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Summary

Addiction is an affliction. 

As you crave you endure sweats, irritations, sleepless nights. Your life suffers, your job suffers.... Your family suffers. 

But you need it. You have to have your fix.

Joe O'Hara is having a bad morning, and it's just about to get worse. 

A random road traffic accident sends him on the path to addiction. Crack is the only thing that can give him any relief from his living hell - but it's a far cry from the crack you might think it is.

Crack is a psychological horror from D E McCluskey, author of The Twelve.

©2016 David McCluskey (P)2020 David McCluskey

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CRACK!

Nope, it isn't about hard drugs.

Nope,it isn't about skating on thin ice.

Nope, it isn't about a plumber's rear end!

It is about... wait no, I'm not going to tell you that - it might spoil it for you.

I finished listening to this a couple of weeks ago.But I wanted to leave some time between finishing it and writing a review.

If you like horror books then I recommend you try this. I'm thinking of early Stephen King here - the stuff he wrote while addicted to hard drugs, not the soft stuff he produces now. Crack is sick and twisted and not an easy listen. But it is very cleverly written and very interesting as a concept.The sort of book where at times you gasp out loud while listening but you just can't stop until you know what happens next.

The narrator is perfect. It can't have been an easy book to narrate but Tim Welch totally nailed it.

I've already put some more D E McCluskey on my kindle and I am looking forward to checking those out this summer.He's definitely an author to watch.

1 person found this helpful

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sick and twisted

I hated Joe. I hated him before the tragedy that ruined his happy family life. He was a bit of a dick before and became a really nasty piece of work thru out the book. There is animal cruelty in is as well. The tragedy causes him to have an addiction and his life spirals into chaos.

I've now read a few books by this author and his characters are so different and distinct. D.E. McClusky does such a great job writing this.

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4.5 stars

Full disclosure. I love this narrator's voice. I stumbled across him on ACx and he gave me a free promo code. I'm odd so this book piqued my interest. The crack this book speaks of is not the the drug.. not even close. It's much better. I can still hear him say CRACK repeatedly and maybe I should go for a drive!!! Lol. just playing.
This is one unique story. I'm usually not a big fan of stories that follow the life of the cops/ detectives, but this one did it right. I can honestly say I thoroughly enjoyed this listen. Seriously, it's a book better to listen to than reading. The 1st part, intro, prologue, whatever was weird. don't let that stop you from reading or listening to this story

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Exciting & thrilling

Crack is a great listen for anyone who loves that horror, thrill and rush type of feeling. When I say you will be taken for a ride, I mean it! The narrator, Tim Welch did a fantastic job at really making you feel as if you were in the main character's shoes. The way in which McCluskey pulls you in and is able to make you feel as if you were losing yourself in the story was fascinating. Don’t be fooled and think you're going to be listening to a story about crack because that is far from the storyline. The story is about the main character Joe, a weird and unusual sensation he develops and desires after a life changing event thus affecting him, his home-life and those around him. You want to listen to this book with open ears because at times you may hear some things that aren’t for the faint hearted. Note that this book isn’t a read for everyone, especially if you have a soft stomach to begin with. The reason why I enjoyed this book as much as I did is because you don’t normally hear twisted, dark humored, gruesome (at times) material like this on a day to day basis. While listening to him narrate, Welch makes storytelling feel as if time isn’t real. As I was listening to him speak I was drawn in more and more and time really felt like it just disappeared, reality seemed as if it disappeared as well in a sense. Overall, a great read for those of you who are like me who have tough skin for a story like Crack.

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Fabulous

Fabulous audiobook
not what you think it’s about
As you crave you endure sweats, irritations, sleepless nights.
Enjoyed the storyline very much

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Phewf, Intense

I was unsure what to expect when first listening to this but gosh was it a ride. Overall the story is well written, Joe, the main character is developed in depth and many times the book has you on the edge your seat. Where the real strength lies is within the horror and gore which is articulated well by the narrator. There are many intense moments throughout the book, all of which are described in graphic detail,. The author is able to conjure up horrid images in one's head while the narrator is able to deliver it with excitement and gusto. Overall I would recommend this book to those who enjoy fast paced thriller novels and not for those faint of heart!

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Crack-tastic

I came across this book and was first of all intrigued by the title and the image of the cracked motorcycle helmet. After reading the sample of the book I decided to give it a go. The book is centred around a family, and the farthers demise after being involved in a life changing event.

Needles to say that it his family who will ultimately suffer due to the cruel twist of fate that has befallen the lead character.

this book is filled with gruesome depiction and a barrel of laughs for those of us with a dark sense of humor. there are plenty of laugh out loud moments, coupled with gory details.

of you are looking for a book that has you thirsting for blood, with laughs thrown in, then this is a read you shouldn't miss out on. Overall, I loved it. A welcome distraction of the everyday hum drum.

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Dark

The main character in this book is Joe O'Hara and he's just finished his night shift and not only tired and wanting to get home to bed but on his way home things just got worse, and he gets involved in a road traffic accident a collision with a biker and all he could hear was the crack as the bones and skull crushed to smithereens and decapitated the head from the body. Somehow the more he thinks about what he heard the more addicted he became and soon was orchestrating his own decapitations just to get the thrill and his sexual desires from the cracking sound. As Joe gets more addicted, it was affecting his home life and his family decides to move on, but Joe is not bothered as his imaginary friend without a face only the black helmet helps him with his addition. This is a very dark listen and the narrator Tim Welch was clear and precise but did emphasize the word Crack and sometimes did get a bit annoying but a must finish for the book, but beware it is quite gory in places.

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Profile Image for Christopher Dowell
  • Christopher Dowell
  • 09-06-21

Check out this guy's CRACK

I received a code for this book in exchange for an honest review.

I usually don't prefer doing so, but when I saw this book's premise, I figured I'd take the risk. I'm glad I did, because from D E McCluskey’s opening words, I knew his CRACK would be a fun ride once I got inside it.

The more I sink myself into the “seedier” genres of horror, the more I find the fun in it. If I had to label this type of story, I’d put it firmly in the late-80s/early-90s exploitation B-movie category, but this one has a lot less of the sexual component than you’d expect. Yes, it’s exploitative and all the violence is directed at women, but it’s done so with a smirk and a wink at the camera. Add to that a bucket of blood and gore, and you’ve got yourself a fun little experience.

As for the nitty-gritty: The concept of the story is one I’ve not seen before. The killer’s addiction to a sound is not only unique, but it leads the reader to also wince every time the sound comes back into the narrative. And it’s such a simple one, too. CRACK. The CRACK brought on by an unfortunate (in many more ways than one) accident. The CRACK of the killer’s sanity. The CRACK it leaves in multiple families.
I love it.

The narration did take some time for me to get used to, however. I’m not saying it’s bad, it isn’t bad. It’s just not the timbre and cadence I’m used to. Tim Welch hits every sentence hard, and each CRACK is rattling. It’s the type of narration you’d want for a story like this, and it was just an issue of me not being used to his style that started me on an uneasy footing.

At 9 hours, CRACK is a long enough listen that you’ll get your fill of blood and violence, but it doesn’t overstay its welcome. But, it’s also short enough that I won’t feel bad coming back to it between larger works.

You should check out D E McCluskey’s CRACK. (let your mind figure out what I mean by that)

1 person found this helpful

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  • DinaQ
  • 22-10-20

Not what you would expect!!

This book could easily be described in ultimately one word: shocking. I found this book to be very gruesome and disturbing. If you’re the type of reader who enjoys sitting on the edge of your seat, this book is for you. This could be seen as an uncomfortable book to get through, but the unpredictable and twisted concepts of horror keep you that more intrigued. Since the book could be very graphic, I feel the narrator Tim Welch did a great job in remaining clear and easy to understand. He put emphasis on certain words, like CRACK throughout the read which reeled me in even more. The delivery from Tim Welch ultimately added to the type of suspense the author conveys throughout the storyline.

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Profile Image for DabOfDarkness
  • DabOfDarkness
  • 15-08-20

More horror than plot

This wasn’t the book I was expecting. It’s firmly in the Horror genre but parts of it read like a snuff film. I was expecting more psychological thriller and less sexual violence over all. The book does open with a scene that portends what the rest of the story will be like; had this not been a for-review book, I would have put it down there. It’s just not my cup of tea.

The main character, Joe, snapped at some point prior to where this story starts. Life pushed him too hard and he couldn’t take it and all that internal rage cracked out into this unhealthy need to kill. Cracking skulls is the only thing that gives Joe a few days of peace these days. The story shows how his need escalates from killing animals to killing women. There’s a fair amount of description spent on Joe’s orgasms, which occur with each cracked skull. It definitely adds to the ick factor that is Joe’s life.

The story goes from one victim to the next: animals, Joe beating up his wife, the women he kills, his therapist who he fantasizes about, etc. Joe doesn’t have much of a personality throughout the story. At first, it’s a little interesting because Joe has this imaginary friend he talks to, but the interest quickly faded for me because Joe remains a one-dimensional character throughout. Though, there at the very end, the plot tries to humanize him.

The ladies are victims and romantic interests throughout. All the male characters, not just Joe, refer to the women as girls throughout the story, failing to make the distinction between actual girls and grown women. If it was just Joe doing that, I would say it’s part of his character, but the other men do it too. The ladies had small roles. Even Paula, the police detective, is sexualized and made a victim throughout. One of the victims even gets her hands undone from Joe’s restraints and then, conveniently, gives up and lets the end come. So I was pretty disappointed in the use of the female characters all around.

For me, the end was unsatisfactory. There is no real justice. 2.5/5 stars.

The Narration: Tim Welch had an odd cadence to his narration. He put extra emphasis on a few words each sentence, like he was trying to add excitement or anticipation to each and every sentence. It was part old-time radio drama and part sports announcer. I got used to it and for some scenes, like the gory murder scenes, it made sense. I did like his voice over all for Joe. Welch tried to give each character their own voice, but they often blended together if 2 or more characters were talking together. His female voices could use more femininity. There were no technical issues with the recording. 3/5 stars.

I received a free copy of this book. My opinions are 100% my own.

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  • Bridget McKeown
  • 10-08-20

Hell of a ride

This listen was sooooo not what I was expecting given the title and the blurb I'd read. A great story and think it works brilliantly as an audio book. I have to say that I really thought I'd not get on with the staccato style of delivery of Tim Welch but it fitted with the story line perfectly

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Profile Image for Ashley
  • Ashley
  • 05-08-20

Not my usual book but enjoyed regardless

After a tragic traffic accident Joe O’hara’s life is changed forever. Not typically a book I would have chosen for myself but the story did keep the reader hooked and engaged. The graphic content of the book was a little much at times but again did help the reader to genuinely picture the scene whether it be sexual or violent. Joe went from a calm security Guard and a loving family man to a human just looking to satisfy an addition. the attention and detail to Joe's new addiction really made Joe a character many could relate to in the sense of understanding the desire to act on his urges.
This book is truly for the dark minded who enjoy being on the edge of their seat. there were multiple times where I felt as thought I had to pause the book and really comprehend what has happened in the last chapter or scene. overall the story was well written and definitely entertaining, but should include a warning about the more graphic areas throughout the story.

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Profile Image for Melanie Preston Lewis
  • Melanie Preston Lewis
  • 16-07-20

Woah!

I am so glad I no longer drive. It's obviously become a seriously dangerous and profoundly moving experience in the dozen or so years since I gave up my licence. Poor Joe, you didn't get the feeling he was living his best life before the accident. After the accident, boy oh boy, things got very bad, very quickly. I think it says more about me when I sobbed more about the dog than anything or anyone else. I can't hear any sound even similar to 'CRACK' now without the hairs on the back of my neck standing up. Mr McCluskey's imagination is extremely, erm, imaginative! I'm thanking all my gods that he chooses to write about the things going on in his head rather than act them out. Not for the faint hearted, Crack gets down and dirty in the guts, gore and gristle and sweeps you in so close you could smell and taste the blood in the air. This is my first audio book by D.E. McCluskey but I can assure you it won't be my last! Listen with the lights on!