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Baal

Narrated by: Ray Porter
Length: 9 hrs
Categories: Sci-Fi & Fantasy, Horror
4 out of 5 stars (12 ratings)

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Summary

AudioFile Best Voices - Sci-Fi, Fantasy, and Audio Theater, 2014

Baal was Robert McCammon's first novel, a debut that would lead to some of the finest popular fiction of our time. Written at the age of 25 and published as a paperback original in 1978, it has been out of print for years. This deluxe new audio edition from Subterranean Press will give McCammon's many fans both newcomers and longtime fans - the opportunity to trace the development of an extraordinarily talented man.

The story begins with a horrific rape on the streets of New York City. Nine months after that violation, a most unusual child is born. His name is Jeffrey Harper Raines, but he quickly assumes his true name - and true purpose - as Baal, a new incarnation of the ancient prince of demons. The narrative recounts his lethal progress through the 20th century, which begins with the destruction of his earthly "family". From there, Jeffrey/Baal moves to a doomed Catholic orphanage, where he unleashes carnage on an unprecedented scale, then out into the wider world, where he embraces his destiny as the Prophet of the Damned, generating a legacy of chaos, violence, and despair.

Baal is very much a young man's story, raw and brimming with emotion. Listen closely and you'll hear the voice of a gifted storyteller struggling to be born. In 1980, the career that would encompass Swan Song, Boy's Life, and The Five still lay waiting several years down the road. This is where it began.

©1978 Robert McCammon (P)2013 Audible Inc.

Critic reviews

"This chilling horror story…is truly terrifying… Ray Porter deserves kudos for his portrayals of the two main characters… Porter's true accomplishment is giving voice to the demonic Baal, whose voice is something between speech and a growl. This is not a book to listen to in the dark." ( AudioFile)

What members say

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passable

excellent narration from ray porter. story was forgettable and a little all over the place.

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Damien

A Damien-style imp is born as the result of a rape. His childhood continues with him using others to achieve much evil doing. Got lost a bit towards the end as the story jumped from desert to ice plains.

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  • Clydene
  • 16-12-13

Excellent Story

Robert McCammon was 25 years old when he wrote this novel in 1979 and it is obvious that he was and is tremendously talented. I remember seeing Baal in the bookstore,but I was in college at the time and didn't have time for fiction. The writing is engaging the story moves along at good pace and keeps the reader interested. The sex and violence in the book is more of a punctuation to the story and is not the focus of the work.

At first I thought the writing might be dated, but found that it was some of the best writing I can remember ever reading. I was concerned how date it might be as it was written before the internet and cell phones, which make up so much of our daily lives today, but the writing was so superb that I didn't really notice.

I spent a delightful weekend with this book and it was worth every moment. I would highly recommend this book.

Ray Porter did a great job with narration.

14 of 14 people found this review helpful

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  • Hunter
  • 17-12-13

Better than the Exorcist Movie!!!

Old school book Robert McCammon wrote this book in 1978 his first and its great.This book reminds me of Exorcist,Rosemary's Baby and The Omen!!!! Baal should have been named Damien.LOL, Intense from start to finish Baal is a bad dude the Prince of Darkness.If you liked Swan Song like me you must read the book you will love it..

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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  • Ron. M
  • 11-06-15

Almost a prophetic work considering the Middle East today.

Good story, well crafted and obviously well researched. Overall an entertaining yarn with great characters, brought to life by the very talented Ray Porter. Hard to believe that McCammon was only 25 when he wrote this debut novel. I always judge an author and story by the degree of mental imagery it conjures up in my minds eye. In my opinion Robert McCammon is a gifted magician in that he is able to create mind movies. I've read all of his "Matthew Corbett" books, absolutely brilliant! I'll read them again soon, yes they're that good. I hope he writes more of these. He has recently become my favorite author. I would recommend Baal without hesitation.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Kyle ritter
  • 06-04-15

Two words. Ray Porter

It says I have to write twenty words, but I only need two. I wish I could just say Ray Porter.

6 of 7 people found this review helpful

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  • Stephen M
  • 07-03-14

It's a first work

Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

Yes. My first introduction to McCammon was "Stinger" It's kind of fun to go back and see the earlier work

Any additional comments?

Baal was definately a first work. I have read other stories by McCammon, and you can watch his maturation as a storycrafter develop. It's not a bad story, and I'm not sorry I bought it. When It's held up to his later work, though, you can definately see the progression as he improved his craft.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Bill
  • 03-11-19

Good debut novel

McCammon is a fine story teller and it shine through even in this early work. Recommend to any fan of his work. production value is good. wish that it had been Whispersync.

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  • Jimmy W.
  • 31-10-19

Pretty Good

Listened to this book in one sitting at work. It was a good book with a good narrator. No Swan Song to be sure but it's nice to see Mccammon's evolution into a great writer.

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  • Lori Alderete
  • 30-10-19

Wonderous! I couldn't stop!<br />

From the start nothing but action and mystery, or just made me want more.


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  • C. Booth
  • 21-09-19

excellent story and superb narrator

this book is even better than I remember it being as a little kid. Would highly recommend to anyone.

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 14-06-19

BRAVO!!

Genius!

McMahon &Porter are amazing! I could not stop listening ..I wish there was more of this story. Not one moment of boredom. Ray Porter is ABSOLUTELY the best narrator there is. it's hard to listen to anyone else and really get into the story..to be able to see the words in your mind..imagining the characters look like.. how they move ..everything when Porter is telling a story you can close your eyes and feel like your watching the movie!