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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 listeners say about The Whisper Man

Average customer ratings
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

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.

19 people found this helpful

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I’m amazed that ppl liked this

As soon as I saw the Narrator was Christopher Ecclestone and read the introduction I purchased without hesitation. 10 minutes in I was thinking “ was C.E forced to read this at gun point??” Honestly I could have done a better job. Really disappointed. Stick to TV mr Ecclestone!

17 people found this helpful

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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.

10 people found this helpful

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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

8 people found this helpful

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dire narrative

monotone throughout.
did the narrator read this through first? if he did he needs to learn how to read. good story just awful narration. spoiled the story!

6 people found this helpful

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What a shame

This is generally a good story. It worked for me and I listened to it almost continuously. Now the bad part. I love Christopher Ecclestone, he is one of my favourite actors, but he phoned it in with this reading. He was obviously bored stiff reading it. There was precious little inflection and his monotone voice made for hard listening. The way he switched from characters made it difficult to work out when one voice changed to another. Sorry Christopher, but you dropped the ball with this one.

5 people found this helpful

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A heart stopping roller coaster

This was a brilliant book that I was consciously drawing out (as I didn’t want it to end) whilst devouring the next bit because couldn’t stop listening. You knew every character inside and out - they were so beautifully detailed and delivered. This was genuinely the best book I’ve listened to in a while

5 people found this helpful

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One of best best books I've ever listened to!

High praise for Alex North for this amazing book! It's gritty, but not gratuitous, leaving your own imagination to do the work.
This author has huge success ahead and I am now a huge fan!
The Narrator as we all know, can make or break a book, but he gets 5 stars too for the energy he brings to every written word.

4 people found this helpful

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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.

4 people found this helpful

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Disappointing...

I was really looking forward to this after looking at the reviews but was disappointed. I didn't find the story very gripping compared to other thrillers I have listened to and the narration was so monotone that at times I was confused about which character was speaking.

3 people found this helpful