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The Whisper Man

Narrated by: Christopher Eccleston
Length: 9 hrs and 41 mins

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Publisher's Summary

Penguin presents the audiobook edition of The Whisper Man, by Alex North, read by Christopher Eccleston.

If you leave the door half open, you will hear the whispers spoken....

Still devastated after the loss of his wife, Tom Kennedy and his young son, Jake, move to the sleepy village of Featherbank, looking for a fresh start.

But Featherbank has a dark past. Fifteen years ago a twisted serial killer abducted and murdered five young boys. Until he was finally caught, the killer was known as 'The Whisper Man'.

Of course, an old crime need not trouble Tom and Jake as they try to settle in to their new home. Except that now another young boy has gone missing, stirring up rumours that the original killer was always known to have an accomplice. And then Jake begins acting strangely.

He says he hears a whispering at his window.... 

©2018 Alex North (P)2018 Penguin Audio

Critic Reviews

"The best crime novel of the decade." (Steve Cavanagh)

"Terrifying and utterly heartbreaking." (Mark Billingham)

"A dark, creepy, thriller with a huge amount of heart." (Stuart MacBride)

What members say

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Simon
  • 06-15-19

A Long Way North of Good!

This is an excellent debut from Alex North. Dripping with atmosphere and suspense rather than being an action thriller it's one to chill the bones just slightly on the warmest day. A single father trying his damndest to bring up his socially-awkward son living in a small town previously ravaged by a serial killer called the Whisper Man. A sinister predator who whispered to his victims from outside their bedroom windows to entice them before pouncing . . . 'If you leave a door half open, soon you'll hear the whispers spoken. If you play outside alone, soon you won't be going home.' Has the Whisper Man returned or is something new and equally dangerous on the loose?

It's really good stuff and the characters feel very well fleshed out with the story being delivered from multiple points of view which each ring true to their nature. Possibly most impressive of all was the voice of young Jake with his (imagined?) friend. Quite often I find when authors try to write children's thoughts they come across as poorly thought out but North's writing of Jake struck good chords with me.

I was looking forward to Chris Ecclestone as a narrator and he didn't disappoint though I would say that for those looking for a genuine performance with lots of varied character voices you won't find it here. He doesn't have that range but what you do get is a very decent reading in a voice that I liked so I was happy with that.

As an overall package, this is genuinely decent though and if you like thrillers that aren't too action-packed but do generate tension and some atmosphere then this could well be a decent choice.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

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  • Melanie Preston Lewis
  • 06-19-19

First class

Well, Alex North, whoever he really is, has a hit on his hands with The Whisper Man. I listened to all 9 hours and 41 minutes in 2 sessions, and I only took a break because I absolutely had to get some sleep. The story draws you in from the very beginning, Tom and Jake are beautifully drawn characters. Their grief is so eloquently described it's almost tangible. I became hugely invested in their efforts to move on, willing them to succeed with every fibre of my being. The story around The Whisper Man is dark, chilling and terrifying and is so full of evil that the juxtaposition between that, and the obvious love between Tom and Jake is even more stark. Our police officers are human beings and their roles in this story are set perfectly. The denouement is startling and credible. Narrated by Christopher Eccleston this is a perfect package, which I highly recommend to all. Can't wait for more from the mysterious Mr North

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • SandraL
  • 06-21-19

Stunning

I don't know who the mysterious Alex North is, but bloody hell he can spin a good tale!

The children's rhyme sets the tone of the book. It scared me to death!

'If you leave a door half open, soon you'll hear the whispers spoken.
If you play outside alone, soon you won't be going home.
If your window's left unlatched, you'll hear him tapping at the glass.
If you're lonely, sad, and blue, the Whisper Man will come for you.'

Indeed the book is incredibly creepy and tense and I was hooked right from the start. The book is so beautifully written, without a wasted word. I loved the characters of Tom, who really wanted to be a good father but often failed, and Jake, the lonely child who had an imaginary friend. I just wanted to hug him. In fact all the characters were well fleshed out and felt real.

I listened to the Audible version and was a little underwhelmed by Christopher Eccleston's narration. I do like his voice, but it was a straightforward read-through of the book with no effort to distinguish between the different voices. Shame because he is a superb actor.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Nick Dawson
  • 06-14-19

Headphones on and say goodbye to the next 9 hours

This is more than a very good audiobook. It's a heartbreaking and pulsating thriller. To say anymore would give away too much of the plot but there's a serial killer on the loose, children going missing and the best father in the world. Christopher Eccleston was an amazing narrator and he added to the atmosphere of the book.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Jools
  • 06-14-19

Enjoyed

Loved this book and would recommend it. Narration was good a good narrator. 5 star

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Rachael the FABULOUS!!
  • 06-21-19

Very Good

I loved the book and I have always enjoyed Christopher Eccleston’s acting roles, but this was a bit of a different performance from him. His voice maintained the same tone and rhythm as everyone so it was hard sometimes to know which character was speaking. However, that was a minor point. The story was darkly engaging and overall I enjoyed it very much.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Deirdre
  • 06-20-19

Exceptional

The Whisper Man is a beautifully constructed thriller that grabs you from the first moment. The characters have an authentic voice and really connected. It is an intricate tale which centres on Tom and his son Jake who are coping after the death of his wife. A terrifying childhood character looms large in the story that links to a child killer. Loved Christopher Eccleston's narration. Highly recommend. I reckon this will be the thriller everyone talks about this summer.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Gabby
  • 06-19-19

Fantastic read

Really enjoyed this audio book. A very intriguing and though provoking story, showing the many sides of father/son relationships. As much as I like Christopher Eccleston, he sounded a bit robotic at times and did not seem to give a lot of the characters their own voice which was a shame. However this really is a good thriller which has many interesting layers.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 06-15-19

I can not wait for the movie!!!

This book certainly deserves a movie all it's own.

The character arcs in this book were so heart felt and real I could feel all the emotion that went into writing this.

At the beginning you expect it to be a standard crime book but let me tell you this book will knock you off your feet!

There are times I got literal goosebumps reading on my couch at night not knowing what was going to be on the next page.

You begin to feel the terror and despair as you follow the story as it begins to unfold in a way you can not predict.

The Whisper Man touches not only on child abduction and the type of person it takes to steal and kill a child, but also explores how sometimes as adults we just aren't the best at really LISTENING to children.

Just because they are young doesn't mean what they have to say doesn't carry any weight. Imaginary friends can be disguised as true secrets waiting to be uncovered.

It will really make you look between the lines in your own life and challenge you.

The Whisper Man is reminiscent of Hannibal, with a killer so enigmatic and the back and forth banter between the police and the alleged killer is delicious!

I don't want to spoil this for anyone so all I'll say is, if you want a book that intricately weaves complicated relationships, secrets and childhood terror into a 'book that you literally can't put down', you need to read this!