is strange and what's behind 14 is weird beyond relief, but the actual room 14 only appears/mentioned in a few chapters and has very little to do with the overall story. It's a counterweight yes, but 14 wasn't the primary focus of the story, so why name the book after something that isn't the primary focus.<br/><br/>I felt myself wondering while they're exploring in the tunnels and ripping things off walls, "what about 14, when are they going to get to room 14?" and then they get to room 14, then there's a NOPE moment and then it's not mentioned again for the rest of the book.<br/><br/>Aside from those little niggles, I thoroughly enjoyed the story, I cared about the characters and wanted more, which can only be a good thing. However there is no more, which is a bad thing :(

1 of 1 people found this review helpful