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  • reviews
  • 9
  • helpful votes
  • 19
  • ratings
  • Annihilation

  • Southern Reach Trilogy, Book 1
  • By: Jeff VanderMeer
  • Narrated by: Carolyn McCormick
  • Length: 6 hrs
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 419
  • Performance
    3.5 out of 5 stars 391
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 389

Area X has been cut off from the rest of the continent for decades. Nature has reclaimed the last vestiges of human civilisation. This is the twelfth expedition. Their group is made up of four women: An anthropologist; a surveyor; a psychologist, the de facto leader; and our narrator, a biologist. Their mission is to map the terrain and collect specimens; to record all their observations, scientific and otherwise, of their surroundings and of one another; and, above all, to avoid being contaminated by Area X itself.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Poor reading

  • By Lawrie Roboto on 04-02-18

Painfully generic and agonisingly disappointing.

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

Reviewed: 24-02-18

I’ll preface this by saying I was interested in this book due to the upcoming film adaptation, as I’m a fan of the directors work. So I’m biased in that regard, however I’m a lover of all mediums of narrative and I enjoy adaptations separately.

The premise of the novel is interesting, and held my attention for the first half where all of the set up happens. As it goes on you get the idea that the author doesn’t intend to explain the why’s and how’s of most of it. I understand it’s a trilogy of novels, but when this one failed to keep me invested (especially with a character as soulless as our protagonist, intentionally I might add) I truly don’t care to try the rest.

We often get parts of the protagonists history throughout the course of the story, but as she’s painfully bland and hard to empathise with, I really didn’t care. Every time it was about to pick up the pace again we segue into more of the characters past and reasons as to why she is how she is. I didn’t care and just made me more frustrated each time it killed the momentum.

The narrator does what she can, but every character feels shallow and uninterested. Honestly this was only a short book but it dragged for me. Nothing about it is original, most of the elements have been seen in one story or another but fails to give them its own twist and the writing ends up feeling pretentious.

I wanted to enjoy this book, especially with how it intrigued me in it’s set up in the first half. If it maintained that kind of pace for the whole story I’d consider the other parts of the trilogy, but I found myself telling the book to “Get on with it!” Towards the end.

  • NOS4R2

  • By: Joe Hill
  • Narrated by: Kate Mulgrew
  • Length: 19 hrs and 40 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,016
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 960
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 958

Summer. Massachusetts. An old Silver Wraith with a frightening history. A story about one serial killer and his lingering, unfinished business.Anyone could be next. We're going to Christmasland . . .NOS4A2 is an old-fashioned horror novel in the best sense. Claustrophobic, gripping and terrifying, this is a story that will have you on the edge of the seat while you read, and leaving the lights on while you sleep.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • spooky treat

  • By charlie on 07-01-17

It definitely runs in the family.

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

Reviewed: 10-02-17

It's no longer news that Joe Hill is Stephen King's son, nor is it news that he is a very talented writer and I knew this going into this novel. But good lord I didn't expect the emotional guy punches this book delivered, the laughs and the tears it brought me were arguably feelings of stronger emotions than King has done in the thirty or forty books of his that I've read. It's almost a shame that Hill doesn't write as quickly as his father, but that also makes his work that much sweeter when we get them.

Kate Mulgrew was fantastic as usual, made me smile when she used a Russian accent towards the end of the novel, and gave the characters and extra dimension and gave a very creepy performance for two of the villains.

I highly recommend this book to any fans of King (obviously) and to any fans of horror and literature in general. I believe this book will go down in a similar regard to The Shining, and Salem's Lot.

  • The Exorcist

  • By: William Peter Blatty
  • Narrated by: William Peter Blatty
  • Length: 12 hrs and 52 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 307
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 285
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 284

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.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • it's horror is undiminished

  • By Kindle Customer on 12-04-17

Phenomenal

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

Reviewed: 04-02-17

I have to say I wasn't really looking forward to branching out and reading other authors after 30 or so straight books by King but wow, this was fantastic. All of the characters felt genuine, the narrator (the author himself) was utterly fantastic! Would not recommend listening to on a night shift however, unsettled me like nothing else ever has.

  • Gerald's Game

  • By: Stephen King
  • Narrated by: Lindsay Crouse
  • Length: 13 hrs and 33 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 99
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 91
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 91

A game. A husband and wife game. Gerald's Game. But this time Jesse didn't want to play. Lying there, spread-eagled and handcuffed to the bedstead while he'd loomed and drooled over her, she'd felt angry and humiliated. So she'd kicked out hard. Aimed to hit him where it hurt. He wasn't meant to die, leaving Jesse alone and helpless in a lakeside holiday cabin. Miles from anywhere. No one to hear her screams.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Not the best SK ever

  • By Andy T on 07-09-16

C Tier King.

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

Reviewed: 21-01-17

While I adore King and his works it's difficult to say that all of his work is worth reading. That's probably true for about 95% of his work, and while I don't regret reading this one, I can't see myself ever reading it again. The narrator is good, but not brilliant as she was with Misery (not her fault at all) and the use of music in audiobooks is an art that is still far from being perfected and this is a glaring case. Is the music supposed to signal the change of chapters? Perspectives? I have no idea!

With all that said the last hour and a half scared me enough to almost tears, and that is the saving grace for me. A novel which you would expect to play out similar to "127 Hours" falls flat of that expectation and is instead a very, I repeat VERY, uncomfortable story about child abuse and coming to terms with it. King is often criticised for THAT scene in It, but I'd argue a scene in this novel trumps it massively, and succeeded where most other books haven't in making me want to stop reading all together.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • The Dark Half

  • By: Stephen King
  • Narrated by: Grover Gardner
  • Length: 15 hrs and 15 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 173
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 160
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 160

The sparrows are flying again. The idea - unbidden, inexplicable - haunts the edge of Thad Beaumont's mind. Thad should be happy. For years now it is his secret persona, George Stark, author of superviolent pulp thrillers, who has paid the family bills. But now Thad is writing seriously again under his own name, and his menacing pseudonym has been buried forever. And yet...the sparrows are flying again, and something is terribly wrong in Thad Beaumont's world.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • great

  • By Gambino on 27-08-16

Couldn't get enough

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

Reviewed: 06-01-17

I'll start off by saying Grover Gardner does a fantastic job as always. He's definitely up there with Frank Muller and Steven Weber for King narrators.

I do a lot of night shifts, and so the best way to kill time is by listening to Stephen King audiobooks. This means I get six hours per shift of pure audiobook time, however I started this one off just a few days before to see what it was like, and before I'd started my nights I was half way through. While I do feel this story is fairly cookie cutter, and doesn't have anywhere near as much character development as I have come to expect from King, it's still a great piece of fiction and will definitely return to it in the future.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • The Tommyknockers

  • By: Stephen King
  • Narrated by: Edward Herrmann
  • Length: 27 hrs and 48 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 412
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 377
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 376

Everything is familiar. But everything has changed. Coming back to the little community is like walking into a nightmare for Jim Gardener, poet, drunk, potential suicide. It all looks the same: the house; the furniture; Jim's friend, Bobbi; her beagle (though ageing); even the woods out at the back. But it was in the woods that Bobbi stumbled over the odd, part-buried object and felt a peculiar tingle as she brushed the soft earth away. Everything is familiar. But everything is about to change.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Top 3

  • By Chris on 08-02-17

Not his best, but far from his worst.

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

Reviewed: 31-12-16

I was very apprehensive to read this one, I've often heard it classed as one of King's lesser works, but gave it a go anyway. It's a slow burn, but is definitely a good read. I enjoyed the narration, although when there is a race against time dramatic scene happening, the narrator fails to create that sense of urgency 2 out of 3 times in the novel that I can think of. Besides that, I'm glad I read this one and will do again in the future I think.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Christine

  • By: Stephen King
  • Narrated by: Holter Graham
  • Length: 19 hrs and 34 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 316
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 284
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 284

Christine was eating into his mind, burrowing into his unconscious. Christine, blood red, fat, and finned, was 20. Her promise lay all in her past. Greedy and big, she was Arnie's obsession, a '58 Plymouth Fury. Broken down but not finished. There was still power in her - a frightening power that leaked like sump oil, staining and corrupting. A malign power that corroded the mind and turned ownership into possession.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A wonderful book brought to life

  • By Miss A. Williams on 14-07-16

Phenomenal

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

Reviewed: 27-10-16

Wow. Everything about this audiobook completely exceeded my expectations. Christine is definitely a household names and is constantly parodied by the likes of Futurama etc and it has definitely become an icon of the eighties. And now I completely understand why King is called "The Master of Horror"

While for the most part I would argue that King shouldn't be solely classed as a horror author, the man definitely knows what he's doing. Surely the idea of a killer car is silly right? Right. But not King's execution of said silly idea. I was genuinely unsettled for all of this book and downright scared at times, and for a book to do that to me is high praise.

The performance was brilliant, Holter Grahams subtle voice changes were very clever and extremely well done, I doubt I'll get his voice out of my head any time soon.

Do yourself a favour and listen to this sooner rather than later.

  • Cujo

  • By: Stephen King
  • Narrated by: Lorna Raver
  • Length: 14 hrs and 7 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 133
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 124
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 124

Once upon a time, not so long ago, a monster came to the small town of Castle Rock, Maine.... He was not a werewolf, a vampire, a ghoul, or an unnameable creature from the enchanted forest or snow wastes; he was only a cop.... Cujo is a huge Saint Bernard dog, the best friend Brett Camber has ever had. Then one day Cujo chases a rabbit into a bolt-hole. Except it isn't a rabbit warren anymore. It is a cave inhabited by rabid bats. And Cujo falls sick. Very sick.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Difficult read

  • By K. on 21-10-16

Difficult read

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

Reviewed: 21-10-16

Not the best King, but classic King all the same. I say it's difficult to read not because of the writing or the narration (although the narration leaves something to be desired) but because it's a pretty traumatic story. I finished it in two listens, and while it's probably one of my least favourite King audiobooks it's still pretty damn good.

Lorna Raver was serviceable, she did a great job with her Maine accent (Ayuh!) but the majority of her male voices either sounded like someone who was extremely creepy or just sounded like a monster. Some characters this worked for but for others it was very distracting.

7/10 altogether.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • The Shining

  • By: Stephen King
  • Narrated by: Campbell Scott
  • Length: 15 hrs and 49 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,484
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,361
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,363

Danny is only five years old, but in the words of old Mr Hallorann he is a 'shiner', aglow with psychic voltage. When his father becomes caretaker of the Overlook Hotel, Danny's visions grow out of control. As winter closes in and blizzards cut them off, the hotel seems to develop a life of its own. It is meant to be empty. So who is the lady in Room 217, and who are the masked guests going up and down in the elevator? And why do the hedges shaped like animals seem so alive?

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A classic horror novel

  • By Steve on 03-10-13

Classic scary King.

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

Reviewed: 09-10-16

A definite must read for any horror lover or book lover. Genuinely one of the most unsettling experiences you can get from listening to a book in a dark isolated location.