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What would have made The Ballad of Ballard and Sandrine better?
The ending came completely out of the blue and, although it was, for lack of a better word, macabre, it lacked any punch whatsoever. It was simply too strange and too tenuously connected to the main body of the story to have the desired, spine-chilling effect. Additionally, either Audible or the publisher made a major editing error, namely, by repeating verbatim the section entitled 1982. I verified this by checking the ebook version. All in all, this is not worth the money and certainly not worth a credit.
Would you ever listen to anything by Peter Straub again?
Yes. I liked both Black House and the Talisman, Straub's collaborations with Stephen King, and I have read, though not listened to, Floating Dragon, which I also liked. Straub is one of those authors who can tell a very good, rich story, when he wants to, but he also seems to be a bit too enamored with his own talent at times and to pitch his writing more toward the professional literary critic crowd rather than the intelligent reader of good fiction who nevertheless doesn't feel the need to untangle an extremely intricate plot while reading a good book for fun.
What do you think the narrator could have done better?
He didn't do a particularly great job with Sandrine's voice, and his presentation made both characters come across as relatively pretentious, which, perhaps, was acurate.
What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?
I know Straub is capable of doing much better than this, and, of course, there is absolutely no excuse for the massive editing error mentioned above.
Any additional comments?
Steer clear of this one. Buy the ebook, if you really want to read it.