• Song of Kali

  • By: Dan Simmons
  • Narrated by: Mark Boyett
  • Length: 9 hrs and 39 mins
  • 4.0 out of 5 stars (672 ratings)

Prime logo Prime members: New to Audible?
Get 2 free audiobooks during trial.
Pick 1 audiobook a month from our unmatched collection.
Listen all you want to thousands of included audiobooks, Originals, and podcasts.
Access exclusive sales and deals.
Premium Plus auto-renews for $14.95/mo after 30 days. Cancel anytime.
Song of Kali  By  cover art

Song of Kali

By: Dan Simmons
Narrated by: Mark Boyett
Try for $0.00

$14.95/month after 30 days. Cancel anytime.

Buy for $17.99

Buy for $17.99

Pay using card ending in
By confirming your purchase, you agree to Audible's Conditions of Use and Amazon's Privacy Notice. Taxes where applicable.

Publisher's summary

Blood will curdle in Calcutta. In the most crime-ridden city, nightmares become real and evil is defined by frightening occurrences. When an American family finds themselves encircled by the terrors of this land, lurid events befall them and life takes on a new meaning - death. Winner of the World Fantasy Award, Song of Kali will chill the blood and frighten even the most jaded of horror fans.

©1985 Dan Simmons (P)2014 Audible Inc.

What listeners say about Song of Kali

Average customer ratings
Overall
  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    263
  • 4 Stars
    238
  • 3 Stars
    124
  • 2 Stars
    31
  • 1 Stars
    16
Performance
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    386
  • 4 Stars
    152
  • 3 Stars
    54
  • 2 Stars
    8
  • 1 Stars
    6
Story
  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    225
  • 4 Stars
    197
  • 3 Stars
    120
  • 2 Stars
    43
  • 1 Stars
    20

Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

All Violence is an Exercise in Power

Horror is not my normal territory. It isn't my alternate either. As far as genre fiction goes I probably reach for a horror novel as often as I reach for a fantasy novel. But this is Dan Simmons we are talking about. After reading Hyperion and The Fall of Hyperion, I was intrigued. How poetic could Simmons make horror? How literate?

I liked the 'Song of Kali'. It was a good story. I'm just not sure I'd count it as great horror. It wasn't that scary. It was definitely more psychological and mental than most. It seemed like a strange mixture of H.P. Lovecraft and Stephen King, all with a big glob of Calcutta madness and poetic mysticism.

Anyway, I liked it. I'll keep reading Simmons when I want a vacation from the classics or an escape into literary genre fiction, but I don't think I will need to steel my nerves with any tonics or leave the lights on to go to sleep after I close the book at night. I might, however, rethink vacation plans to Kolkata and West Bengal. Screw THAT.

Something went wrong. Please try again in a few minutes.

You voted on this review!

You reported this review!

34 people found this helpful

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

Not what I was hoping for

Is there anything you would change about this book?

More gross than scary. If you are looking for a good ghost story, this is not it.

Something went wrong. Please try again in a few minutes.

You voted on this review!

You reported this review!

12 people found this helpful

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

Truly immersive horror!

Excellent listen! Dan Simmons captures the essence and atmosphere of Calcutta expertly. A truly horrific story that seems more truth than fiction. The fate of a particular character seems pre-ordained simply that that character's inclusion into the story which is my only criticism of the plot.
The narrator is absolutely superb going from American Mid-West, American-New York, to Indian accents with ease.
A definite recommended listen.

Something went wrong. Please try again in a few minutes.

You voted on this review!

You reported this review!

11 people found this helpful

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

Dated, but still good fiction

This is an early work of talented author Dan Simmons set for the most part in Calcutta, India. And it is definitely a horror story. The setting and suspense are very entertaining if you can overcome the voice in the back of your mind wondering why you would ever take a seven month old baby on a trip to Calcutta to find a may be dead poet. That voice will also wonder about some of the other choices the main characters make. Choices that I’m pretty sure I would not have made even back in the 80s. But if you can get over those blocks you have a terrifying good listen.

Something went wrong. Please try again in a few minutes.

You voted on this review!

You reported this review!

9 people found this helpful

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

Excellent, atmospheric horror

Simmons practically makes his setting into a major character in this subtle, unsettling novel set in Calcutta, India. Song of Kali is mysterious and though-provoking and like some of the best horror, a bit ambiguous. Simmons doesn't spell everything out for the reader and that works to the novel's benefit. This book is definitely worth a credit and the reading by Mark Boyett is superb.

Something went wrong. Please try again in a few minutes.

You voted on this review!

You reported this review!

8 people found this helpful

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

Creepy but great!

It was much creepier than a lot of Simmon's work, but I personally thought it was excellent. Not for the faint of heart, however.

Something went wrong. Please try again in a few minutes.

You voted on this review!

You reported this review!

6 people found this helpful

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

Good narration, compelling story

Boyett does a good job narrating this novel. The novel is less horror, and more about the human condition.

Something went wrong. Please try again in a few minutes.

You voted on this review!

You reported this review!

5 people found this helpful

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

Grim.

One of the grimmest books I've ever read. The narrator did an excellent job with all the accents. I especially enjoyed the one moment of Punjab/cockney English.

Something went wrong. Please try again in a few minutes.

You voted on this review!

You reported this review!

5 people found this helpful

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

Troubling depiction, but well written

Would you listen to another book narrated by Mark Boyett?

The author did a good job with the material provided and gave many of the characters a unique voice. As such, I would be willing to listen to another book Boyett narrated

Could you see Song of Kali being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

This book could have been adapted to a film in the 80s when the book was written, but I don't know if it stands up well enough to gain a contemporary adaptation

Any additional comments?

One of my biggest issues with the book is how the author reduced a complex figure like the Goddess Kali to a two dimensional Evil B**ch essentially. Also, the differences between Robert's wife (Indian born, but educated in Europe) and some of the Indian characters who had remained in India can be interpreted as favoring colonialism. If neither of these are potentially worrying for you, then you might enjoy this story. There are some genuine moments of terror, and some poignant descriptions of Kolkata in the 1980s. I don't know if I would personally recommend the listen, but with the narrator did a solid job and there are some truly chilling passages. As such, listen if you choose to.

Something went wrong. Please try again in a few minutes.

You voted on this review!

You reported this review!

4 people found this helpful

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

not his best, but still good

The narrators voice was a little too subdued and mono-toned, but maybe that was the desired effect to compliment this dark story.

Something went wrong. Please try again in a few minutes.

You voted on this review!

You reported this review!

4 people found this helpful