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Publisher's Summary

"You think you got away with something, don't you? But your time has run out. We know where you are. And we are coming." The man on the screen says this in Russian. "Who are you?" The man smiles, but it's not a pleasant smile. The image freezes. The celluloid burns exactly where his mouth is, burns in the nearly flat U of his smile. His eyes burn, too. The man fades, leaving the burning smiley face smoldering on the screen. "Oh Christ," Andrew says. The television catches fire.

Andrew Ranulf Blankenship is a handsome, stylish nonconformist with wry wit, a classic Mustang, and a massive library. He is also a recovering alcoholic and a practicing warlock, able to speak with the dead through film. His house is a maze of sorcerous booby traps and escape tunnels, as yours might be if you were sitting on a treasury of Russian magic stolen from the Soviet Union thirty years ago. Andrew has long known that magic was a brutal game requiring blood sacrifice and a willingness to confront death, but his many years of peace and comfort have left him soft, more concerned with maintaining false youth than with seeing to his own defense. Now a monster straight from the pages of Russian folklore is coming for him, and frost and death are coming with her.

©2013 Christopher Buehlman (P)2013 Tantor

Critic Reviews

"The logic of the plot is eclipsed by the eruption of characters who evoke Dickensian whimsy and range from the merely unusual to the bizarrely imaginative. Within this magical universe, rivalries, revenge, and self-seeking contend with the willingness to sacrifice." ( Publishers Weekly)

What listeners say about The Necromancer's House

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Finally - Magic / Fantasy Novel for adults.

I don't know about you but I've grown so very tired of looking for magic and fantasy novels. It seems like i'm always Pawing through trite, whiny tween books, and the predictable female power/porn/romance fantasy novels. Blargh.

Finally! A really good magic/fantasy novel written for adults. The main characters are dysfunctional, sometimes distasteful, but in the end realistic and ultimately interesting. There's real danger and they make mistakes. The writing isn't for kids, and its not all about romance/fantasy daydreams. It feels a lot like Peter Clines "14" with modern characters and classic fantasy mixed.

29 people found this helpful

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Decidedly Worth It!!!

Having read his previous two books, I was eager to hear what Christopher Buehlman had in store for his readers in this, his third, novel. A story about witches and warlocks engaged in decidedly human bad behavior but on a scale that make the failings of mere mortals seem trivial.

I must admit that the style, pacing, and perspective of this story are unlike his other two. This style was off-putting to me at first. I couldn't find the story's rhythm. It had a way of jumping around in perspective, partially introducing things in short bursts – for example like the dialogue from a chat session or a dream. It made me feel like I was missing something, and I had to force myself not to put it down all together. I stuck with it, and I am so glad. There is so much payoff in the second half of this book! Things really get good!

The Necromancer's House is totally unique and is why I think that Christopher Buehlman is one of the great horror writers of our time. He brings deep thought to the genre and is one of my favorites. I can’t wait for his next book.

The narrator, Haberkorn, did an excellent job with this book considering the style and the Russian accents. His reading definitely brought the story to life.

This is book may be an acquired taste but it is taste that will leave you craving more once it gets under your skin.

11 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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137 Chapters?

I really want to like this book, but it was broken down into 137 chapters. Some chapters are less a minute long, some are only 5 minutes long. All these breaks in the story made it difficult to keep my attention. Soon as something is about to happen, chapter break, waiting to something else to happen, another chapter break.

7 people found this helpful

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It's Similar to The Dresden Files, But Better

Pros:
The characters. They are all fully fleshed out and thus, their motivations and reasonings for their behavior is always apparent. Some not instantly, but all eventually. Also, they are all extremely interesting. It is because of these wonderful characters and the magic "system" in the book that I wish Buehlman would makes this a series.
The Magic. What more can I say other than it is the best magic system I have encountered in over 50 titles of fantasy books listened to and read the past few years; It's fun and adaptive, mysterious yet still deep, and there's so much untapped within it that it left me wanting to know more and more with every instance of it. Seriously, Buehlman has a gold mine here that I wish he would set to excavating. I feel like we were just shown a few nuggets of a vast deposit, yet to be truly tapped.
Cons:
There's not a sequel. Trilogy. Series. Whatever. I want more!

On the title to my review:
If you are familiar with Dresden, you will feel right at home here. That being said, Andrew Blankenship and his friends are way more interesting than anything ever written in a Dresden book. Most importantly, Andrew doesn't make the same stupid mistakes that Harry seems to repeat over and over again. When Andrew does screw up, it makes sense. There is a method to the madness. It's not stupidity just to push the plot along like I feel we get in the Dresden books. No, if Andrew, or Anneke screws up, it's because they probably knew better but just couldn't help themselves (based on the deeply explored and fascinating histories we have been introduced to for them); whether it be because of vanity or a hangup on a lost love that changed their life and they just can't quite get over, they make relatable, believable mistakes. Harry's screw up are more often than not mistakes that he should have avoided based on what we have been told or shown.
Lastly, the "baddies" or morally gray characters in TNH are way more nuanced and relate-able. With Dresden's antagonists, they are often black and white with little relatability, and thus believability. Perhaps it's just Dresden books are a simpler, pulpy kind of modern fantasy noir whereas here we are given a real, adult telling of modern magic users. And that's nothing against people who enjoy Dresden. Heck, I enjoy the Dresden books (after book 2 especially). But I won't for one second listen to any kind of nonsense stating that Dresden is in any way a BETTER written telling of a modern magician. Not at all. The Necromancers House is a rare gem and I truly think that if anyone out there reading this, who enjoys Dresden, will LOVE this book.

5 people found this helpful

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Creative and engaging

Would you consider the audio edition of The Necromancer's House to be better than the print version?

Having read all three of Christopher Buehlman's published horror novels now, I can say that it has been a treat following his success. I know the author from his Renaissance Faire performances and have been a huge fan of his work there for years. I have to say that this book begins much like his performance work at Faire. "Unapologetic-ally Descriptive" was what a friend of mine and I came up with when we discussed the book over a few beers when we were both finished with it. Christopher Buehlman has a knack for painting a very detailed picture with his words. And that's how he hooks you!

In addition to his descriptive prowess, he is not afraid to delve into psychology and personal stories with his characters. And in this way, side characters who may not begin as characters you care about become Very important to you throughout the story.

The narrator on this work was great overall. The pacing and performance aided in a couple of "driveway moments" for me. However, I could not give the narrator a full 5 star rating like I wanted to because he MISPRONOUNCED the author's name. How does one mispronounce an author's name that they are narrating??? I am shocked that the narrator was not asked to re-record that one piece or that another voice was not hired to provide a recording of the book credentials.

5 people found this helpful

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worth a read, but not his usual quality

not as good as his other books. between two fires and lesser dead are masterworks to me. this one however had some good points but it jumped around a little two much and had some very porny bits. sex is cool but reading every detail is cringe to me.

3 people found this helpful

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Inventive world building

I liked this book to start with. The characters are well developed and while the plot is somewhat complex and tends to wander, it doesn't lose you. For me the book droned on too long, too many flashbacks and there seemed to be no real limit to what magic the main character could use. Great book for an epic road trip.

3 people found this helpful

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Amazing & Alluring

Best fiction I have read in a decade. Masterfully executed, combines ancient and current in a captivating tale.

2 people found this helpful

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You won't be disappointed!!

As I've come to expect, an excellent book!! The only regret is that it's over.

2 people found this helpful

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  • JH
  • 08-22-17

Well performed, not ideal for audio.

The reading performance was excellent. It included multiple accents and easily distinguishable male and female voices. I would definitely check out more from the reader.

I am a fan of the author's other works, and it seems like this was the hardest of his novels to adapt to audio.

Unlike "Between two fires" or "Those across the river", this story bounces around to different locations and timelines, which makes it difficult to follow in an audio version.

I love the author, and the reader was excellent. I would still, however, recommend listening to one of the author's other books first, or just physically reading this one.

Trldr...good story, good reading, but the two don't match up well.

2 people found this helpful