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Publisher's Summary

Father Damien Karras: 'Where is Regan?' Regan MacNeil: 'In here. With us.'

The terror begins unobtrusively. Noises in the attic. In the child's room, an odd smell, the displacement of furniture, an icy chill. At first, easy explanations are offered. Then frightening changes begin to appear in eleven-year-old Regan. Medical tests fail to shed any light on her symptoms, but it is as if a different personality has invaded her body.

Father Damien Karras, a Jesuit priest, is called in. Is it possible that a demonic presence has possessed the child? Exorcism seems to be the only answer...

First published in 1971, The Exorcist became a literary phenomenon and inspired one of the most shocking films ever made. Freshly polished and expanded by the author, including new dialogue, a new character and a chilling new extended scene, this unique fortieth anniversary edition provides an unforgettable reading experience that has lost none of its power to shock - and is poised to terrify a new generation of readers.

©2011 William Peter Blatty 1971 (P)2011 Harper Audio 2011, published in the UK by Random House Audiobooks

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What listeners say about The Exorcist

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Raw, chilling yet oddly moving and heartbreakingly human - a work of art

I have read this in print form years ago, and loved it. This book is so much more than the possession storyline- that is almost incidental to the torture the adult characters subject themselves to. Though the movie is good, the frailty, shortcomings and fears are brought to life by the elegant writing that hints at the very divinity the characters are so desperate to find.
Not normally a fan of authors reading their own books, I found the narration was a revelation. William Peter Blatty has a cadence, gentle tone and understated emotion that contrasts deliciously with the guttural tones of the demon.
Reagan bears the brunt of the demons fury, yet those surrounding her are already dead lost in their own private hell.
Ultimately it speaks all of us who have ever feared letting our loved ones down.... who realised their career choices were detrimental to our families... who are terrified of messing our kids up... who have been unable to embrace faith or have lost it. It paints a portrait of a society on the brink of being at the mercy of pharmaceutical solutions.
My favourite purchase on Audible ever.

1 person found this helpful

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Amazing

I loved this! I love the movie and when I saw this on audible I had to get it, it’s an incredible story and I loved the authors performance. 100% recommend to any horror fan!

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 04-12-17

it's horror is undiminished

This is probably the most terrifying book I've ever read, and I'm not even religious.

First off, this is an excellent production. I'm not always a fan of the author reading their own work, but Blatty's moody, gravelly voice not only perfectly evokes the content and characters, but also the smoggy, cigarette-ash torpor of the period, when the Vietnam war was still on, the optimistic peace movement had basically ended with the Manson murders, and it was all too easy to believe Satan or some evil force really was taking hold in the world.

The novel might be forever overshadowed by the film, but there are certain things that give the book an advantage. One thing is the slow burn: the horror develops gradually, increasing the tension largely by suggestion at first. A big part of this is doubt. A priest experiencing a crisis of faith is a central character, and the ritual of exorcism requires that medical and psychological explanations be exhausted first, so much of the novel painstakingly examines the poor girl's symptoms, searching for a rational explanation. Another is the description of smells and odours, which the film can't do. This really brings home the assault on all five senses and the bestial degradation that is so horrific.

8 people found this helpful

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  • Matt Shinn
  • 01-07-18

William Peter Blatty as the author and narrator

Blatty encapsulates the whole mood of this book and his distinctive voice is perfect. I loved every minute.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Woohoohooooooooooooo
  • 06-26-19

A Masterpiece.

So much scarier than the film!
Blatty's reading is masterful, he will send chills down your spine.

2 people found this helpful

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  • A. H. Carter
  • 12-19-17

Emotional

This is not horror in my book. Just sheer emotional drama. heart wrenching for a parent but extremely satisfying.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 02-02-15

Fantastic performance of an amazing story

Would you consider the audio edition of The Exorcist to be better than the print version?

Yes, I think I would. It's my favourite book and the title I've read most often, but to hear the author, William Peter Blatty, perform the story so well, I got the impression that he could be a frustrated actor! Very well done.

What did you like best about this story?

It barrels along at a great pace, and I seem to get so much out of it every time I read it.

Which scene did you most enjoy?

Any of the gripping dialogue exchanges between the demon/Regan and Father Karras.

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

I think the compassion in the story really came through at the end this time, much more so than when I've read it in the past/watched the movie (which I also love).

Any additional comments?

A fantastic performance (not just 'reading aloud') of a brilliant book, I will listen to this again.

5 people found this helpful

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  • jennifer
  • 01-17-15

The Exorcist

Well this as always been one of my favourite films, so when the book came on audio I was made up. This was a fantastic listen with the narrator just making it with the horrible demon voice that gave me goose bumps 10 out of 10 for this fantastic narrator. When I finished the book I went out to buy the dvd and was very surprised to find how both were very similar .
If you enjoyed the film you will love the book.

8 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 10-22-20

My score doesn't reflect the book as a whole.

My score is based on my experience of the book due to my circumstances so I can't rate beyond that.

I'd recently watched the film and then found out that it was based on a book, so having enjoyed the film I rushed to get the book.. unfortunately the film is almost identical to the book, as in word for word, scene for scene, so if you've seen the film, you'll get nothing drastically new here.
if you haven't, I'd probably watch the film or ease and time but the book is enjoyable... if you've not seen / don't remember the it.

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  • Abbie Vallis
  • 09-04-19

Great listen!

Thoroughly enjoyed the book and an engaging performance from the author. This is not an easy book to listen to but I highly recommend everyone give it a try.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Crypticelt
  • 06-14-19

what a job by blatty

this book is fantastically brutal and creepy as hell, had me looking in my rear view mirror while listening in the car. A must have if you loved the movie

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  • pongwiffy1991
  • 12-19-17

loved it

The narrator really brings the story alive by changing his voice for each character. brilliant story.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Max Dark
  • 09-12-18

Fucking good

That was fucking great. So fucking good. I was blown by how fucking good it was!

3 people found this helpful

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  • Diana Szymiczek
  • 06-12-17

Masterpiece!

It was my honour to hear this story read by Mr Blatty himself. This harrowing tale of demonic possession, and the desperation of a loving mother has become a horror classic, and for good reason - it's frightening, harrowing, but incredibly touching. If you enjoyed the movie you will only fall more in love after hearing Mr Blatty so beautifully read you his tale. If you consider yourself a horror fan you owe it to yourself to take this terrifying journey. "What an excellent day for an exorcism"....

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  • Anonymous User
  • 09-13-18

Classically horrific

I'd head about this classic for a long time now. While it's known as a horror novel that spawned the acclaimed film of the same name, the book transcends genres much like Father Karras does at the end of the tale.

What Blatty has done brilliantly, is walk the fine line between horror and poetry. His descriptions of place are as beautifully poignant as his exploration into human nature. As much as this novel is about a possession, Blatty uses it to delve deeper into the meaning of faith, loss, and the connections we build with other people. Of course, one cannot discount the carnage that is the possessed Regan. And while Blatty delves deep into the science of psychology, and gives an insight into humankind, he also doesn't shy away from trauma and the darkest side of the occult.

On the other hand, I was not surprised to find it narrated by the author himself. The narrator has such an intimate knowledge of the voice of the characters, that he captures and delivers the tone of the scene perfectly. I would however, encourage listeners to download the file in HD, as Blatty's gravelly voice makes phrases unintelligible at times.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 12-30-17

Wow. Blatty does an amazing job.

I just loved this book so much. W.P. Blatty reads his own work with passion, integrity and intensity. I was truly moved. An amazing experience.

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  • Sarah
  • 01-18-15

Couldn't put it down

Slow at first but once I got into the story I couldn't put it down! Bit disturbing and scary at times. Love this narrater too

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Horacio Medina
  • 02-10-15

Excelente

Uno de los mejores libros de su genero, tal como la película, y con esta edición es mejor escucharlo de su autor.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Kitty
  • 03-28-21

Impeccable. Perfect.

Absolutely wonderful. William Peter Blatty’s The Exorcist is, without a doubt, one of the best horror novels of all time.
Hearing it read by Blatty himself is a truly unique experience. The author is able to put all of his intention into the narration. Every inflection and tone that may be missed by a reader.

The best audiobook I have ever listened to. Blatty is able to instil such dread with his writing and it read aloud by the voice who wrote those words is truly wonderful.
Just as the film is, this is a perfect depiction of The Exorcist and I cannot recommend it enough to anyone who enjoys Horror.

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  • Pete Shields
  • 07-19-20

In depth

Whist similar to the film this will take you more in depth with back stories and an introduction to an astronaut! so that's what Regan meant!!

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  • Customer
  • 11-18-14

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1 person found this helpful