Monday, May 7, 2012

Ghost Road Blues by Jonathan Maberry (Audiobook Review)

Audiobook Reviews from Audiobook-Heaven

”GhostGhost Road Blues
by Jonathan Mayberry
narrated by Tom Weiner
Series: The Pine Deep Trilogy #1
Copyright: 2011 Blackstone Audio
Duration: 14 hours 17 minutes unabridged
Genres: horror, supernatural, paranormal
Filed in: Audiobook Reviews
Click the image to visit the publisher’s website.

PUBLISHER’S SUMMARY: From a master of horror comes an apocalyptic showdown between the residents of a secluded, rural town and the deadly evil that confronts them wherever they turn.

Evil doesn’t die.

The cozy little town of Pine Deep buried the horrors of its past a long time ago. Thirty years have gone by since the darkness descended and the Black Harvest began, a time when a serial killer sheared a bloody swath through the quiet Pennsylvania village. The evil that once coursed through Pine Deep has been replaced by cheerful tourists getting ready to enjoy the country’s largest Halloween celebration in what is now called “The Spookiest Town in America.”

It just grows stronger.

But then—a month before Halloween—it begins. Unspeakably desecrated bodies. Inexplicable insanity. And an ancient evil walking the streets, drawing in those who would fall to their own demons and seeking to shred the very soul of this rapidly fracturing community. Yes, the residents of Pine Deep have drawn together and faced a killer before. But this time, evil has many faces—and the lust and will to rule the earth. This struggle will be epic.

©2011 Blackstone Audio

AUDIOBOOK REVIEW: I just can’t help it. Whenever I read a horror novel I just can’t help but compare it to Stephen King. So far no one has come even close, but I’ll admit that Maberry comes closer than some. Ghost Road Blues is a good story, but it still felt like reading a story in a book, whereas King’s novels always become more real for me.

And while we’re making Stephen King comparisons, Ghost Road Blues actually had a very similar feel to King’s It. Pine Deep, Pennsylvania could just as easily be Derry, Maine except that Pine Deep is a very small town. That’s one thing I like about Ghost Road Blues. Small towns are just scarier somehow. More personal. I dunno, maybe it’s because I grew up in a small town myself. Anyway, just like in It there is an ancient evil lurking and it feels that its time has come. It begins to draw in its minions and set its plans into action. But the forces of good are at work too, placing its own people in the right places at the right time. Until everyone is in place and a showdown is imminent. It’s not an uncommon formula for a horror novel, but it still works.

There are many types of horrors in this world, and the little town of Pine Deep, Pennsylvania seems to have them all on this particular October. There’s the fake horror of the hayrides, the kind where people dressed in red-stained clothing jump out and shout “Boo!” Then there’s the real kind of everyday horror; a man with a gun enters the house and starts acting crazy, or a man savagely beats his stepson. And then there’s the kind of horror most of us can only imagine: dead people coming back to life and dark forces gathering and drawing power. It’s all here in Pine Deep, “The Most Haunted Town In America” according to the billboard just outside of town. Maberry blends it all together nicely and, while he didn’t quite reach that deep part of me where the nightmares live, he did create a worthwhile story.

Tom Weiner is a decent enough narrator, although I suspect he’ll never be one of my favorites. He’s not boring or monotonous at all, but he doesn’t read with much feeling. His character voices are pretty good; each character has his or her own persona.

Ghost Road Blues was Jonathan Maberry’s first novel and it won the Bram Stoker award for Best First Novel. If you’re a fan of horror novels, you’re bound to like this one too.

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Special thanks to Blackstone Audio for this review copy. Audiobook review by Steven Brandt. This audiobook review is based on the unabridged audiobook. Come back soon for more audiobook reviews from Audiobook-Heaven.


Jonathan Maberry said...

Thanks for the review. Not sure if you know that GHOST ROAD BLUES is the first book of a trilogy, followed by DEAD MAN'S SONG and BAD MOON RISING.

Stormcrow said...

Wow, thanks for stopping by Jonathan! I'm looking forward to finishing the trilogy. Keep writing!

joni said...

I love to hear first novel authors become a success. That is the great part.
Now the story premise seems a little cliche' but we horror writers will always be compared to Mr. King.
I'm more of a Shirley Jackson kind of writer. :)

Nice review and it DOES make me want to listen to it!