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The Loney Audiobook

The Loney

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Publisher's Summary

The British Book Awards Book of the Year 2016.

Winner of the Costa First Novel Award 2015. Shortlisted for the Independent Book Week Award 2016.

If it had another name, I never knew, but the locals called it the Loney - that strange nowhere between the Wyre and the Lune where Hanny and I went every Easter time with Mummer, Farther, Mr. and Mrs. Belderboss and Father Wilfred, the parish priest.

It was impossible to truly know the place. It changed with each influx and retreat, and the neap tides would reveal the skeletons of those who thought they could escape its insidious currents.

No one ever went near the water. No one apart from us, that is. I suppose I always knew that what happened there wouldn't stay hidden for ever, no matter how much I wanted it to. No matter how hard I tried to forget....

©2015 Andrew Michael Hurley (P)2015 Hodder & Stoughton

What the Critics Say

"Modern classics in this genre are rare, and instant ones even rarer; The Loney, however, looks as though it may be both." (Sunday Telegraph)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.9 (166 )
5 star
 (57)
4 star
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3 star
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1 star
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Overall
3.7 (153 )
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Story
4.3 (154 )
5 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Rachel Redford 17/12/2015
    Rachel Redford 17/12/2015 Member Since 2015

    Writer and audiobook reviewer.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A mystery wrapped in an enigmatic landscape"

    Every now and then an exceptional first novel like The Loney comes along. It's not easy to classify - it pares sliver after sliver from a psychological onion of a plot; it has elements of gothic creepiness, even horror; it gets inside a fanatical and unhappy group of people expecting a miracle from God... Binding everything together is the eerie, bleak sweep of 'wild and useless' coastline in north-east England with its treacherous tides which consume all in their path
    The main events are set in 1976 when the middle-aged narrator Tonto was 15. His parents are part of an annual pilgrimage to a shrine accompanied by their Catholic priest who is replacing the much-loved Father who very recently died in mysterious circumstances. The group is riddled with tension and dissension, driven by Tonto's fervent mother who believes if they can but reach the shrine, God will cure the mutism of Hanny,Tonto's disturbed older brother. Tonto is Hanny's keeper and speaker, devoting his life to protecting him from himself and others, a role which becomes increasingly and frighteningly necessary as the unsettling tentacles of menace tighten their grip as the story progresses.
    To describe further would be to give away the increasingly disturbing strands of the story, but what makes it satisfying is that the whole is soundly rooted in reality. The other striking element is the author's superb writing: eyes are 'glassy like the underside of a slug'; a 'squabble of little brown birds' disturb the sky; there are 'cochineal tears' on a figure of Christ'. There's humour too: the Priest relishing the food saying, 'There's no better way of serving the Lord than feeding a Priest!' or a priest being like a fish, 'immersion for life'.
    The narration is excellent, capturing a whole raft of different characters, accents and changing moods.
    The only criticism I have is not to do with the writer or the narrator, but with the flashback and flash-forward episodes which make up the whole. Because when listening you cannot see the breaks in the text which tell you the time sequence has changed, it is sometimes confusing to realise you as listener have been catapulted forward or backward. Some kind of indication to the listener was needed.
    I recommend this one whole-heartedly!

    12 of 13 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Kunde 14/02/2016
    Amazon Kunde 14/02/2016 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
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    "I don't have enough superlatives. This is what fiction should be...."

    I'm not one for writing reviews, but must for "The Loney". This is the best piece of fiction I have read in ages. So humane, intelligent, so thought-provoking, so insightful, so gripping, so well paces and plotted, so well written. Absolutely unputdownable/unswitchoffable. And in the audible version, so excellently narrated (which, unfortunately, is rarely the case with audio downloads). I am about to order the print version and start reading. This more than deserves the Costa prize, and should have been on the 2015 Mann Booker shortlist. Please read/listen!!!

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Celia Johannesburg, South Africa 13/03/2016
    Celia Johannesburg, South Africa 13/03/2016 Member Since 2014
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    "Haunting and thought provoking"

    The combination of a beautifully written, understated style of writing; haunting images and a superb narrator kept me listening when I should have been doing other things! Now that I am finished the book, I find that aspects of the story keep on flitting into my mind, and while I consider them, I realize that the book is much more multi-faceted than I expected. There is the gothic aspect, and some supernatural incidents that are hinted at by the genre of the book. Then there is the human drama of a community caught up in issues of faith and family. Finally, there is a hint of humour in the parochial characters. I highly recommend this book to people who enjoy crime and thrillers, to those who appreciate the bizarre, and to those who enjoy books that question our basic values and religion.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    rathbone 07/02/2016
    rathbone 07/02/2016 Member Since 2012
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    "brilliant"

    I Totally loved this. I listen when I'm running and found myself going out for extra runs especially to listen! !

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Suswati 10/05/2017
    Suswati 10/05/2017 Member Since 2016

    Obsessed with psychological thrillers, crime, mystery and dystopian fictions. A good drama now and again. A harsh critic at times.

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    "Odd gothic thriller"

    The last 20 mins was the best part of this entire novel. Incredibly slow to start and for a very long time the religious subplot seemed pointless. There's also a lot of holes in the story like what happened to the baby's mother? Feel like it's been overhyped.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Patricia White Kendal 29/01/2016
    Patricia White Kendal 29/01/2016 Member Since 2017
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    "An outstanding narration makes this a must-listen."

    This book is a worthy award winner, but I suspect that if I'd read it as opposed to listen to it, I wouldn't be giving it 5 stars all round. The storyline itself is just not quite believable enough. BUT.... in this audio version the narration is outstanding; the atmospheric location and all the characters are alarmingly brought to life and the suspense generated as a result is sometimes palpable. Highly recommended.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ricci 21/04/2016
    Ricci 21/04/2016 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Best book for a very long time"

    If you like Jon McGregor's writing you should try this. It has all his patience, perceptiveness & humanity; it also has a tiny hint of horror, quite a lot of menace; some strong story-telling: like Stephen King! I really loved this book. I hope there will be plenty more from Andrew Michael Hurley

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Iain Crockett Bolton 16/03/2016
    Iain Crockett Bolton 16/03/2016 Member Since 2017

    Old Crock

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Abigails'Party meets The Whicker Man"

    This book is written beautifully. The phrases, observations and descriptions of the people and beach and the sea around Morcombe bay are wonderful and evocative. The dissection of the relationships within the group is acute and peceptive. The use of flashbacks occasionally gets confusing but the story continues to its conclusion in a non linear slightly dark way. Not a gory blood spattered horror by any means more a "tales of the unexpected". Absolutely loved it. Iain

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    User from Sussex sussex 26/01/2016
    User from Sussex sussex 26/01/2016

    active dog walker

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Avid audio book user"

    After reading other reviews I couldn't wait to download this book. I appreciate that it's award winning but I only managed to struggle through the first third before giving up on it. I found it so slow that it was going nowhere. Certainly wouldn't be one that I'd recommend.

    3 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Fifilefluff 16/06/2017
    Fifilefluff 16/06/2017 Member Since 2015
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    "Baffling"

    Richard Burnip's performance is wonderfully evocative and brilliantly soothing. The story left me a little blank though. There are elements of horror within the banal, but this is by no means a horror. As others have said, The Loney’s intrigue lies in all that Hurley dares to leave out. This is a novel of the unsaid, the implied, the barely grasped or understood, crammed with dark holes and blurry spaces that your imagination feels compelled to fill. It takes both confidence and talent to write like this and it leaves you wanting more...

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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