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Publisher's Summary

It was Easter Monday, 1952. It was a day like any other. The slat truck rolled into camp with half a dozen new convicts. I counted a couple of vagrants, one drunk, one assaulter and one assaultee.

All of that and Olan Walker.

Olan Walker was first out of the slat truck and he could have slid through one of the slats. That man was nothing but lank. He was as lean as a dog in Lent. He was as lean as hunger poured thinner than a spoon full of prison soup. He looked like he ate nothing but wind and shadow all his life. If there was a king and queen of skinny; a duke of raw bone, an earl of gaunt, and a prince of scrawny - well Olan Walker was the lord high ruler of them all.

It didn't take too long before we all found out what Olan Walker really was.

Olan Walker was a conjure man.

Fans of haunting southern gothic horror stories will want to give this one a listen.

©2014 Steve Vernon (P)2017 Steve Vernon

What members say

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

Olan Walker the Conjure Man!

THE FOREVER LONG ROAD OF OLAN WALKER is a unique short story of a conjure man.

On the chain gang in Alabama, life is not good. The guards have the prisoners at their disposal and they're not afraid to remind the prisoners of that at every opportunity. But one prisoner is different. He's a conjure man. He can heal you, he can kill you, and he doesn't seem to care which.

I enjoyed the narrative style of this story and I enjoyed the narrator, I just needed MORE. This is something I rarely say, because I knew this was a short story going in. But this time around, even though this short tale had a definitive ending, I felt like this was just the beginning, (or maybe the ending?) of a vast, epic tale. I feel like I'm missing out on that larger story.

That said, I am looking forward to reading more from this author because I enjoyed his style and humor a great deal. When describing how skinny Olan was, he said "...as lean as a dog in Lent." It's a vivid and funny writing style which brought Joe Lansdale's work to mind.

Recommended!

*I received this free audio from the author, in exchange for my honest feedback. This is it!*

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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

Less than an hour long, but what great writing!

Would you listen to The Forever Long Road of Olan Walker again? Why?

Yes. The narrator really nailed it. It was the perfect narration for this type of story. The story reminded me of "Cool Hand Luke" but the narration reminded me of "The Shawshank Redemption."

My favorite part of the story was the descriptions. I love hearing how the characters describe the environment around them. It was very poetic writing and I genuinely look forward to hearing more from this author or similar stories.

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Forever Long Road of Olan Walker?

"I've seen too much to believe that heaven isn't more than a grave digger's joke. Hell is here." That line was one of my favorites. It's hard to say which part on such a short story is the most memorable. But the environment at this point and on really held my interest.

Which character – as performed by Adam Gold – was your favorite?

I could honestly listen to Adam Gold's narration daily, and he did a great job of distinguishing characters. Brady was a great antagonist. Olan, of course, was also done very well.

Any additional comments?

I see most reviews disclose that they received the book for free. So here I go: Full disclosure. I got this book for free via a free code from a poster on Reddit. I was just given a summary and the giver asked for a review. So here I am reviewing. It was definitely a charming surprise. I thank the poster for sharing this story. Definitely up my alley.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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

Good story!

Any additional comments?

This short audiobook is solid! The characters have some depth. The dialogue is good–feels real. The story is set at a prison in 1952. Olan Walker is a different type of prisoner. He's a conjure man.

The tension builds as the story steamrolls ahead until you reach the explosive ending. Overall, this is a solid audiobook. The narrator did a good job with the story.

Recommended!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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

Great short story, Narrator nailed it

Any additional comments?

As a huge fan of Gothic horror and short stories this was perfect marriage of the 2. The Narrator was spot on with his interpretation, he captured the style and spirit of the piece quite naturally IMO. I loved this.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Jason
  • Sacramento
  • 02-26-18

Fun little tale of Supernatural Forces

Would you consider the audio edition of The Forever Long Road of Olan Walker to be better than the print version?

Absolutely. The narration was excellent.

What other book might you compare The Forever Long Road of Olan Walker to and why?

Lanmo by Thomas F. Flowers. they have the same supernatural Voodoo vibe to them.

Which scene was your favorite?

The final confrontation. Lots of death and destruction

If you could rename The Forever Long Road of Olan Walker, what would you call it?

I don't think I could answer this one.

Any additional comments?

I requested a free review copy of this audiobook and I am leaving a voluntary and honest review.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • norman
  • burlington, nc, United States
  • 04-05-18

Well written short story

The Forever Long Road of Olan Walker is an interesting and very well written short story. Adam Gold gave a gripping narration.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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

Southern Gothic Horror

The Forever Long Road of Olan Walker written by Steve Vernon and narrated by Adam Gold is a unique and fun short story. This story has a specific audience in mind, primarily fans of southern gothic horror. This has a very short running time of 47 minutes but in that time it does tell a story set in the south of 1952 in Alabama on a Chain Gang. It is very hard not to compare this to the Green Mile. It has that feel to it without the kindness.

On this Chain Gang the guards remind the prisoners that they are disposable anytime they get the chance to and bully them for fun. Olan Walker arrives with a new load of prisoners and is described as being lean as a dog in lent. These analogies, metaphors, and similes are common descriptors used in this story. Olan Walker is a conjure man. He can heal you, he can kill you, and he doesn’t seem to care which. He takes no crap from no one. Treat him with respect and he gives the same.

I was hooked into this story right away. I mentioned the use of analogies, metaphors, and similes being common descriptors in the authors writing style. The story moved quickly and was highly enjoyable with characters that were interesting and defined enough to get the listener invested and leave them wanting more. The story had and conclusive ending. The author could also easily pick the story and characters up again and create a full-length novel in this world he has created

The narration Adam Gold was very well done. I enjoyed his performance. This was a short performance and my first time hearing any of his work I did enjoy his characterizations of the guards and Olan specifically. The audiobook was produced and published by Stark Raven Press. The production was crisp and clear during the entire production. This was a solid well-made audiobook.

Audiobook was provided for review by the author/narrator/publisher.
Please find this complete review and many others at my review blog.
[If this review helped, please press YES. Thanks!]

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

Short, Yes, but Awesome!

This is a story about the "conjure man." What exactly IS a conjure man, you ask?
He can do lots of things. Meet, Olan Walker.

It's not long, but it's a great story, listen and find out what he's all about.
Great story, loved the narration, a really cool short story.
I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

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

So many analogies...

Tried to listen to the book. Couldn't pass the 15 minutes mark. Everything is described with an analogy, so much it becomes distracting and comical. Some of the analogies are so bad, you can feel them coming. All character descriptions are analogies "X is like Y", all gestures, actions, moods are analogies. Just couldn't follow the story, like a man trying to follow a game with too many players and too many balls, or a kid staring at the blackboard of a uni math class full of pranksters with chalk.

0 of 3 people found this review helpful