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Publisher's Summary

When four old University friends set off into the Scandinavian wilderness of the Arctic Circle, they aim to briefly escape the problems of their lives and reconnect with one another. But when Luke, the only man still single and living a precarious existence, finds he has little left in common with his well-heeled friends, tensions rise.

With limited experience between them, a shortcut meant to ease their hike turns into a nightmare scenario that could cost them their lives. Lost, hungry, and surrounded by forest untouched for millennia, Luke figures things couldn't possibly get any worse. But then they stumble across an old habitation. Ancient artifacts decorate the walls and there are bones scattered upon the dry floors.

The residue of old rites and pagan sacrifice for something that still exists in the forest. Something responsible for the bestial presence that follows their every step. As the four friends stagger in the direction of salvation, they learn that death doesn't come easy among these ancient trees....

©2011 Adam Nevill (P)2018 Tantor

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4 out of 5 stars
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    70
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    68
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    30
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    10
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    2

Performance

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    92
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    50
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    21
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    7
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    1

Story

  • 4 out of 5 stars
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    60
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    61
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    34
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    11
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

AMAZING AND SCARY

I had an actual visceral physical reaction to the ending of this book. I became physically distressed. I love horror and it has been a while since I felt this way about a book. Amazing imagery and very very well written.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Catherine
  • NORCROSS, GA, United States
  • 03-17-18

Absolutely loved! Fantastic narrator too

I checked this out after watching the Netflix movie and absolutely loved it!!!! Perfect narrator too. I will definitely be reading more books from this author.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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

Interesting, but long winded

What did you like best about The Ritual? What did you like least?

I liked the premise, history and introduction to a different culture that had never been on my radar before.

Would you recommend The Ritual to your friends? Why or why not?

I would not recommend to every friend, but certainly to those who I know would appreciate at least the same elements I did about the book.

What about Matthew Lloyd Davies’s performance did you like?

Good voice, not overly dramatic. Maybe a little hard to understand in the latter portions of the book, but it added to the characters and the situation; rather than being an annoyance.

Could you see The Ritual being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

Actually read the book because I saw the film very recently.

Any additional comments?

I feel like the story could have been trimmed down; it seemed to get bogged down a little in the second half and lost some of its momentum. That being said; there were some genuinely creepy and unsettling parts; overall a fun read.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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

Really great!

Nevill is so descriptive when it comes to what these characters are facing that many times I felt I could hear and smell the environments myself! I listed to this after watching the movie and wish I had done the reverse (who would've thought?!). I enjoyed the movie and loved the book even more. Some of the plot that did not make it into the movie (and, after some research, is not even that popular amongst a handful of readers) I found to be some of my favorite aspects of the story. Davies does an awesome job with the accents and inflection and really reads it as I imagine I would do so myself.

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

wonderful!

This was very interesting to listen to, I liked it very much and I thought it was much better then the movie that was just released.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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

Movie was way better than the book

This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

I'm not sure who would enjoy this book. I liked the movie so I thought the book would be good too. In the movie, the characters were more sympathetic while still flawed but in the book everyone is pretty unlikable. Just watch the movie, its way better and has an interesting monster and characters that are more relatable.

Would you ever listen to anything by Adam Nevill again?

I don't know.

What about Matthew Lloyd Davies’s performance did you like?

The performance was good, he was a little hard to understand as the cult members though.

What character would you cut from The Ritual?

The Cult members. As soon as Luke is taken by cult members the book comes to a stop. The first half of the book with the friends trying to escape a monster in the woods was interesting. But the book comes to a stand still once the cult members enter the story. I thought they were annoying, boring and not interesting. The movie did a brilliant job of making these characters silent and mysterious and keeping their presence in the story to a short amount. The book kind of failed with them.

Any additional comments?

The portrayal of women in the book was a little disappointing. Very few mentions of women in this book, which is totally fine, but the few female characters mentioned were terrible. Luke's friends are described to have horrible wives who just use them for money, treat them badly and cause them to become overweight and sad. Hutches wife may have been an okay person but nothing much is said of her. The cult members, the writer went into detail about the female cult member's private parts but never mentions any detail about the male cult members in the same way. Its just weird. Plus, as a young woman, I can identify with Lukes struggle to not be married like his friends because he pursues his dreams but I'm disappointed that its sort of made out that women are part of the reason their friendships and lives suffer. So that takes me out of identifying with him, because as a women I feel I'm portrayed as a problem and an "other" and not like the hero. Oh well, the movie and its cool monster are awesome, the book not so much.

3 of 5 people found this review helpful

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

Good and Dark

It was a good and dark and definitely keeps you hooked but the end is where the book lost its luster for me. Maybe it was just my interpretation but I definitely recommend.

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

Disappointing

The first 3/4 was drawn out and seemed to go nowhere. Then enter characters with ridiculous sounding vampire voices yet the story at least started to get going somewhere. Actually became very suspenseful and eerie briefly but alas it was drawn out to a painful irritation where I just wanted it to come to a culmination of some kind. And finally, after suspecting a weird or tragic ending several things happened that were not explained and then it just sorta snuffed itself out. Seemed like the author couldn’t make up his mind what to do with the ending and so drug it on and didn’t end up doing anything special. I will say that the last part of the book was full of suspense and action, BUT it just didn’t end up going anywhere or ending with any kinda of wow moment at all.
Overall it felt very much like a bad B-rated movie! Im very disappointed and feel like I wasted my time with the first 3/4 of a pitiful book just because I wanted to see what it was all about only to end up being terrible anyway. This is another I should ask for my credit back!

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

Was really good until 1/2 through

Wow! The last 1/2 of this story was BAD!! The really overdone Swedish? accents that came into play made it worse.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars
  • luke
  • san francisco, CA, United States
  • 04-14-18

For those who like Scandinavian things

Really glad I read this. Unique ideas and some cool themes interwoven.
The writing is descriptive to a fault, sometimes going on and on without a story payoff. I think the film actually made the plot more streamlined and personal arc of the protagonist more clear.
Performance was good but the dialect choices were distracting.

Recommended tho!