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I wanted to love The Fisherman. It's been described as a literate "cosmic" (ie: Lovecraftian) horror novel and that sounded right up my alley. It gets off to a very strong start as we meet Abe and Dan, two men dealing with terrible loss who find solace together in fishing. Langan takes the time to develop these characters (particularly Abe) into people we care about. Unfortunately, just as that relationship is becoming interesting, the novel takes a left turn into a very long story within a story. It's important to the plot but the characters in this section of the book aren't as interesting or well-developed as Dan and Abe. Structurally, the story sets up what follows later but it consumes half of the novel, leaving it's main characters far behind and by the time the tale finally returns to them, it's too easy to see what's coming, making the remainder of the book somewhat anticlimactic.
There are some wonderful descriptive passages and there's no shortage of imagination. The story deals effectively with both powerful mythological concepts and human bereavement. It's a good book, certainly a cut above many of the less ambitious horror novels I've read but in the end, I think it's sabotaged a bit by it's own structure.
I'd give it 3.5 stars if that was an option.
Danny Campbell's narration is excellent.
10 of 11 people found this review helpful
Would you listen to The Fisherman again? Why?
The Fisherman unfolds like a story told by a grandfather during a storm or at a bar when the sea's too bad to catch anything. It only gets better with a second listen!
What did you like best about this story?
Langan's language is incredible.
Have you listened to any of Danny Campbell’s other performances before? How does this one compare?
If you could take any character from The Fisherman out to dinner, who would it be and why?
Abe--if only to hear the yarn from the man himself.
Any additional comments?
This Stoker Award-winning novel ushers in what will hopefully be the rise of the Weird Fiction Horror Novel. Let's hope it inspires Audible to produce his short fiction as audiobooks as well. I can't wait to hear The Wide, Carnivorous Sky!
2 of 2 people found this review helpful