ABR's full Forsaken audiobook review and many others can be found at Audiobook Reviewer.
This is the first novel I have had the pleasure of hearing written by J.D. Barker. The mention of the store “Needful Things” in Castle Rock captured my attention first. Having read Stephen King’s novel Needful Things, I knew Forsaken had to be as interesting and captivating.
Thad McAlister an author tells the story of Shadow Cove and its inhabitants during the Salem Witch Trials. Unfortunately, writing his book releases an evilness bent on revenge first and foremost at the same time endangering his family. This novel which practically wrote itself will be the novel that puts McAlister on the established and legend writers list. One would not expect writing a book would result in so much darkness and fear. But for Thad McAlister and his family, they experience the fear and horror of things best left unwritten first hand. Rachel McAlister realizes early on that she has brought this horror upon her family with a casual comment made at the mysterious little shop in Castle Rock but has no way to stop it. Thad figures out much later that his writing has opened a door best left closed and sealed. Can he save his family? Can he save himself? The answers will terrify you!
We are given a small amount of insight into the mind of Barker and it is a deep, dark place: minions that crawl forth and smother everything with vile rotten dirt, plants that rip the flesh from anyone brave enough to venture through them. Even a most innocent noise “click-click-clickity-click” becomes terrifying! The one phrase that made my blood run cold was “her soul crept in.” The imagery of this was jaw dropping. This is a small phrase and not entirely unique, the manner in which Barker uses it makes it frighteningly creepy.
The storylines flow fluidly, interwoven expertly and horrors are described with a rich vocabulary that leaves one with images burned deep in their minds. Just using “click-click-clickity-click” invokes terror in one’s mind resulting in goose bumps.
Barker develops each character to its fullest, both main and secondary ones. I can still see the small minions with their yellowed teeth and long nails. I can even smell their vile rotten dirt that is their physical essence when destroyed. Barker is a master wordsmith.
This story will leave you looking behind you at each and every snap, crackle and pop your house makes night or in broad day light!
Christina Delaine does an excellent job of narrating. Her “click-click-clickity-click” is so softly spoken time and again, that one hears it in their minds throughout the book. She translates the fear, darkness and chilling atmosphere clearly with her voice.
The audio production by Audible Studios was excellent and clearly done, I had no issues at all.
Audiobook provided for review by the author.