This is one of the creepiest novels I've read in a long while. Clines uses real tension to get our hearts beating like made and make us afraid to shut of the lights at night -- there isn't a whole slew of gore and cheap scares. When you couple this with a fascinating set of mysteries and interesting everyman (and woman) characters, you end up with a pretty amazing novel.
** Now I've listened to the audiobook as well. And it's not bad, though I really enjoyed reading the book much more. 4 stars for the audiobook.
What if the apartment you rent is in a building that is actually a machine built to deter the end of the world (as we know it)? Cthulu, a door that opens into space, miles-deep tunnels under the laundry room, an elevator that's never worked, a nude sun-bathing neighbor, a new neighbor with a shadowy past, a religious fanatic neighbor, and a close-mouthed building manager: all this and more await you as you delve into Clines' compelling and gripping story.
Nate's in a dead-end, endless 'temp' job and he needs a new place to live. Sure, the low rental price of this apartment causes him to pause a moment, but only a brief moment. After moving in, Nate starts to notice odd things about the building, like none of the apartments have the same layout and none are the same size. Oh yeah, no one dreams in that building. Sleep great, but no dreams. As Nate takes the lead on investigating the building's origins, other residents join in, dodging the manager and researching the building's unusual history. Suffice to say that when a door is locked with 3 large padlocks and painted over as if it's never been opened, you shouldn't open it.
Fun, thrilling story.
Completely original story. Nate is an every-man tuck in a mundane rut until he finds his life's purpose.
Suspenful throughout, and full of chilling, weird revelations; it's completely nuts in the best way.
When it finally picked up steam, it was awesome! However, I'll be honest, it took a while for it to hook me. I got it as an audiobook, and though I liked the narrator, the book just seemed a bit slow in the beginning, so I walked away from it for a while. (Sometimes I have the attention span of a gnat, especially when I have a pile of books waiting for me.) However, I kept reading lots of positive reviews, so I thought "Okay, I'll give it another try."
I am SO glad I did.
First, let me make the disclaimer of: I think I enjoyed this as an audiobook much more than I would have enjoyed it as a hard copy. I think the narrator (in the case: Ray Porter) brought the story to life.
14, once it really got going, was a book that kept me on my toes. I would expect one thing to happen, and something else would happen instead. I would think "Oh, that has to be a stopping point" only for the wave to start cresting even higher from there. (I do think he took a little too long on some of the scenes. They didn't need quite as much description as he gave them (aka: space scene.) The author made great use of setting the surreal against the drudgery of life.
He managed to make all the characters unique, yet believable (there are a few stereotypes present but it was fairly easy for me to shrug off because I just flat-out enjoyed the dialogue and it made up for it). By the time the story was done, I was glad it was done, because he'd wrung every ounce of drama from me, but also thinking I knew I had to listen to it again soon.
I would highly recommend 14. Just keep in mind it starts off a bit....slow.
Have to agree with the two commenters below, this is a great book, could be the perfect pacing, plot and characters, could be something of a preternatural quality?
WOW! Amazing! So original and engrossing you will not be able to stop reading. Just when you think you have it all figured out you get another surprise. Great scifi writer. Be sure to read The Fold after you finish this one. Or read The Fold first if this one is on hold for you.
The writing is just so good! Read this then read The Fold.
This book sucked me in relatively quickly. Consistently kept me interested. Would probably make a great movie as well.
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