Title: Libertines: A Horror Story
Author: Grant Palmquist
Narrator: David Winograd
Genres: Horror, Paranormal
Length: 1 hr and 13 mins
Source: Audible | Giveaway
Samantha is bored with her sex life, so when she finds an ad in a magazine promising the key to spice things up, she proposes to her husband that they give it a try. The method consists on listening to a recording which contains subliminal messages. At first, everything seems great, until Samantha and her husbands’ desires spiral out of control.
This is the second book I listen to by this author and narrator. The premise is great: A couple in their early 40s try to spice up their sex life. Who wouldn’t want that? You love the person you’re married to, but the passion has been gone for a while now. That’s normal, right? Is it possible to have it any other way? An ad in a sex magazine says so. It guarantees so. It’s not much of a conundrum, is it? You’d give it a try, right? Samantha and her unnamed husband did.
The book is narrated by the husband and it starts off really well, with all the questions I mentioned above running through his mind. I thoroughly enjoyed that character because he was just darn average. He is settled in his routine, resigned that it is all he is ever going to get because that’s just what couples grow into after being married for a while, and when his wife suggests that they try this thing (sort of like Eve offering Adam the apple), he has serious doubts. He can’t be bothered. I thought that was very real.
The first few minutes after that, when they both start changing, were also quite enjoyable. I especially appreciated when the protagonist realizes that he is turning into something he is not very fond of but cannot seem to stop listening to that darn recording and following his urges because they are so new and exciting to him, even though he knows decent limits are being crossed.
I liked that Samantha wanted to go through those changes with her husband. When he does his own thing, he starts realizing that he doesn’t really know his wife anymore. Those bits were all very interesting.
But then the story started getting a tad too repetitive for my taste, especially whenever the main character enters a bar, and then all the blood and violence. But my interest in the story decreased most of all because it started turning eerily into something much too similar to Engel: A Novelette of Terror, the other novelette I listened to by the same author. That feeling of been there, done that persisted till the end, which didn’t give me much closure either.
The narrator was overall quite pleasant to listen to. Again, there were a few inflexions I wasn’t much of a fan of, but nowhere near as annoying as in Engel’s. I had the same problem with not being able to easily distinguish between especially the two main voices, and there were a couple of times when I wasn’t immediately sure if the story was being narrated or if I was listening to a dialogue. But some intonations were spot on, especially when one of the characters did something really bad and then acts all innocent. The repulsion felt by the other character was also very well achieved. Also, I can honestly say that I would most likely not have enjoyed the story as much if I had not listened to it; David Winograd did manage to get me engrossed in it, and turned something which could have been almost dull (to me at least) into a good paced and interesting narrative.
In conclusion: very good beginning but it starts going downhill after the middle or so. I will be rounding the 2,5 stars up because it is an intriguing concept and the narration kept me going. I sort of feel that I should have been more excited about all I listened to, but in a world where sex loses its meaning so easily, and it’s all been said and done, I really could not feel much. I should have been shocked but this sort of thing isn’t really new anymore. It’s the psychological effects of how the situation developed that kept me intrigued, and because of those I do recommend you listen to this story.
Disclaimer: I won this audiobook in a Rofflecopter giveaway hosted by Audiobookreviewer.
Listened to on May 28, 2015