The Auctioneer

Valancourt 20th Century Classics
Narrated by: Matt Godfrey
Length: 8 hrs and 45 mins
4 out of 5 stars (76 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

One of the finest and best-selling horror novels of the 1970s returns at last to chill a new generation.

In the isolated farming community of Harlowe, New Hampshire, where life has changed little over the past several decades, John Moore and his wife, Mim, work the land that has been in his family for generations. But from the moment the charismatic Perly Dinsmore arrives in town and starts soliciting donations for his auctions, things begin slowly and insidiously to change in Harlowe. As the auctioneer carries out his terrible, inscrutable plan, the Moores and their neighbors will find themselves gradually but inexorably stripped of their freedom, their possessions, and perhaps even their lives....

A chilling masterpiece of terror whose sense of creeping menace and dread increases throughout, Joan Samson's The Auctioneer (1975) is a rediscovered classic of 20th-century fiction. With echoes of Shirley Jackson's "The Lottery" and Stephen King's Needful Things, Samson's novel returns at last in this long-awaited new edition.

©1975, 2018 Joan Samson (P)2018 Valancourt Books, LLC

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What listeners say about The Auctioneer

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

HELL YES OMG

'The Auctioneer' grabbed me by my eardrums and wouldn't let me go; I listened to almost this entire book in one day! It has a slow burn type Stephen King feel to it (but no paranormal happenings) that is incredibly satisfying, and truly horrifying. This book is almost an experiment in human nature: how far are people willing to be pushed by authority?

I would recommend this book to any friends who enjoy a slow burn horror but I do have to say that I hated the ending. So WARNING this book is fantastic and the ending is a huge let down. Still worth listening, though.

Matt Godfrey is always an incredible narrator and he does not disappoint here!

I was voluntarily provided this free review copy audiobook by the author, narrator, or publisher.

3 people found this helpful

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The Auctioneer

Wow,what a story! I didn't want to stop reading!The Auctioneer comes to town and everyones lives are turned upside down.Matt Godfrey was a terrific narrator.I was given this book by the narrator,author or publisher free for an honest review.

2 people found this helpful

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  • TU
  • 09-19-18

fantastic book

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

This was a slow but masterfully written psychological horror story. It is not your typical horror story with breakneck pacing. It's a more thought out, psychological one that slowly builds the tension and carries you along for the journey. The narration is well done and really makes this a good listen.

2 people found this helpful

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Underrated Gem

It's a shame Joan Samson did not write more books because her talent and skill is evident in The Auctioneer. Matt Godfrey's performance is the prefect pitch for this suspenseful horror novel set in rural America. Fans of Flannery O'Conner will appreciate this dark disturbing book.

2 people found this helpful

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A excellent tale of slow burn, small town horror

I’m not entirely sure this wasn’t Bentley Little writing under a pen name…of course, he would have been a teenager, but you see what I’m sayin’.

“We’re having an auction.”

Now, pony up some stuff.

All of it.

I listened to this on audio and it was great. Matt Godfrey is quickly becoming one of my favorite narrators. The dude has serious skills and I have thoroughly enjoyed everything that I have listened to from him. Absolutely perfect for the story.

I also need to give a shout out to Valancourt Books who has been re-releasing some truly excellent rare and out-of-print fiction. Kudos and please keep it up.

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

2 people found this helpful

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A tad drawn out, but very well written

This book feels very Stephen King. No, there's no supernatural element to this at all (though I sort of thought there might be by the description), I mean more that Samson's laid back style of writing that drops us right into their world is very reminiscent of King.

The story itself plods along for quite a long time as Samson loves to spend a great deal of time detailing every event. We meet the auctioneer and watch as week by week he beats down the morale of our protagonists and their neighbors. I honestly felt it went on for far too long without some action -- almost as if Samson was content in detailing their miseries. That said, his style of writing kept me right there along with the family even when I wanted to inwardly groan and move on.

Action does eventually happen, but it's in around the last 2 hours of the book (more like 1.5, but Samson does tend to spend a LOT of time on every scene). The ending was satisfactory in a way, though it did leave a lot of questions open and made me realize much of what Samson prattled on about was irrelevant.

Matt Godfrey did an excellent job of bringing the writing and characters to life. He was one of the reasons I was able to stick through the endless emotional abuse our characters sustained.

This audiobook was provided to me free of charge in exchange for my honest review. It's a good listen, though would be far better abridged IMO.

2 people found this helpful

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Frustrating Small Town

It had good build-up but the small town, no one says a word, mentality frustrated me. I think the whole story could have been over after the first chapter if people had just talked to one another!

1 person found this helpful

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Another perfect Valancourt release

Valancourt continues to impress with this once almost-lost horror gem from Joan Samson. Fans of authors like Thomas Tryon and Bentley Little will love this one.

1 person found this helpful

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One More Review that Has Disappeared...

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

This seems to be a recurring problem of late. This is the third book that I reviewed and that has disappeared from the review list.
I'm not sure if I need to keep doing it again, but it is hard to remember exactly what I thought of the book when I first listened to.
I do remember the storyline and found it interesting, and I think that the narration was also pretty good. Not sure if I'll have time to get back to it, but if I do, I'll revise this review.

1 person found this helpful

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Unbelievable

The writing is good, and Matt Godfrey is an outstanding narrator. The premise of the book is hard to believe. One person convincing an entire town to "give" him all their belongings and sometimes children? The town's people finally stand up for themselves but not until they've lost everything. I find it hard to believe that an entire town would simply lay down while one person extorts everything from them. They do nothing when the guy shows up week after week taking everything from butter churns to their live stock and anything they may use to protect themselves. These people are farm families that work hard and fight for their very existence but do nothing at all to stop this guy. I know the book fiction, but, sorry, I don't buy it.

1 person found this helpful